Monday, December 18, 2006

Nottingham Forest 1 Leyton Orient 3

Its kids for a quid at The City Ground today, and I have promised to take the boys I coach on their Christmas Party. I had a season ticket during Paul Hart's 3 year tenure, but refused to go during Kinnear and Megson era. Football should be played on the grass! Colin Calderwood is their new, bright, young manager who quietly goes about his business.
Top versus bottom, surely a formality? An evenly balanced game burst into life on 25 mins when an unmarked Luke Guttridge, a player I admired so much at Cambridge, who is currently on loan from Southend, opened the scoring with a shot from 20 yards. Adam Chambers, made it 2-0, shortly before half-time, following good work from James Walker, the on loan striker from Charlton, who was beginning to cause problems with his pace and power.
20 year old defender Brian Saah, was shackling with ease, the highly rated 9 jacket Nathan Tyson, who was receiving little service from his colleagues. Kris Commons, courted by numerous Championship teams, was struggling with the physical presence of the Orient defence. A fine save from Orient keeper, Garner in injury time, from Grant Holt, meant the Londoners were to hold their two goal advantage.
Forest came out all guns blazing, and it was no surprise when Breckin reduced the deficit on 58 mins, with a looping header following a Southall free-kick. Wayne Corden killed off any hopes of a Forest comeback with the goal of the game on 69 mins, a fine curling effort after a dazzling run. Only a fine save from Paul Smith at the death, prevented Gary Alexander from inflicting further misery on the now dwindling crowd.
A reality check for Forest, but The Orient were great value, and on this showing it remains a mystery why they are in the lower regions. Sammy Clingan, for Forest showed great creativity and intelligence, but Chambers and Guttridge, amongst others for Orient were outstanding.
Nottingham Forest 1 Breckin Leyton Orient 3 Guttridge, Chambers, Corden.
Man of the Match Adam Chambers.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Ilkeston Town 0 Marine 2

Arrived at a chilly New Manor Ground for my second visit of the season, having previously seen an exciting 2-2 against Burscough back in September. A refreshing Stella, in the friendly social club, set us up nicely for the eagerly awaited contest. Marine currently lie 3rd in the table, whilst Ilkeston have dropped into the bottom half.

It was Marine who were to earn the points today, as more pressure fell on Ilkeston manager Nigel Jemson, he once of Nottingham Forest fame.

Ilkeston began brightly quickly settling into the passing rhythm which impressed me so much on my last visit. Walker and McSweeney were controlling the midfield in the early stages but wingers Adam and Wade were getting little change out of the Marine full backs.

It was Marine who took the lead in controversial circumstances in the 22nd minute. Ilkeston keeper Annerson blocked an initial Marine shot but Cumiskey's follow-up was handballed by centre half Robinson. Referee McIntosh of Lincoln awarded a corner, but following protests by Marine and consultation with his assistant awarded a penalty, which Cumiskey duly dispatched with ease. Mysteriously no red card for Robinson.

The game boiled over shortly before half-time when Ilkeston manager Jemson was dismissed to the stands after entering the field of play and appearing to push Marine full back McDermott.

The second half began similar to the first, with Ilkeston continuing their short passing game, with Marine preferring the more direct approach. On 68 minutes Lathan had the chance to put the game out of sight but blazed wide. Marine were indebted to goalkeeper Andy Ralph whose handling had been immaculate all afternoon, when on 75 mins he made a fine save from Ilkeston striker Muller.

Marine were beginning to look more dangerous since the arrival of livewire Mulvaney, who had replaced the injured Young in the first half. Ilkeston pressed hard for an equalizer but holes were beginning to appear in their defence. Lathan sealed their fate, in the 85th minute, with an excellent strike, following good work from O'Donnell. A mesmerising run from Mulvaney should have made it 3-0 in the dying moments but his shot flew wide.

Final score Ilkeston Town 0 Marine 2

Cumiskey (Pen)

Attendance 315

Man of the Match: McDermott (Marine left back)

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Non League Football in the East Midlands

I have recently begun to watch non-league football in the East Midlands area hopping from ground to ground, I intend to write a brief match report on each game I see and review each ground I visit. I have already visited Alfreton, Belper, Hinckley Ilkeston and Burton.