Matlock Town FC vs Belper Town
Matlock Town FC0
The Proctor Cars StadiumFA Cup
MATLOCK TOWN 0-3 BELPER TOWN
Jonathan Margetts returned to haunt his old club with a hat-trick as against the odds, Belper took full advantage of an inept Matlock performance to comfortably make FA Cup progress in front of a great 1052 crowd.
Margetts was on loan with the Gladiators from Boston United in 2018/19 and he, along with the rest of the Nailers players must have been surprised with the ease in which they won, especially given Matlock had won five on the bounce.
Perhaps complacency set in, only the home players will know that. Over the ninety minutes they were outbattled by a team a tier lower in the pyramid, finishing with ten men after Jamie Sharman’s red card for the second Belper goal.
Belper showed desire, Matlock on the day didn’t which in a local derby with valuable financial rewards at stake is unacceptable.
It was certainly a most unlike a Paul Phiillips side display against Belper who were competent in all areas of the field. An indication of Matlock’s poor display is that they didn’t seriously test visiting goalkeeper Myles Wright until the 92nd minute when substitute Callum Chippendale saw his fierce strike beaten away.
Ross Hannah, back in the Matlock line up after suspension, only featured very briefly, pulling up with a hamstring injury and having to be replaced by Jesurun Uchebgulam in only the 8th minute.
Soon afterwards Belper had the first meaningful strike, Sam Wright’s shot cannoning off Sam Egerton for a corner, the pressure being eased with Matlock being awarded a free kick.
The hosts won two corners of their own which came to nothing, as did an Alex Byrne free kick.
Belper then lost full back Ben Rhodes to injury, Harvey Kozluk coming on and then with 25 minutes on the clock, Belper drew first blood.
Belper recycled a cleared corner to return the ball into the danger area, MARGETTS reacting quicker than anyone to lift a close range finish into the roof of the net.
The Nailers comfortably fended off any Matlock attacks, dominating midfield with Brodie Litchfield at the heart of things. Surprisingly Matlock looked low on confidence and lacked the ingenuity to unlock a solid yellow back line.
Craig Nelthorpe, another former Gladiator , curled narrowly wide of the far post as he cut in from the right in the 40th minute, Matlock only managing a soft strike from Alex Wiles which dribbled through to Wright.
Mark Lees drove into the sidenetting early in the second period as Matlock clearly needed an injection of urgency. A promising interchange between Byrne and Wiles saw the former fire tamely at Wright.
The introduction of Chippendale seemed initially to pep up an out of sorts Matlock but Margetts and Belper had other ideas.
Margetts broke clear and was pulled back by Sharman who saw red before MARGETTS sent Rowley the wrong way from the spot on 68 minutes. The final nail in Matlock’s coffin arrived just ninety seconds later as MARGETTS was free again to sidestep Rowley and roll home his hat-trick goal.
Chippendale’s shot was deflected wide and Lees drove harmlessly over the top but Matlock’s normally stable defence had been undermined, far too easily for comfort.
Josh Woodcock’s shot was caught by Rowley and Margetts might even have had a fourth, capitalising on an error by Lees in midfield to curl his shot against the crossbar.
A Byrne free kick was off target, Chippendale’s late effort being the closest Matlock came on an afternoon to forget, but one Belper and their fans will remember.
They could not have dreamt that Matlock would play as poorly as they did, but take nothing away from the Nailers, they did everything right on a day when Matlock did everything wrong. They gained control and rarely looked like surrendering it.
MATLOCK TOWN: 1 Shaun Rowley 2 Jamie Sharman 3 Reece Kendall (12 Ashton Hall 88) 4 Sam Egerton 5 Ryan Qualter 6 Mark Lees 7 Alex Byrne 8 Alex Wiles (15 Callum Chippendale 61) 9 Liam Hughes 10 Ross Hannah (16 Jesurun Uchebgulam 8) 11 Declan Walker Other subs: 14 Kayde Coppin 17 Lirak Hasani 18 Craig King 19 Paul Phillips
BELPER TOWN: 1 Myles Wright 2 Josh Woodcock 3 Ben Rhodes (18 Harvey Kozluk 23) 4 Riece Bertram 5 Danny South 6 Tom Wilson 7 Brodie Litchfield 8 Sam Wright (12 Corey Gregory 52) 9 Alex Peterson 10 Jonathan Margetts 11 Craig Nelthorpe (14 Nathan Curtis 74) Other subs: 15 Damien Reeves 16 Prince Mancinelli 17 Ben Sandhu 19 Todd Jordan
REFEREE: Ben Tomlinson (Doncaster) ATTENDANCE 1052 BEST GLADIATOR: Callum Chippendale