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Vanarama National League match
played on Saturday, 12 March 2022 at 3pm


Altrincham made it nine goals in a week, without reply, as they comfortably beat Eastleigh whose defensive mistakes were plentiful and whose goal threat was minimal. Alty's win lifted them to thirteenth in the table and also means they have not conceded a goal now for almost 400 minutes.

After a mundane opening to the game, things improved after a quarter of an hour with Altrincham beginningto get the better of things. Colclough won his side a penalty as Boyce brought him down and, with Altrincham having missed their last three spot-kicks, it was one of those who had missed previously, Ryan Colclough (left), who took it. He curled the ball into the net to give Altrincham a 1-0 lead (25 mins).

Kosylo wasted a great chance to make it 2-0 moments later. Nevertheless, the lead was soon doubled when Kelly's back-pass led to the keeper's delayed kick being charged down by Colclough and from his pass, inside, Hulme scored from a tight angle on the left (29 mins).

The interval arrived with Altrincham still two goals to the good. But, under two minutes after the restart, it was 3-0 as Kelly gave away a goal. Following an Eastleigh freekick the ball was played to Colclough who went on to score and make it 3-0 (47 mins).

Ten minutes later it was 4-0 when Hulme fed Mooney who scored into the far corner from right of centre on the edge of the box (57 mins). The Robins comfortably remained in control to the final whistle.


REFEREE: Mr Martin Woods

ATTENDANCE: 1,614 (67 in away section)


Going into the match with one defeat in their last six games, it was not surprising that Altrincham did not make any changes to their matchday squad for this fixture.

Eastleigh made one change as recent signing and Crawley Town loanee, Silva, replaced Miley in the starting eleven in place of Miley.


ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, white socks): 30. Steven Drench, 23. Harry Perritt, 25. Toby Mullarkey, 14. Jake Cooper, 28. Eddy Jones, 8. Elliot Osborne, 32. Isaac Marriott, 7. Dan Mooney, 15. Matty Kosylo, 11. Ryan Colclough, 29. Jordan Hulme (c). Subs: 10. Josh Hancock, 24. Kyle Ferguson, 17. Ben Pringle, 20. Andy White, 27. A-Jay Leitch-Smith.

EASTLEIGH (All blue with white sleeves): 1. Joe McDonnell, 2. Brennan Camp, 5. Tom Broadbent, 3. Michael Kelly, 6. Andrew Boyce, 8. Harry Pritchard, 19. Danny Hollands (c), 12. Jake Hesketh, 11. Ryan Hill, 17. Danny Whitehall, 20. Ronan Silva. Subs: 10. Tyrone Barnett 14. Brett Pitman, 21. Tom Bragg, 26. Vincent Harper, 4. Cavaghn Miley.


The two sides went into this game with remarkably similar records. Alty lay fourteenth and Eastleigh, with a worse goal difference, were fiteenth, both on 37 points, though Altrincham had played one more fixture.

Both teams had won ten games and drawn seven times. But Alty had scored fifteen more goals whilst conceding ten goals more than the Hampshire club.

Also, both sides had endured poor form since the turn of the year yet both had recovered to varying degrees. After twelve matches without a win between November and February, Altrincham had won three and drawn one of their last six league games. Eastleigh, for their part, had ended an eleven-game run without a win before achieveing a heavy victory over Wealdstone last time out.

The Spitfires arrived with new manager Lee Bradbury still bedding himself in after achieving success with another Southampton-area side, Havant & Waterlooville.


Eastleigh kicked off towards the Golf Road end but the opening phase of the game did not rise above the mundane. Things improved as a Mooney freekick found the head of Perritt but his header bounced to the visitors' keeper (7 mins).

The Spitfires gained the first corner of the afternoon, to little effect, before Jones fed Hulme whose excellent voley went just wide of the far post, over the head of McDonnell, who was off his line (15 mins).

A promising Altrincham move earned them their first corner, off Broadbent (16 mins) but Cooper headed Mooney's flag kick over the bar.

After a clash of heads between Hulme and Kelly, the Eastleigh man needed treatment (20 mins). Hulme, as ever, was working hard to unsettle the defence but when Alty took a 25th minute lead it was Ryan Colclough who was instrumental in its arrival. Latching on to a Kosylo pass, he jinked past Botce was clearly brought him down inside the box and a penalty was awarded.

Given that Alty had missed their last three spot kicks this could have been a mixed blessing. But Colclough, who had taken one of those three errant spot kicks, stepped up and beat McDonell with a curling hot to make it 1-0 (25 mins).

Shortly afterwards Hulme and Mooney got the ball to Kosylo but he shot disapppintingly wide with his left foot to spare the visitors' further pain (27 mins). But their respite was short as a back-pass by Kelly, saw McDonnell hesitate and his resulting hasty kick was charged down by Colclough who fed Hulme, who scored from the left, at a narrow angle, to make it 2-0 (29 mins).

Hulme continued to keep the visitors' defence on its toes but it was Eastleigh who won the next corner, though this came to nothing. However, Alty had a narrower escape when hesitation by Drench allowed Hollands an effort but he hooked the ball wide (39 mins).

Soon afterwards, the impressive Colclough beat two opponents and got in a shot which the keeper parried (41 mins). In the decreed two added minutes after the forty-five, Kosylo did well on the right, leading to a Mooney shot which was on target but did not trouble the keeper unduly (45+1 mins).

So, ALty reached the interval two goals to the good.


Defensive lapses by Eastleigh had led to Alty's first-half brace and, just two minutes into the second half, there was another calamitous piece of Eastleigh defending, by Kelly, as he played a freekick across the pitch to Colclough who cleverly got past his defender and he made it 3-0 (47 mins).

Alty nearly added to their tally when a Mooney shot curled narrowly wide of the far post (53 mins) and this was followed by a slick passing move which ended in Kosylo firing, left-footed, over the bar. Moments later, however, it was four nil as Hulme held the ball up well in the right corner and fed Mooney, whose shot beat the keeper to his right. Mooney had started the nove himself with some trickery on his own byline before his long ball reached Hulme. Alty had now scored nine times in little more than two hours of football this week, without conceding a goal in reply (57 mins).

Immediately, Colclough was withdrawn for a rest as Hancock entered the fray (58 mins). On the hour Hollands, the visitors' captain, became the match's first booking for a foul on Hancock. The Spitfires now made a double change as Pitman and Barnett replaced Hesketh and Whitehall (61 mins).

Pitman, whose goal for Portsmouth had broken Alty hearts in the FA Cup in November 2019, now shot narrowly wide with Drench beaten, before the visitors also won a corner.

Eastleigh's improvement after the substituions continued as Barnett had a free header but he directed it wide (66 min).

On 70 minutes Harper replaced Pritchard for the visitors and, as play continued relatively uneventfully, Alty brought on White for Osborne (75 mins).

Shortly after a long-range effort from Mullarkey had gone close, Pringle became Alty's final change when he replaced the escellent Mooney (78 mins).

It now took a smart save from McDonnell to keep out a Hulme effort after the striker had turned smartly past Broadbent (80 mins).

An Alty corner came to nothing before Harper was booked for a foul on Pringle (81 mins). After Hancock had put a freekick over the bar (85 mins), Altrincham saw out the remaining time, which included three added minutes.

It had been a remarkable week of nine goals scored without reply and a fourth successive clan sheet. This latter statistic was all the more remarkable for being achieved by a defence comprising three loanee defenders and a 36 year-old keeper who had not played regularly for a year.

The win lifted Alty to thirteenth, though they have played more games than most other teams. However, their form now is in marked contrast to their November to Febuary games when they could not buy a victory during a run of twelve fixtures. In contrast they are now fifth from the top in the form guide over their most recent five matches.