Competition: CMFL South Division
Clifton - Phil Massingham (11, 32), Jaylee Hodgson (36), Stuart Robinson (71)
Shiners - ( Shane Newton (pen 45+3, 73)
We had a few concerns over the current horrendous roadworks in and around South Nottinghamshire, so left Hucknall just after 2pm. We also had a few concerns over how the weather was going to behave - we'd had torrential rain all morning and there is little cover at Clifton.
Despite the tram works, we arrived at the ground about 2:40pm, and it was already very busy - but at least the rain hadn't reached this part of the county!
With hoppers galore, and the great and the good of the local non-league game present, the attendance was huge for a CML game, although this was the Championship decider and one not to miss.
Spent the game in the company of Richard Lane (again!), Benjamin Newman and Kenny Shinfield from Pinxton, Andy Graves and Paul Stevenson from Hucknall Town and Selston striker Jay Cooper. Rob Hornby provided the team sheets - Kev took a pic of his programme, as we didn't manage to get one.
Pre-match cuddles -- give over!!
Although it was sunny, the wind was a bit of a bugger, and both teams struggled to cope from the start, although the home team looked more up for it than their opponents from Derbyshire.
PHIL MASSINGHAM opened the scoring with just 11 minutes played, the Clifton striker hitting a speculative shot from 25 yards out that sailed past Lawrence Kennerson and into the far corner before the keeper could react.
Mass can't believe it!
The Shiners upped their game after going behind, and Curtis McDonald in the home goal was called into action on a couple of occasions, but the home team defended well and actually doubled their lead on 32.
Plenty of protection for McDonald!
A South Normanton corner was cleared, and when the ball fell to Lee Torr on the edge of the box, the defender ran almost the full length of the pitch, held off a strong challenge from Graham O'Reilly and fired in a cross to the near post that MASSINGHAM met with a neat flick header.
Massingham (out of shot) heads past Kennerson
It was more joy for the All Whites in the 36th minute, JAYLEE HODGSON heading home a Tom Maddision free-kick from the edge of the six-yard box.
Hodgson header leaves Kennerson flat !!
The visitors were handed something of a lifeline in the third minute of added time when Sam Leggitt appeared to trip an attacking player in the box. SHANE NEWTON made no mistake from the spot, and "Normo" were back in the game as the half ended. H-T 3-1
Athletic were in attack mode straight from the re-start, although Clifton did invite them on, defending way too deep and struggling with the wind in their faces. Unfortunately for the Shiners, they failed to take advantage of their superiority and actually went further behind on 71, STUART ROBINSON given a simple tap in after Joe Carter had deflected a ball in from the right towards his near post.
South Normanton had the final word two minutes later though, SHANE NEWTON curling a terrific shot from the corner of the box past McDonald. F-T 4-2
MOM: Kev's choice - Lee Torr
Pics: Kev Goodman