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Vanarama National League match
played on Saturday, 10 October, 2020 at 3pm
behind closed doors


Altrincham started well and took an eleventh minute lead through Yusifu Ceesay, who netted from about eight yards after a Williams corner had come back out to him.

Williams was then put out of the game by Payne's reckless challenge, through the back of the Alty midfielder (37 mins). The offender only saw yellow, for a red-card offence, which left Williams being helped off the pitch with what looked like a right-ankle injury.

Eastleigh may have gone into the game as league leaders but if they are one of the best teams in the division their lacklustre showing throughout this game did not say much for the overall standard of the National League this season.

The Spitfires got level in added time when a corner pinged around the Altrincham penalty area before coming to Miley to score from right of centre, about ten yards out. So half-time was reached at 1-1.

In the second half Alty matched their opponents but neither side created very much, though Jake Moult did have to clear one effort off the line. Alty also lost Andy White to injury in the second half.

Overall Altrincham were certainly deserving of their draw.


REFEREE: Mr Daniel Lamport
ATTENDANCE: Behind closed doors.

Tom Hannigan was rested for this game, in the light of a heavy fixture schedule, and Shaun Densmore was also out of the squad, so Joel Senior and Ritchie Sutton made their Altrincham debuts.

Manager Phil Parkinson was not at the game.


EASTLEIGH (All blue): 1. Joe McDonnell; 11. Sam Smart, 2. Joe Partington, 3. Michael Green, 15. Alex Wynter, 6. Andrew Boyce; 8. Jack Payne, 4. Cav Miley, 7. Abdulat Baggie; 18. Ben House, 10. Tyrone Barnett. Subs: 5. Pierce Bird, 19. Danny Hollands, 14. Tom Bearwish, 9. Dan Smith, 17. Joe Tomlinson

ALTRINCHAM (Red and white shirts, black shorts, white socks): 1. Tony THOMPSON, 24. Joel SENIOR, 2. Andy WHITE, 25. Toby MULLARKEY, 4. Ritchie SUTTON, 6. Jake MOULT (c), 15. Matty KOSYLO, 8. Sean WILLIAMS, 23. Tom PEERS, 10. Josh HANCOCK, 11. Yusifu CEESAY. Subs: 7. Dan MOONEY, 30. Simon RICHMAN, 3. Connor HAMPSON, 5. Tom HANNIGAN, 17. Curtis MILLER.


Eastleigh started the game top of the table after winning both of their opening league games; Alty lay 18th after a draw and a defeat.

The Spitfires had the advantage of an additional day's rest, having played on Tuesday whereas Alty's televised match, away at Notts County, had been on Wednesday. And they also had the benefit of a free widweek after this game, as they were supposed to be having the dubious pleaure of travelling to Macclesfield this coming Tuesday and that, of course, had been cancelled given the Silkmen's demise.


Altrincham kicked off this third-ever league meeting with Eastleigh on their ground. Twice in the opening five minutes the hosts' Miley went down injured and during his treatment Alty's debutant centre-back Sutton showed his leadership qualities as he gave advice to his less experienced team-mates.

The first chance of the game came to Altrincham, through Kosylo, but his shot from the right was beaten out by the keeper before an offside decision was given (6 mins).

Barnett then won a freekick for Eastleigh, off Sutton, and Payne's freekick from 22 yards was deflected for a corner, followed by a second from which Barnett headed well over the bar (10 mins). At the other end, Ceesay won a left-wing corner for his team. Williams's deep corner came back to Ceesay who, from about eight yards, netted with a low shot to give Altrincham the lead (11 mins).

Next, a Williams 25 yarder narrowly cleared the bar as the visitors dominated early possession. A home corner came and went before a low cross from Peers was held by McDonnell at the other end (18 mins). Miley committed more than one foul but escaped a card before Alty threatened again as Kosylo had a shot beaten out by the keeper.

The ball ran to Moult who, with his back to goal, went down under a challenge but the referee ignored claims for a penalty (21 mins).

Belatedly Eastleigh improved and won three corners in a five-minute spell shortly before the half-hour mark. None of the corners came to anything.

Williams was having a good game and his tackle to win the ball off Baggie was exemplary (28 mins).

On 34 minutes Tom Peers earned a corner before Eastleigh got in their first shot on target, from Smart, which Thompson comfortably saved (35 mins). Two minutes later, a dreadful challenge by Payne cleaned out Williams from behind, and left the Alty midfielder needing treatment to his right ankle before he had to be helped off and replaced by Richman (39 mins).

Payne escaped with a yellow instead of the red card that he deserved. And Sutton got a lecture for his complaints about the incident.

Not surprisingly, losing Williams affected Alty, and it was Eastleigh who went on to win three corners shortly before half time. From the last of these, the ball pinged around the Alty box before falling for Miley to slot home from right of centre, about 13 yards from goal (45+1 mins).

Half-Time: EASTLEIGH 1

Although Eastleigh had kicked off the half, Altrincham were immediately threatening the home goal, with the Spitfires conceding two consecutive fouls, the second by the booked Payne.

Kosylo now won, and took, a corner before another Eastleigh foul, this time by Partington, gave Alty a thirty-yard freekick. Rather than Hancock, it was Peers who took it but his effort drifted wide (49 mins).

Eastleigh's fourth foul in the first five minutes of the second half put them further ahead in the match's foul count. There was then a scare for Altrincham, on 53 minutes, when Howse, who had been kept quiet, saw a shot loop off team-mate Barnett and drop behind Thompson into the net but it was ruled out for offside.

Two more Eastleigh fouls broke up play as the hour mark approached, at which point Barnett earned a corner which Thompson failed to collect but which drifted out of play.

After a Ceesay corner had been taken short by Kosylo to Ceesay, the latter's shot from the left was beaten out by the keeper as was Hancock's follow-up shot. Another Alty corner resulted before Eastleigh replaced Barnett with the equally tall Smith (66 mins).

With the Spitfire TV commentators describing proceedings as "very even", Alty made a change as Mooney replaced Ceesay (70 mins).

Eastleigh then went close as Moult had to clear off the line from Green's looping header (73 mins).

Andy White now went down injured off the ball and had to give way to Hampson at left-back (76 mins). Four minutes later Eastleigh introduced Bearwish to replace Baggie (80 mins).

Next Kosylo got to the byline but his cross found no one in the goalmouth. Alty then put together a 21-pass sequence which underlined how comfortable they were at this stage of the game (82 mins). Mooney then beat two men before the ball ran to the keeper, at which point the home side took off Green and brought on Tomlinson (84 mins).

Four minutes from time Jake Moult was booked, which seemed harsh at the time and, after the game, it emerged that it was a case of mistaken identity though it was unclear that there was an offence at all. Yellow cards cannot be rescinded so the Alty captain now has three in three matches.

Three added minutes passed fairly uneventfully apart from a strange incident when Peers sat down for treatment before trotting off seemingly uninjured after the physio had come on but given him no treatment!

So Altrincham took their first away point of the season in deserved fashion.

Full Time: EASTLEIGH 1