08 January 2013
Dave Pursglove's match picture album here
Alfreton Town couldn't follow up Saturday's win when Wrexham visited the Impact Arena on Tuesday night, and despite the Welshmen being reduced to ten men from the 49th minute they still managed to claim top spot in the Blue Square Bet Premier.
Dan Bradley was rested for the fixture, and with Paul Clayton having recovered from his illness at the weekend, Daniel Meadows was able to drop back into midfield.
A bright start by the Reds saw Clayton's volley from the edge of the area held by Cameroon international Joslain Mayebi in the first minute, then in the fourth minute Josh Law's free-kick zipped through the pack to be gathered by the keeper.
Alfreton strung together some promising moves and Anton Brown stumbled as he entered the area following several passes in the 12th minute, but Wrexham took a 16th minute lead against the run of play.
A Joe Clarke corner caused mayhem in the box, and after in-form striker Danny Wright had seen his header loop up off a defender Neil Ashton was on hand to head home despite Brown's heroic attempt to prevent the ball from crossing the line.
Meadows fired just wide on 20 minutes and Ben Tomlinson fired the ball through a crowded goalmouth with no takers, but the Reds deservedly drew level in the 32nd minute.
Brown had been hacked down by Jay Harris on the left side of the area, and when Law delivered the free-kick Tomlinson whacked the ball past Mayebi from ten yards.
In the closing stages of the first half Wrexham's Rob Ogleby saw a goal ruled out for off-side, then Nicky Law was banished to the stands by Chelmsford referee Michael Bull who had taken exception to the Reds' manager's comments.
Four minutes after the break the visitors were reduced to ten men when Wright was dismissed for a second bookable offence - a foul on Leigh Franks, then six minutes later Wrexham's assistant manager Billy Barr was also sent off by the busy official.
In the 51st minute Alfreton wasted a gilt-edged chance when Tomlinson sent Nathan Arnold through with a great cross-field pass, only for Mayebi to stand firm and save, when a square ball to the supporting Clayton might have been a better option.
Barnes comfortably held an Adrian Cieslewicz header on the hour, then Mayebi held shots from distance by Law and Arnold before Harris went close from 30 yards.
Alfreton did not heed a dangerous central run by Nick Rushton in the 75th minute that went close, because seconds later a similar run by Clarke ended with Wrexham back in front as he waltzed past three Reds defenders and slotted the ball low past Barnes from 12 yards.
Arnold headed wide from Law's 79th minute cross, then two minutes later Barnes made the save of the night when he stretched to claw away a goalbound shot from Cieslewicz.
Alfreton Town Team:
01 Phil Barnes
02 Josh Law (Alastair Taylor, 84 mins)
12 Leigh Franks
17 Theo Streete
23 Ross Killock
07 Anton Brown
14 Daniel Meadows
16 Matty Harriott (Dan Bradley, 84 mins)
09 Paul Clayton
11 Nathan Arnold
21 Ben Tomlinson (Ashley Worsfold, 77 mins)
Substitutes not used:
03 Connor Franklin
05 Adam Quinn
01 Joslain Mayebi
03 Neil Ashton
04 Danny Alfei
06 Martin Riley
23 Chris Westwood
08 Jay Harris
12 Dean Keates
14 Joe Clarke
16 Jonny Hunt (Adrian Cieslewicz, 55 mins)
09 Danny Wright
15 Rob Ogleby (Nick Rushton, 63 mins)
Substitutes not used:
18 Declan Walker
17 Glen Little
21 Jay Colbeck
Goals: Alfreton Town - Ben Tomlinson 32. Wrexham - Neil Ashton 16, Joe Clarke 75.
Yellow cards: Alfreton Town - Leigh Franks (17, unsporting behaviour), Danny Meadows (50, foul on Neil Ashton), Theo Streete (59, foul on Jay Harris), Ben Tomlinson (77, foul on Jay Ashton). Wrexham Jay Harris (32, foul on Anton Brown), Danny Wright (41, kicking the ball away and 49, foul on Leigh Franks).
Red cards: Wrexham - Danny Wright, 49 minutes, two cautionable offences.
Attendance breakdown: 628 with 153 from Wrexham.
Man of the Match: Theo Streete
Referee: Mr Bull of Essex