Match Reports, 2004-05


Lancashire League Match,
played on Saturday, 29 January, 2005
at Robin Park, Wigan


ALTRINCHAM RESERVES: 1. Spencer LIDDIARD, 2. James MARSDEN, 3. Ashley BROWN, 4. Wayne LEATHER, 5. Matt TOOTH, 6. Ranell WILLIAMS, 7. Paul TILLEY. 8. Lewis CHALMERS, 9. Paul MONAGHAN, 10. Anthony WEALLE, 11. Sean SMITH. Subs: 12. Pat CONNOLLY, 13. Billy BLOWER (gk), 14. Danny GRIMSHAW, 15. Rosalyn DOCTA.

LEIGH RMI RESERVES: 24. Dale NEWBROOK, 26. Liam COYNE, 21. Stephen HOWARTH, ? FILICE, 15. Paul LEWIS, 18. Graham TENCH, ?. Scott ?, 7. Adam GIRDLESTONE, 20. Rick SMITH (capt.), 10. Mike FARRER, 11. Ian TAYLOR. Subs: 23. Lindsey WEST, 3. Ian HORTON, 8. Mike CAVANAGH, 14. Jason KEEN, 2. Patrick CLAFFEY.


This was Altrincham Reserves' first game for over six weeks due to a series of postponements caused by bad weather. Manager Neil Brown was keen to continue the team's run of eight games without defeat and transferred this home match to Leigh Reserves' venue at Robin Park, next to the JJB Stadium at Wigan, which has a good playing surface.

The following report is based on information kindly supplied by Neil Brown.

Altrincham gave Ashley Brown his first start, at left-back, whilst Matt Tooth moved to centre-back in the absence of Adam Brindle who was playing for Curzon Ashton. Ranell Williams came into the side and Paul Tilley returned after seeing service with the first-team squad. Paul Monaghan and Anthony Wealle started up front whilst Sean Smith was set to play the first half and then depart for Moss Lane to be on the bench for the first team fixture against Lancaster City, which was possible as this game was a 1.30pm kick off. Michael Brown was out with a back injury.

Leigh included a numerous ex-Alty youth players, including Newbrook, Coyne, Howarth, Tench, Girdlestone, Smith, Taylor, Horton, Claffey and, making his RMI debut, Paul Lewis who had just joined RMI from this season's Alty Youth team.

Altrincham dominated almost the entire first half, starting strongly and playing the ball about well. But their plans had to be changed after 15 minutes when Williams pulled a hamstring and had to be replaced by Docta, who played up front. So, Monaghan moved to the right of midfield and Tilley, in turn, moved inside to central midfield from the right flank.

Altrincham took the lead when they enacted a rehearsed corner which the players themselves had had a big hand in devising. Tilley sent in a perfectly directed corner which found Chalmers at the back post and he headed firmly past the keeper (10 mins).

Alty now dominated the first half with the back four passing the ball about comfortably. But the team hit a rocky five minutes around the half hour mark and Leigh scored a good goal, the ball flying into the top corner of the net to make it 1-1.

For Alty, Anthony Wealle was covering every blade of grass up front but half-time arrived with the score still level.


As arranged, Sean Smith left the game at half-time and Danny Grimshaw took over on the left. The second period was to be more even than the first half but Alty took an early lead. Alty won a freekick on the right which, after some deliberation between Marsden and Grimshaw, was taken by the latter. As with Damien Duff's goal against Manchester United last week, the freekick evaded everyone and curled into the net, to Danny's delight (47 mins).

The only blot on the day was that Tooth, Grimshaw and Chalmers were all booked. After 70 minutes Connolly came on up front in place of the tiring Docta. Seven minutes from the end Ashley Brown was laid low by a tackle which, at first, was feared to have broken his leg but, although it turned out not to be that bad, it was serious enough for him not to able to continue. So Alty carried on with ten men, using Wealle as the lone striker in a 4-4-1 formation.

Leigh employed a lot of long-ball football but the Alty defence coped well with this to extend the team's unbeaten run to nine games.