NW Youth Alliance Premier Division game
played on Sunday, 20 September 2009


ALTRINCHAM: 1. James FOSSDYKE, 2. Ben SHAWCROSS, 4. Dominic BATES, 5. Rory BRADBURY (capt), 3. James SMART; 7. Matthew CLINTON, 8. Jamie BROWN, 6. John BENNETT, 11. Niall SHERIDAN; 9. Kieran MADDEN, 10. Glodi KUBA-KUBA. Subs: 12. Liam BROMILEY-BLACKBURN, 14. Stelvio da ROCHA, 15. Alfred KUNABIE, 16. Luke LAVELLE, 17.GK. James THORN.


Altrincham made three changes from their game last Sunday with Fossdyke returning in goal, Clinton taking over from Whiteside on the right wing and Kuba-Kuba joining Madden up front. Alty were still without their captain Dan Shaw and left winger Joel Brownhill.

On a sunny afternoon the game got off to an unexceptional start with plenty of effort from both sides but little in the way of goalmouth incident. Alty began to string their passes together but the two defences remained on top before Prescot had to withdraw the no.10 who got injured as he and Sheridan went for a 50-50 ball. He was replaced after 20 minutes by the number 12. Soon after this, Cables won a corner off Bates. Following this Alty survived a goalmouth scramble.

Altrincham then went close after Sheridan had found Kuba Kuba and the burly striker made space well before looping an excellent shot onto the Prescot cross bar from outside the box (23 mins). Alty's improvement continued as Smart, who had a fine game at left back, dribbled to the by-line to win a corner (25 mins). Alty were now having the better of the game but apart from another corner (31 mins) had nothing to show for it.

A mistake at the back almost let in Prescot but Fossdyke did excellently to block the Cables' number seven's shot and get the ball over the bar for a corner (37 mins). The same Prescot player was again foiled by Fossdyke as the game went into added time, following another defensive lapse from Altrincham. This time the Alty keeper got out well to close down the no.7 after he had got behind the defence. Again Fossdyke's block led to a Prescot corner (45+1 mins). The referee played five added minutes, given there had been a couple of injury stoppages in the first half.


Altrincham started the second half by winning a couple of corners, the second coming from a fine long range shot by Smart (48 mins). Alty then struck the crossbar for the second time in the game, this time it being an effort from Brown which was denied by the woodwork (52 mins). The turning point in the game arrived soon afterwards when Bennett, who had been doing well in central midfield, put Madden racing in on goal. He was brought down in the box and with the linesman flagging vigorously for a penalty, the referee accepted his judgement and pointed to the spot. Shawcross drove home the spot kick efficiently to give Altrincham the lead (58 mins).

Prescot now brought on their no.15 for their no.9 (62 mins). The referee who had a good game but whose bookings were unclear, then appeared to booked Bates for reasons that were not very clear (65 mins). Alty, however, continued to give away unnecessary freekicks to the annoyance of the management before the visitors' no.5 went down clutching his head and writhing on the ground. However, he soon sprang to his feet before receiving further attention at the end of which the referee again waved a yellow card at no one in particular so who was booked was unclear.

Altrincham won two corners in succession before a clash between Kuba Kuba and the Prescot no.5 resulted in a lecture and yet another vague waving of a card. It can only be assumed that Kuba Kuba and the no.5 were each booked in these last two incidents though who was booked on which occasion is conjecture (80 mins). The booking signalled an increasing petulance in the game. Alty then withdrew Kuba Kuba in favour of Alfred Kunabie, up front (84 mins). His first contribution was a foul which earned him a booking (84 mins).

Soon afterwards, Clinton and his fellow no.7 were involved in a spat from which the visitors gained the freekick but also a booking (87 mins). With the game at the end of ninety minutes Alty brought on Lavelle for Clinton and soon afterwards Kunabie forced a routine save from the Prescot keeper,

Kunabie then rode a tightrope as he committed another foul. and received a deserved lecture (0+4 mins). In the fifth added minute Shawcross got in a fine covering tackle to see off the threatening no.8 for Prescot and as the game started its sixth added minute, the referee finally blew his whistle to confirm a narrow win for Altrincham.

The game had not been a classic and the bobbly pitch had not helped in that respect but Alty retained their unbeaten league record ahead of their FA Youth Cup tie this Wednesday against Cammell Laird at Moss Lane.