Match Report


Pre-season friendly match
played on Tuesday, 20 July 2010, at 7.45pm


After stuttering pre-season performances at Woodley, Rhyl and Nantwich, Altrincham were much improved here, against local neighbours Trafford of the Evo-Stik First Division, winning the game 5-0.

The match was preceded by torrential rain which then fell, more lightly, for most of the game. Following his excellent goal from a freekick on Saturday at Nantwich, Ryan Brown scored again from a dead ball, on this occasion with the aid of a large deflection (9 mins). Brown made it 2-0 direct from another freekick, superbly struck this time from wide right, to make it 2-0 six minutes later. (See adjacent picture of Ryan's second goal entering the net; Ryan is off-picture to the right).

Alty's third arrived after Brown's deep cross from the left came to Carden on the right. His low cross left Holmes with an elementary finish from close range (40 mins). It was 4-0 soon after the interval when Damian Reeves smartly converted a loose ball, after Michael Twiss's fierce low shot had been well parried by Trafford's Tom Read, a former Alty Youth keeper. Reeves then made it 5-0 with another well taken goal in the 87th minute.


  • 9 mins: Ryan BROWN (Trafford 0 ALTRINCHAM 1)
  • 15 mins: Ryan BROWN (Trafford 0 ALTRINCHAM 2)
  • 40 mins: Danny HOLMES (Trafford 0 ALTRINCHAM 3)
  • 48 mins: Damian REEVES (Trafford 0 ALTRINCHAM 4)
  • 87 mins: Damian REEVES (Trafford 0 ALTRINCHAM 5)


    ATTENDANCE: c.200


    Alty used a large number of trialists, especially in the second half but there were only three new faces amongst them. The first of these was, however, a familar face from the past; Matty Crowell, who played five league games for Alty last season before going to play football in Australia. The other two were Matt Heywood, a tall 31 year-old defender, released by Grimsby Town in February 2010. Since then he has had trials at Mansfield and Gateshead. And the third was Oliver Devaney, a young ex-Preston midfielder.

    Trafford included former Alty first-teamer Simon Woodford, ex-Alty reserve Scott Barlow and Alty Youth keeper Tom Read, whose fellow Alty graduate, Tom Bailey, was on the bench.


    The pre-season trip to Trafford has become a pretty regular fixture and, as ever, the Shawe View pitch was in fine condition and the welcome friendly. The heavens opened shortly before kick off but, thankfully, the downpour eased a little and the game took place without the rain being a major factor.

    Watching the game was Matt Doughty, who is getting close to fitness after his cruciate injury, and Nicky Clee, who had a slight strain, which ruled him out tonight. Former Altrincham left-back, Chris Adams, was also amongst the spectators.


    Trafford are shown below as listed in the programme, but with numbers only shown where positively identified. Some shirts were used twice.

    For their part, apart from the odd shirt with the correct player's name on its back, Altrincham wore a range of former players' kit so some numbers appeared twice on the pitch simultaneously and the names on the back of many shirts bore little resemblance to the wearer's true identity!

    TRAFFORD (All white): 1. Tom READ, 2. Simon WOODFORD, Kyle HARROP, Paul ASHTON, Nia BAYUNU, Chris LAWTON, Lee HARGREAVES, Adam TURNER, Paul VANDEN, Joe SHAW, 8.Melford KNIGHT, 9. Scott BARLOW, Tommy SMITH, 15. Kade COPPIN, Tommy TURNER, 14. Tom BAILEY, Marvin MacDONALD, Nikos PAPAGIRIS, Danny WHITE, Warren COLLIER

    ALTRINCHAM (Yellow shirts and socks, blue shorts): 23. Russell SAUNDERS, 12. Robbie WILLIAMS, 22. James SMITH (capt), No Number. Marc JOSEPH, 27. Ryan BROWN, 24. Adam CARDEN, 25. Anthony DANYLYK, 18. Adam NOWLAND, 8. Matt HOLMES, 26. Michael TWISS, 21. Chris DENHAM. Subs: 15. Robbie LAWTON, 22*. Damian REEVES, 11. Oliver DEVANEY, 8*. Tom SCHOFIELD, 17. Danny ADAMS, 20*. Matty CROWELL, 20**. Matt HEYWOOD, No Number. Fraser McLACHLAN, 24. Michael CARR, No Number. Shaun DENSMORE, and Andy GAMBLE (who was not used).


    James Smith always likes to be the last player out of the dressing room but, tonight, he had to lead the way as captain. Apart from James, the only other members of last season's first-team squad who started the game were Robbie Williams, Ryan Brown, Adam Carden, Anthony Danylyk and Chris Denham. On the bench, Shaun Densmore and Robbie Lawton were the only other first-teamers from last season in the squad.

    Former Burton trialist Danny Holmes started the game behind the front two of Denham and Twiss, whilst another trialist, ex-Blackpool man Adam Nowland, joined Danylyk in central midfield. Former Rotherham defender Marc Joseph, yet another trialist, was on the left of the back line.

    Trafford started brightly and won the game's first two corners (5 mins). Altrincham won a freekick just outside the Trafford box in a central position. Ryan Brown, who had scored with an excellent freekick at Nantwich on Saturday, took this kick, too. The ball struck someone en route and deflected into the net to give the visitors an early lead (9 mins). Soon afterwards, Brown set Twiss free but, although his shot was well hit, Read did well to divert it for a corner.

    Brown then stepped up to take another Altrincham freekick, wide on the right about 25 yards out. The curling, left-footed strike deceived everyone and entered the net just inside the back post to make it 2-0 (15 mins) and mark the former Northwich man's third free-kick goal in less than 90 minutes of pre-season football.

    It was almost 3-0, five minutes later, when a well-taken volley by Holmes struck the cross bar. One of several full-bloodied tackles by well-travelled midfielder Melford Knight, now Trafford's captain, left Joseph on the ground but no freekick was awarded.

    Nowland was impressing in the Alty midfield and Danylyk too was playing well. And it was after Danylyk had won possession and fed Brown on the left that Altrincham were to go 3-0 ahead after 40 minutes. Brown overhit his cross from wide left but Carden retrieved the ball, wide on the right by-line. He played in a low cross to Holmes, who calmly placed his shot inside the keeper's left post from six yards or so.

    Trafford kept going and won a corner (43 mins) and then Barlow forced a fine save from Saunders on the stroke of half-time, to leave the score 3-0 to the visitors.


    Altrincham made four changes at the break with Damian Reeves (forward), Robbie Lawton (midfield) and trialists Matty Crowell (midfield) and Matt Heywood (central defence) all coming on. The players taken off were respectively, Denham, Holmes, Nowland and Williams.

    The first action of the half saw Alty over-elaborate as they threatened the Trafford goal but then an excellent through ball set Twiss fee left of centre. His well-struck, low shot was impressively saved by the diving Read, but the ball fell for Reeves. The former Farsley man had to turn smartly to control the ball, but he finished well to record his first goal for his new club (48 mins).

    Traford did not enjoy much luck when a shot was stopped by Saunders but ran free against the upright before rebounding to the grateful Alty keeper's arms (51 mins). Then, the Trafford no.11 went close before the home side made changes with Tom Bailey and another player replacing Barlow and the no.10 (55 mins).

    Brown went for his hat-trick at the end of a neat Alty move but sliced his effort well wide. At the other end, Saunders had to make a good save after Trafford got behind Smith, to the right of goal. Carden was having another good game for Altrincham and Lawton was industrious on the left. Trafford's Knight continued to make his presence felt and the home management withdrew him after 59 minutes before anything untoward could happen. On the hour mark, Densmore and a trialist, Oliver Devaney (ex-Preston), came on for Carden and Danylyk. Devaney soon did well to feed Reeves. Despite being held in the box, the Alty striker advanced on goal but his shot across the keeper went narrowly wide of Read's left post (63 mins).

    Next Trafford brought on a sub for Woodford and, on 70 minutes, Altrincham made a triple swap. The arrivals on the pitch were three trialists; Danny Adams, Michael Carr and Tom Schofield, all of whom had played in the match at Nantwich last Saturday. They replaced Smith, Brown and Joseph. Trafford then brought on Coppin before McLachlan became Altrincham's next substitute, replacing Twiss (75 mins). Reeves now shot narrowly wide before some pressure was exerted by Trafford. However, on a counter attack, Carr fed Schofield but he fired over the bar from outside the box (83 mins). Two more Trafford subs came on after 85 minutes and another change occurred a minute later. But Altrincham rounded off the evening when they scored their fifth goal, three minutes from time. A ball up the middle set Reeves free and he took his chance well (87 mins).

    This was Altrincham's best pre-season performance to date this summer as most of the trialists acquitted themselves well, with Holmes, Nowland and Joseph all particularly impressing. Former Grimsby defender Heywood had relatively little to do when he came on.

    Alty move on for their fourth pre-season match against EvoStik League Division One opposition, when they travel to Curzon Ashton this Saturday.