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Altrincham v Rushall Olympic
Altrincham 4-0 Rushall Olympic
7 October 2017

Match report by Finley White, a Sports Journalism student at UCFB Etihad Campus.

Just shy of one thousand spectators saw Phil Parkinson’s Altrincham side move up one place to third on Non-League day after another rampant home win, this time it was league-strugglers Rushall on the receiving end.

Altrincham were unchanged from their impressive 5-1 victory against local rivals Nantwich, meaning that it was a special occasion for Altrincham’s central midfield partners, as Simon Richman and captain Jake Moult made their 250th appearance for the Robins yesterday.

Action began as early as the second minute, with starlet John Johnston weaving in and out on the left flank, which signalled what would be a difficult afternoon for Rushall’s right-back Joshua Webb.

Rushall were the catalyst for their own downfall, constantly putting keeper Dale Eve under unnecessary pressure, which resulted in Eve punting the ball out of play as the Altrincham front-line were hungry for the ball. The Robins eventually got the breakthrough in the 18th minute, after a fluffed effort from Peers found Ben Harrison in the box who slotted the ball past Eve in a rather composed fashion.

Twenty minutes later Alty doubled their lead, with Josh Hancock joining in on the fun. Richman’s intelligent pass was controlled well by attacking midfelder Hancock, who turned leaving the Rushall defender on the floor, and a right-footed finish meant Altrincham were 2-0 up at the break.

The second half couldn’t have started any worse for Rushall as six minutes after the break they were reduced to ten men when Kristian Scott denied Altrincham a clear goal scoring opportunity, which saw Rushall change their style of play to a temporary back three before making all available substitutions in a short period of time.

More and more chances came for Altrincham as Harrison was whiskers away from adding to his tally for the day after Hulme’s cross was just in front of outstretched boot.

Rushall sat back in the second half after their red card, but that didn’t stop Altrincham making it 3-0 in the 73rd minute through John Johnston. Some magical footwork from Poole allowed Peers to find Johnston in the box, the tap in finished off a beautiful move from Parkinson’s men.

Three minutes from time Altrincham added a fourth with Hulme taking advantage of a goalkeeping error, as Eve fumbled Poole’s shot into the path of Hulme, who chipped the ball over the keeper and fired home to seal the win.

Next up for Altrincham FC is an away trip to Whitby and for Rushall a home tie against Barwell, which saw a thrilling 4-4 finish the last time the two sides faced each other.

Man of the match: Altrincham’s number 5, Ben Harrison".