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1st Team - Match centre

Hednesford Town
Witton Albion
Sat 7 Oct 15:00 - The Evo-Stik League - The EVO-STIK Premier Division Full time Attendance 457

Only goal of the game condemns Witton to 5th straight loss

Match Report kindly supplied by: Andrew Simpson, Senior Sports Writer, Northwich Guardian http://www.northwichguardian.co.uk/sport/

THERE was a moment late in the second half when Witton Albion manager Carl Macauley could be forgiven for thinking his team’s luck had changed.

Jordan Graham, making his debut as a substitute for Hednesford, did not make a clean contact with a strike on goal. It took a wicked deflection off a defender, and the ball struck an upright with the visitors’ goalkeeper Calvin Hare unable to intervene. That would have been a cruel way for a four-match losing run to become five.

Instead the Pitmen plundered a winner from their best move of the match two minutes later.
Graham moved the ball to captain Tom Thorley, and his measured pass sent Tyler Weir, overlapping on the home team’s left, into the clear.
He did not break stride, and steered a shot where Hare could not reach it. It was a moment of rare quality.

Albion attempted to muster a response, and James Foley’s strike flashed wide of the target via the slightest of touches from a back-marker.
That was as close as they got to scoring though.

If more than six hours without a goal is a concern, it is secondary to a sequence of six defeats in the past seven matches.

Carl Macauley recalled Michael Wilson to restore a five-man backline that had served his side so well during August. They appeared more steady, although the added stability – certainly in the contest’s early stages – felt fragile.

The visitors banked therefore on set-pieces as a way to plunder a goal. It almost worked, and Rob Hopley failed to control a volley when Nick Ryan nudged a header his way from Anthony Gardner’s long throw.

Tom Owens teed up Steve Tames, but James Mutton reacted swiftly to block the striker’s low shot.

Hednesford were similarly short on ideas, although the speed of front man Edjidja Mbunga forced Witton’s defenders to stay on alert.
He shot straight at Hare after cutting inside Anthony Brown before repeating the trick, this time prompting Albion’s custodian to block at his near post.

Hare also parried a snapshot from Mutton in the seconds before half-time.

The Pitmen enjoyed a prolonged spell of pressure after the interval, although it consisted almost entirely of corners punctuated by Ben Bailey launching throws into their penalty area.

Ryan limped off too with a thigh problem, forcing a reshuffle that Macauley admitted afterwards he didn’t want to make.

Will Jones reacted smartly to redirect Mbunga’s header to safety, then Thorley’s drive stung Hare’s palms.

At the other end, a counter-attack by the away team ended with Jones’ well-struck drive nestling in the side-netting.

On course for a draw, which defensively at least they can make a case they merited, Witton breathed a sigh of relief when Graham’s diverted shot clattered a post. The respite was only brief though, and Weir’s first goal for Hednesford proved to be decisive.

Pitmen | 3-5-2 | Wren (GK), Mutton, Oki (Fitzpatrick 72), Bailey, Melbourne, King, Thorley, Collins (Graham 61), Weir, Mbunga (Butlin 74) & Glover. Subs not used: Steele & Veiga (GK). Goal: Weir 79. Booked: Glover, King, Bailey & Melbourne (all fouls)

Witton | 5-3-2 | Hare (GK), Gardner, Wilson, Brown, Ryan (Jones 50), McKenna (Devine 57), Owens, Williams, Foley, Tames (Haywood 67) & Hopley. Subs not used: Hedley & Neild (GK). Booked: Brown (foul)

Referee Matthew Law Attendance 457


Highlights

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83:00 Yellow Card
Anthony Brown is yellow carded for Witton Albion
67:00 Sub Off
Steve Tames is substituted off for Witton Albion
67:00 Sub On
Prince Haywood is substituted on for Witton Albion
57:00 Sub Off
Danny McKenna is substituted off for Witton Albion
57:00 Sub On
Matty Devine is substituted on for Witton Albion
50:00 Sub Off
Nick Ryan is substituted off for Witton Albion
50:00 Sub On
Will Jones is substituted on for Witton Albion
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Hednesford Town
  • Witton Albion
  • 0
  • Nick Ryan Sub Off 50:00'
  • Will Jones Sub On 50:00'
  • Danny McKenna Sub Off 57:00'
  • Matty Devine Sub On 57:00'
  • Steve Tames Sub Off 67:00'
  • Prince Haywood Sub On 67:00'
  • Anthony Brown Yellow Card 83:00'

Team selection

Hare, Calvin Hare, Calvin
Ryan, Nick Ryan, Nick
Brown, Anthony Brown, Anthony
Wilson, Michael Wilson, Michael
Gardner, Anthony Gardner, Anthony
McKenna, Danny McKenna, Danny
Foley, James Foley, James
Williams, Paul Williams, Paul
Owens, Tom Owens, Tom
Hopley, Rob Hopley, Rob
Tames, Steve Tames, Steve

League round up

Other The EVO-STIK Premier Division results

Altrincham
4
0
Rushall Olympic
Buxton
2
1
2
0
Nantwich Town
1
2
Stafford Rangers
Mickleover Sports
2
5
Stalybridge Celtic
4
1
1
2
Halesowen Town
Warrington Town
2
1
Whitby Town

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
6. Ashton United 21 38
7. Farsley Celtic 23 36
8. Witton Albion 23 32
9. Hednesford Town 23 32
10. Stourbridge 20 31
11. Mickleover Sports 25 31
12. Matlock Town 23 31

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