Saturday, 16 November 2013

Arnold Town 3-1 Anstey Nomads

Venue: Eagle Valley, Oxton Road, Arnold.

Good things happening on the pitch at Arnold - if they can sort out their well documented issues off the pitch, then they may be able to go forward and regain their rightful place as one of Nottinghamshire's top non-league clubs. 

The Eagles were top of the EMCL before kick off, whilst their visitors are having a bit of a struggle and were third bottom.

Arnold look to have put together a good squad of players, but seem to be desperately short of a top striker. They actually ended this game with midfielder Matt Peberday up top, after Ben Middleton had failed to make an impression against a very determined Anstey defence.

Eagles: Walker L, Hall, Price, Hayes (c), Hore, Spiers, Slawson, Fatta, Middleton, Corrigan, Royes. Subs: Meakin, Sutton, Peberday, Smith, Walker J.

Nomads: Witham, Goodman, Aikens, Alexander (c), Clayton, Smith, Oliver, Litchfield, Penn, Creese, Beck. Subs: Brett, Darko, Williams, Gibbs.

Danny Hayes had a header cleared off the line in the 10th minute as Arnold pressed in the early stages of the game. The visitors were well disciplined across the back, and managed to repel everything that Arnold threw at them. 

The Eagles thought they had taken the lead on 23, but Hayes had strayed off-side before he headed Liam Corrigan's free-kick past Nomad's keeper James Witham.

Hayes' effort ruled out

It took a 30 yard drive in the 27th minute from REGGIE ROYES to breach the stubborn Nomads defence and to be fair, Witham did get a hand to the ball, but couldn't divert it away from goal.  

 Royes' (out of shot) hits the games first goal

Andreas Fatta tried his luck from 18 yards soon after - on this occasion Witham managed to palm the shot onto the bar before gathering at the second attempt. Fatta then made a mazy run into the Anstey box on 38, but dragged his eventual shot hopelessly wide. 

Mitch Slawson fired one in from 25 yards just before the break, but the effort flew just wide of the upright. H-T 1-0

Slawson had the first shot in anger after the restart - on this occasion though, Witham was able to gather safely. 

With five minutes of the second half played, Nomads were level - OLIVER CREESE prodding home at the far stick after Eagle's keeper Lance Walker had parried Matt Penn's 18 yard drive. 

Arnold were slightly wrong-footed by the goal, and took a while to get back into their rhythm. They have to thank Witham for his help in restoring their lead, the keeper allowing a 63rd minute tame CHRIS HALL effort from the corner of the box to creep under his body.

Anstey looked a spent force and hardly troubled the home defence as the game wore on. In the 65th minute, Peberday had a great chance to make a scoring debut for the Eagles, but Witham foiled the former Linby man, tipping his shot onto the bar after Royes had picked him out in the box. 

Jimmy Spiers struck the foot of the post on 88, then Peberday was played in one-on-one with Witham - the keeper doing well to reach up and catch the ball after the sub attempted to lift it over him.

LUKE SMITH added the Arnold third goal from the spot in the third minute of stoppage time, firing comfortably past Witham. F-T 3-1

We hadn't seen Referee Scott Mason in action for a while - he handled this game superbly - although the players were, on the most part, on  their best behaviour! 

Admission: £4
Programme: £1.30 - very passable publication
Attendance: 67

MOM: Danny Hayes