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1st Team - Match centre

Nantwich Town
Witton Albion
Full time
W Jones (69')
Tue 1 Jan 15:00 - The Evo-Stik League - Premier Division Attendance 956

Albion complete worthy double over league leaders

By

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

CARL Macauley urged his players to believe in themselves before meeting the league leaders and it turns out they listened.
Substitute Will Jones scored a decisive goal to condemn Nantwich Town to only a second defeat of the campaign in front of their own supporters.

Witton Albion deserved it too. The Dabbers were unbeaten in their previous eight matches in the Northern Premier League and started 2019 with a four-point lead at the table’s summit.

However on the few occasions they did have sight of goal their finishing was flaky. They were unconvincing in defence too and the visitors punished them at their most shoddy.

There was little danger on 69 minutes when goalkeeper Will Jaaskelainen received a back-pass from a teammate and he lazily stroked it towards Louis Barnes. Jones darted forward, panicking the full-back into giving up possession before steadying himself and spearing a rising shot into the net before the Dabbers’ custodian could recover.

It was a near-identical goal to one scored by Tom Owens against Farsley Celtic last weekend. This time though Witton protected their advantage.

They had to survive a scare or two, notably when Greg Hall produced a brilliant save to thwart James Lawrie after Jamie Morgan had slid a pass across goal. The Nantwich midfielder appeared certain to score, but fired too close to the falling goalkeeper.

Hall was in the right place as well with three minutes left when Joe Malkin steered Barnes’ cross towards goal. The Dabbers sent on two more strikers, Callum Saunders and Danny Glover, but to no avail.

Instead it was changes from the bench made by Carl Macauley, who also introduced Danny McKenna early in the second-half, that made a defining impact.

Nantwich had found precious few gaps in Witton’s defence, boosted as it was by the return after an illness of River Humphreys, in the opening period too. Sean Cooke’s shot was deflected to safety after former Winsford United wide-man Nathan Cotterell and Barnes had combined on the left.

Cotterell scampered away from Anthony Gardner midway through the first-half and teed up Cooke, but Josh Wardle blocked his attempt. The Dabbers’ best chance fell to Malkin, who inexplicably headed wide from close-range after rising to meet Barnes’ cross.

Albion were doubly-relieved; a poor clearance from Hall set the move in motion. He was untroubled when Barnes tried his luck from distance, while James Foley’s free-kick was the only time Witton made Jaaskelainen work before the break.

Nantwich might have taken the lead before much of the near four-figure crowd at Weaver Stadium had returned to their position after the interval. Cooke’s glorious cross picked out Malkin, and his looping header was tipped over the bar by Hall.

Jordan Cobley spun into a shooting space at the other end but failed to hit the target, then Joe Mwasile’s cut-back rolled across the face of goal after he had bustled past Humphreys.

Jones’ arrival then swung the contest Witton’s way, and on this occasion there was no late twist!

Nantwich | 4-2-3-1 | Jaaskelainen (GK), Morgan, Mullarkey, Stair, Barnes, Hughes, Lawrie, Mwasile (Glover 85), Cooke, Cotterell (Saunders 70), Malkin. Subs not used: Bourne, O’Riordan & Walsh. Booked: Malkin (foul) & Cooke (dissent)

Witton | 4-4-2 | Hall (GK), Gardner, Humphreys, Wardle, Devine, Smart (McKenna 61), Booth, Owens, Foley, Cobley (Jones 54), Hopley. Subs not used: Yates & Lingouba. Goal: Jones 69. Booked: Smart & Humphreys (both fouls)

Referee Daniel Hitchell Attendance 956

Many thanks to Karl Brooks Photography for his photos from this great win.

Key moments

69:00
Goal Will Jones scores for Witton Albion

Highlights

View 0 new events
90:00 +4:00 Clean Sheet Bonus
Greg Hall keeps a clean sheet for Witton Albion
76:00 Yellow Card
River Humphreys is yellow carded for Witton Albion
69:00 Goal 0 - 1
Will Jones scores for Witton Albion
61:00 Sub Off
Billy Smart is substituted off for Witton Albion
61:00 Sub On
Danny McKenna is substituted on for Witton Albion
57:00 Yellow Card
Billy Smart is yellow carded for Witton Albion
54:00 Sub Off
Jordan Cobley is substituted off for Witton Albion
54:00 Sub On
Will Jones is substituted on for Witton Albion
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Nantwich Town
  • Witton Albion
  • 0
  • Jordan Cobley Sub Off 54:00'
  • Will Jones Sub On 54:00'
  • Billy Smart Yellow Card 57:00'
  • Billy Smart Sub Off 61:00'
  • Danny McKenna Sub On 61:00'
  • Will Jones Goal 69:00'
  • River Humphreys Yellow Card 76:00'

Team selection

Hall, Greg Hall, Greg
Gardner, Anthony Gardner, Anthony
Humphreys , River Humphreys , River
Foley, James Foley, James
Wardle, Josh Wardle, Josh
Devine, Matty Devine, Matty
Smart, Billy Smart, Billy
Booth, Will Booth, Will
Hopley, Rob Hopley, Rob
Cobley, Jordan Cobley, Jordan
Owens, Tom Owens, Tom

League round up

Other Premier Division results

Hednesford Town
0
1
1
1
Buxton
Mickleover Sports
3
2
Stafford Rangers
Warrington Town
2
0
Whitby Town
2
0
Scarborough Athletic
1
2
Stalybridge Celtic

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
7. Basford United 40 61
8. Scarborough Athletic 40 61
9. Witton Albion 40 58
10. Hyde United 40 53
11. Whitby Town 40 49
12. Lancaster City 40 49
13. Hednesford Town 40 48

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