Longridge Town 5 vs Vickerstown 1
In Town’s final home match of 2014 they were able to do the league double over visitors Vickerstown.
Before the match began there was a fitting tribute to a dear friend and first chairman of the club, Sam Wilkinson, with a minute’s silence. Sam sadly passed away on November 14 after losing his battle with cancer.
Ashcroft made a few changes from last week opting to play four-four-two with Ryan McKenna dropping into the centre of defence, Sam Nightingale moving to left back, allowing Danny Wilkinson to play in a more advanced position.
Rick Coar started up front and Jordan Bowen started on the bench. Town also welcomed new goalkeeper Ryan Platt who has joined for 6 weeks.
The home side were out of the blocks quickly and Rick Coar had the chance to score in the opening minute but saw his shot go just wide of the goal. Town did strike early on through Jonty McDonald. A deep cross from Lennie Reid was headed back across the face of goal by Dave Woodruff and Jonty reacted quickest to put the ball in the back of the net from close range.
A long ball over the top saw the Vickerstown forward in space but the Town defence recovered, forcing him onto his unfavoured left foot. The attempt was saved through a mixture of Platt and the post.
Jonty was again at the heart of the attack and played in Coar whose scuffed attempt fell to Wilkinson at the back post but his effort came back off the woodwork. Town did get a second on the 29th minute when Wilkinson laid off Coar and he side footed attempt was excellently placed out of the reach of the Vickerstown number 1.
Four minutes later Jonty’s deep cross was headed back across the goal by Coar to make it 3-0 and stun the away side.
Coar and Jonty continued to link well and a fourth was added when the two combined and Jonty latched onto Coar’s through ball. He confidently beat the onrushing keeper. Vickerstown thought they had pulled one back early in the second half. Platt misjudged the corner but the Vickerstown attempt was headed off the line by Woodruff. Daniel Keenan was then played in by Sean Patterson but Platt fantastically denied him.
Longridge then came close to adding a fifth when Rick Murch was unlucky to see his strike beat the keeper but not the post. Vickerstown did pull a goal back late on a when a long ball over the top wasn’t gathered and Robert Bruce put the ball into the empty goal. It proved to be no more than a consolation for the away side as Town shortly after added a fifth. Substitute Sam Dean, recently resigned for the club, got on to the end of a Reid cross.
After the match Ashcroft said: “Back to the league and back to winning ways. We took our chances today and we didn’t last week.
“It’s kept us in touch with the top 2. 5 wins out of 5 that’s 15 points – let’s see how long we can keep
“We’ve been playing negative football at home recently but that’s because teams are showing us a lot a lot of respect.
“We had to change our shape today and thankfully it’s worked.
Man of the match was Ryan McKenna who Aschroft said is “an unsung hero who can play anywhere on the field.”
Next fixture: Crooklands Casuals vs Longridge Town 14.00