First Team
Sat 30 Mar 2024  ·  Premier Division Central
Alvechurch F.C.
First Team
J Gordon (99')
T Waite (88'), (97')
Church Fail To Make The Most Of Their Chances And Pay The Price

Church Fail To Make The Most Of Their Chances And Pay The Price

Alan Deakin31 Mar - 12:43
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Church more than matched second placed Mickleover in all aspects except the finishing, conceding twice in the last minutes to lose the game.

This was always going to be a tough ask for Church. Struggling for form themselves, whilst Mickleover were handily placed in second place in the table, albeit eight points off the summit pace.

Church featured new signings Ethan Young and Finlay Thorndike in their squad, with Ben Cassidy out injured and Leo Brown and DJ Sturridge having departed the club in the week.

Alvechurch: Hollingshead, Young (Batchelor 90+1), Dyer, Mitchell, Ofosu, Crowther, Thorndike (Dugmore 82), Gordon, Allen-Hadley, Clayton-Phillips, Dawkins (Hallahan 76) subs not used: Patterson, Reka

Mickleover : Mersin, Mann, Bennett, Bradley (Atkinson 59), Tamen, Rowley, Fitzhugh (Barnes 63), Sault (Waite 81), Beavon, Trueman, Greaves subs not used: Ridd, Bapaga

An early Easter weekend this year, but also a good glimpse of spring sunshine bathing Lye Meadow, and reminding us that it is undeniably one of the most picturesque grounds around.

First sight of goal was for the visitors as Mickleover won their first corner on 4 minutes. The ball was steered into the side netting at the far post. A minute later a great turn from Allen-Hadley shrugs off two defenders, but his shot is not of the same quality, flying well off target from 22 yards.

At the other end, on the quarter hour, a flicked header on target by Beavon from just inside the box finds Hollingshead well positioned to make a comfortable gather under his crossbar. A minute later, as the play swings from end to end, Gordon does well with a long through ball, gets behind the full back and into the box, but his stabbed effort on goal steers the ball just wide of the far angle of the goal.
We are in a period of good passing possession from Church, but Mickleover are still capable of clearing their lines quickly to put the home defence under pressure, and win another corner. The ball is delivered dangerously into the box and raps off the far post before being cleared by the Church defence.

On 27 minutes Clayton-Phillips looks to punish the visitors with a looping free kick, with Crowther directing a header on target forcing keeper Mersin to make a flying save to his right to turn the ball around the angle of the goal.

The pressure is still on the Mickleover goal, and as the corner is delivered Ofosu connects with a header at the back post, looping the ball back on target, and forcing intervention from Mersin again to tip the ball over the bar for another corner.

It is definitely a good spell for Church, who doggedly win the ball back in midfield and Clayton-Phillips eludes two challenges before firing on target, forcing Mersin into another smart save low down to his left.

The home side are still seeking a first half lead as the minutes tick away, and just a minute before the break Thorndike profits from good hold up play from Gordon, dribbles through to the edge of the box, but cannot find the target with his shot, firing over from eighteen yards.

Half Time : Alvechurch 0 Mickleover 0

No doubt that Church had looked good enough to have carved out a lead for themselves, but the breakthrough would not easily come.
In fact, the visitors stole the points with just three minutes remaining when substitute Waite bagged the first of his afternoon’s brace.
Having not taken their own chances Church allowed the visitors to profit from half chances of their own. Firstly a free kick from wide on the Mickleover left is lofted to the back post, headed back down all too easily to the feet of Waite who made no mistake in lashing the ball in from a few yards past the exposed Hollingshead.

Deep into stoppage time a hopeful ball is delivered from deep in the Mickleover half, Church allow it to bounce unchallenged in the eighteen yard box, and Waite instinctively takes control to lash the ball across the face of Hollingshead’s goal into the far corner to double Mickleover’s lead and settle the outcome of the game.

Nine minutes into stoppage time Gordon bags his 13th league goal of the season when he heads in from close range in converting Dugmore’s inviting cross to the far post.

Having failed to make the best of their chances Church failed to keep the back door shut in the final stages and paid the price.

Match details

Match date

Sat 30 Mar 2024






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