Vics' earned a point in a dramatic, chaotic game Vs visiting Gresley FC this evening. Gresley took the lead through Reece Morris mid-way through the first half, and extended that lead just after the resumption through sub' Keenan King with a clinical finish. Vics' hit back through Stu McDonald's well-taken left-foot strike on 76' before a stunning shot by Matty Clarke on 82' from over twenty yards went in off the crossbar to ensure a point for the Green and Whites'. The game was ill-tempered and not helped by some in-different officiating - which resulted in four red cards being shown in injury time; two for each side.
Wednesday 29th March 2017. COMPETITION - EvoStik NPL Division One South. VENUE - The Net Dec Stadium, Northwich
LINE-UP'S - Vics' - Forth, Lawrence, Lyndon (C) (S/O 90'), Fitzgerald, Mannion, Bennett, Cesaire (Shaw 30'), Clarke, McDonald (S/O 90'), Gyimah (caution) (Imade 66'), Short (caution). Un-used subs' - Matthews. Unavailable for Vics' - Niall Sultan (work), Jack Kelleher (work).
Gresley FC - Flinders, Wakeling, Egginton, Barrett (C), Jarvis (two cautions & S/O 90'), Roome, Browne, Morris, Grouse (King 46') (S/O 90'), Harris (caution) (Hill 85'), Manship (Harrison 62'). All subs' used.
GOALS - Vics' - Stu McDonald 76', Matty Clarke 82'. Gresley FC - Reece Morris 20', Keenan King 51'.
Vics' M.O.M - Matty Clarke. Was at the heart of all Vics' probing and endeavours in the heat of battle, and never gave an inch all evening. An absolute howitzer of a right-foot strike from distance to earn a point.
PICTURED - Vics' midfield maestro Matty Clarke lets fly with his twenty-yard plus blockbuster that sealed a brilliant comeback by the Green and Whites'.
Vics' started the better, pinning Gresley back with the first chance on 11' when a cross from the left by Lingouba Cesaire was deftly flick-headed goalwards by striker Dave Short which Moatmen' keeper' James Flinders saved well. Then on 18' Vics' forward Yaw Gymiah tried a speculative lob from the left touch-line thirty yards from goal after seeing Flinders off his line but the impudent and improvised effort dropped just wide of the target.
Gresley took the lead on 20' with their first attempt on goal when Reece Morris cut in from the right and drilled a low left-foot shot past keeper Dylan Forth at the near post. Forth managed to get a strong left-hand to the ball but the shot had just enough power to creep into the corner of the net.
The game started to be punctuated by some poor tackles with Yaw Gyimah going into the referee's book followed by Gresley's centre-half Alvin Jarvis.
Gresley should have extended their advantage on 29' when striker Sam Grouse was put clean through but with only Forth to beat he could only scoop his powerful shot over the bar. On 37' visiting midfileder Leandro Browne tested Forth with a low shot which was saved with relative ease.
The visitors were pressing now and on 40' Reece Morris found fellow midfielder Tom Manship on his right but the chance wasn't taken with the drilled shot clearing the bar easily. Vics' had the last chance of the half on 43' when skipper' Reece Lydon headed just over the cross-bar from an inch-perfect corner by Stu McDonald.
HALF-TIME - Vics' 0-1 Gresley FC.
Gresley made a substitution at the break with Keenan King replacing Sam Grouse. On 51' Tom Manship put the ball through to Keenan King on the edge of the area and the striker turned on a six-pence before blasting the ball past Forth. Vics' responded on 62' with a header by John Bennett from seven yards that lacked enough power to seriously trouble visiting glove-man Flinders. The game entered a bit of a lull for the next quarter as both sides battled gamely but no real chances presented themselves at either end of the pitch.
Vics' got back into the game on 76' when Gresley failed to deal with a ball in their own half and sub' Favour Imade cut into the box and un-leashed a powerful daisy-cutter of a shot that Flinders parried and Stu McDonald seized on the loose ball, ramming a low left-foot shot into the net from around ten yards.
Vics' now smelled blood and levelled on 82' when a headed clearance by Alvin Jarvis was picked up by Matty Clarke around twenty-two yards out, the in-form midfielder sent a right-foot howitzer screaming into the Moatmens' net via the underside of the cross-bar.
Gresley came back but they spurned a chance to regain the lead on 87'. Leandro Browne was put through in on goal but the final shot was a poor one flying well over the bar, under heavy pressure by an excellent retreat and recovery by Vics' centre-back Andy Fitzgerald.
As the game went into injury time Stu McDonald reacted violently to a crude tackle on him by sub' Zach Hill who unbelieveably escaped punishment by the referee in front of the dugouts and within seconds every player was involved in an ugly scene.
McDonald was shown a straight red for retaliation followed by his skipper' Reece Lyndon who also received a straight red.
It didn't stop there as Gresley centre-back Alvin Jarvis was shown a second yellow and subsequent red. And referee Les Sinclair wasn't yet done - he showed Moatmen' sub' Keenan King a straight red card for what looked like a headbutt. The spoils were shared on a dramatic evening of football.
Vics' Manager Paul Moores' verdict on a dramatic evening -
A good point Paul after going 0-2 down; and two cracking goals got us into a position to maybe nick a dramatic late winner - but ill-discipline at the end may cost us dearly with suspensions coming up for the two players that were dismissed. The referee didn't help matters beforehand but the players should know better with the crucial run-in now looming large.
Match report & interview by Jamie Dewsbury. Photography courtesy of Kevin Warburton. Twitter handle - @amomentinsport Website - kevinspictures.co.uk
Up next for Vics' is another EvoStik NPL Division One South fixture AWAY Vs AFC Rushden & Diamonds on Saturday 1st April. K.O is at 15:00. Stadium Address - The Dog and Duck stadium, London Road, Wellingborough, Northamptonshire. Postcode for Sat-nav systems is - NN8 2DP. Admission prices - £9 Adults, Concessions (O-65's & students with a valid NUS card).