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Vanarama National League North match
played on Saturday, 7 September 2019, at 3pm


Altrincham paid a substantial price for their best win of the season, losing both Yusifu Ceesay and Connor Hampson to injury inside the first half hour.

By then, however, Alty had taken the lead, following a spell of several minutes' almost exclusive possession of the ball. The opening goal came as Jones threaded the ball through to White, whose low cross was turned into the net by Hulme (15 mins).

But almost immediately Ceesay had to be stretchered off with an apparent hamstring injury and this disrupted Alty's flow. It got worse when Hampson also had to go off injured (30 mins).

Despite these setbacks, Alty struck a second time in the second added minute of the half. Hemmings, who had a fine game, found Johnston, whose clever chip forward was matched by Hancock's intelligent run and the number ten nodded the ball into the net.

Altrincham's third goal arrived on the hour mark after Hulme had won a freekick on the right byline. Hemmings's freekick ended up in the net courtesy of an apparent own goal by Gittings, although Jordan Hulme did his best to claim it.

A very disappointing Leamington had hit the post in the first half but failed to suggest they would be able to retrieve anything in the second half. Alty rounded off the afternoon with two late goals. In the first added minute after the ninety, Peers tapped home a Richman ball from right of goal. And then, with the last kick of the match, Hancock scored a smart goal at the near post after good work from substitute Johnston on the left.


REFEREE: Mr Dean Hulme

Altrincham were again without the suspended Tom Hannigan. As Yusifu Ceesay joined the starting eleven, John Johnston moved to the bench which, again, lacked Shaun Densmore who has been unfortunate not to be involved in recent games. Ceesay started in JJ's place.


ALTRINCHAM (Red and white striped shirts, black shorts and red socks): 1. Tony THOMPSON, 2. Andy WHITE, 3. Connor HAMPSON, 4. James JONES, 5. Toby MULLARKEY, 6. Jake MOULT (c), 7. Ashley HEMMINGS, 8. Sean WILLIAMS, 9. Jordan HULME, 10. Josh HANCOCK, 11. Yusifu CEESAY. subs: 12. John JOHNSTON, 14. Tom PEERS 15. Max HARROP, 16. Conor BRANSON, 17. Simon RICHMAN

LEAMINGTON (All blue): 1. Jake WEAVER, 2. George CARLINE, 3. Cieron KANE, 4. Joe CLARKE, 5. James MACE, 6. Jake LANE, 7. Kieran DUNBAR, 8. Callum GITTINGS, 9. Josh MARCH, 10. Jake EDWARDS (c), 11. Kaiman ANDERSON. Subs: 12. Ravi SHAMSI, 14. Connor TAYLOR, 15. Jordan MURPHY, 16. Gift MOUSSA, 17. Jamie HOOD.


Alty were eighteenth at kick off whilst the visitors lay sixth, despite having played one fewer game. Mike Garnett's records reveal the past tally in matches between Altrincham and Leamington...

Former Alty forward James Poole was a spectator in the directors' box this afternoon.


Leamington kicked off towards Golf Road before the game got off to a quiet start. A shot from Ceesay deflected to keeper Weaver (4 mins) before Edwards received a lecture for a foul on Moult. Things improved for the spectators with Williams's fine pass to Hulme, whose well hit shot just cleared the bar (7 mins).

When Hulme went down in the box, his namesake, the referee, was unmoved. Altrincham now began to dominate possession but, when Ceesay was seemingly fouled in the Brakes' box, Mr Hulme again dismissed the appeals for a penalty which, this time, did seem to be a valid call from the Alty side (13 mins).

Two Alty corners came and went before Alty scored the match's first goal, without any need for assistance from the referee. Jones played a fine ball forward to White, who had advanced up the right. His low cross was turned into the net near the back post by Hulme to give his side the lead (15 mins).

But with Altrincham playing well, in the 18th minute, Ceesay pulled up lame, with an apparent hamstring injury, and he had to be stretchered off (20 mins).

Johnston came on to replace Ceesay on the left wing (21 mins). The injury disrupted Altrincham's flow and it was Leamington who won the game's next corner (25 mins).

And the injury jinx struck the hosts once more, after 28 minutes, when Hampson sat down for treatment and had to be taken off. His replacement was Richman, who assumed the right-back role as White shifted to the left (30 mins).

Next a fine shot from Dunbar smacked against the left post of Tony Thompson as Alty's bright start was now faltering (32 mins. Within five minutes of his introduction, Richman, who misses the next match through suspension, was twice penalised.

Altrincham now lacked their earlier tempo and their passing became slow and largely lateral or backwards. Indeed, it was Leamington who next went the closer as a shot from Dunbar, after he had latched onto a headed Mullarkey clearance, was stopped by Thompson. The home keeper had to smartly regather the ball to prevent an equalizer as a visiting forward closed in on him (41 mins).

Just as three added minutes were being announced, a Johnston cross just evaded Hulme. But, in the second added minute, Hemmings fed Johnston. He was alert to Hancock's run into the box and chipped the ball forward cleverly for Hancock to run onto it and nod the ball past Weaver to make it 2-0 (45+2 mins).


The second half soon saw Mullarkey showing his coolness at the back as he cleared the ball and he soon impressed again with a fine pass.

Altrincham almost made it 3-0 when Hulme fed Hemmings. From outside the box, he curled a superb left-foot shot onto the underside of the bar but the ball bounced down and was cleared (51 mins). Mr Hulme the referee soon annoyed Alty yet again as Hancock went down and received no freekick.

For Alty, Jake Moult was getting back to his true self after his long injury lay off and his side was now again threatening the visitors' goal again with some neat passing moves. Next, Hulme won a freekick on the right byline, just outside the box. Hemmings's freekick ended up in the net after Hulme had had a stab at it at the near post but the final touch was from Leamington's Gittings (60 mins).

Leamington now made a double swap as Murphy and Shamsi replaced Dunbar and Anderson (62 mins). Five minutes later, Moussa completed their substitutions as he replaced Clarke.

Williams was unfortunate to be penalised as Lane threw himself down ahead of any contact with the midfielder. The Alty man also appeared to be shown a yellow card (72 mins). To add injury to insult the freekick smashed into Williams in the defensive wall and he needed treatment before resuming.

On 77 minutes Jordan Hulme was replaced by Tom Peers. However, Alty continued to threaten with a fine ball from Jones getting White into the box, only for the offside flag to be raised. White was soon in the box again only to be thwarted by keeper Weaver.

Soon afterwards a great ball from Johnston set up Hancock whose fine shot was tipped over the bar for a corner (84 mins). It was damage limitation now for the visitors as, next, Hemmings fired narrowly over the bar (86 mins).

Twice in a matter of minutes Hancock appeared to be fouled without any acknowledgement from the referee so there were huge ironic cheers when the referee did give Johnston a freekick soon afterwards. From the freekick by Johnston, Richman got to the byline on the right, from where his low cross found Peers who completed a close-range finish to make it 4-0 (90+1 mins).

In the final added minute, Johnston again set up a goal. From the left he sent in a low ball to the post where Hancock, showing good anticipation, arrived to slot the ball into the net for goal number five (90+3 mins).

After their faltering start to this season, this had been more like the Altrincham of last season. And it was all the more commendable a performance for having come in a game in which two of their players had been injured inside the first half hour. With Richman suspended next week and Ceesay and possibly Hampson now injured, Alty will be particularly pleased to welcome back Hannigan from suspension on Saturday at Kidderminster.