top of page


Pitching In Northern Premier League West

Newcastle Town

Hednesford Town

Dixon (75)

(0) 0

(0) 1



Current Form

Next Match


Jack Kelly



Darlaston Town 1874 (A) 19.8.23

Hednesford recorded their first win of the season this evening as a dominant ninety minutes from the men in red was rewarded with a seventy-fifth-minute winner from Max Dixon

Saturday's 1-1 draw at home to Trafford had left manager Danny Glover a little frustrated after seeing his side fail to take advantage of a late flurry of chances to win their season opener. With this in mind, the Hednesford supremo made three changes to his side for tonight's trip to Stoke-on-Trent as Ryan Andrews, Max Dixon and Reinaldo Forbes were all handed their full debuts for the club as the trio came in for Harry Bower, Wembanvuanda Star Mayemba and Jack Sang respectively

Hosts Newcastle had started the season with a 2-1 defeat at the much-fancied Bootle on Saturday, with manager Paul Moore making two changes of his own for their first home game of the season as Alfie Carmichael and Callum Speed came into the side ahead of Patryk Mazurkiewicz and Max Chimenes

Backed by a large away following that had made the short cross-county trip, Hednesford started with real purpose on the front foot from kick-off as they looked to take the early initiative. In the third minute, Rivel Mardenborough seized upon a long kick forward from Dan Crane, controlling the ball well on  the edge of the Newcastle penalty area as he turned past Tommy Van Der Laan before striking a low angled shot at goal that was turned away by home goalkeeper James McClenaghan for a corner to the Pitmen

More neat play from the Pitmen two minutes later saw the Pitmen work the ball down the right through Callam Mendez-Jones and Thorley and into the path of Dixon, who worked some space for himself before crossing into the box from the byeline, only to find the grateful hands of McClenaghan at his near post

The Pitmen were using the ball well, playing some attractive, positive play out of defence through the likes of skipper Sam Griffiths, Michael Williams and Mendez-Jones. The Hednesford right-back was involved in an attacking position in the eighth minute as he fed Dixon once more down the line, with his cross driven well wide of goal by the hard-working Mardenborough on the edge of the Newcastle penalty area

There was a half-hearted call for a Newcastle penalty in the eleventh minute as Carmichael went to ground as he was squeezed out of a challenge between himself, Desean Martin and Williams, but referee Mr Eaton was unimpressed with the shout and play continued

Jack Kelly had started the game well for the visitors, getting up and down the left to support Forbes at every opportunity. The pair linked up well in the fourteenth minute with the winger beating two players and sending Mardenborough away, who was adjudged to have been offside when he made his run in behind the Newcastle defence

Kelly was wasteful from a great position for the away side on seventeen minutes as he overlapped Forbes brilliantly to take the winger's pass into acres of space down the left but wildly blazed his cross over the crossbar and onto the velodrome track behind McClenaghan's goal

The Pitmen were handed a golden opportunity to take the lead on nineteen minutes as they were awarded a penalty kick; Mardenborough made a run into the Newcastle penalty area down the left-hand side of the penalty area, cutting back inside from the byeline as he skillfully beat Josh Jordan, who instinctively fell on the ball and handled it to keep Mardenborough from getting his cross in. Mr Eaton was in an excellent position to observe the incident and awarded the Pitmen a spot-kick for the handball. Mardenborough stepped up to take the penalty but struck his effort at a nice height for McClenaghan, who made a fairly comfortable stop to his right to push the ball away

Undaunted by the disappointment of Mardenborough's missed penalty, the Pitmen continued to press as they picked the pace up once more with successive corner kicks out on the right. Kelly's cross midway through the half was flicked on by Dixon and found Forbes, who jinked his way into the box and looked to pick Dixon out once more at the far post but overhit his return ball over the head of the former Lichfield City man

A short back-pass from Ollie Ritchie two minutes later was seized upon by Dixon on the edge of the box, whose lay-off to Mardenborough saw the former Darlaston Town 1874 man strike a first-time effort that McClenagahan held well

Martin tested the reflexes of McClenaghan with a spectacular cross-cum-shot on twenty-eight minutes that forced the Newcastle goalkeeper into a superb save to turn the ball over the crossbar for a corner kick

A rare foray into the Hednesford half from the hosts on thirty-one minutes saw Edwards swing in a cross from the right that fell at the feet of Jack Van Der Laan, whose low shot from twelve yards out was blocked by Williams and subsequently cleared by Griffiths

Back at the other end of the pitch, Griffiths was the latest man in red to test the reflexes of the over-worked McClenaghan two minutes later as the centre-back's swirling cross from the right was tipped over the crossbar by McClenaghan for another corner to the Pitmen

Tommy van Der Laan had arguably Newcastle's best chance of the half on thirty-seven minutes as Stubbs launched a long throw into the Hednesford box level with the edge of the penalty area and found the head of his skipper, whose tame effort at goal was easily claimed by Crane

Speed somehow avoided picking up the game's first booking of the evening on thirty-nine minutes as he blatantly chopped down Mendez-Jones in full flight down the right, somehow avoiding a caution from Mr Eaton despite it looking like a textbook caution for a poor challenge on the full-back

More forceful play from Kelly and Forbes down the left saw them double up on Jack Derbyshire once more on forty minutes, with Forbes taking Kelly's pass into the box but wastefully chipping the ball wide of the far post

With a minute of normal time remaining, McClenaghan made another good save to deny the visitors once more as Andrews flicked on a Mendez-Jones ball into the path of Mardenborough, who was denied by some alert and smart goalkeeping from the former Vauxhall Motors man as he raced out of his box to claim the ball ahead of the striker

It had been a dominant but highly frustrating first forty-five minutes for the away side, who had been much the better side but had nothing to show for their efforts thus far after Mardenborough had fluffed his lines from twelve yards out early on in the game

The game continued to be played at the Pitmen's tempo at the start of the second half as the away side had most of the early ball after the restart. An early cross from Kelly on forty-eight minutes found the head of Mardenborough, whose weak effort drifted well wide of goal from ten yards out

More good play from Forbes two minutes later saw the winger make another fine run down the left before setting Kelly away on the overlap, with the left-back's deep cross headed behind for a corner by Ritchie ahead of the lurking presence of Dixon. From the resultant Kelly corner, Dixon met the ball with a full-blooded header but saw his effort fall the wrong side of McClenaghan's left-hand post

Newcastle responded with a chance of their own on fifty-two minutes as they forced the underworked Crane into a save; Carmichael picked the ball up on the corner of the penalty area and drove in an angled shot that forced the veteran stopper into a fingertip save to turn the ball behind for a corner kick

A great ball over the top from Williams sent Mardenborough on his way towards goal two minutes later, only for the assistant on the far side of the pitch to raise his flag against the striker, who had moved too quickly to get himself in behind the Newcastle defence

A long throw from Stubbs on fifty-five minutes was cleared by the Pitmen and allowed them to break quickly on the counter-attack as Thorley played Mardenborough away with a fine through ball. However, the youngster was once again a little too keen to impress and was adjudged to have been in an offside position again by the assistant

Another brilliant run from Forbes saw the winger create a chance for himself out of nothing just before the hour mark as a slalom-like run into the box from the left winger saw him drift past two players and sidefoot his effort towards goal, only to see his goalbound effort hacked off the line by Stubbs and put behind for a corner kick by McClenaghan

On sixty-two minutes, the men in red went even closer to breaking the deadlock as Dixon fed Mardenborough into the penalty area, only for the striker to slip at the worst possible moment and lose possession. The ball ran to Kelly on the edge of the penalty area, with the former Nottingham Forest youngster trying his luck with a curling effort that beat McClenaghan but clattered the crossbar and came back into play

A dangerous-looking cross into the box from Dixon two minutes later saw the forward drill in a low ball into the Newcastle six-yard box that was cleared by Tommy Van Der Laan before Mardenborough could pounce on the ball and turn it home

Newcastle made their first change of the evening on sixty-seven minutes as they looked for a change in fortunes for their under-pressure side as Mazurkiewicz came back into the team as he replaced Carmichael

Kelly had been highly impressive as the game had worn on, with the left-back making yet another fine run beyond Forbes a minute later and crossing deep to the far post where McClenaghan claimed ahead of Dixon

With twenty minutes remaining, the Pitmen made their first changes of the evening as the impressive but tiring Forbes was replaced by Bower on the left flank and Mayemba came on for the out-of-luck Mardenborough up front

Bower's eagerness to get involved in the game saw him pulled up for a tight offside decision against him on seventy-three minutes as the winger looked to get on the end of a searching Williams ball in behind the Newcastle defence

The Pitmen finally grabbed the goal that their efforts richly deserved on seventy-five minutes as they broke the deadlock through a maiden Hednesford goal for Dixon; Bower picked up a pass from Griffiths and originally lost possession to Derbyshire before regaining it wide on the left, picking the pocket of the dawdling full-back before whipping a deep cross to the far post where Dixon was on hand to nod the ball into the net from close-range

Some excellent game management from the Pitmen saw them control the game in the next five minutes, breaking up any Newcastle momentum quickly and using every possible opportunity to take their time when it came to set pieces. Dixon took one for the team on seventy-eight minutes as he muscled Ritchie off the ball as the pair wrestled for possession down the Hednesford right and conceded a free-kick

With eight minutes of the game remaining, Moore made his second change of the afternoon for the home side as he elected to bring on Lewis Holdham ahead of Joe Thompson

A good move from the Pitmen on eighty-three minutes saw Andrews play Bower into space down the left with a fine threaded pass, allowing the winger to jink his way into the penalty area before seeing his shot blocked by Derbyshire

Crane stood firm to deny Newcastle a chance on eighty-five minutes as he plucked an Edwards cross out of the air ahead of Holdham after good play from Tommy Van Der Laan to find the winger out on the right

A delightful pass from Kelly sent Thorley away on goal a minute later, with the experienced midfielder making an unchallenged run through the centre of the pitch before being brought down just outside the box by Jordan, who picked up the game's only yellow card for the shove on the midfielder. Andrews' resultant free-kick from twenty yards out was curled around the Newcastle wall but lacked enough height to test McClenaghan, who claimed the ball with ease

With two minutes of the game remaining and the Pitmen looking to pull the shutters down, Sang was brought on as their final change of the evening as he replaced Andrews

In added time, the home side made their final change of the game as new signing Louis Lake made a late appearance for the men in blue as he replaced Jordan

An impressive and well-deserved three points for the Pitmen then - their first away win in league action since their win over AFC Rushden & Diamonds in February - that sees them make it two games unbeaten at the start of the campaign and four points from the first two games. It's an earlier-than-normal start to the Pitmen's F.A. Cup campaign this season as they start in the preliminary round of this season's competition on Saturday with an intriguing local derby against near-neighbours Darlaston Town 1874

Newcastle Town: McClenaghan, Derbyshire, Ritchie, T. Van Der Laan ©, Jordan (Lake 90), Stubbs, Edwards, J. Van Der Laan, Carmichael (Mazurkiewicz 67), Thompson (Holdham 82), Speed      Subs Unused: Slinn, M. Van Der Laan

Hednesford Town: Crane, Mendez-Jones, Kelly, Martin, Williams, Griffiths ©, Andrews (Sang 88), Thorley, Mardenborough (Mayemba 70), Dixon, Forbes (Bower 70)     Sub Unused: Paddock, Richards


Images © copyright Pitmenweb

bottom of page