Tuesday March 14th
North West Counties Football League First Division South
Brocton 2 Cammell Laird 1907 3
Brocton were forced into a change following Saturday’s defeat at Sandbach United. Christian Blanchette had picked up an injury and he was replaced in the starting line up by Charlie King. Cammell Laird travelled to Staffordshire 5 points clear of the potential drop zone.
Brocton should have taken the lead inside the first two minutes. Will Whieldon played a delightful ball through the Cammell Laird defence where it was latched onto by Reg Smith. The division’s leading scorer took it on and, one-on-one with keeper James Dineley, it was the latter that won the contest with a fine stop. Connor Haddaway saw a shot blocked as Brocton had all of the early play. They were given a reminder of how dangerous the visitor’s could be when Cameron McGregor’s shot was saved at the 2nd attempt by Tony Allsopp. Allsopp had to race of his line in the 12th minute to thwart a Cammell Laird break. A Smith free kick was just wide in the 14th minute but the pressure finally told in the 18th minute. Excellent approach play down the left saw a cross to the far post to Smith. He played the ball inside to King who volleyed into the roof of the net. Brocton went close to doubling their lead within two minutes but Dineley pulled out a fine save to thwart Whieldon. Brocton’s full backs were finding lots of space and from a Jake Triggs delivery from the left, Ben Haddaway flicked the ball wide. On the half hour mark, a quick break from Brocton following a superb interception from Ben Haddaway saw Morgan Payne’s shot deflected for a corner. Brocton continued to push for a second with Connor Haddaway driving over from 20 yards. The woodwork rescued Cammell Laird in the 37th minute, Whieldon’s header coming back off the bar after he was set up by Smith. A minute later, Triggs was beaten to the ball by Daniel Stephens, the danger averted when the full back failed to keep the ball in. In first half stoppage time, a shot from McGregor went through a maze of legs in front of him and narrowly wide. With the final attempt of the half, more good approach play teed up Smith who curled his shot over the bar.
Half-Time: Brocton 1 Cammell Laird 0
Brocton wasted a glorious chance to double the lead four minutes into the second half. A free-kick dropped invitingly into the 6 yard box with no Brocton forward able to turn the ball home. The missed chances came back to bite the home side as Cammell Laird grabbed an equaliser in the 57th minute. Kieron Frost was fouled near the left hand by-line. The free kick was played to the near post and Ross Waring reacted quickest to head the ball past Allsopp. Things got worse for Brocton in the 64th minute. Frost challenged Allsopp for a loose ball, leaving his foot in, in the process, The incensed Allsopp reacted with Frost ending up on the floor. The Brocton keeper did not wait for the referee to show the red card and headed for the dressing room. Without a keeper on the bench, player Manager Alex Curtis took responsibility between the sticks. His first job was to face a penalty from McGregor awarded for Allsopp’s misdemeanours. Although he got a hand to the penalty he could not keep it out and Cammell Laird took the lead. Brocton were rattled, not just by the scoreline, but by their perceived grievance with many of the decisions. Jack Bostock stopped Frost with an excellent challenge only to see the referee award a free-kick. Dean Nunn took responsibility and his shot was saved by the legs of Curtis. The ten men pushed forward and Whieldon was off target with a left-footed effort. Cammell Laird had a great chance to make it three with ten minutes left. A cross from Jospeh Downey was inches in front of Charlie Fitzsimmons, unmarked and in front of goal. Brocton levelled the scores in the 84th minute. Smith and Whieldon combined to set up Connor Haddaway who tucked the ball into the corner despite a valiant attempt from a defender. Brocton were well set on getting the three points and Whieldon should have done better with a shot which was just off target. A Whieldon corner was headed over by Bostock before Cammell Laird clinched the three points three minutes into stoppage time. A long ball forward sent Fitsimmons clear, and he slotted the ball past Curtis.
Full-Time: Brocton 2 Cammell Laird 3 Attendance:63
Brocton: Tony Allsop, Adam Weldon, Jake Triggs (Luke Haddaway 76), Jack Bostock, Tom Vaughan, Ben Haddaway (Will Finlay 45), Will Whieldon, Charlie King, reg Smith, Connor Haddaway, Morgan Payne (Alex Curtis 64). Subs (Not Used): Lewis Rowley, Mario Novaku
Cammell Laird 1907: James Dineley, Daniel Stephens, Michael Speed, Jason Clark (Charlie Clewlow 57), Dean Nunn, Dominic Cain, Ross Waring, Joseph Downey, Kieron Frost, Ryan Smith, Cameron McGregor (Charlie Fitzsimmons 76). Sub (Not Used): Benjamin Hughes
Yellow Cards: Bostock (Brocton), Downey, Fitzsimmons (Cammell Laird)
Red Card: Allsopp (Brocton)