Match Report


FA Trophy, Round 1 match
played on Saturday, 30 November 2013, at 3pm


For the second time this season Altrincham bowed out of an FA cup competition to a side from a lower league. Altrincham thought they had taken the lead after 29 minutes when Moult's freekick was nodded down by Havern for Reeves to net but the referee ruled it out, apparently for a push. Apart from one decent save from Chapman neither keeper was kept busy in the fairly even and goalless first half.

When Leather was judged to have tripped Johnson, Johnson converted the resulting penalty (67 mins). Alty continued to labour after this and, when Johnson converted Johnston's pass in injury time, it was effectively all over. However, Wilkinson got an even later consolation goal, with a good shot from long distance, but Alty could not complain too much at the result.


REFEREE: Mr David Richardson

Altrincham were without the injured Clee, so James Lawrie started on the left flank and youth striker Max Pouncey joined the bench. Former Alty midfielder, Anthony Danylyk, was playing for Leek.


LTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, red shorts and socks) 1. Stuart Coburn, 2. Shaun Densmore (capt), 3. Matt Doughty, 4. Jake Moult, 5. Gianluca Havern, 6. Scott Leather, 7. Greg Wilkinson, 8. Simon Richman, 9. James Walshaw, 10. Damian Reeves, 11. James Lawrie. Subs: 12. Carl Rodgers, 14. Brian Smikle, 15. Max Pouncey, 16. Kyle Perry, 18. Adam Reid

LEEK TOWN (Light blue shirts, dark blue shorts and socks) 1. Ben Chapman, 2. Danny Smith, 3. Matt Bell, 4. Ryan Dicker, 5. Paul Donnelly, 6. Sam Hall (capt), 7. Anthony Danylyk, 8. Niall Maguire, 9. Andy Kinsey, 10. Jordan Johnson, 11. John Johnston. Subs: 12. Mitch Husbands, 14. Andy Bratt, 15. Tim Grice, 16. Dan Shelley, 17. Rhys Swetnam.


Mike Garnett reminds us of the previous encounters between our two clubs:


Altrincham kicked off, defending the away end and, after just 23 seconds, they won a corner too. Keeper Chapman missed the corner and it eventually came out to Moult but he fired over the bar from 20 yards or more. With vocal away support, Leek soon settled but the only goalmouth action saw Coburn save a weak shot by Maguire before Reeves and Walshaw were halted in the other box. After eight minutes, Moult forced a good save from Chapman; little did we know but that was to be about as good as it got in the first half (8 mins).

Next Densmore was fouled near the corner flag but his freekick was cleared, after which a highly ambitious long-shot by Wilkinson sailed well over the bar. In the 16th minutes Leather located Reeves and, via Lawrie, Walshaw fired wide, as did Wilkinson a minute later from a Reeves feed.

"Quicker" shouted manager Lee Sinnott to his team in response to their sluggish start to the match. But, after Reeves had been almost played in by Wilkinson, at the other end Leek won two corners in as many minutes (24 mins). It was still a game of no real goal chances but then Alty won a freekick near the centre spot. Moult took it and Havern rose well near the left post and nodded the ball down to Reeves, who slotted the ball home. Referee Richardson, however, ruled out the goal, seemingly for an alleged push (29 mins).

Shortly afterwards, a Densmore cross was cleared but a corner soon followed. For Leek, Johnston then got past Lawrie but Smith's resulting cross located no one in the goalmouth for the visitors (33 mins). An excellent Densmore cross now found Reeves but he headed over the bar, after which a Walshaw shot almost hit an upstairs window in the Golf Road (38 mins).

As half time approached Densmore via Lawrie found Walshaw but his effort was narrowly wide. With the game into its one added minute, it needed Moult to scramble the ball clear in Alty's goalmouth as the visitors continued to match their more highly placed hosts (45+1 mins).


No doubt benefitting from a half-time talk from management, Altrincham started the second half with a bit more gusto. An early Lawrie shot won a corner, followed by a Densmore cross to the keeper and, then, Reeves fed Wilkinson, who forced another corner (48 mins). But the improvement did not last long and, soon, the stalemate continued with little in the way of goalmouth excitement at either end.

Indeed, it was past the hour mark before the game's next corner as a Wilkinson shot was palmed out. Then Moult won another corner as Alty, at last, mounted a bit of sustained pressure. After a foul by Moult, the Alty midfielder was booked, after which Perry replaced Lawrie with Walshaw being directed to a position on the left flank as the new man joined Reeves up top (62 mins).

With the game drifting on, Leather was harshly judged to have brought down Johnson. A penalty was awarded and Leather was booked. Johnson himself took the spot kick, blasting a low effort past Coburn to give Leek the lead (67 mins).

The game now opened up a bit as, firstly, Reeves found Wilkinson, whose cross led to a Densmore header, just over the bar, and then a Densmore cross was just held on the goal-line by Chapman (73 mins). Moult now won a freekick against Danylyk, who was booked (74 mins). Following this, Chapman fumbled the ball and it came out to Wilkinson, who steadied himself then sliced a shot very wide.

The steady stream of bookings continued as Walshaw was felled and Smith booked (77 mins), but Leek looked fairly comfortable with their lead as Alty failed to put pressure on the visitors' defence. A half chance arrived in the 82nd minute when Walshaw crossed from the left but Reeves was unable to turn it in at the near post. Indeed, Leek continued to look as likely to score again as Alty were to level the game.

Three added minutes were signalled, after which Johnston, on the Leek right, fed Johnson who made it 2-0 (90+1 mins). Too late, Altrincham got a goal as, out of nothing, Wilkinson hammered in a long-range effort (90+2 mins). Dicker kicked the ball away to delay the restart and got a deserved booking. Johnson then flattened Densmore and found himself the latest name in Mr. Richardson's increasingly full notebook. But there was still time for an Alty corner but it came to nothing.

So, for the second time this season, Altrincham bowed out of a national cup competition to opposition from the EvoStik League, in this case, a team from two steps lower in the pyramid. But, though Altrincham could point to a disallowed goal and a dubious penalty awarded against them, the truth is that they did not play anywhere near to their potential, with too many mis-placed passes and mis-understandings. Leek deserved their win and we wish them well in the next round; they have now accounted for two of the top three in the Skrill North in the FA Trophy, having beaten Brackley in the previous round.