Matlock Town 2-4 Alfreton Town

FT: Matlock Town 2    4 Alfreton Town

12 February 2019

Alfreton Town fought back from 2-1 down to win 4-2 in a brilliant second half fightback to seal a spot in the Derbyshire Senior Cup final against Mickleover Sports, in a cracker of a local derby with Matlock on Tuesday night.

Billy Heath made three changes with Nathan Hotte, Tom Allan and Jordan Sinnott all starting. Callum Chettle and Morgan Brough made the bench.

With a great atmosphere inside the picturesque ground, both sides looked to dominate the ball in the early stages, Matlock were movng the ball well but had to defend quickly to deny Allan's run.

Williams then swung in the first corner of the game which was cleared only as far as Yates but his cross was over-hit.

With ten minutes gone, we took the lead through an unbeliveable diagonal pass from Sinnott found Reece Styche in the box whose first touch took him slightly wide but he still finished at the near post with a powerful effort past Durrant. It was just what had needed with the game a tense affair in the opening stages.

Jackson's cross was cleared away well by Shiels before the Gladiators had a good chance with a free kick from 23 yards which Tempest took low, the ball took a deflection before Margetts fired into the side netting from a tight angle on the right.

The hosts then had claims for a penalty when Jackson looked to be dragged down in the box, these were waved away before we pressed up the other end and Sinnott showed quick feet in the box and was tripped with the Reds penalty claims also firmly rejected.

But with 23 minutes gone, Matlock were awarded a penalty to the frustration of the Reds players who had their own shout turned away minutes prior, Martin Riley appeared to trip his man in the box and Margetts stepped up to send the penalty down the middle past Sam Ramsbottom.

Matlock were growing into the contest and were beginning to pile the pressure on Alfreton, Sinnott did produce a brilliant ball from a free kick after Styche was fouled, but the ball was too long for Allan.

The Reds were giving away far too many fouls in the first half but luckily the latest ball in from Tempest had too much on it and went behind for a goal kick. Riley then defended well to deny Williams run in behind with the offside flag going up anyway.

Whitehead flicked a header wide from another Matlock free kick before the hosts took the lead after 41 minutes as Chapell's free kick wide right was sent in low and Margetts finished via a deflection into the bottom corner.

Sam denied Chapell's low effort from inside the D with a huge save to his left, the Reds had lost their way since the Matlock equaliser and half time came at just the right time for Billy Heath's men.

HT: Matlock Town 2    1 Alfreton Town

The second half saw a vast improvement from us and we really dictated the play, Matlock had early moments in the half with a Williams free kick which went over from a good position before Bobby Johnson poked an effort wide of the post in the box.

Ross Durrant continued to impress with a stunning save to deny Sinnott's rasping drive after a cross from Clackstone wasn't cleared. The Matlock keeper again produced heroics on 59 minutes to palm away Sinnott's top corner effort as we continued to push for an equaliser.

The leveller did come on 61 minutes as substitute Danny O'Brien weaved his way past two challenges in the box from a corner before firing into the far corner to drag the Reds back into the tie.

It was nearly 3-2 to Matlock with a free header from a Williams free kick which went over the bar from just a few yards out. Styche was then clattered by Durrant with no foul given, Durrant raced back to his line as Sinnott eventually got a shot off in the box with Durrant covering his near post to see the shot wide.

Durrant produced a third heroic save to deny Riley's low header which was destined for the bottom corner and was clawed behind by the Matlock goalie.

However on 75 minutes we took the lead with a wonderful low effort from Styche caught Durrant off guard and the low accurate effort went into the far corner from outside the box.

The game got worse for Matlock after 78 minutes with a straight red card for Yates for a lunge on Styche. And with 89 gone, we wrapped the game up as Bobby Johnson's effort from a tight angle squirmed its way in to seal our spot in the Derbyshire Senior Cup final in a compelling local derby.

It was a much needed win for the Reds with league leaders Chorley visiting on Saturday, a morale boosting performance with the second half outstanding.

Chorley await next for the Reds on Saturday at the Impact Arena, kick off is 3pm.

Alfreton Town Team:

Ramsbottom, Clackstone, Smith, Johnson, Shiels (c), Riley, Styche (Brough 88), Platt (Chettle 60), Allan (O'Brien 54), Sinnott, Hotte.

Subs Not Used: Clarke, Lynch.

Attendance: 371

Referee: Daniel Middleton Match Reports

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