Match Report


Cheshire Senior Cup Round Two match
played on Tuesday, 13 January, 2015, at 7.45pm, at Flixton


With Altrincham's recent heavy Conference and FA Trophy schedule of five games in two weeks, a number of fringe and reserve players got their chance in his Cheshire Senior Cup tie at Valley Road, Flixton, now the home of Jim Gannon's Northwich Victoria. For the first half hour, or more, Alty competed well, with Ryan Barry their stand-out performer. But two goals in as many minutes effectively settled the outcome. The first came after the Alty defence allowed a ball from the right to reach the left and, from that, Amis scored with a low shot. He added a second with a free header in the 41st minute, from a Sanogo cross.

With Vics' star man Sanogo withdrawn at the break, it was not until the 71st minute that a Roddy penalty made it 3-0 for the Vics. A fourth goal in added time, by Bennett, completed the scoring.




Having played five tough games in barely a fortnight, Altrincham rested players with niggles and injuries and gave opportunities to fringe and reserve players to display their skills.

Identification was not helped by at some Vics' players wearing shirts with different numbers from those on the team sheet. Apologies, therefore, if anyone is misnamed in the report below.


NORTHWICH VICTORIA (Green and white hoops, white shorts and socks): 1. Dave Smith, 2, Chris Smalley, 3. Mo Ali, 4. Michael Clarke, 5. Danny Meadowcroft (capt), 6. Michael Roddy, 7. Brian Summerskill, 8. Abou Sanogo, 9. Gaz Burnett, 10. Josh Amis, 11. Scott Harries. Subs: 12. Callum Henry, 14. Jack Sherratt, 15. Richard Bennett, 16. Godwin Abadaki.

ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks): 1.Josh Samberg, 2. David Brown, 3. Ryan Goodwin, 4. Elliot Messam, 5. Tom Clarke, 6. Dino Jones, 7. Shaun Arrowsmith, 8. Ryan Barry, 9. Louis Potts, 10.Joel Swift (capt), 11. Connor Sutton. Subs: 12. James Campion, 14. Craig Goulden, 15, Laurence Taylor, 16. Max Pouncey, 17. Iwannis Stouppis


It seemed strange meeting the "old foe", Northwich Victoria at Flixton, a location much nearer to Altrincham than the Vics' ancestral home. Added to the travelling distance, the Vics' historical support has fragmented with a rival team, Northwich 1874 now attracting considerably larger gates than Vics for their matches in the NW Counties Football League. It was therefore not surprising that there were probably more away fans than home ones in a gate which actually looked somewhat larger than the 122 officially counted.


The game kicked off in a heavy sleet shower on a well-grassed but, given the recent weather, uneven surface. Following an early Vics' corner (3 mins), a good ball from Ryan Barry was missed by the Vics' defence and Joel Swift attempted an overhead shot bu this cleared the bar (5 mins).

The game was fairly even in the opening stages as the sleet, and then rain, eased off. Although Vics began to apply some pressure, there was little threat of an early goal as a Vics' long range shot which went wide was the best effort of this phase of the game (21 mins).

Three minutes later, another perceptive through-ball from Barry set up Arrowsmith, whose shot was on target but was saved by Smith (24 mins). Moments later, from another Barry feed, Swift got clear but was headed off by a defender.

From a Vics' corner, the powerful and skillful Sanogo headed over the bar. Altrincham continued to defend well whilst, at the other end, their next effort of note was not until the 34th minute when Smith saved from Swift at the near post. Sanogo should have scored for the Vics, moments later, when he jinked through into the Alty box but finished weakly wide.

Altrincham posed a threat on the counter-attack and, from a smart cross from the right by Swift, Barry's well struck shot was well saved (36 mins).

Disaster struck for Altrincham in the period just before the interval. A cross form the right was allowed to drift over the Alty central defence to the Northwich left, which allowed Amis to get in and score with a low shot (39 mins). Two minutes later, a Sanogo cross from the right found Amis unmarked and he completed an easy header past Samberg to make it 2-0 (41 mins).

Altrincham responded by winning a corner from a Brown cross but half-time now arrived.


At the break, Sanogo was replaced by Sherratt for the Vics. The opening stages of the second half produced plenty of effort but little in the way of goalmouth action on a heavy pitch.

After an effort from Goodwin had gone to keeper Smith, Vics won a corner, which came to nothing (58 mins). Max Pouncey was now introduced by Alty in place of Sutton (59 mins). Alty had a close shave when a clearance rebounded to a Roddy, who was completely clear, but Samberg somehow managed to divert the ball out for a corner. Vics remained on top as Harries played a cross across the face of Alty's goal.

A trip by Jones on Harries, just inside the Alty box, gave the Vics a penalty, which Roddy converted comfortably, making it 3-0 after 71 minutes. After this, Abadaki replaced Burnett for the home side and, a few minutes later, Alty made a swap, too, with Campion replacing Arrowsmith (76 mins). Next, Stouppis came on for Jones (83 mins) before the Vics won three corners in as many minutes. From the last of these, former Alty midfielder, Brian Summerskill side- footed a shot narrowly over the bar.

Altrincham's best moment in the second half arrived in the 89th minute when Swift fed Pouncey, whose first-time shot was well saved by Smith. As the game went into added time Abadaki had a free shot, which Samberg did well to stop, but Bennett latched on to the loose ball to slot home a simple fourth for the hosts.

Finally, a word of praise for the referee who not only got most decisions right but displayed firmness without officiousness and clearly explained his decisions to the players.