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Pre-season Friendly match
played on Tuesday, 22 September, 2020 at 7.45pm
behind closed doors


After a goalless first forty-five minutes, a disappointing second half from the visitors witnessed two goals inside five minutes for Alfreton. The first goal was netted by ex-Alty man Conor Branson following a corner, just before the hour-mark. And the second goal arrived, some four minutes later, from a long-range shot by Fox after a mistake by Richman.

Alty did rally, in the late stages of the game, with Ceesay prominent and they could have levelled in the final five minutes. Firstly, Ceesay fed Peers who missed the target from ten yards and then the winger won a penalty. He wanted to take it himself but Max Clayton did so only to see his spot-kick saved.


REFEREE: Mr Elliot Swallow.
ATTENDANCE: Behind closed doors.

Altrincham's pre-season continued with this, a fourth successive away match. Josh Hancock and Andy White returned after their recent knocks but a number of the subs employed last time out actually started this time, including Matthew Gould making a first start in goal.

There were no new faces in the squad tonight as the three trialists deployed at Huddersfield were all involved again here. For Alfreton, former Alty midfielder Conor Branson started.


ALFRETON TOWN (Red): 1. George Willis, 2, Josh Clackstone, 3. Nathan Fox, 4. Conor Branson, 5. James Jones, 6. Toby Lees, 7. Dom Smith, 8. Dan Bradley, 9. Shaun Tuton, 10. Bobby Johnson, 11. Elliot Reeves. Subs: 2. Joe Stacey, 3. Kieron Hinchley, 4. Harvey Grice, 5. Adam Lund, 6. Adedapo Adelekan, 7. Rio Molyneaux, 8. Michael Williams, 9. Danny Clarke, 10. Jake Day. .

ALTRINCHAM (All grey with red and white sash on shirts): 1. Matthew GOULD, 2. Joel SENIOR, 3. Andy WHITE, 4. Tom HANNIGAN, 5. Ritchie SUTTON, 6. Toby MULLARKEY, 7. Matty KOSYLO, 8. Sean WILLIAMS, 9. Jordan HULME (capt), 10. Josh HANCOCK, 11. Curtis MILLER. Subs: 12. Shaun DENSMORE, 14. Ashley SMITH-BROWN, 15. Jake MOULT, 16. Simon RICHMAN, 17. Max CLAYTON, 18. Tom PEERS, 19. Yusifu CEESAY, 21. Will HALL, 23. Connor HAMPSON, GK. Tony THOMPSON


Alty had not visited the Impact Arena last season as their league fixture was scheduled to be played after the start of lockdown was imposed for Covid-19 in March. The previous season Alty had won 7-0 at the ground!


For some reason Alty were very late emerging to start the match, leaving their hosts waiting for their guests to kick-off. The opening stages were uneventful with Alfreton perhaps initially having a few freekicks and marginally the better of things. But neither keeper was to be troubled in the opening twenty-five minutes.

For Alty, Hancock was looking sharp and a clever turn set him off towards goal only for former Salford City and Chester FC defender James Jones to halt his threat (9 mins). Next, a fine ball from Sean Williams led to a Miller shot rising over the bar (10 mins).

Alty were now getting on top with Williams and Hancock particularly impressing whilst their opponents' direct style was presenting a much different challenge from that encountered the previous Saturday at Huddersfield. It was not till the midpoint of the first half that the game's first corner arrived and it went to Altrinchma but was overhit by Williams who, otherwise, was playing well.

Neither goalkeeper had yet been tested as the half continued. but then Alty goalkeeper Gould had an unhappy triple attempt to deal with an Alfreton freekick, with a home corner resulting (30 mins).

An uncharacteristic error from Tom Hannigan then allowed Tuton to threaten Alty's goal but Ritchie Sutton managed a block, with just a corner resulting (32 mins). Next a ball from White sets Hulme on goal but he cannot find the target (38 mins).

Alfreton's best effort of the half arrived just before the interval as Johnson's shot narrowly cleared the bar (44 mins). Although it was a friendly match Mr Swallow chose to book Jordan Hulme before half time, perhaps remembering that he had deemed it necessary to send off the Alty striker, who was captain today, when Alty had played at Stockport County in 2018-19 season.


Altrincham made three changes at the interval with Hampson, Ceesay and Richman replacing White, Miller and Williams respectively.

Having booked Hulme just before half-time, shortly after the restart he cautioned Alfreton's Johnson for a foul.

Trialist Joel Senior was having a good game for Alty but, as the hour-mark approached, Alfreton upped the pressure. First, Johnson went down in the box but no penalty was awarded (57 mins). Three successive corners culminated in Alfreton scoring the opening goal. Jones won a header from the last of the three corners and ex-Alty man Conor Branson diverted the ball past Gould (58 mins).

Alty then brought on their remaining outfield substitutes (Densmore, Smith-Brown, Peers, Moult), only to concede a second goal moments later.

That goal aorose when Richman lost possession and Fox advanced to hammer a fine 30-yard effort past Gould (62 mins).

Alty did respond to this quick-fire double blow as Clayton went close (65 mins). Alfreton were drip-feeding their substitutes but it was Alty who now won a 70th minute corner through Ceesay following a good ball from Smith-Brown. Two more Reds' substitutions followed before Alfreton won a corner, which Jones headed over the bar when he might have done better (78 mins).

Ceesay then enjoyed a purple patch. First of all he was hauled back by Adelekan to concede a freekick which came to nothing (81 mins). Then a Ceesay advance led to his feed for Tom Peers who unaccountably missed the target from ten yards (85 mins).

Moments later Densmore got forward but he, too, finished disappointingly with a wide effort. Undeterred, Ceesay advanced again and this time won a clear penalty when fouled by Adelekan (88 mins). Although the former Blackpool man clearly wanted to take the spot-kick himself, Clayton picked up the ball, only to see his effort from the spot saved by the keeper (89 mins).

And that was that, a disappointing result after a promising first period from Altrincham.