Glossop North End 4-1 Clitheroe
By Chris Musson
Glossop 4 Clitheroe 1
It had been more than 10 years since these two sides met and with Glossop riding high at the top of the league, it was always going to provide a stern test for Clitheroe. With a number of players unavailable the task was made that bit harder, although the tremendous news that Sefton Gonzales was back at the club, put a spring in the step. However, a dreadful first 25 minutes belied some genuine quality football by the Blues and even though Glossop never ventured into the Clitheroe half in the second 45 minutes, the damage had been done.
Clitheroe were first to show in the very early stages and had a couple of good half chances. Glossop have a very direct and pacy brand of football and rely on swamping teams early doors and it worked to brilliant effect, albeit aided by some shaky defending. On four minutes Glossop broke quickly from the half with the ball fired down the right hand side. A shot, a parry and a follow up, and it was 1-0 to Glossop. Things got worse two minutes later when a regulation deep free kick was simply not dealt with, and the lack of challenge led to a an easy stab home. Clitheroe were still playing fluent football, but there was always a sense that the home side would use their pace to get more goals. And so it proved. On 23 minutes, Glossop hoofed a speculative ball down the right hand side, Guthrie hared out of his goal, but was second to the ball as the striker lobbed it from fully 40 yards into the empty net with only one bounce. Two minutes later, Brady gave a free kick on the edge of the box, and with a large wall protecting half the goal, the resultant free kick went into the unprotected area of the goal, with apparent ease.
The second half could not have been more different. Jimmy Heywood, who had been stuck in traffic, came on at right back and the defence seemed to breathe a sigh of relief and normality reigned. The front line of Harries, Gonzales, Hendry and Bakkor attacked the home defence at will. Chances came and went, Gonzales had a number of crisp shots saved and also went for a curling shot to the top corner when a good old fashioned pile driver would have done far better. On 75 minutes, Harries twisted and turned on the edge of the box and Hendry drive the ball in through a crowd of legs. It was no more than Clitheroe deserved and, but for a chaotic spell in the first half, the score could have been very different.
Team: Guthrie, Mayers, Barski, Bonaminio, Brady, Nwachkwu, Bakkor, Lynch, Gonzales, Harries, Hendry. Subs: Dent, Hession, Steenson, Heywood, Garner