Tuesday 17th August
North West Counties Football League First Division South
Brocton 1 Abbey Hulton United 0
Following Saturday’s heavy defeat at Abbey Hey, Badgers manager Kev Welson welcomed back Jack Arrowsmith and Jake Thomas and gave starts to Luke Haddaway and Ryan Douglas. Abbey Hulton had lost their first game of the season on Saturday and were looking to get back to winning ways.
It was almost a catastrophic start for Brocton. Josh Mousley lost possession in his own penalty area, gifting Sam Wytcherley a great chance but, to Brocton’s relief, he failed to hit the target. The change to back three was already paying dividends with Arrowsmith marshalling the defence. In the 10th minute, Dean Williams charged down a clearance from Abbey Hulton keeper Adam Lawrence. The ball rebounded to Brad Rolston, who couldn’t get his shot away. Williams tried his luck from distance, but a slight deflection saw it drop comfortably for Lawrence. On the quarter hour, a cross from Williams from the left narrowly cleared the Abbey Hulton cross bar. The pace of Mbemba Juwara was a constant threat to the Badgers’ defence and from a quick break down the right, Corey Mallen was forced into a decent save low down. Abbey Hulton were having a better spell and a cross from Wytcherley was whipped across the box with no-one to make the important connection. Mousley tried his luck from twenty-five yards before Williams put a header wide from a well delivered Keeny Devoir free-kick. With ten minutes to go to the break a dangerous through ball forced Mallen to race off his line to gather. Lawrence followed suit at the other end, foiling Ben Haddaway who chased a ball clipped over the top by Williams. On the stroke of half-time, Thomas Hinton’s shot was deflected for a corner, and the sides went into the break with defences on top
Half-Time: Brocton 0 Abbey Hulton United 0
The second half began with a couple of efforts from the Badgers. Ben Haddaway trying an effort from long distance which was comfortably saved, and a Williams free-kick gathered by Lawrence under pressure. Lawrence made a fine save in the 54th minute, diving to his left to palm away a curler from Williams. Goal attempts from either side were rare with no-one giving an inch. Just after the hour, Abbey Hulton were awarded a free-kick outside the Brocton penalty area. Keeylin Thomas struck the free-kick into the wall with Douglas knocked off his feet by the force of the shot. Abbey Hulton substitute, Cole Mohindra, rode two tackles but his shot didn’t match his footwork and it was easily held by Mallen. Abbey Hulton went close to the opener on 70 minutes. A free-kick from Keeylin Thomas was met on the volley by Zak Hill, and Mallen saved well, low down to his right. A quick break by Jake Thomas down the Brocton right, created a chance to Rolston but he clipped his shot wide of the post. In the 90th minute, the visitors were celebrating when Hill had the ball in the Badgers net, but the celebrations were short lived as an offside flag was spotted. Celebration turned to consternation as Brocton responded in impressive style. Adam Welson overlapped on the right, took his time to find Jack Weldon in space in the 6-yard box and he had the easiest of finished to give Brocton the lead. In the aftermath of the goal, Hill was sent off for Abbey Hulton, presumably for something he said. Three minutes into stoppage time, a late challenge from Rolston led to a melee of at least a dozen players. Rolston and Billy Silvester for Abbey Hulton were booked but, on another day, a rash of red cards may have been brandished. The final whistle went with joy and relief for the Badgers who had responded in fine style to their defeat at the weekend.
Full-Time: Brocton 1 Abbey Hulton United 0 Attendance: 78
Brocton: Corey Mallen, Adam Weldon, Luke Haddaway, Josh Mousley, Jack Arrowsmith, Kenny Devoir, Brad Rolston, Jake Thomas, Dean Williams (Malaki Norford 75), Ben Haddaway (Todd Pryor 76), Ryan Douglas (Jack Weldon 68). Subs (Not Used): Cam Jackson, Ben Powell
Abbey Hulton United: Adam Lawrence, Zak Hill, Josh Bristow, Keeylin Thomas, Nathan Grice, Joe Lewis (Lewis Doughty 29), Adam Catalano, Thomas Hinton (Billy Silvester 67), Mbemba Juwara (Cole Mohindra 57), Tyler Barnes, Sam Wytcherley. Subs (Not Used): Nathan Mellor, Ashley Newton
Yellow Cards: Rolston (Brocton), Thomas, Catalano, Silvester and Mohindra (Abbey Hulton United)
Red Card: Hill (Abbey Hulton United)