< Altrincham FC Match Report

Match Report


Vanarama Conference match
played on Thursday, 1 January, 2015, at 3pm


Altrincham lifted themselves to 16th in the table, recorded their first four-goal haul of the season and completed their first double of the campaign with this well deserved win over neighbours Chester FC.

The Robins took an eleventh-minute lead when Chester keeper Worsnop cleared the ball from outside his box to Nicky Clee. From 45 yards out near the touchline left of goal, Clee curled a superb lob into the unguarded net. An excellent through ball, following a fine run, by Simon Richman, set up Damian Reeves. He took his chance well fom left of goal to make it 2-0 after 17 minutes. John Rooney pulled back a goal, direct from a freekick, after 28 minutes.

A wild lunge by Touray on Clee saw the Chester man sent off in the 56th minute. Following a corner, the Chester defence parted to allow Reeves a second goal, to make it 3-1 after 61 minutes. Then a Clee-Reeves interchange ended with Clee's shot going through the keeper's hands to complete the scoring it 4-1 after 67 minutes.


REFEREE: Mr Martin Coy


Sean Densmore, Simon Richman and Peter Cavanagh missed last Sunday's game with illness or injury but all returned today. However, James Lawrie was out with a hamstring injury. Scott Leather dropped back to the bench to accommodate Densmore. There was no place for Greg Wilkinson in the squad today.


ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks): 1. Stuart Coburn, 2. Shuan Densmore (capt),  5. Gianluca Havern (c), 16. Tom Marshall, 3. Adam Griffin, 4. Jake Moult, 8. Simon Richman, 25. Peter Cavanagh, 19. Ryan Crowther, 10. Damian Reeves, 11. Nicky Clee, Subs: 6. Scott Leather, 18. Sean Williams,  9. Steven Gillespie, 14. Kyle Perry, 17.Dave Parton

CHESTER FC (Blue and white) 1. Jon Worsnop, 25. Ibou Touray, 5. Matty Brown, 6. Kieran Charnock, 22. Ben Heneghan, 14. Jamie Menagh, 8. Kingsley James, 10. John Rooney, 15. Kane Richards, 16. Sean McConville, 19. Craig Hobson, Subs: 4. Michael Kay, 7. Craig Mahon, 13. Connor Roberts, 3. Gareth Roberts, 21. Tom Peers,


Altrincham had won the reverse fixture at Chester on Boxing Day, 2-0. Mike Garnett reminds us that, before kick-off, the overall record between Altrincham and Chester FC, is as follows:


On a dull afternoon with rain intensifying before kick off, Alty kicked off towards the away end, following the reading of the annual Roll of Honour for Altrincham supporters and staff who had passed away in the previous twelve months.

Altrincham started with some good forward momentum and, in the third minute, Clee showed his eye for goal as he attempted to lob Worsnop from 45 yards, but his effort was off target. Altrincham’s bright start continued as a Griffin cross was only half cleared and then Reeves was blocked in the act of shooting (5mins).

Setting the tone for his performance, referee Coy now penalised Densmore as he slid in well to halt a Chester foray. Rooney's freekick came off a Chester head for Alty throw (9 mins). The rain now eased as Worsnop came out to the front, right edge of his box to kick clear an Altrincham through ball. However, he cleared the ball to Clee on the Alty left touchline. From an improbable 45 yards Clee scored a superb goal as he lobbed the stranded keeper (11 mins).

It now took a fine Cavanagh tackle to concede a corner on the Chester left but Altrincham continued to set the agenda as Clee did well on the right only for Crowther to scuff his shot wide (16 mins). Now a strong Richman run up the middle led to a great ball being threaded through to Reeves. He drew the keeper and from left of goal scored impressively with a left-footed shot, to make it 2-0 after just 17 minutes. Prior to this Alty had netted just eight times in the first half of their previous 28 games.

Chester responded as a Heneghan header was saved but the rain was now falling more heavily. After 20 minutes Touray won a freekick from which Rooney's kick was headed clear. After Hobson had given the ball away, Richman, who had a fine game, was tripped on the edge of Chester's box. However, Clee put the freekick into the defensive wall before a weak Cavanagh effort went wide. At the other end Rooney sidefooted well wide after a Marshall misheader.

Alty's attacks were coming mostly up the left but Chester found a way back into the game when Cavanagh fouled McConville 23 yards out. Mr. Coy arguably should have played on as Chester had possession but he blew for a freekick and Cavanagh escaped with a lecture. From the freekick, just right of centre, Rooney beat Coburn to make it 2-1 (28 mins).

When play resumed, Reeves was upended but no foul was given. For the second time in the match Densmore was harshly penalised but when Richards fouled Densmore, moments later, the Chester man was unlucky to be booked for what looked a minor transgression. However it produced a poor freekick by Densmore (32 mins). An equally surprising booking soon followed as McConville was cautioned for a routine foul on Cavanagh (33 mins).

Soon Crowther won a corner before Richman became the third very dubious booking from Mr. Coy. At this rate it seemed a sending off would be just a matter of time. As half time approached, Havern conceded a corner, which Richman headed clear, with rain now pouring down. Just before added time started, Clee dwelt on the ball and Chester won a corner on their left. From this, Alty blocked the ball on the line.

In added time Crowther was halted in the Chester box after a great Cavanagh long ball had located him. It had been a very entertaining first half, in which Altrincham had started much the better and they deserved their interval lead.


Altrincham kicked towards Golf Road in the second half. Soon they were threatening again as a Reeves shot was saved stopped and Richman's follow up was blocked before Crowther sliced the loose ball well wide (49 mins).

Next, a strong Clee shot forced a low one-handed save from Worsnop, which gave Altrincham a corner. However, Clee wasted the corner by putting the ball straight out of play. In the 52nd minute, Peers replaced the ineffective striker, Hobson, for Chester. However, Altrincham continued to threaten as a Clee run was followed by a Densmore incursion (54 mins).

Mr. Coy's inconsistency saw James escape a booking with a late challenge on Moult but the referee had to take action when a wild lunge at Clee by Touray drew a red card. It was a foolish challenge, wide out on the Alty right with no imminent danger to the visitors' goal (57 mins).

After Densmore's freekick Mr. Coy again courted controversy as he booked Crowther for diving as he jinked into the box (58 mins). Now Chester introduced Roberts for Menagh (59 mins).

Next an impressive dribble by Densmore got him to the by-line before a Clee right footer gained his side a corner. The corner was taken short and the resulting cross, from right of goal, was badly missed by a defender, leaving Reeves with an open goal. He duly dispatched his second goal of the game to make it 3-1 (61 mins).

A superb long ball from Cavanagh located Crowther, whose shot won a corner on the Altrincham left. From this, Marshall lashed a shot over the bar. Moments later the Alty central defender was very fortunate to avoid a yellow card when he threw the ball away after conceding a foul (64 mins).

From this freekick Coburn saved a header, after which Irishman Mahon came on for McConville who, for all his ability, had made little impression on the game (65 mins). Another good run by Clee saw him feed Reeves who turned smartly as he gathered the ball on the byline. He laid the ball back to Clee whose shot was partly stopped by Worsnop but the ball carried on into the net for Altrincham's fourth goal (67 mins).

When Cavanagh was booked for a trip, the referee seemed to be called over by the fourth official. The debate seemed to be whether Cavanagh had already been cautioned but he had not, so Altrincham remained eleven strong. Mahon now got in a good shot which just cleared the bar before Crowther got to the byline before the keeper caught his cross (72 mins). Alty now brought on Williams for Moult, rather than Cavanagh whose booking placed him in a precarious situation (73 mins).

For the neutral the game continued to be entertaining but when Brown clattered Clee from behind, Mr. Coy elected not show a card (79 mins). Altrincham pressed with Densmore and then Richman each winning a corner. After this a Crowther cross saw Reeves control the ball well but his shot cleared the bar (83 mins). Five minutes from time Chester won a corner themselves after which Heneghan's fierce volley flew wide. Into the three added minutes, Richman won Altrincham a corner but soon afterwards the whistle sounded on a convincing win which lifted Altrincham three places to sixteenth.

Following the poor display against Nuneaton last Sunday this had been an excellent showing from the home side and will give them confidence as they travel to Eastleigh next Sunday. Nicky Clee was a deserved Man of the Match but there were excellent performances all over the pitch.

Footnote: Nicky Clee was also booked in this match.