What a week of fixtures that was! Eight teams were in action on Wednesday in #MatchweekFourteen and it was filled with drama.
In the Joma Division, Witton Albion ended Mickleover Sports (Red) unbeaten run after beating them 5-3 thanks to a hat trick from Oliver McDonough. The win for Witton moves them up to sixth in the table after notching their second victory of the season. Despite tasting defeat for the first time this season, Mickleover remain three points clear at the top of table.
In the Sports Traider Division, Mickleover Sports (Black) also suffered their first defeat of the season in a five-goal thriller with league leaders Widnes. In a hard fought game where neither side was letting up, Widnes nicked the game at the death with skipper Amir Hajri leading the charge for his team, scoring all three goals. The win for Widnes cements their place at the top of the table and puts them three points ahead of Skelmersdale United in second. The defeat for Mickleover brings up their first dropped points of the season but they currently sit in third spot in the table, having played five games less than Widnes.
Skelmersdale United beat north west rivals Runcorn Linnets 3-2 to keep up the pressure on Widnes. Adam Donohue scored twice to null the fightback from Runcorn and escape with all three points. In the final Sports Traider Division game, Ossett United enjoyed their trip to Belper Town with the visitors coming away with a 1-6 win. Carl Clarkson scored a brilliant hat trick in this one-sided game to claim the victory which keeps Ossett nailed down in fourth spot.
Eight teams were involved in #MatchweekFourteen and there were some brilliant individual performances including three different players scoring hat tricks! Congratulations to all students nominated and selected by their coaches for #TeamOfTheWeek and a special mention to Widnes student, Amir Hajri whose performance in #MatchweekFourteen earned him the title of ‘Player of the Week!’.
Goals galore, last minute winners and local derbies all make for a brilliant edition of The Highlights Show. Catch all of the match highlights and goal action below.
Game Review of the week come from the Joma Division where Witton Albion handed Mickelover Sports their first defeat of the season.
DONOHUE DISMANTLES DIVISION LEADERS MICKLEOVER
In the early kick-off, Witton Albion hosted the unbeaten league leaders, Mickleover Sports. The home side got off to a flyer and took the lead 15 minutes in thanks to a tap in from Jonathan Afriyie. It was a set piece that undid the Mickleover defence, after a looping corner wasn’t cleared properly, Jordan Coles shot forced a good save from the Mickleover keeper but couldn’t push the ball wide and Afriyie was on hand to convert from 4 yards out. Witton Albion 1-0 Mickleover Sports
The home sides luck continued as seven minutes after taking the lead, Witton Albion were awarded a penalty when Kyle Hill was brought down in the Mickleover box. Ollie McDonough stepped up to take the penalty and calmly slotted the ball into the bottom left corner to double his sides lead. Witton Albion 2-0 Mickleover Sports
Mickleover did peg one back and stopped the early pressure from Witton on the 20th minute. A dangerous corner was whipped in from the left hand side and Charlie Harrison was on hand to flick the ball in at the front post. Witton Albion 2-1 Mickleover Sports
With Mickleover getting back into the game, they started piling on the pressure and made it count 10 minutes’ after scoring their first. The equaliser game from Taylor Smith who finished the ball past the Witton keeper after a lovely clipped pass from Jack Griffiths found Smith in the Witton box. Witton Albion 2-2 Mickleover Sports
The visitors nearly flipped the game on its head five minutes later. Witton keeper Danny Hamlett made a great save to deny a powerful header from Jack Daniels to keep his side level.
Witton Albion’s defence was taking a hammering as Mickleovers attacking players started to click. The first-half comeback was complete in the 40th minute after a brilliant finish from the NPLFA’s top scorer, Jack Thatcher. Witton couldn’t deal with a long ball punted into their box and Thatcher was able to hold the ball up well. He off loaded the ball to Finn Parkin who managed to take the ball past one defender and nudged the ball across to Thatcher. After faking a shot and fooling the Witton defence, he shifted the ball onto his favoured left foot and slotted the ball home. Witton Albion 2-3 Mickleover Sports
HALF TIME: Witton Albion 2-3 Mickleover Sports
After giving up a two goal lead in the first-half and sensing like they could be missing out on a brilliant opportunity to hand Mickleover their first defeat, Witton were motivated to turn things around after half time.
Just ten minutes in the second half after defending well and dominating the ball, Witton did just that and scored their equaliser. The goal couldn’t have been more route one if the team tried but Owen Wynne won’t mind. He was on hand to chase down Danny Hamlett’s huge kick from his own box and found himself with just the goalkeeper to beat. He showed real class and finesse by finishing from the tight angle. Witton Albion 3-3 Mickleover Sports
In an already spectacular game, both teams were pushing for the winner and Mickleover were a goal line clearance away from finding it. Another long ball forward, this time aimed at Jack Daniels was causing problems and Danny Hamlett had to rush off his line to prevent the danger. He blocked the ball but it rebounded straight to Jack Thatcher, whos left footed snapshot was cleared off the line by a Witton Defender.
Witton were able to get their noses in front on the 70th minute mark after some brilliant team passing in the middle of the park opened up the Mickleover defence. Ollie McDonough was able to slip the ball past a defender to open up a scoring oppourtunity for Witton and made no mistake when it came to the finish. Witton Albion 4-3 Mickleover Sports
The home side were able to add to their lead just five-minutes after taking it thanks to Ollie McDonough completing his hat trick with a brilliant strike. He turned one defender near the half way line and drove towards the heart of the Mickleover defence. After cutting inside on to his right foot, McDonough let off his right footed shot that rattled the back of the net to cap off an impressive victory for Witton.
FULL TIME: Witton Albion 5-3 Mickleover Sports