New Mills 1 Eccleshall FC 5
By Richard Farrington
Wakefield HatrickHero As Eccy Hit Five
Eccleshall recorded their first league win in nine attempts with an emphatic victory at New Mills, the win lifted Eccleshall into 16th place.
New signings Connor Docherty and Josh Davies came into the starting eleven as did the returning Saki Ahmadi, Dan Needham (injury), Lewis James and Jordan Bennion (both unavailable) missed the game, whilst Ben Fraser has been recalled by Newcastle Town.
Eccleshall started on the front and should have been in front in the opening minutes, first Tommy Van Der Laan had his shot blocked, then Joe Griffiths headed wide after good work from Brad Carr and Luke Walsh.
On six minutes Eccleshall almost paid for their missed chances as Owen Wyatt made an excellent save with his legs.
On the quarter hour Billy Johnson replaced the injured Griffiths and he was soon in the action as the home side pressed for the opening goal. Davies then did well to keep the scores level as he blocked a shot which looked to be going into the top corner.
On twenty- five minutes, Eccleshall had the lead, Lewis Dunn won the ball back on the half way line, finding Ahmadi, who switched the play through Van Der Laan to Carr on the right wing, his cross being turned in neatly by Tom Wakefield.
Just after the half hour Eccleshall almost doubled their lead, Harvey Collins sent Carr through on goal, but the home keeper did well to narrow the angle and make the save. The visitors didn’t have long to wait for that second goal, Ahmadi and Wakefield both had efforts well saved, but Ahmadi found the corner of the net after Wakefield had managed to regain possession. Three minutes before the break Ahmadi made it three after fine play between Carr and Walsh.
HT. New Mills 0 Eccleshall FC 3
The second half started evenly as the home side looked for a way back into the game, but good defending ensured that Wyatt didn’t see any action. If there was to be any doubt about the result, they went away on fifty-five minutes as Ahmadi put Wakefield through on goal and he fired into the far corner.
Luke Walsh’s mazy run almost ended with a fantastic goal, but he couldn’t find a finish as several defenders closed him down, Walsh then became provider as he slid Wakefield through on goal and this time the Eccy No 9 clipped his shot into the far corner to complete his hatrick.
The home side did pull a goal back in the final minute and although Eccleshall clean sheet had gone, this was an excellent away, team performance.
FT. New Mills 1 Eccleshall FC 5
Manager Nick Farrington said “ it was the perfect NWCFL performance, defending with discipline and professionalism , taking few risks in our own half, but being expressive in the other half. We looked dangerous every time we went forward, breaking with pace and aggression, showing excellent combination play. Tom Wakefield led the line exceptionally, whilst Saki, Brad and Luke provided excellent support and creativity. Josh Davies settled in brilliantly adding strength into the midfield, alongside Tommy Van Der Laan who moved the ball well and helped to circulate possession. We should remember that Owen made a good save before the opening goal, Connor Docherty performed well at right back as did Dunny on the left side, whilst our skipper Harvey Collins looked solid alongside Billy Johnson.
Next Saturday Eccleshall make the long trip to Carlisle City for a Division One Challenge Cup tie, the prize for the winners will be a place in the quarter finals.
Eccleshall FC – Wyatt, Docherty, Collins ©, Griffiths (Johnson), Dunn, Davies (Walsh I) , Van Der Laan, Carr (Downs), Walsh L, Ahmadi, Wakefield, Subs not used – Gittins and Aziamale