Vics' played out a 0-0 draw with Cammell Laird F.C at the Kirklands ground this afternoon. Despite having the better chances in the game, the men in green and white were unable to make the breakthrough.
It was the hosts' last game of the season before resigning from the EvoStik League and gave manager Tony Sullivan a good send-off in the process.
MONDAY 21ST APRIL - The Kirklands ground - EvoStikNPL Division One North.
VICS' - Deasy (C), Smalley, Joseph, Clarke, Greenwood, Sanogo (Y), Summerskill, Hadfield, Harries, Amis (Phoenix 73'), Burnett. All subs used.
CAMMELL LAIRD - Langley, Foley, Hollett, Dysart (C), Lundon, Holt, Couch, Evans, O'Brien, Henders, Foy. Subs - Cairns, Gibiluru, Potter, Parle, Mooney.
Unavailable for Vics - Meadowcroft, Wisdom, Schofield (All groin strains), Henry (ankle), Stott (knee).
A depleted Vics' squad arrived at the Kirklands ground bidding for a victory that would keep alive hopes of finishing in eighth position in the league table at the expense of Ossett Town, whilst the hosts were looking to finish the season strong with the game being their last before resigning from the league.
Mike Clarke had to deputise for the absent Dan Meadowcroft and Cal Henry in an unfamiliar centre-back position alongside Marc Joseph.
Vics' started brightly, in the 5th minute Josh Amis prodded against the base of the post from close-range following a cross from the left by Gary Burnett. Lairds' had their first opportunity in the 16th minute - Jamie Henders' hanging header at the back post was expertly tipped over the cross-bar by Tim Deasy, fine work by Lairds' Joe Evans to find him umarked in the build-up. Vics' missed a golden chance to take the lead in the 23rd minute; Abou Sanogo skipped past Lairds full-back Paul Lundon with ease, and sent over a cross that picked out the on-rushing Josh Amis who lifted the ball over 'keeper Langley and fired at the empty net only to see home 'skipper Che Dysart recover and divert the ball to safety and deny a certain goal. The remainder of the half saw both sides sharing possession but with no real cutting edge to their play - the hosts' front-man Jamie Henders the only player to have an attempt at goal; firing well wide of Deasy's goal from the edge of the box in the 35th minute. Half-time arrived with the score at 0-0.
Vics' kicked-off the second half with purpose - in the 52nd minute the impressive Che Dysart again made a vital block on the goal-line to deny Abou Sanogo's driven shot from 10 yards after 'keeper Langley had parried Scott Harries' cross-cum shot out to him. Lairds' best chance to open the scoring came shortly after in the 59th minute - John Couch driving a cross into Vics' box from the right touchline, but ex-Vics' wide-man Joe Holt could only stab a shot wide when well placed on the edge of the six-yard box.
The next twenty minutes were somewhat scrappy; with both sides struggling to make any real impact in front of goal. In the 85th minute, Vics' hit-man Gary Burnett was sent scampering into the box after Summerskill picked him out with a fine pass but he took too long to get his shot off and Dysart cleared the loose ball to Harries who shot wildly wide.
Burnett had the last chance of the game in the 92nd minute; Jordan Hadfield sent him clear into the box with a long raking pass from centre-field - Burnett rounded the on-rushing 'keeper Langley and pulled the trigger to drive in what looked like a match-winning goal only for Jay Foley to miraculously make a last-ditch clearance off the line and ensure a share of the spoils and a 0-0 stalemate.
VICS' M.O.M - Michael Clarke. Deputised at centre-back alongside Marc Joseph effortlessly. A polished performance for a striker by trade; unflustered and did the basics well.
Up next for Vics' is the final league game of the season at home to Ossett Town on Saturday April 26th, kick-off 15:00.
END OF SEASON TEAM AWARDS PRESENTATION
The presentation for the end of season awards will take place following the game at 17:30 in the Social Club. Food will be available for all and manager Jim Gannon will address the presentation with his thoughts on the season and the whole of the first team squad will be staying behind to mingle with supporters.
We look forward to seeing you there!
Match report by Jamie Dewsbury.