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Match Center

1st Team

Willenhall Town


Ellesmere Rangers

WMRL Premier Division Tuesday 2 September @ 7:45 pm

For the fifth time in six outings, The Lockmen were taking on top five outfit, this time in Ellesmere Rangers, who had finished the season before with a long winning run. The visitors had the best possible start when The Reds kicked-off but gave away possession in their opponents half and a swift ball forward found Mike Jordan and he burst through to finish via the far post from an awkward angle. Rangers then saw a free header fly wide from a corner on three minutes before another break down the left hand side saw a cross fly beyond the forwards. Graham Ashton produced a fine saving tackle on Rangers skipper Josh Brown to save another goal on 7 minutes. Fortunately for The Lockmen, that although the ball bounced back to the son of the former Willenhall player, his tame shot rolled straight to Ben Holden. A minute later and Brown saw his well-placed cross flicked inches wide by Brendon Price. Jordan then won and took a free-kick on 10 minutes out on the wide but his effort curled straight into Holden’s arms. Two minutes later and The Reds finally broke the visitor’s stranglehold. A quick throw-in from the left flank by Ashton found Ryan Ward, who inturn cleverly freed Jack Pottinger for a deep cross into the box where Simon Laidley saw a low effort blocked by the defence. A minute later and Ward was back in action, feeding strike partner Michael Clark with a clever ball through but his shot took a double deflection back off him and behind for a Rangers goal-kick. A long free-kick on 17 minutes then saw Laidley head straight at Mason Springthorpe, who caught easily as the home side finally seemed to have kick-started their game. Laidley was involved again as he sent in a curling cross that the keeper took well under pressure from Ward. After 19 minutes skipper Danny Hemmings broke well through the centre before setting up Matt Dove but his cross, needing only a touch, flew harmlessly across the face of goal. After a lull in play, Hemmings was next to threaten, his good footwork earning a 32nd minute corner for Town. However, the keeper caught under no pressure. Sixty seconds later a swift break saw Scott Ryan played in on goal but his fine effort drew an equally fine save from Holden, his instinctive reaction saw him able to palm the ball up and over the bar at the expense of a corner. The Lockmen deservedly levelled ten minutes from half-time when a superb curling cross in from the right by Ashton saw Clark meet the ball at full speed with a flying header for a spectacular equalising goal. Three minutes later and Clark was provider with a clever ball in from the right which found Ward well positioned, he turned and spun and fired his shot just over.


The start of the second-half saw strike a 47th minute effort at Springthorpe, who half spilled the effort before collecting the loose ball. Clark was having a fine game and the next threat was initiated with his run at goal before setting up Ward whose effort flew inches wide on 58 minutes. Six minutes later and Rangers won a corner, taken short, but the effort flew well wide of target. Clark again threatened the Ellesmere defence on 65 minutes when he cut in from the right and fed Ward with a pass, the chip was over Springthorpe’s head but didn’t have enough power to prevent him from grasping and holding the attempt on goal. Excellent work between Ward and Harry Rickus who had just replaced Pottinger, opened up the visiting defence, but the latter fired at the keeper. Rangers won a corner with a quarter of an hour left, which was initially headed clear, a hopeful ball into the box was then met with an equally hopeful shout for a penalty. However, a minute later the visitors had what proved to be the winning goal. A storming run down the right by sub Sean Jennings saw him fire in a fierce low drive which flew across the unsighted Holden and into the far corner. Jennings then won an unproductive corner a minute later with a couple more following at sporadic intervals as they tried to shut out the game. Holden made a fine save to deny the visitors a third with two minutes left on the clock before The Lockmen had one final burst at grabbing a deserved point, firstly that man Clark saw an effort well saved by the keeper before Reds sub sparked an injury-time scramble by his speedy burst through three men before flicking the ball goal wards. However the visitors just about held out, moving up to second in the table with their hard fought victory heading back up to North Shropshire.


ATT: 41



1. Ben Holden,
2. Andre Calder,
3. Andy Cahill,
4. Graham Ashton,
5. Tom Turner (off 76min),
6. Danny Hemmings (capt),
7. Simon Laidley (off 84min),
8. Matt Dove,
9. Michael Clark,
10. Ryan Ward,
11. Jack Pottinger (off 66min).


12. Harry Rickus (on 66min),
14. Rhydel Ikouara (on 84min),
15. Jake Morgan (on 76min).

Chris Burton – Match Secretary

Willenhall Town 1 - 2 Ellesmere Rangers

  • Tuesday 2 September 2014 @ 7:45 pm
  • WMRL Premier Division 
  • Attendance: 41
Harry Rickus Jack Pottinger
Rydhel Ikouara Simon Laidley
Jake Morgan Thomas Turner

Previous meetings

02 Sep 14 7:45 pm WMRL Premier Willenhall Town v Ellesmere Rangers 1 - 2
14 Oct 14 7:45 pm WMRL League Cup Ellesmere Rangers v Willenhall Town 5 - 0
25 Apr 15 3:00 pm WMRL Premier Ellesmere Rangers v Willenhall Town 2 - 2
19 Sep 15 3:00 pm WMRL Premier Ellesmere Rangers v Willenhall Town 1 - 0
22 Mar 16 7:45 pm WMRL League Cup Ellesmere Rangers v Willenhall Town 4 - 1
30 Mar 16 7:45 pm WMRL Premier Willenhall Town v Ellesmere Rangers 0 - 2
20 Aug 16 3:00 pm WMRL Premier Ellesmere Rangers v Willenhall Town 4 - 2
07 Jan 17 3:00 pm WMRL Premier Willenhall Town v Ellesmere Rangers 2 - 2