Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Carlton Town 1 v Shepshed Dynamo 0 - Evo-Stik League First Division South

Wednesday 14th September 2011 at Stoke Lane
Evo-Stik League Division 1 South
Carlton Town (0) 1 (Ashley Grayson 81)
Shepshed Dynamo (0) 0
Admission £7, Programme £1.50
Plentiful supply of free teamsheets
Attendance 113
Left click for enlarged image.

After a cagey start to the game, with Shepshed pushing forward and Carlton waiting patiently for them to leave gaps at the back to exploit, Ayden Duffy the Dynamo keeper got down to save well from Adam Kimberley when the first real chance of the game fell to the home side.
Play switched to the other end, where the former Millers striker Steve Chaplin almost gave the home side a demonstration of what they were missing, when he held off a couple of challenges and hit the post.
But save from that scare on 13 minutes, Shepshed only threatened sporadically for the remainder of the game and seemed content to sit back and soak up pressure, as Carlton rose in stature and upped the tempo for the remainder of the game.
Carlton Town started the season with an abundance of striking options, but the release of long standing club servant Chaplin, followed by the transfer last week of Massiah McDonald to Worksop Town, will certainly give the forwards they have left a chance to prove themselves over the coming months.
The majority of Carlton fans wish nothing but the best for Massiah and he goes with their good wishes and a lot of praise for the job he did at Stoke Lane, but there must be an element of being magnanimous through gritted teeth about their sentiments, because they're going to miss the player.
It remains to be seen how he shapes up in the Evo-Stik Premier and if he is the answer to the Tigers goal scoring problems, but surely a striker of MacDonald's calibre being provided with ammunition by a player of the undoubted quality of Jamie Jackson, has to be a mouthwatering prospect once they gel together.
That said, I saw a player last night who can score and create goals out of nothing who Worksop Town released last season ... so who am I to comment on the goings on at the Windsor Food Services Stadium?
I'm well out of the loop there these days.
And enjoying my football a hell of a lot this season too.
The last two sentences might be coincidental ... then again.
Carlton began to take the initiative and looked the side most likely to break the deadlock.
Neil Grayson hit the Shepshed crossbar and Ian Brown had a goal disallowed, but half time came and went without either side having made a breakthrough yet..
We decided to sit behind the goal for the second half in the only seated area of the ground, it was a good decision ... that was the end that Carlton Town were attacking and for the majority of the second half that is exactly what they did.
Carlton Town's very dapper press officer Brian Dennett (right)
watches the game with his bodyguards Simon and Tim Harris ... gulp!

It was good to catch up with Simon and Tim Harris again tonight, who are both working for Carlton Town these days, having joined the committee at Stoke Lane after leaving Brigg Town.
I'm sure their input, effort and presence will be sorely missed at the Hawthorns and the bar takings in Brigg are going to be down considerably too ;-)
Lord Brian of Carlton. A living leg end.
Whoops! I mean living legend.

Brigg's loss is most definitely Carlton's gain.
These larger than life twins are steeped in enthusiasm for non league football and would be an asset to any club.
With people like the Harris twins, the affable and well turned out Brian 'Steptoe' Dennett and that bloke with the trumpet in attendance, your guaranteed some noise and high jinx when you visit Stoke Lane.
Hey you! No more pictures of the Dennett guy.
That's just bad manners!

Carlton attacked in waves after the break, winning a succession of corners, as chance after chance went begging.
Oh for a Simon Grayson or Massiah MacDonald on the end of a couple of those near misses.
Shepshed defended deep and in numbers, while Terry Hawkridge and Ian Brown in particular were giving them a torrid time of it.
Ayden Duffy, the Dynamo keeper keeper ran up to take a goal kick ... just as he reached the ball, the Carlton Town supporter with the trumpet (who has obviously not been to visit a music teacher since I last saw him 'perform' during the Notts Senior Cup final v Eastwood Town at Field Mill last season), gave out a solitary and off-putting blast on his wind instrument. Duffy miss-kicked and walloped the ball out of play. He grimaced and muttered something uncouth towards the supporter under his breath and the tone was set for the rest of the night ... and if my ears weren't deceiving me, there were quite a few goal kicks in the second half
Rubens Wiggin-Thomas came on for the Millers late in the second and the home side really began to turn the screw.
A neat passing move between Terry Hawkridge and Neil Grayson inside a packed penalty area made a chance for Neil's son Ashley, who struck home the only goal of the game on 81 minutes, just when it had started to look as though all of Carton's second half endeavours had been in vain.
Full time. Carlton Town 1 v Shepshed Dynamo 0.
Following a run of three straight defeats, tonight's result and performance will have given Carlton a big lift in advance of their FA Cup tie v Heanor Town on Saturday.
A thoroughly deserved win for the Millers.
Good luck to Carlton Town on Saturday in what looks like it is going to be a great Notts v sheepsha ... err, Derbyshire encounter.

I had set myself a target of 50 games for 2011-12 ... tonight I have already reached that total ... whatever will I do with myself on Saturday afternoons and midweek nights for the remainder of the season now!?Coming soon to a blog near you:
Following a couple of nights at various ten pin bowling, drinking and cinema establishments across Yorkshire ... I'm up bright and early on Saturday for a long, long trek up to Cumbria, for the Blue Square Bet Premier League game between Barrow and Mansfield Town.
Looking at the weather forecast, it might be time to dig out my thermals and invest in a Sou'wester.