Matlock Town FC vs Whitby Town
Matlock Town FC0
The Proctor Cars StadiumNorthern Premier League
MATLOCK TOWN 0-2 WHITBY TOWN
Whitby staged a smash and grab act to inflict more misery on a Matlock side who had by far more of the play and the better chances at a blustery Proctor Cars Stadium on Saturday.
The Seasiders gained a fourth successive win with a goal in each half from Alex White and substitute Bradley Fewster, while the Gladiators again fluffed their lines in front of goal.
It all added up to a first league defeat for manager Paul Phillips and while his side did not deserve to lose the game he will be well aware that football can be a cruel game. Until Matlock can convert more of the chances they are creating, there are likely to be many more days like this.
The Matlock groundstaff had worked wonders to get the game on, the pitch coming through a breakfast time inspection and being heavily sanded in some areas. Phillips gave a debut to winger Jude Oyibo, on a month’s loan from Alfreton Town, while his other new recruit, defender Ellis Roberts warmed the bench. Nathan Valentine passed a late fitness test but Matlock still had key players out through injury.
The hosts faced the worst of the elements in the first half but were still unfortunate to be a goal down at the interval.
Oyibo found space on the right to cross low for Marcus Marshall to fire at goalkeeper Shane Bland in the 2nd minute and their luck was right out only two minutes later as Tomas Poole met a cross from Adam Yates to flick his finish against the post with Bland beaten.
Chib Chilaka found the top of the net with an effort which might have been a centre or a shot in the 10th minute, Whitby not threatening until the 14th minute when Callum Patton curled a free kick wide from twenty yards.
Jake Greatorex held a firm snapshot from Paul Blackett but was then at fault when Whitby grabbed a 22nd minute lead. A corner from the right was hoisted into the Matlock box, Greatorex came off his line to try and claim a ball he had little chance of catching and WHITE was left with a simple downward header into the corner.
It was a body blow for Matlock who were now chasing the game after looking in control of proceedings.
Greatorex redeemed himself somewhat with a fine fingertip over the bar from a Matty Tymon shot four minutes later. His side could have been back on level
terms when Oyibo scooped a shot over the bar from a Marshall assist but at only one goal down and with the elements firmly in their favour for the second half, the Gladiators would have been confident of turning the game around.
Marshall found Poole whose twenty five yard daisycutter flashed narrowly wide and captain Adam Yates, Matlock’s best player on the day, surged through from deep, his deflected shot being magnificently tipped over the bar by Bland.
But despite using all three of their permitted substitutes and camping in the Whitbv half for virtually the entire second half, Matlock could not find a breakthrough.
Bland was superbly protected by his defenders who seemed content to clear their lines and accept what Matlock threw back at them. The goalkeeper scarcely had a shot to save in a game which was feisty at times leading to bookings for Matlock’s Luke Dean and Valentine and Whitby’s Patton and Jassem Sukar.
Dean fired wide from distance and Matlock often got themselves into promising attacking situations only to let themselves down with a faulty final pass or wanting to be too precise in the final third.
Whitby added a second with a well worked goal from virtually their only serious attack of the second half, Tymon doing the donkey work holding the ball up well to feed Patton whose low cross was touched home by the unmarked FEWSTER from close range.
Matlock could not even grab a consolation, Marshall putting a difficult chance over the bar in stoppage time.
Phillips troops still have plenty of time to improve their position but even a point from this match would have been useful with the games they have in hand. It was always going to be a tough fixture against an in form Whitby side but Matlock will be kicking themselves for not getting some reward from it.
The astonishing sequence of an away win in this fixture, whether it be at the seaside or at Matlock continued for a third successive season.
A disappointed Phillips echoed the views of many afterwards.
“We’ve got to start converting those chances, we don’t work the goalkeeper nearly enough”.
He added that Matlock will play far worse and win but goals win football games and it’s a conundrum Phillips knows he must resolve.
MATLOCK TOWN: 1 Jake Greatorex 2 Adam Yates 3 Ben Gordon 4 Luke Dean 5
Dwayne Wiley 6 Bailey Gooda 7 Jude Oyibo (16 Dan Bramall 58) 8 Nathan Valentine 9 Chib Chilaka (12 Piteu Crouz 80) 10 Marcus Marshall 11 Tomas Poole (17 Sam Scrivens 70) Other subs: 14 James Tague 15 Ellis Roberts
WHITBY TOWN: 1 Shane Bland 2 Matthew Dixon 3 Evan Horwood 4 Daniel Rowe 5 Alex White 6 Jassem Sukar 7 Jordan Hickey 8 Adam Gell 9 Paul Blackett (14 Bradley Fewster 50) 10 Matty Tymon 11 Callum Patton Other subs: 12 Dale Hopson 15 Luke Bythway 16 David McTiernan 17 Daniel Dixon
REFEREE: Leo Howard (Selby) ATTENDANCE: 460 BEST GLADIATOR: Adam Yates