Toolstation NCEL Division One - Game 1
29/07/23 - Wombwell Town vs Yorkshire Amateur
Wombwell Town could not have wished for a better start to life in the NCEL, but will be well aware there will be tougher games ahead.
Their opponents, Yorkshire Amateur, were relegated from the NCEL Premier Division last season and most were expecting a close match between the two sides.
After a fairly even ten minutes which saw the home side press forward more often, it was debutante Jed Rashid who broke the deadlock on eleven minutes. Fellow new signing Gadhafi Kiwanuka created the chance by breaking through on the left, cutting inside towards the edge of the penalty area. The pass to Rashid was controlled well, with the winger moving the ball onto his left foot before firing low between two defenders from the edge of the box and beating Arren Warner.
The lead was doubled by Kiwanuka on 23 minutes who controlled the long pass forward by bringing the ball down with his left foot. Turning his marker, the playmaker found space a yard outside the penalty area and unleashed the shot, putting the ball past Warner into the far corner.
It was almost 3-0 with ten minutes to go in the half as Kiwaunka laid off a pass to Jordan Good, who returned to the club in the summer, to tap in at the far post, only for the former to have been ruled offside in the build-up.
In truth there was little for Wellers keeper Jono Davis to do in terms of saves, but the man now in his 5th season with the club was forced into one on 41 minutes as a free kick by Callum Hannigan was fired over the wall towards goal. Davis, though was equal to it and put his body behind the ball to gather the effort.
Shortly after the save, Warner was forced into a fingertip save at the other end after captain Eddie Agnew, who has now appeared in all four divisions for the club, tried his luck from a yard inside the penalty area. Warner relieved to see the ball go wide for a corner.
Half Time: WTFC 2, YAFC 0.
There must have been words of "do the same again" in the home changing room as the Wellers came out for the second half with the same tempo and determination to grab another goal.
Grab it they did just five minutes into the half as Rashid bagged a brace from inside the penalty area. The high-ball switch from left wing to right was punched higher into the air by Warner, who may have just stayed in his area to do so, and fell nicely to Rashid, who again put the ball on his left foot and curled his effort over a number of defenders into the far corner.
Two minutes later a collision involving Brodie Cooper saw a few handbags, but after calmly talking to the players involved referee Nick Greenwood didn't need to show a caution and awarded Yorkshire Amateur the free kick for initial foul by the Wellers midfielder.
Another debutante, Callum Walton, was also on the scoresheet as he found himself inside the penalty area, but his shot across goal found the wrong side of the left hand post on 68 minutes. Walton tried again just a minute later, but once again the ball went side as Warner made a save from the shot on target.
More Wellers pressure came as Agnew fired wide, but with 15 minutes to go it was time for the substitutes to come on and make their own impact with what little time was remaining.
It took time for them to settle into the game, but with three minutes remaining the floodgates opened up. It started with substitute Will Harling's corner on the left. His delivery was redirected towards goal by the head of Cooper who was able to watch his effort find the far corner.
On 90 minutes another Harling corner was touched on by Cooper, but this time it found sub Matthew Thornton who hit the ball on the half volley to breach the Yorkshire Amateur defences once again.
In the second minute of added time the score became 'six of the best' as Harling's free-kick from the right wing may or may not have taken a touch by Gareth McDermott before deflecting in off Yorkshire Amateur sub Finlay Beetham. After a lot of discussion the goal was awarded to Harling, but might have been cruel on McDermott?
Wombwell Town - 6
Jed Rashid 11, 50
Gadhafi Kiwanuka 23
Brodie Cooper 87
Matthew Thornton 90
William Harling 90
Yorkshire Amateur - 0
Player of the Match