Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Staveley MW 2 v Clipstone 2 - NCEL Prem

Wednesday 3rd February 2016
Toolstation NCEL Premier Division
At Inkersall Road
Staveley Miners Welfare (1) 2
Kieran Watson 35, Charlie Oglesby 90+4
Clipstone (1) 2
Chris Salt 45, Jahmal Smith 50
Admission £5. Programme £1.50.
Attendance 283
The two faces of Brett Marshall.
A successful NCEL manager and chairman
Staveley Miners Welfare:
Nick Siddons, Chris Baugh, Greg Fitzpatrick, Ash Rawson, Matt Varley (C), Charlie Oglesby, Adam Scott, Steve Carty, Courtney Hasting, Kieran Watson, Jamie Brown
Subs - Ross Goodwin, Jack Hutchinson, Luke Walker, Lewis Naylor, Richard Mintoft
Steve Hernandez, Liam Royles, Luke Randle, Ellis Wall, Chris salt, Stuart Ludlam, Jahmal Smith, Nicky Walker, Oli Ryan, James ashmore, Alec Denton
Subs - Josh Scully, Liam Nelthorpe, Brad Holmes, Tyler Bates, Michael Ball
With both sides entering the field of play wearing stripes, I was pleased that I wasn't watching this game on my black & white portable telly.
After a slight delay because the host club hadn't got one of their goal nets ready in time for kick off, a lively NCEL Premier Division encounter ensued, that became a thoroughly entertaining affair, once the brief frantic spell at the outset had settled and both teams had found their rhythm.
Prior to kick off, a good few of the people involved with the Cobras, who had travelled across the M1 in decent numbers tonight, would probably have settled for a point. but in the aftermath they may also have been entitled to feel a touch disappointed that they hadn't returned home to Nottinghamshire with all three points in the bag, after the home side snatched a very late equaliser with the game running deep into stoppage time.
Clipstone's manager Jas Colliver, won't be happy that his team have become prone to conceding late goals, but I'm sure he will be having a 'quiet word' with his players, about their pusillanimous approach to defending in the latter stages of games.
It was good to see that Greg Fitzpatrick, who was introduced to the first team squad at Staveley last season from their Under 21 team, is being given the chance to shine again this term and that Charlie Oglesby, who joined the Trojans development ranks from Espial FC in the Summer, obviously thrived on being given the opportunity to prove himself at NCEL tonight. They'll  both benefit no end from playing alongside the Staveley captain Matt Varley.
A nip and tuck, high tempo first half, saw two evenly matched sides, both going toe to toe and adopting an attacking approach.
The Derbyshire side took advantage of a defensive slip in the 35th minute, when Clipstone should have cleared their lines and Kieran Watson drew first blood for Staveley with an opportunist goal.
The visitors were almost on even terms straight away, but Alec Denton headed wide from close range, within a minute of the opening goal.
Oli Ryan split the Staveley ranks with a well weighted through ball, but Denton's shot was blocked for a corner. The home side attempted to clear the ball into their goalmouth, but Chris Salt was on hand to claim an equaliser for his side, which they had deserved on the balance of play thus far.
In stoppage time, Clipstone almost snatched the lead, but Nick Siddons did well to thwart the former Trojans striker Jahmal Smith.
HT: Staveley Miners Welfare 1 v Clipstone 1
However, Siddons could do nothing to stop Smith when they next came together, as Jahmal gratefully accepted the gift of some poor defending to put the visitors ahead, five minutes after the restart.
Nicky Walker and Alec Denton were causing the home side's defence a few headaches and pulling them wide as Clipstone began to gain the upper hand and impose themselves on the game.
The opening 45 minutes had been a very close run thing, but the Cobras were marginally in the ascendancy after the break, though Staveley obviously weren't about to give this cause up with a fight.
An announcement that a crowd of 283 was present crackled over the ever reliable PA system at Inkersall Road. With no other games taking place in the area tonight, the local footballing public had flocked to Staveley to watch what promised to be a good, open game between two of the better sides in the division.
Somebody sat behind us questioned the validity of the attendance figure and said: "They're not supposed to count the players and everyone who is at Weight Watchers in the Speedwell Rooms next door as well". But I can vouch for the fact that it is always difficult to estimate exactly how many people there are spread around this spacious and impressive arena, but with an above average turn out present and a sprinkling of representatives from at least a dozen other clubs in situ (it was akin to an Who's who of the NCEL) swelling the Staveley coffers, the total will have been correct, or as near as damn it.
Clipstone had deserved to win on the balance of play in the second half, but credit where it is due, with the clock ticking down, the home side kept plugging away... goals win games (or snatch draws late in the day), not percentages, when all is said and done.
In the 94th minute, the home side won a free kick just outside the Cobras goal area.
Steve Hernandez left his line to deal with the ball as the visitors only half cleared it to the edge of the area, where young Charlie Oglesby was waiting and he aimed his shot between the two defenders who were still guarding the posts from the dead ball and salvaged a point for his side.
It was a cruel finale to the game for the visitors, who'd given a very good account of themselves, but everybody headed home at least relatively content with what they had seen tonight.
FT: Staveley Miners Welfare 2 v Clipstone 2
All in all, a decent game, with a real sting in it's tail.
It was good to be able to catch up with a few really good friends I have who are connected to both teams... and representatives of several other clubs who were out in force tonight too.