Match Reports, 2003-04


NW Youth Alliance Premier League match
played at Eagley Sports Club, near Bolton
on Sunday, 2 November, 2003, at 2pm.


EAGLEY FC YOUTH (Yellow shirts, blue shorts, yellow and blue socks) 1. JONES, 2. STEVENS, 3. LEECE, 4. HENRY, 5. EDWARDS, 6. ASPEN, 7. HULME, 8. POWER, 9. BRADLEY, 10. BIRCHBY, 11. KETTLE. Subs: 12. MOORCROFT, 14. HURST.

ALTRINCHAM YOUTH (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts and red socks ): 1. Ashley TIMMS, 2. Jake LENNOX, 3. Matthew TOOTH, 4. Kelvin LUGSDEN, 5. Steven HOWARTH, 6. Adam DOUTHWAITE, 7. Lewis CHALMERS (capt.), 8. Paul LEWIS, 9. Steve LUNT, 10. Kieran LUGSDEN, 11. Josh COLLINS. Subs: 12. Andy THORPE, 14. Stuart COOK, 15. Adam BALL, 16. James MONAGHAN, 18. Barry GEORGE (gk).


This was Altrincham's first visit to Eagley, which lies on the Blackburn Road, north of Bolton. Eagley FC, whose first team plays in the West Lancs League, are based at an impressive sports complex, which includes a cricket pitch and tennis courts as well as the football pitch and a pleasant clubhouse. Despite the torrential rain of the previous 12 hours, the pitch was in very good condition.

Altrincham were without their captain Alex Frost, who was taking part in the same representative colleges' match as Eagley's leading scorer. Lewis Chalmers took over the Altrincham captaincy with Adam Douthwaite playing in an unaccustomed right-midfield position whilst, at the back Kelvin Lugsden was partnered by Steven Howarth at centre-back. Up front, Steve Lunt, who had played more than 20 minutes in the FA Trophy yesterday at Gateshead, was joined by Kieran Lugsden.

Altrincham had an early scare when Aspen's shot from outside the box had to be tipped over the bar by the alert Timms. However, Lunt's persistence won Altrincham a corner soon afterwards on their right. Adam Douthwaite's well struck flag-kick found Lewis Chalmers and he headed the ball home cleanly to put his side ahead (4 mins). After a Collins shot had gone over the bar, Alty won another corner and from this Collins got in another shot which also went over the target (7 mins). Altrincham were now well on top and Lunt went close when he sent a shot rising over the bar after good work by Kieran Lugsden (15 mins). At the other end, the Alty back four were proving an effective barrier to Eagley. Howarth was getting good distance as ever on his clearing headers whilst Kelvin Lugsden was showing good positional sense. Alty won two more corners and, following the second, Douthwaite got in a good cross from the right which Kieran Lugsden headed home expertly (22 mins).

Eagley then won themselves a corner but their short-corner routine ended with a shot into the side netting. Lewis was winning the ball well in midfield and from his prompt Kieran Lugsden had a shot blocked (26 mins). Another Eagley corner was seen off before Tooth, who was his usual composed self at left-back, won a free-kick as he broke towards the halfway line. Soon, Collins fired in another effort which was only narrowly wide (34 mins) and then Douthwaite was played in by Kieran Lugsden but Adam could not get full power behind his shot at Jones. Chalmers's long throws were proving troublesome to Eagley as was his midfield tackling but the Alty captain got a lecture along with Eagley's Hulme from the referee. Half-time came with Alty two up.


Alty made a double substitution after 54 minutes when Andy Thorpe came on up front for Steve Lunt and Adam Ball replaced Josh Collins. Eagley got back into the game when Birchby was pushed over in the Alty box and Bradley coolly sent Timms the wrong way from the spot (57 mins). There was then a worrying moment when Timms failed to gather a routine ball at the first attempt but the Alty keeper recovered well to gather the ball (59 mins). Andy Thorpe then got on the end of a fine Altrincham passing move but his shot hit the side netting (62 mins). Then a fine ball from Lewis gave Thorpe another crack at goal but he shot wide (63 mins). Nnevertheless, Altrincham soon restored their two-goal lead when Douthwaite's ball forward came to centre-back Howarth who drove it strongly and low into the net from the edge of the box, the ball striking a defender en route (66 mins). Alty then replaced Lennox by Stuart Cook (70 mins), which allowed Douthwaite to revert to right-back. Adam Ball was showing some good touches on the left and Douthwaite was soon getting forward again on the other flank as Alty took control once again.

However, Eagley won two corners either side of substituting Birchby by Moorcroft (73 mins). But more good work from Lewis saw him feed Thorpe who played the ball right to Cook who finished well from the right of goal to make it 4-1 (78 mins). Eagley now replaced Power by Hurst before Aspen picked up a booking for a foul on Cook (82 mins). Lewis then had a shot well saved before a fine Tooth tackle broke up an Eagley response. Seemingly out of nothing, Edwards was called over and shown a red card, presumably for dissent, but he will have done his disciplinary case no good by then swearing loudly at the referee (84 mins). There was still time for Kieran Lugsden to feed Andy Thorpe for Altrincham's fifth goal (85 mins). However, Ashley Timms was called to make a fine save at the other end just before the end when he tipped a freekick from the lively Bradley on to his left upright.

This was an excellent performance by Altrincham and all the more so for being achieved by a team which included several players who have only recently joined the club. Altrincham remain unbeaten but next week have no game as they will be involved in the Altrincham FA match against the Wirral FA at Trafford's Shawe View. In fact, the next league game is the return fixture at home to Eagley on 16 November.