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Cheshire Football League Premier Division match
played at the J Davidson Stadium
on Friday, 1 December 2017, at 7.45pm


ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks): 1. Andrew JONES, 2. Harry SHERIDAN, 3. Tom WESTALL, 4. Ryan BARRY, 5. Billy NUGENT, 6. Ethan BROOKS, 7. Max POUNCEY, 8. Scott SMITH, 9. Will SMITH, 10. Joel SWIFT, 11. Rhain DAVIS. Subs: 12. Rob KENNERLEY, 14. Joe ROEBUCK, 15. Alex LOVELL, 16. Denico WALTERS, 20. Cameron TERRY.


Warrington side, Eagle Sports, kicked off but fell behind inside the first minute. A ball was played up to Will Smith and, in a central position, he controlled the ball before slipping it past the exposed goalkeeper. Curiously, just a few minutes later, Eagle Sports were presented with a similar opportunity to that from which Alty had scored, but their forward put the ball wide.

An Altrincham corner came and went before Pouncey, who was looking lively on the wing, fired a shot wide for the hosts.

The visitors began to grow into the game and they went close, after 19 minutes, with a shot that just cleared the bar. Eagle Sports soon threatened again when their no.11 put in a fine ball which only just evaded his no.10.

With the game now fairly even, the visitors' right-back put a 25 yard freekick narrowly over the bar (32 mins). Moments later Alty goalkeeper, Andrew Jones, was forced into a save as a good cross allowed the Eagle Sports no.9 to volley goalwards, at a stretch.

For the latter part of the first half Altrincham were unable to threaten the opposition goal seriously. And, three minutes before the end of the first 45, Alty were hampered by the temporary loss of Brooks, who had to leave the pitch to try and stem a nosebleed, leaving his side to negotiate the remaining period to the interval with ten men. However, in this spell, Sheridan got forward and won a corner but the score remained 1-0 at the break.


Eagle Sports started the second period well and won the half's first corner. From the left, their burly no.5 got in a strong header which deservedly levelled the score at 1-1 (51 mins).

Soon after this, Alty brought on Roebuck for Westall (54 mins). Roebuck slotted in at right-back with Sheridan moving to left-back. The visitors' no.10 was then booked for kicking the ball away as Jones was about to take a freekick (56 mins).

On the hour mark, Eagle won another corner and the no.5 got in a goalbound shot which, fortunately for Alty, hit one of his own players (61 mins). But Alty soon responded, as a fine run by Pouncey ended with his shot which the keeper had to beat out, allowing Swift to win a corner.

Next, Alty midfielder Ryan Barry gave way to striker Denico Walters (66 mins). Two Eagle Sports corners soon followed and, after the second, there was a fracas on the goal-line, which led to the referee blowing his whistle countless times as the melee developed. When peace had been restored, the visitors' no.5 and Jones were booked. A minute later, Eagle brought on no.15 for no.7 (72 mins).

Altrincham had an escape, moments later, when a fine cross to the back post found a Sports player in space but the ball got under his feet and the danger passed. It proved to be a turning point as, three minutes later, Altrincham scored (76 mins). An excellent Pouncey freekick from the left, some 40 yards from goal, was bundled in by Walters to restore Altrincham's lead.

Immediately, Altrincham made another change as Kennerley replaced Will Smith (77 mins). A trip on Scott Smith gave Pouncey another freekick after 81 minutes. This was beaten out, as was a follow-up, a corner resulting. With time running out, the visitors brought on no.12 for no.3 (87 mins). Pouncey received a harsh booking for a "foot up" offence in the final minute of normal time but Altrincham held onto their lead until the final whistle sounded.

What had promised to be a comfortable win after such an early opening goal had turned out to be a hard-fought contest.