First Team vs. Northwich Victoria (1 : 2)
Evo-Stik League First Division South
Northwich Victoria did their survival hopes a world of good on Saturday, writes Stuart James, as they ran out 2-1 winners over a lacklustre Sheffield FC at the Home of Football.
A 60th minute strike from Adam Lawrence gave the visitors what looked like an unlikely lead, but this was doubled on 79 minutes through Jack Kelleher, whilst Club’s sole response was a consolation from Pat Lindley two minutes from time.
With both sides smarting from midweek defeats, it was the home side that were the first to show any forward pressing initiative, and it took some fine keeping from Vics’ custodian Dylan Forth.
Matt Roney’s corner left everyone in a bit of a panic, and following skipper Lee Cooksey’s volley, Forth did well to deny the opener with a good diving save.
Seconds later Roney put another corner in, this time Forth was in the right place at the right time, getting in the ay of a Danny South header.
Club should really have capitalised on their dominance, but when Ross Goodwin missed from close range, the writing was on the wall prophesising another frustrating day for the World’s First.
The best came from the visiting keeper just before the break, as Alec Denton made space to unleash a powerful drive, Forth this time making an acrobatic save to tip round the post.
In the second half Northwich looked a more confident outfit, and went close early on, as Jack Kelleher shot just wide of the post.
For Sheffield, Danny South was having another impressive display up front, and was unlucky not to open the scoring as first Forth denied him following a Liam Royles’ cross, whilst a drive from the big man was not too far off target.
The hosts were hit by a sucker punch on the hour mark, as Lingouba Cesaire and Favour Imande combined, teeing up LAWRENCE - who’d strayed forward - with a simple side footed place shot into the corner.
Club reacted and came to life for the first real time in the game, with South once again the most threatening player on the pitch, seeing two shots within the space of minutes denied by the keeper saving and flashing a second inches outside the post.
Once again Vics took advantage of a shaky looking Sheffield side to double the advantage, Niall Sultan putting the ball across, and KELLEHER steering the ball over the line from close range.
There was no way back for Sheffield at this point, but they made the last few minutes of stoppage time uncomfortable for the visitors, with young Brad Nicholson’s long throw converted by LINDLEY from 12 yards out.
It made for a nerve jangling minute or so with Sheffield throwing all forward for a late salvage for an unlikely point, but for all their efforts, they couldn’t deny the struggling visitors what was a deserved victory.
Sheffield FC: Butt, Royles, Hanna, Lindley, Cooksey ©, Magee, Roney, Goodwin, South, Ashmore, Denton. Subs: Rene Marsden, Nicholson, Morton, Hamid, Haystead.
Northwich Victoria: Forth, Lawrence, Mannion, Fitzgerald, Short, Bennett, Clarke ©, Lingouba, Kelleher, Imande, Sultan. Subs: Matthews, Shaw.
|Lee Cooksey ©||more|