MITCH’S LATE WINNER SNATCHES FIRST WIN AT MAIN ROAD
BY GARRY CLARKE
MAINE ROAD 2-3 1874 NORTHWICH HSL PREMIER 20TH JANUARY 2018
A 94th minute goal secured 1874 Northwich their first ever win at Maine Road’s Brantingham Road home in a five goal thriller.
Playing their first away Hallmark Security League fixture since 1st November, 1874 extended their winning run of league games to seven but had to work hard for the victory against determined opponents.
Struggling at the wrong end of the table, Maine Road got off to a flying start when Sam Riley took advantage of 1874 failing to deal with a corner to open the scoring in the 3rd minute.
On a heavy pitch 1874 dominated the first half, despite crating several chances struggled to find a way through a hard working Maine Road team which defended resolutely.
Mark Jones and Jake Parker both had shots blocked by defenders, Scott McGowan and Taylor Kennerley fired just off target, Kazin Waite-Jackson struck a post while Road keeper Hayden Buckley-Smith tipped a Jones strike over the bar and several crosses were cut out by Road defenders.
1874 finally breached the Road defence on the stroke of half time. Kennerley delivered a free kick into the home side’s penalty area, the ball was only cleared as far as Matt Woolley, who from ten yards outside the box flighted the ball diagonally over the Road rearguard towards the far post where it was met by Jack Pritchard who headed past Buckley-Smith from close range.
The second half opened with Woolley and Road’s Jack Coop trading long range shots which were comfortably saved by Buckley-Smith and opposite number Greg Hall.
On the hour mark Waite-Jackson unleashed a 30 yard drive which beat Buckley-Smith’s dive, the ball cannoned off an upright bounced along the goal line struck the far post and rebounded into Buckley-Smith’s hands.
In the 65th minute Waite-Jackson swung in a corner from the left which Maine Road could not clear. In a goalmouth McGowan and Ryan Mitchell had attempts cleared off the line, before the ball broke to Parker who drilled a low shot through a packed six yard box to give 1874 the lead.
Moments later Hall pulled off a good save to deny Coop, however the 1874 custodian was unable to prevent Coop from equalizing in the last minute of normal time. A free kick caused confusion in the 1874 penalty area; the ball fell to Coop who smashed it into the back of the net from ten yards.
Looking like leaving Brantingham Road for 5th time without a win 1874 snatched a winner four minutes into stoppage time at the end of an entertaining, well refereed encounter.
A Waite-Jackson corner flicked off the head of a Maine Road defender at the near post. Travelling towards the far post the ball was met by Mitchell who bulleted a header into the back of the net sparking wild scenes of celebration as players and spectators joined together to celebrate 1874 Northwich’s first ever win at the ground.
MAINE ROAD: Buckley-Smith, Brown (Wright 61), Socha, Mason, Edwards, Wills, Langford, Riley (Pope 61), Coop, Burton (Ormrod 41), Cookson. Subs not used Hill, Pollitt.
1874: Hall. Connor (Meadowcroft 93), L Jackson, Pritchard, Mitchell, M Jones, Waite-Jackson, Woolley, McGowan, Parker, (Lever 77) Kennerley (Woods 70). Subs not used Haughton, Thomas.
GOALS: Maine Road Riley 3 1874 Pritchard 45, Parker 68, Mitchell 94
ATTENDANCE 175 REFEREE L Corrigan
1874 held up on the road
by Garry Clarke
Having taken the lead in the 84th minute 1874 Northwich were confident of breaking their Brantingham Road hoodoo and winning for the first time at the ground. However, their hopes of a first three point haul were dashed two minutes from time when Maine Road equalised leaving the green contingent in the crowd feeling like their team had lost, but a draw is still 1874’s best return from the ground where they had lost on all three previous visits.
1874 dominated the game enjoying the vast majority of the possession but struggling to find a way past the Maine Road defence and cause Ryan Livesey in the home goal too many problems. At the other end of the pitch the 1874 rearguard had to be careful not to be caught out on the break by a young enthusiastic Maine Road team.
Returning to an old stomping ground, Tom Bailey went close to opening the scoring in the 4th minute curling a shot inches wide, while a minute later Jason Carey forced his way past two defenders to shoot wide of the target as 1874 subjected Road’s goal to early pressure.
Having withstood the early onslaught Road hit back with Rhys Clooney firing over the bar in the 10th minute and eight minutes later having a shot blocked as he tried to turn a low cross goalwards. Later in the half Matt Morgan ended a good run by shooting across 1874’s goal.
In the closing minutes of the first half Livesey saved well to twice deny Bailey and keep out a Carey effort with his feet.
The second half followed a similar pattern to the first half with 1874 virtually camped in the Maine Road half and the home side looking for a quick breakaway.
Livesey did well as he snatched a Paul Connor cross off Bailey’s head, while a few minutes later Bailey headed wide of the target after Sam Hind had headed a Carey cross back across goal.
On the hour mark Maine Road broke down the left wing, a cross found Connor Hughes unmarked in the centre of the 1874 area, but he could not hit the target heading over. A minute later Clooney ended a good run by drawing a fine save from Greg Hall, before Sam Hare looped a header from a Hind cross into Livesey’s hands.
In the 75th minute Bailey drilled the ball across the face of Road’s goal, sliding into the six yard box with the goal at his mercy Hare failed to make contact with the ball which a defender diverted behind for a corner. Road only cleared the corner as far as Mark Jones who fired a shot just wide from 25 yards.
Bailey finally broke the deadlock in the 84th minute netting his 25th goal of the season. Taking route one, Hall launched a clearance downfield, Carey out jumped the Road defence to flick the ball into the path of Bailey, who, taking advantage of the covering defender losing his feet, calmly slotted the ball past Livesey.
1874’s joy was short-lived as four minutes later Maine Road equalised. Braking down the ring wing, a low cross was delivered into the 1874 area, the cross was cut out but not cleared, the ball fell to substitute Christy O’Brien who, with the aid of a deflection, sent the ball high into the 1874 net.
In the dying minutes of an entertaining, but ultimately frustrating, game 1874 launched several balls into the Road area in search of an elusive equalizer, but Livesey and his colleagues dealt with everything that was thrown at them.
MAINE ROAD Livesey, Senior, Edwards, Mason, Inniss, Morgan, Broady, Tinker, Roe, Clooney (Burgess 72), Hughes (O’Brien 77) Subs not used Blundell, Steele, Breslin
1874 Hall, Connor, Mitchell, Thomas, Russell, Hare (Edwards 80), Mark Jones, Lee Jones, Carey, Bailey, Hind Subs not used M Woolley, Jack Woolley, Whitlock, Millington
Goals: Maine Road O’Brien 88 1874 Bailey 86
Referee Patrick Mahon Attendance 225
1874 supporters were out in force showing support for their team.
Photos courtesy of Molly Darlington
1874 slipped to their 7th league defeat of the season with a below par performance against a youthful Maine Road side.
The game began at a good pace, with both sides trying to secure the midfield area and the home side took an early lead when, after just five minutes, Connor Hughes fired home after the 1874 defence failed to clear the danger.
But just five minutes later and the scores were level as 1874’s leading scorer Matt Beadle, had time to bring a Ben Brooks header down and volley the ball into the bottom right hand corner of the Maine Road net from 20 yards. However, on the quarter hour mark, Maine Road recaptured the lead and once again mistakes in the 1874 defence helped Hughes to score, but he did so only after Greg Hall had made two good saves, only to once again see that his defence failed to clear the danger.
Shortly afterwards, the 1874 fans and players thought that good work by Beadle had won his side a penalty but the referee thought otherwise and waived play on.
Another lapse in concentration by 1874’s defence nearly resulted in hat-trick for Hughes but his effort from 15 yards went over the bar.
On the stroke of half time, Ryan Jackson, cut inside from the left wing and delivered a great ball into Mike Brandon, but as he was about to shoot he was fouled and the referee had no hesitation in awarding a penalty. Beadle stepped up, but his spot kick was weak and easily saved. This was the third penalty missed by 1874 in two seasons at this venue.
HALF TIME: Maine Road 2-1 1874 Northwich.
The Greens started the second half well and were level on the 49th minute, as Matt Beadle latched on to an over the top ball from Jackson to chip the on rushing Livesey from 20 yards – a great finish that brought the 74 back in to the contest.
Indeed for the next 20 minutes or so, 1874 enjoyed their best period of the game but a goal wasn’t forthcoming.
Then in the final 15 minutes Maine Road took control of the game once again and in the 80th minute Hughes was allowed time and space to advance on the 1874 goal with no real resistance but his shot was saved well by Hall but Tyler Edwards was following up and restored the home sides lead with a simple tap in five yards out.
The three points were confirmed just five minutes later, as Edwards beat Connor and then Mitchell before scoring his second goal of the afternoon.
FULL TIME: Maine Road 4-2 1874 Northwich
1874 TEAM | Hall, Connor, Mitchell, Thomas, James, Chappell (C), Brandon, Ward, Beadle (Riley 89), Brooks (Woolley 81), Jackson (Wellstead 75).
UNUSED SUBS | Kirk, Lomas
MAINE ROAD 1-0 1874 NORTHWICH NWCFL PREMIER 3RD JANUARY 2015
2015 started in similar fashion to the end of 2014 for 1874 Northwich FC, dominating possession, missing two penalties and losing to the only goal of the game.
Having lost their last three games in 2014, 1874 kicked off the New Year determined to get back to winning ways. Playing at a high tempo, 1874 enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges playing several dangerous balls into their opponent’s area before in the 11th minute Lee Duckworth fired in a long range free kick which Road’s impressive goalkeeper Ryan Livesey tipped onto and over the bar.
Eight minutes later Steve Foster set Stuart Wellstead away down the left wing, as he entered the penalty area he was felled by Mike Shenton. On his first return to Brantingham Road in his new colours, Maine Road’s all time record goal scorer Neil Chappell blasted the spot kick over the bar.
1874 switched off defensively for a moments allowing the home side to take the lead against the run of play in the 28th minute. A well worked corner kick found its way to Connor Hughes on the edge of the 1874 area; Road’s leading scorer rifled a shot through a packed penalty area giving Matt Conkie no chance.
1874 worked hard attempting to get back on level terms before the half time break. Daley Woods hit the bar with an in swinging corner, Matty Ward had a shot deflected wide and Chappell shot inches wide from distance.
1874 continued to push forward in search of an equaliser in the second half. Woods headed a Wellstead cross onto the bar in the 50th minute, five minutes later he flashed a shot across the goal. On the hour mark Woods ended a run down the right wing with a cross along the six yard line which none of his team mates could get on the end of with the goal open.
Throughout the game a well organised Maine Road team who defended well were always dangerous on the break went close to adding to their tally several times in the second half as they broke quickly to exploit space left at the back as 1874 attacks were thwarted.
Matt Woolley had a powerful header from a corner saved by Livesey, who in the 80th minute brought down Foster forcing referee Peter Sporne to award 1874 their second penalty of the game. After a lengthy delay during which players from both teams indulged in a bout of pushing and shoving which saw Road’s Shenton sent off, captain Duckworth stepped forward to take the penalty, which was saved by Livesey.
As the game entered stoppage time Livesey parried a long range shot into the path of Foster who bundled it into the net, however the goal was disallowed as Foster had inadvertently controlled the ball with his hand as he was sliding in.
In the closing minutes Dave Short fired a shot over the bar from the edge of the area and Ryan Stewart had a powerfully struck shot turned behind by a fine save from Livesey as Maine Road held on to take all three points from an entertaining encounter.
MAINE ROAD- Livesey, Tinker, Flynn (Hulme 78mins), Shenton, Mason, Struminskyj, Breslin, Langford, Burke (Alexander 72mins), Hughes (Roe ht), Morgan. Sub not used- Harper.
1874- Conkie, Mitchell, Stewart, Duckworth, Thomas, Chappell (Short 77mins), Woods (Connor 60mins), Woolley, Foster, Ward, Wellstead (Brandon 60mins). Subs not used – Crofts, McGrath.
GOAL – Maine Road Connor Hughes 28 ATTENDANCE 226 REFEREE – Peter Sporne
MAINE ROAD 3-1 1874 NORTHWICH NWCFL CHALLENGE CUP SEMI FINAL FIRST LEG
1874 Northwich will have to overturn a two goal deficit in the second leg if they are to reach the NWCFL Challenge Cup Final, having lost 3-1 at Brantingham Road. Although second best for large periods of the game, 1874 caused their Premier Division opponents enough problems to ensure they enter the second leg at the Barton Stadium on Saturday 12th April confident of being able to cause an upset.
Standing third in the top flight, Maine Road dominated the opening exchanges forcing Matt Conkie into several fine saves, with Rick Williams especially lively. Surviving the initial onslaught, 1874 slowly start to establish a foothold in the game and, somewhat against the run of play, tok the lead in the 28th minute. Ryan Stewart, who a few minutes earlier had sent a long range shot just wide of the target, floated a free kick into the Maine Road penalty area, as the home side struggled to clear the ball amidst a goalmouth scramble their goalkeeper Ryan Livesey shoulder charges Sakeel Abdullah to the ground. Stuart Wellstead stepped forward to send Livesey the wrong way from the penalty spot.
1874 were enjoying their best spell of the half, with Livesey saving well to deny David Short from adding a second before Maine Road equalised in the 41st minute, 1874 failing to clear their lines, the ball fell to James Rothel who fired home from eight yards.
1874 went close to regaining the lead in the first minute of the second half. Short setting up Stewart whose drive from 25 yards was tipped over the bar by Livesey.
Watched by the highest crowd of the season at Brantingham Road, Maine Road hit the front in the 58th minute. 1874’s rearguard momentarily switched off while appealing for hand ball allowing a cross from the left to find an unmarked Jack Langford who drilled the ball home.
Employing a direct style of play, a hard working Maine Road team dominated the second half, reacting quicker than their visitors they were able to cut out many 1874 attacks before they had chance to develop. The home side extended their advantage in the 70th minute when Neil Chappell rose highest meeting a corner from the left, flicking the ball across the goal and into the far side of the net.
Limited to sporadic attempts on goal, mainly shooting from distance, 1874 went close to halving the deficit carried forward into the second leg. Mike Brandon slipped a pass into the path of Matty Ward whose cross flashed across the goal mouth agonisingly just out of reach of any team mates.
MAINE ROAD – Livesey, Hill, Rothel, Shenton, Mason, Chappel, Williams (Henderson 67mins), Langford, Bentham (Beadle 76mins), Connors, Moran. Subs not used Doherty, Broady, Coughlan.
1874 – Conkie, Mitchell, Duckworth, Farnworth, Thomas, Stewart (Bailey 83mins), Abdullah, Woolley, Short (Brandon 74mins), Ward, Wellstead. Sub not used Bowyer.
GOALS Maine Road Rothel 41, Langford 58, Chappell 70 1874 Wellstead 28
Attendance 206 Referee N.Barnard