Altrincham FC Youth Team
Match Reports

FA Youth Cup, 1st Qualifying Round match
played on Thursday, 22 September, 2011
at Millbank Stadium, Murdishaw, 7.30pm


REFEREE: Alan Browne (Cheshire)

ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks): 1 Adam Reid, 2. Alan Tansinda, 4. Ben Hamilton, 5. Joe Coombs (capt), 3. Sam Grimshaw, 7. Liam Rutledge, 6. Ryan Barry,8. Oliver Riley, 11. Declan Barry, 9. Derryn Ofori, 10. Duncan Watmore. Subs: 12 Nathan Gray, 14. Redmond McGuire, 15. Mark Napier-Hemy, 16. Shackeel Depeiaza, GK Cody Wharton

RUNCORN LINNETS (Green and yellow hoops, green shorts, yellow socks): 1. Ryan Mayers, 2. Jay Barraghan, 4. Ryan Lynsey, 5. Luke Batters, 3. Jay Patterson, 7. Lee Turkington, 6. Danny Hesketh (capt), 8. Joe Nolan, 11. Alex Howard, 10. Alex Brown, 9. Adam Collins. Subs: 12. Luke Farrell, 14. Luke Routledge, 15. Tony Murphy, 16. Jordan Mahon, GK. M. Ainsworth


Alty were without several regulars including Matt Fearon, who had played impressively for the first-team earlier in the week, and striker Jack Martiny-Schofield, who was injured in last Sunday's Open Cup game. But centre-back Joe Coombs returned, as captain, in central defence.

After changing ends, the Linnets kicked off playing up the slight slope in the first half. From the start, Altrincham went at the Linnets defence and, in the first minute, a fine through ball from Ben Hamilton got Watmore running at goal but Mayers came out well to make a good block. Two more attacks followed in the next two minutes but, although Duncan Watmore had the ball in the net after five minutes, it was rightly disallowed for a push by the Alty forward.

Ofori and Watmore's pace was causing the Linnets problems and Alty's pressure produced three corners in a spell of a couple of minutes. But the visitors were not, at this stage, converting their chances.

Runcorn replied with a corner of their own and then Howard got past Tansinda to fire over the Alty bar (12 mins).

Alty were next caught offside twice, before they finally took the lead. Ofori's throw, on the left, found Riley whose fine cross was met by Declan Barry, who netted at the near post in the 17th minute.

A second goal soon followed as Grimshaw advanced up the left and he fed Ofori, then Ryan Barry, before the ball came back to Declan Barry on the left and, from his pass, Rutledge scored a well-taken goal to make it 2-0 in the 19th minute.

Soon after Ofori went close to another goal, following an Alty corner, won by the skill of Watmore. Next, Runcorn's Howard won a freekick against Tansinda towards the Linnets' left. Batters drove an impressive, low freekick into Reid's bottom left-hand corner to make it 1-2 (24 mins).

But, just three minutes later, a superb run from Watmore got him to the by-line, from where he fed Declan Barry for a tap-in and the winger's second goal of the night (27 mins). Four more Alty corners followed in the next eight minutes as the visitors dominated. The third of these came after an excellent dribble from Declan Barry was only ended by a fine block from the goalkeeper, Mayers. Afterwards, another fine run from Watmore ended with his shot across goal going narrowly wide.

Yet another corner was won by Ofori in the 42nd minute. Riley's excellent curling flag-kick from the left beat everyone and went into the net off a defender, with Alty's Joe Coombs making sure it crossed the line at the back post. It was now 4-1 to Alty and should have been 5-1 when Declan Barry shot wide from close range in the 44th minute. The second half looked likely to be a formality but it was to prove far from that.


Altrincham proceeded to commit defensive suicide in the opening six minutes of the second half, conceding three times. The half had started well enough, with Rutledge feeding Watmore for a shot, which Mayers saved. But, then, Tansinda fell on the front edge of the box and handled the ball whilst on the deck. He was booked by Mr. Browne and, from the resulting freekick on the edge of the "D", Hesketh drove the ball into the bottom corner.

Less than a minute later, a fatal bit of indecision by Ryan Barry allowed Collins to advance, draw keeper Reid, and slot the ball into the net from right of centre to make the score 3-4 (48 mins). It got even worse when Runcorn gained a freekick on their left and Collins got on the end of it, swivelling well to hook the ball past Reid and level the scores in the 51st minute.

Altrincham were briefly stunned by what they had done to themselves in the space of just six second-half minutes but, to their credit, they got their act together and won an almost immediate corner. Though this was cleared, it was not long before a powerful run from Ofori was ended by Mayers but the ball came to Liam Rutledge who again finished well, from right of goal, to give Alty the lead again at 5-4 (53 mins).

Runcorn now introduced Murphy as a substitute before a great shot from Ofori produced another Alty corner. Turkington fired narrowly over at the other end, after which a late challenge by the same player on Joe Coombs led to the Runcorn man being booked (63 mins). At the same time the ref booked Hesketh for what appeared to be an accumulation of offences, judging by the official's gestures.

At this point the Linnets took off Brown and brought on Routledge. Play was now getting a little "competitive" but the referee took a generally lenient attitude. After a third Runcorn change, when Farrell came on (72 mins), the hosts won two corners. After these, an error by Coombs led to a melee from which Collins was presented with a good chance and he gave no Reid no chance as he levelled the game at 5-5 (78 mins).

Routledge's foul on the hard working Tansinda earned him a yellow card soon after this goal. But, then, a fine run up the right by Tansinda fed Ofori, who did well to hold off a challenge. His cross was volleyed home by Watmore, whose earlier work had deserved some reward (82 mins).

Hesketh went close for Runcorn from an 83rd minute freekick but Ofori wrapped the game up with some excellent play, holding off a challenge, before firing a low shot into the net to make the final score 7-5 to Altrincham (85 mins). It was a well-deserved goal for the striker.

It almost became 8-5 when a succession of blocks by Runcorn halted two shots from Riley and one from Declan Barry (86 mins). Watmore then jinked his way to the edge of the box, only to be upended but the freekick ended with a shot over the bar by Watmore. In the 90th minute Alty introduced Napier-Hemy for Ryan Barry and after a couple of minutes of added time, the whistle went on a quite amazing game.

Alty now host Lancaster City in the next round at Moss Lane.

Attendance: 101.