Ossett Town 2 Clitheroe 0
Three points gone with the wind
Clitheroe’s dismal away form continued although they had sufficient possession and chances to take at least a point from the encounter. The howling diagonal gale and bone hard pitch can only partially explain away the final result.
Kicking into the wind in the first half, Danny Wilkins showed his class from the outset and always looked most likely to conjure up a goal for the away team, with him being involved in the first real chances of the game within the first 15 minutes. However, straight from a saved shot from Wilkins, the ball was spirited down the Ossett right wing, and the resultant cross driven into the wind fooled everyone, including debutant keeper Alex Palffy, and it was a simple tap in for the home side. Four minutes later things go much worse as a huge hoof downfield bounced high into the air and with a forward bearer down on him, Palffy chose to leave his area to head the ball, but a combination of extra carry from the wind and bounce from the pitch merely saw the ball glance vertically off his head to leave the simplest nod in from the forward. Olapade looked keen to take on his opposing full back and on 27 minutes he received back his throw in, drove to the bye line and forced a save, but with no-one following up. On 33 minutes, another Olapade run was halted on the edge of the box, but the resultant free-kick was squandered, whilst good interaction between Garner and Preston saw the Rovers starlet’s effort saved right on the half time whistle.
The second half took place almost exclusively in the Ossett half. On 46 minutes, a cross from the right saw a flash shot from Ross Dent whistle wide. On 58 minutes, Wilkins controlled a swirling ball and hammered it goalwards, only for the keeper to parry desperately, but with no-one following up. McNamara was introduced in place of McLean and he was central to three key chances almost immediately. On 61 minutes he put Preston clear, but the shot was saved. On 63 minutes, he received a ball over the top and whilst he made contact, his radar was missing and the ball squirted wide. Two minutes later, the chance of the game came from a sublime 40 yard threaded pass by Nangle, and with McNamara one on one with the keeper, his shot was smothered. Little of substance happened thereafter. Half chances came and went Preston’s way, but in the end the Blues never looked like ending their winless sequence at Ossett Town.
Team: Alex Palffy, Lanre Olapade, Simon Garner, Danny Brady, Dominic Barrett, Simon Nangle, Danny Morton, Danny Wilkins, Jordan Preston, Oli McLean, Ross Dent Subs Charlie Collinge, Matt McNamara, Scott Byrom, Andrew Eaton, Bryn Potter