18.3.2017

Evo-Stik Northern Premier League

Coalville Town

Watson (75) (penalty), Jenno (81) 

Hednesford Town

Clarke (69), Martin (90)

(0) 2

(0) 2

Attendance

MoTM

Current Form

Next Match

162

Remeao Hutton

L D L L W W L W L D

Warrington Town (A) 25.3.17

A spectacular late strike from forgotten man Desean Martin rescued a point for the Pitmen this afternoon in their first-ever visit to Coalville Town in the Evo-Stik Premier League

 

Another week of chopping and changing for the club had seen Gary Birch and his management team handed the job of taking the Pitmen to the end of the season permanently, with Birch dispensing with the services of striker Vinny Mukendi after cancelling the big man's contract by mutual consent. He was also shorn of the services of on-loan defender Nat Brown, with the 35-year-old recalled by parent club Boston after an impressive month's loan at Keys Park. This meant a debut for new signing Joe Ballinger at the heart of the defence, with Remeao Hutton also given a chance to impress on the left-wing after Danny Glover was ruled out with injury. Martin - who had spent most of the season out on dual registration deals with the likes of Tipton Town and Walsall Wood - also returned to the squad for the first time since September

 

Coalville's first-ever season at step three had seen Tony Brookbanks' side consolidate and compete well, despite some of the smallest crowds in the league and a meagre budget. Coalville's first-ever season at step three had seen Tony Brookbanks' side consolidate and compete well, despite some of the smallest crowds in the league and a meagre budget. Last week had seen the Ravens lose 3-0 at Nantwich Town, with Brookbanks making three changes to his side for today’s game with Anton Brown, Rory Coleman and Luke Foster replacing Dean Freeman, Liam Walshe and Jack McMillan

On an impressively green surface for this late stage of the season, both sides stroked the ball around in the early stages without really threatening either goalkeeper. Dan Crane's weak punch from a corner kick on six minutes caused momentary panic in the defence before Darren Campion hacked the loose ball clear ahead of Coleman

 

Crane gave the Pitmen more concerns a few moments later, as he came off worst in a challenge with Alex Dean and required lengthy treatment from Gavin Blackwell before he could continue

 

The Pitmen were wasteful with their set-pieces once more, as they had done for much of the season with successive corner kicks from Tom Thorley and George Washbourne failed to clear the first man and were easily cleared from danger in the twelfth and thirteenth minute respectively

Good play from Steve Towers in the fifteenth minute saw the former Corby midfielder rob the ball off Washbourne and take the ball deep into the Hednesford half before playing a fine slide-rule pass through to Nat Watson. The striker took a touch that got him past Dan Brenan before drilling a shot wide of Crane's goal from fifteen yards out

Hutton had started well, playing in a more advanced position than his previous two appearances for the side and using his pace and trickery to good effect as he drifted in from the left-wing at will. He created an opening for himself on twenty-three minutes, cutting inside and beating two players before firing in a shot that was deflected wide of goal by Danny Jenno

Jenno was involved at the other end of the pitch three minutes later as he saw his goalbound header from a Dean cross deflected wide of the far post by Brenan's presence

From the resultant corner kick, Watson stabbed the ball well wide at the second attempt after the Pitmen had failed to clear the striker's initial shot at goal from ten yards out

 

Coalville had a great chance to open the scoring in the thirty-first minute as Lee Torr's pass found Dean, but the midfielder got his shot all wrong and lifted his effort high over the crossbar with only Crane to beat from thirteen yards out

 

Both sides created good openings just before half-time with Hutton involved again as his quick feet got him to the byeline on thirty-eight minutes, crossing to the far post and just failing to find the onrushing Thorley, who was arriving unmarked six yards out

 

With a minute left until the half time break, Coalville should have done better from a corner kick as Kyle Bryant lifted his shot over the bar after bringing the ball down inside the penalty area

 

After a fairly tame first-half showing, both sides upped the ante after the break with the pace of the game picking up as they looked to take all three points. A neat pass from Thorley on fifty-eight minutes found Tony Clarke, whose rising shot flew wide of goal and into the Hednesford fans huddled behind the goal

Coalville almost gifted the Pitmen the lead on fifty-two minutes, as a cross from Hutton was nearly turned into his own net by Ravens defender Kyle Bryant at his post as he followed the ball into his own six-yard box

 

Coalville keeper Matt Coton made a straightforward save to deny Hutton on fifty-three minutes, making a save low down to his right to deny the winger after he had been played into the box by Thorley's clever reverse pass

Clarke did well to hold off the attentions of Jenno on fifty-six minutes and play Washbourne into space down the right-wing, only for the former Forest Green winger to waste a good chance by electing to shoot from an audacious angle and fire well over Coton's crossbar

 

Recent signing George Cater was introduced to the game by Birch on sixty-two minutes, replacing the ineffective David McDermott who added to his recent run of poor performances with another anonymous display

 

Lewis Wright - looking more like his former self after recovering from a long-term injury - nearly grabbed his first Hednesford goal on sixty-four minutes as his deep, looping free-kick almost caught everyone out as it narrowly missed dropping into the far corner of the net

 

Coalville thought they had taken the lead on sixty-eight minutes as Torr's low cross was turned in by Watson, only to be denied a goal by an offside flag on the right-hand side

 

The hosts were made to pay for this marginal decision two minutes later, as a marauding run from Hutton saw the teenager play an inch-perfect ball through to Tony Clarke, who kept his composure well to lob the ball over the head of Coton and into the far corner of the net for his first-ever Hednesford goal. It had been a long time coming for the former Bromsgrove man and his relief at finally getting off the mark was obvious

Washbourne was booked for a late challenge on Torr on seventy minutes followed into the referee's notebook two minutes later by Clarke for an accumulation of fouls on the Coalville back line

 

However, all of the Pitmen's hard luck was undone on seventy-six minutes, as Coalville were awarded a penalty after Cater had been adjudged to have pulled Jenno to the ground in a goalmouth scramble. Watson stepped up to send Crane the wrong way from the spot and equalise for Coalville

The visitors continued to accumulate yellow cards with Campion booked for arguing with the referee on seventy-eight minutes, whilst substitute Cater was booked for a trip on the marauding Bryant a minute later

 

The game turned on its head on eighty-one minutes, as the Pitmen's lack of discipline once again was their undoing; a cheaply given away free-kick just outside the penalty area by Brenan gave Jenno the chance to strike at goal, with the defender curling a superb shot around the Hednesford wall and beyond the reach of Crane to put the hosts into the lead

 

The Pitmen made their second change of the afternoon with six minutes remaining, as Martin returned to the side after his long spell away as he came on in place of McNaught, who was limping after picking up a knock a few minutes earlier

 

Clarke somehow failed to put the Pitmen back on level terms with two minutes remaining, as a superb run from man of the match Hutton saw the winger square the ball to Clarke, who was standing barely half a yard from goal. Somehow, the big man failed to find the net, lifting the ball over the crossbar from close range, with the goal gaping. A dreadful miss

 

Fortunately for Clarke, it wasn't to matter at the end of the game as the Pitmen did indeed find a leveller in added time - and what a goal it was from Martin; Clarke's header found Martin in space, fully thirty yards from goal; after taking a touch, the midfielder unleashed a brilliant volley over the head of a flailing Coton and into the top corner of the net to make it 2-2 in spectacular style with his first-ever goal for the club

The Pitmen looked the more likely to nick the win in added time as successive Thorley corner kicks were cleared by the Coalville defence, under pressure from Brenan and Ballinger who had both been sent up to create issues in the Ravens penalty area late on

 

A point apiece does little to really improve the fortunes of either side after an entertaining and end-to-end second period which could have gone either way in the final twenty minutes of the game. The Pitmen back in action in just forty-eight hours time when they face local rivals Halesowen Town in the Evo-Stik Premier League looking to get back to winning ways at Keys Park and climb back into the top half of the league table

Coalville Town: Coton, Bryant, Torr, Jenno ©, Foster, Dean (Lavelle-Moore 61), Brown (Walshe 81), Towers, Watson, Coleman (McMillan 61), McDonald      Subs Unused: Freeman, Bowles

 

Hednesford Town: Crane, Wright, Campion , McNaught (Martin 84), Brenan, Ballinger, Washbourne , Thorley ©, Clarke , McDermott (Cater 62 ), Hutton      Subs Unused: Ransome, Peace-McDonald, Danquah

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