Mattishall back with a bang
Mattishall 4, Kirkley & Pakefield Reserves 1MATTISHALL, after five weeks of being dormant, earned the perfect Christmas present against Anglian Combination Division One title contenders with a resounding victory.
Mattishall 4, Kirkley & Pakefield Reserves 1
MATTISHALL, after five weeks of being dormant, earned the perfect Christmas present against Anglian Combination Division One title contenders with a resounding victory.
This win put Mattishall second behind leaders St Andrews who happen to be Mattishall's next opponents in the new year.
This match typified the way football should be played on a difficult surface between two good teams. There was even a comment from the referee John Seach that this match was a joy to referee and to be a part of.
With the stand at capacity with a very good crowd both teams looked to stamp their authority on the game.
Early probing attacks saw Chris Hall causing the visitors' defence all sorts of problems on the right.
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On 11 minutes a darting run into the visitors' box saw the keeper bring down a home forward for a penalty which Gary Starling sconverted.
Kirkley kept up their momentum and were rewarded with their goal from the penalty spot.
The ground became heavier and was a defender's nightmare as they had to get it right on crucial tackles. And home defenders got their game in order as they restricted Kirkley chances.
On 40 minutes Jimmy Lovell put Matishall in front from one of his probing runs in the box. A great first-half display saw Mattishall leading 2-1.
The second half got under way with concerns for the light. Fifteen minutes into the second period a great ball in from Lovell found Chris Hall in the area and his flicked header went in over the keeper for 3-1.
It was all Mattishall as Kirkley had to defend stoutly to keep the home chances down. With 20 minutes remaining Dan Connelly hit home an effort to put the result beyond a deflated Kirkley outfit.
By the end of the match all the players knew they had been in a good battle, and spectators applauded both teams at the final whistle.
Credit to Mr Seach for letting the game flow and having to book only one player from each team in a closely fought top-of-the-league encounter.
This was by far the best all-round team performance from Mattishall so far. Playing like this consistently will see them contending for promotion.
Mattishall Reserves' match at South Walsham was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.
There are no scheduled matches for this weekend.
The next fixtures are: Mattishall first team away to St Andrews on Saturday, January 3 (ko 2pm), meet at noon; Mattishall Reserves away to Martham Reserves in the League Cup (ko 1.30pm), meet at noon.