NW Youth Alliance Football League, Premier Division game
played on Sunday, 8 March 2009 at 2.30p.m.


ALTRINCHAM FC YOUTH (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks): 1. Chris WALKER, 2. Daniel O'DONNELL, 3. Ben OLIVER (capt), 4. Jake LEIGH-WATSON, 5. Dominic BATES, 6. John BENNETT, 7. Blaine WHITESIDE, 8. Daniel SHAW, 9. Kieran MADDEN, 10. Paul CORDOCK, 11. Joel BROWNHILL. Subs: 12. Kieran BOWN, 14. Ryan DAVIES, 15. Osebi ABADAKI.

NEW MILLS (Yellow kit) 17. Jerrard INCE, 2. Mick KENNEDY, 3. Mike HALLIWELL, 4. Dan WHEALAN, 5. Jon CASULLI, 6. Aaron BROADLEY, 7. Aaron BLEAKLY, 8. Andy ATHERTON, 9. Dan CHRISTIE, 10. Jake BURTON, 11. Mike DUGDALE. Subs: 12. Addam FELLOWS, 14. Pat RENNOLDS, 15. Andy TIMMINS, 18. George ARNOLD.


From last week's starters at Bury Amateurs, Alty made Bown and Abadhaki drop to the bench, whilst Silvester and Berkeley were absent. Into the side came Madden, Leigh-Watson, Shaw and Bates.

Above: Alty's defence in action against New Mills, against a backdrop of the large new clubhouse being built at Wythenshawe Town FC (next to Tesco's at Baguley).

This game was played in bitterly cold and very windy conditions on a pitch made soft by rain in the previous 12 hours. The visitors started the better and won an early corner (3 mins). But there was little serious threat to either goal in the opening stages as the teams fought to come to terms with the difficult wind blowing across the pitch. From a kick by Alty keeper, Walker, the ball was relayed up the Alty middle to Madden, but his shot cleared the bar. Next, from an Alty freekick by Brownhill, Oliver headed over the bar (13 mins),

At the other end, Altrincham had a narrow escape when Christie turned smartly in the box but his shot was hit weakly to Walker (17 mins). Altrincham were now getting on top but the next corner went to the visitors. As the game moved towards half-time, Alty won four corners in a couple of minutes; after three had been taken by Brownhill, Whiteside took the fourth, from the right. From this, Oliver put a shot over the bar (40 mins). Although another Altrincham corner arrived in the last minute of the half, the score remained goalless at the interval.


At the interval, the Millers brought on Timmins for Burton up front. Inside the first minute they had a very strong shout for a penalty turned down when Bleakly went down under a challenge inside the box. A corner resulted and after this a New Mills freekick arrived. Timmins then got clear but shot weakly at Walker before, at the other end, Millen shot over the bar (50 mins).

After a New Mills freekick had almost hit a no.370 bus on the nearby Stockport Road, New Mills won a corner as they remained the better side at this stage in the second half. After 64 minutes, Altrincham brought on Abadaki for Millen. Soon after this a fine ball from Bennett fed Brownhill, who won a corner. Leigh-Watson then did well on the left but there were no serious goal threats before New Mills's Fellows replaced Bleakly (67 mins).

Shaw, who had a good game in the Alty central midfield, was then felled for a freekick. The home side were now back on top and, following an overlap up the left by Oliver, the Robins won a corner (71 mins). Soon afterwards, at the other end, Dugdale had a shot cleared as the game's outcome remained in the balance (76 mins). Altrincham continued to have most of the play and, with four minutes left, Abadaki turned well and his shot forced a good tip wide by the keeper, followed by a corner off a defender. Almost immediately a Whiteside shot was deflected wide for another corner. A third corner followed in the 88th minute but the defence remained firm for New Mills. Shortly afterwards the game ended with the score still goalless. Nevertheless it had been an entertaining game.

And, finally, a word of praise for the young referee, who had a fine match despite having no linesmen at his disposal.