Brackley Town 3-1 Alfreton Town

FT: Brackley Town 3    1 Alfreton Town

07 August 2018

Alfreton Town endured an awful Tuesday night in Northamptonshire when they had no answer to an onslaught from Brackley Town that frankly could have been much worse than the 3-1 score-line suggests.

?Hopefully Billy Heath's newly assembled team will have suffered an early season blip and will be able to quickly rectify this set-back, but they certainly had keeper Sam Ramsbottom to thank for numerous saves on a night that saw Alfreton lose to Brackley for the first time in seven meetings - it was also the first time in four visits that the Reds had not won at St. James' Park.

The hosts swept into a fifth minute lead when Shephard Murombedzi slotted a Lee Ndlovu pass beyond Ramsbottom, and the combination was repeated just eight minutes later with the goalscorer doubling his and Brackley's tally.

Several outstanding saves in the first half by Ramsbottom denied Murombedzi and Adam Walker as well as thwarting James Armson on at least a couple of occasions, whilst the Reds could only muster a 26th minute chance that saw Luke Shiels go close with a header after Tom Denton had teed up a James Clifton throw.

There was also am incredible stop by the keeper despite being grounded at the time, leaving Shane Byrne scratching his head as to why he had failed to score.

HT: Brackley Town 2    0 Alfreton Town

Richard Peniket reduced the arrears on the hour mark after Gareth Dean had made a hash of trying to clear Tom Platt's through ball, leaving the former Gateshead striker free to finish in style, but by the 69th minute Brackley had restored their two-goal cushion through Ndlovu's simple back-post header from a Walker cross.

Alfreton's contingent were outraged when Harry Middleton's close-range shot was ruled out for a late off-side decision just two minutes later after clever work by fellow sub Curtis Bateson - a goal at that point might just have spurred them on to a share in the spoils.

There were injury worries for the Reds to contend with ahead of their next game away at York City, with Bobby Johnson picking up a groin strain midway through the game and defender Josh Wilde assisted off the pitch with 15 minutes remaining.

Alfreton Town Team:

Ramsbottom; Clifton, Shiels, Lane, Wilde [Chettle 75], Platt, Hotte, King [Bateson 62], Johnson [Middleton h/t], Denton, Peniket. 

Other subs: Bacon, Nicholson.

Brackley Town Team:

Lewis; Lowe, Franklin, Byrne, Hall, Dean, Walker [Fairlamb 75], Armson, Ndlovu [Nti 90+2], Murombedzi, Walker.

Other subs: Graham, Myles, Smith.

Attendance: 505

Man of the Match: Bobby Johnson

Referee: Scott Simpson Match Reports

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