Matlock Town FC vs Witton Albion F.C.
Matlock Town FC9
The Proctor Cars StadiumNorthern Premier League
Witton Albion F.C.0
Matlock Town 9-0 Witton Albion
My word, who would have forecast this result in a soccer six competition?
Matlock, were quite simply top class in all areas of the field to demolish an Albion side who had won their last two games, both on the road, at Scarborough and Morpeth.
But on Tuesday night they faced a rampant and hungry Matlock who showed little mercy and still could have won by a few more. Witton usually provide Matlock with a stiff test, this time it was men against boys as the Albion could not match Matlock’s physicality, movement and slick interpassing play. It was Matlock’s record home NPL win, and their seventh on the spin this season.
For the record, skipper Liam Hughes grabbed a hat-trick and the match ball, substitute Jesuriun Uchebgulam netted a brace, the others coming from Callum Chippendale, Alex Byrne, Reece Kendall and a Will Sutton own goal.
Watched by Paralympic rugby gold medalist Ryan Cowling, who was Town’s special guest along with performance analyst Jem Akpinar, Matlock looked suitably inspired, despite the loss earlier in the day of central defender Sam Egerton who had opted for a move to Warrington Rylands. Jamie Sharman, back from suspension came in to a three man central defence alongside Ashton Hall and Ryan Qualter.
Witton’s brightest moment came in the opening minute when James Foley’s teasing free kick from the left skidded across the Matlock penalty box, from that point onwards it was all downhill for them.
Matlock hit back for Chippendale to have a long ranger held by goalkeeper Raajan Gill before Hughes headed Byrne’s excellent cross too high. Hughes fed Chippendale to fire narrowly wide before HUGHES headed Matlock in front on 9 minutes, Gill parrying a Byrne cross, Wiles seeing his shot knocked off the line but the ball looped up for the Gladiators skipper to nod in.
Two minutes later Hughes turned provider, escaping on the right to cross low for CHIPPENDALE to slot home from close range.
Kendall lifted a shot inches wide after Byrne’s magnificent sixty yards Crossfield pass and Wiles after going for the jugular of the Albion defence, pulled his effort wide.
But there was little respite for a shell shocked Witton who conceded again on 22 minutes, HUGHES Being on hand to squeeze in a low ball from Dec Walker.
A header from Chippendale was only inches too high and an audacious strike from fully thirty five yards by Kendall flashed past Gill’s left hand upright, Chippendale and Byrne then going close before the half time whistle.
For the second successive game, Matlock netted in the opening minute of the second half, Walker superbly releasing Hughes and although Gill managed to palm away the initial shot, HUGHES was on hand to drill home the rebound to complete his hat-trick.
Wiles set up Walker whose shot was charged down but Witton were on the ropes again as SUTTON headed a Byrne corner into his own net for Matlock’s fifth in the 52nd minute.
Wiles fired inches wide before being replaced by Craig King, Uchebgulam then giving Chippendale a well earned rest.
UCHEBGULAM had only been on the field for ninety seconds before turning sweetly to fire low into the corner in the 63rd minute. KENDALL then rose at the far post to score with a power packed header from Byrne’s cross four minutes later.
A corner on the left led to criminal defending by Witton who by this time had brought on experienced former Tranmere defender Steve McNulty. Nobody stopped UCHEBGULAM from finding the target with a free header from point blank range to make it a magnificent eight, with still thirteen minutes to play.
Matlock still turned the screw as the blue tidal wave towards the Albion goal showed no sign of being repelled. BYRNE completed the rout with a minute left with fantastic control from a Kendall cross to sidestep Gill and virtually walk the ball into the net.
What a performance, what a night, a pity only 294 saw it on a damp night but those who witnessed it will remember Matlock’s scintillating show for a very long time.
MATLOCK TOWN: 1 Shaun Rowley 2 Jamie Sharman 3 Reece Kendall 4 Ashton Hall 5 Ryan Qualter 6 Mark Lees 7 Alex Byrne 8 Alex Wiles (15 Craig King 57) 9 Liam Hughes (12 Kayde Coppin 66) 10 Callum Chippendale (14 Jesurun Uchebgulam 61) 11 Dec Walker Other sub: 18 Paul Phillips
WITTON ALBION: 1 Raajan Gill 2 George Nugent (15 Steve McNulty 56) 3 Nathan Woodthorpe 4 Callum Leigh (14 Tom Owens 46)5 Rob Hopley 6 Will Sutton 7 Jawad Jebrin 8 Danny McKenna 9 James Hooper 10 Callum Saunders 11 James Foley Other subs: 12 Josh Patterson 17 Greg Hall
REFEREE: Lee Hible (Sheffield) ATTENDANCE: 294 BEST GLADIATOR: Liam Hughes