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Vanarama National League match
played on Tuesday, 17 November, 2020 at 7.45pm
behind closed doors


Chesterfield took a 14th minute lead following a needlessly conceded corner, which led to an immediate second corner. Although this second corner was half-cleared, a deep ball from the right was relayed back from the byline by Denton to a team-mate on the left, whose long diagonal ball to the right was nodded back across the penalty area by Maguire for Boden to head in at the back post.

However, Alty rallied and the lively Kosylo fed Adarabioyo who finished coolly (30 mins) from 12 yards or so. The goal boosted Alty and, indeed, they had the ball in the net again, five minutes later, but Dales was ruled to be marginally offside when he netted Kosylo's feed. So at half-time it was one apiece.

Alty then took the lead thanks to a slightly dubious penalty as Alistair Smith went down in the box. Hancock converted the spot kick (62 mins) but they were ahead for fewer than 60 seconds as Cropper drilled in a fine goal from wide on the right.

A couple of excellent saves from Thompson kept the visitors out but, in the 89th minute, Alty put together a fine goal. More than half a dozen passes culminated in a clever dummy by Kosylo which let in Hancock to slide the ball past the keeper and make it 3-2.

Despite more than four added minutes Altrincham comfortably held on to record their first home win of the season, and move up to sixteenth, albeit having played more games than all of the teams below them. For Chesterfield it was yet another case of being unable to capitalise on a lead.


REFEREE: Mr Karl Evans who has refereed Alty since as far back as 2005
ATTENDANCE: Behind closed doors.

Ritchie Sutton was fit for the bench but the injured Andy White, Sean Williams, Toby Mullarkey, Simon Richman, Dan Mooney, Tom Peers and Yusifu Ceesay were not in the squad tonight. On the positive side, Josh Hancock returned to the starting eleven as did Shaun Densmore with Joel Senior surprisingly dropped to the bench, along with loanee Joe Robbins.

Alistair Smith, the recently signed loanee from Mansfield, made his first start but manager Phil Parkinson was not there to watch him as Neil Sorvel took charge for the evening.

For Chesterfield, the goalkeeper had only been signed on the eve of the game, as a loanee from Barnsley. At 6ft 7 inches the new keeper was only marginally taller than striker Tom Denton who led the attack with the much-travelled Scott Boden.


ALTRINCHAM (Red shirts with white chest panel, black shorts, white socks): 1. Tony THOMPSON, 20. Shaun DENSMORE, 28. Billy SASS-DAVIES, 5. Tom HANNIGAN, 3. Connor HAMPSON, 6. Jake MOULT (c), 29. Alistair SMITH, 15. Matty KOSYLO, 32. Andy DALES, 10. Josh HANCOCK, 9. Fisayo ADARABIOYO. Subs: 24. Joel SENIOR, 19. Joe ROBBINS, 12. Curtis MILLER, 31. Jamie McDONALD, 4. Ritchie SUTTON

CHESTERFIELD (All blue): 1. Corey Addai, 4. Josef Yarney, 5. Will Evans (c), 6. Laurence Maguire, 32. Jordan Cropper, 3. David Buchanan, 13. Milan Butterfield, 23. Jonathan Smith, 8. Curtis Weston, 19. Scott Boden, 24. Tom Denton. Subs: 31. Dylan Wharton, 26. Haydn Hollis, 33. Tyler Denton, 7. Joe Rowley, 25. Luke Rawson.


Alty started the game in 21st place. This was the first ever meeting between the clubs, though Alty had won the UniBond League Cup at Chesterfield's old Saltergate Stadium back in 1998, against Gainsborough Trinity.

Both sides were anxious for a win after poor results recently.


Although this was Altrincham's fourth home game, it was the first to be played in anything approaching good conditions. It was dry but with a stiff breeze.

The Spireites kicked off playing towards the away end and started the game the better. As early as the first minute Maguire headed a freekick over the bar but Alty responded well with Dales looking lively on the left wing in his second start for the club.

Chesterfield began to enjoy territorial advantage, and more possession, winning four corners to Alty's one in the opening quarter of an hour.

Indeed, it was from a needlessly conceded corner by Hannigan that the opening goal arrived. The corner by Buchanan was put out for another flag-kick. Although the second corner went back out some forty yards to Buchanan near the right touchline, he fired in a deep cross which skimmed Sass-Davies's head but Denton collected the ball on the left byline. He played it back twenty yards, from where a deep cross from the left was met, right of goal, by Maguire. His header back across goal was headed home at the back post by Boden to give the visitors the lead (14 mins).

At this stage the visitors remained on top, with the majority of their attacks being up the right. For Altrincham Kosylo was looking the most impressive forward player but Chesterfield again went close in the 26th minute when Hampson was dispossessed by Jonathan Smith, whose long-range, low shot, only just went the wrong side of the far post.

But then a little out of the blue, Alty equalised. More good work from Kosylo saw him feed Adarabioyo, in the middle of the box, to his left. He took a good touch before planting the ball past the keeper (30 mins). The Alty striker is proving something of an enigma; at times making the wrong decisions but with two goals to his name already, he clearly has ability, as would be expected of someone who spent his formative years with Manchester City.

In midfield the tall Alistair Smith was creating a good impression on his full debut for Altrincham but the visitors continued to look the more threatening. It took a fine tip over the bar from Thompson to deny Cropper from 25 yards and Alty weathered the two successive corners that followed (33 mins).

Altrincham felt aggrieved when Dales netted from a Kosylo pass on 35 minutes but he was judged to be marginally offside.

After Sass-Davies had headed off the line for Alty, Weston was booked for a foul on Kosylo. Altrincham now enjoyed a decent spell and a smart turn and shot from Adarabioyo earned them a 42nd minute corner.

Kosylo's corner found Sass-Davies in space but he directed his header disappointingly wide of goal. Just after another Chesterfield corner had come to nothing, half-time was reached with the sides level at one apiece after an entertaining first half.


Altrincham kicked off the second half and, inside the first minute, Dales pursued a ball towards the box where he was met by the on-rushing keeper. ALthough Dales went down he was judged to have been taking avoiding action rather than being brought down and no penalty was awarded.

The game's next three corners all went to Chesterfield, in an eight-minute spell. Following the first, a low Chesterfield effort from the right by Jonathan Smith was diverted by Hancock onto his own crossbar from where it rebounded to safety for Altrincham (51 mins).

Play then became fairly even with Yarney becoming the second name in the referee's book for a foul on Dales (60 mins). Following the freekick the ball ran loose on the outer, front edge of the Chesterfield box and as a defender attempted to clear it, Alistair Smith arrived on his blind side and was upended, though he appeared to be on his way down before contact was made. Nevertheless, a spot-kick was the referee's decision.

Kosylo, having missed the team's only penalty this season, deferred to Hancock whose own recent record from twelve yards had been indifferent, but this time the Alty number ten made no mistake even though the keeper went the right way. So Alty had the lead and had scored two goals in a match for the first time this season (62 mins).

Chesterfield have had a habit of losing leads but this time they responded perfectly, making it 2-2 within sixty seconds as Cropper fired in an unstoppable drive from outside the right hand side of the penalty area, the ball flying into the far corner to make it 2-2 (63 mins).

In retrospect the turning point of the game was Tony Thompson's magnificent one-handed save from a Tom Denton header. Denton had headed a cross from the right back across goal but the Alty keeper, leaning to his right somehow threw himself to the left to claw the ball away (69 mins).

At the other end, Alistair Smith curled a twenty-yarder narrowly over the bar (70 mins). And the Alty keeper was at it again, three minutes later, when he pushed away a long shot and, as the ball came back into the box, he made a fine close-range save from Butterfield.

Alty now enjoyed another good spell with Kosylo impressing again. A fine Alty move earned a corner (83 mins) before each side made its first substituion of the night in the 84th minute. Miller replaced Adarabioyo for Alty and Rowley came on for Chesterfield's Smith.

Two minutes later Rawson replaced Boden for the visitors as a draw looked the likely outcome. But in the 89th minute Alty put together a patient passing move on the right which culminated in a diagonal ball into the box from the right. Kosylo cleverly stepped over the ball, a dummy which left Hancock to receive the ball as he drifted across the box from left to right. Hancock cleverly tucked the ball back to the left and past the advancing goalkeeper to give his side a very late lead (89 mins).

Three added minutes were decreed during which Chesterfield won two early corners before Alty brought on centre-back Sutton to replace winger Dales (90+3 mins). After this Evans scuffed a very late half chance for his side well wide (90+4 mins) before his namesake, the referee Mr Evans, concluded play in the 95th minute.

The win lifted Alty five places to sixteenth and left Chesterfield back in the slot vacated by Alty, twenty-first in the National League table.

This had been Alty's best performance of the season so far and their most entertaining fixture yet played. Kosylo had been the star man thougn Smith on his full debut also played well. At the back, the defence coped well with the aerial threat of Denton but were grateful to Tony Thompson for several excellent saves.