Scarborough Athletic vs Matlock Town FC
Flamingo Land StadiumNorthern Premier League
Matlock Town FC0
SCARBOROUGH ATHLETIC 0-0 MATLOCK TOWN
Saturday’s massive match at sunny Scarborough ended the same as the one at a cold Matlock on a January Tuesday night with both sides giving their all but being unable to break down strong defences.
The draw was just about right although Matlock, if anything, created the better opportunities and with steadier finishing, they might have brought home all three points.
Scarborough, the form team in the league, stretched their unbeaten run to sixteen matches, Matlock now having won just once in ten games but the heartening element in Town’s display was the togetherness and it was a massive improvement on the display at Mickleover seven days earlier.
Deadline signings Osebi Abadaki and Danny Greenfield both made their second debuts with Callum Chippendale being passed fit after being ill during the week.
In front of a great crowd of 1602 with the home support spurred on by the appearance on the pitch before kick off of former boss Neil Warnock and his 1987 side which gained promotion to the Football League, Matlock settled well with Abadaki and Jesurun Uchegbulam willing runners as they also defended from the front.
Gladiators boss Paul Phillips made a tweak or two with the formation, starting with a back four and then later reverting to three with Reece Kendall pushing more forward.
Scarborough are a good side if you let them play, Matlock’s industry and workrate negated the hosts’ threat.
Abadaki created a chance for himself within three minutes, his effort being deflected for the game’s first corner.
The Seadogs first shot at goal was a rising one from Luca Colville after a long Ashley Jackson throw into the Matlock penalty box on 10 minutes before Matlock won two quick corners, the second one resulting from a Chippendale shot which cannoned off a defender.
Uchegbulam looked to have a fine chance on 20 minutes but he took too long to weigh up his shot and former Matlock defender Bailey Gooda produced a magnificent challenge to halt the danger.
Seven minutes later Ryan Qualter had the ball in the net but had strayed offside from Abadaki;s deflected effort.
Matlock threatened again on 39 minutes when Uchegbulam’s silky skills on the by-line saw him set up Abadaki who then teed up Alex Byrne whose shot was straight at goalkeeper Ryan Whitley. Shortly afterwards Abadaki cut in from the left but his shot was both tame and wide.
When the half time whistle shrilled, Matlock could be well satisfied with their performance but also knowing they would have to maintain it in a testing second half.
They did, although the Seadogs manufactured the opening chance of the second half, Jackson’s curling effort dropping comfortably wide.
But defences were becoming increasingly dominant, the Matlock back line doing well to block a 15 yard strike from Will Jarvis. Whitley made heavy weather of dealing with an Abadaki shot, sloppily conceding a corner which saw the Scarborough defence charge down another Abadaki shot.
Uchegbulam cleverly made a shooting chance for himself which again was straight at Whitley, Matlock needed one of these chances to go in.
Scarborough retaliated strongly and in a crowded eighteen yard area, Matlock’s defence did remarkably well to block a shot from Boro substitute Jake Day. Then Ryan Qualter, against one of his former clubs, brilliantly blocked a fierce strike from Kieran Glynn.
Scarborough, who have scored a number of decisive late goals in their excellent run, sought a repeat but Matlock held firm. Jarvis and Day both shot harmlessly over the bar before at the death Joe Young, who hadn’t had a shot of note to save, comfortably caught a Day header.
Abadaki limped off late on with a knock to be replaced by Ross Hannah and Matlock brought on Jamie Sharman for the impressive Greenfield in stoppage time.
It had been a fine team effort with Matlock’s midfield showing a mix of grit and skill. Just the end product was missing.
SCARBOROUGH ATHLETIC: 1 Ryan Whitley 2 Ryan Watson 3 Ashley Jackson 4 Simon Heslop (14 Kieran Weledji 76) 5 Will Thornton 6 Bailey Gooda 7 Brad Plant (17 Jake Day 62) 8 Will Jarvis 9 Luca Colville 10 Kieran Glynn 11 Cameron Wilson (15 Michael Coulson 62) Other subs: 12 James Cadman 16 Dylan Cogill
MATLOCK TOWN: 1 Joe Young 2 Adam Yates 3 Reece Kendall 4 Ioan Evans 5 Ryan Qualter 6 Mark Lees 7 Alex Byrne 8 Callum Chippendale 9 Osebi Abadaki (12 Ross Hannah 86) 10 Danny Greenfield (16 Jamie Sharman 90) 11 Jesurun Uchegbulam Other subs: 14 Luke Daly 15 Kayde Coppin 17 Terry Hawkridge
REFEREE: Chris Joyce (Stanley, County Durham) ATTENDANCE: 1602
BEST GLADIATOR: Callum Chippendale