Met at the gate by our good friend Scott Ward, who outlined all the hard work that has been done to the Welfare Ground during the closed season. There has been a serious amount of toil - and the ground looks well tidy. A big "well done" to Scott and all involved.
Great to see the ground being used whilst the cricket season is still on-going. Used to be either/or, but the new changing room block meant that the football team could play even though the Welfare's seconds were in action.
The Welfare Ground looking good (not so the team, unfortunately)!
The games was just 3 minutes old when Heanor took the lead. Jay Cooper played a neat ball in from the right, and ALEX HAUGHTON met the cross with a neat back-heel effort that gave Jason Fisher in the home goal no chance.
Three minutes later the Lions scored again - Cooper's 20 yard shot cannoned off the post straight to STEF FROST who snapped up the rebound with ease.
It was 3-0 on 10 minutes, HAUGHTON lobbing the ball over Fisher from 20+ yards, although the striker seemed to be well offside when he initially received the ball. Good finish though...
Heanor added their fourth on 16, KIERAN DEBROUWER collecting the ball from Adam Campbell 12 yards from goal, flicking it into the air and volleying powerfully past Fisher. Superb technique - well worth the £2 entry fee!
After 31 minutes NICK HALL smashed the ball past Fisher from the better part of 25 yards - again the keeper no chance.
JAY COOPER added the sixth in the 36th minute - another great ball from Campbell picking out the big no. 10 who kept his cool in front of goal, turning two defenders inside out before rifling the ball home.
HAUGHTON completed his personal treble just before the half time whistle, the striker finding space in the area, rounding Fisher and rolling the ball into the back of the net. H-T 0-7
Great cuppa at the break - thanks Scott! We went to catch a couple of overs of the cricket - saw a great wicket, then were amazed when the next batsman walked to the crease - he was only about 3 foot tall ! No joke - and he was facing a fairly fast bowler! Showed great defensive technique though and looked really calm and composed for such a young lad.
Back to the footy - and Blidworth looked a different team as the second half progressed and deservedly pulled a goal back on 55 through KURTIS BAMFORD, the no. 7 curling a neat shot past visiting keeper Ross Cherry. It has to be said though, that the home team's new found promise soon faded and their chances were few and far between.
ADAM NICHOLLS grabbed the Lions' eighth goal with 12 to go, side-footing home from close range after he was picked out by Haughton.
The final goal of the game was an OG - the home no. 5 prodding the ball into his own net after he was put under pressure by Nicholls. F-T 1-9
I don't know what Heanor can take from this game into their new NCELP campaign that starts at Maltby Main next Saturday. Blidworth weren't exactly a tough test.
Blidworth's CML season begins with a home game v Holbrook St. Michaels. Winnable, at least it will be if they play as well as they did in the second half....
Attendance - counted 50, but not too sure how many were actually paying guests.