The road to defeat
On the road again. In Warrington again. Against title chasing contenders again. Knutsford completed a miserable treble of Saturday’s, goaless and fruitless they will be happy they have made their last visit to the wire town this season.
Although the outcome was correct, the final scoreline was a little harsh but the Reds poor defending cost them once again. They now lie exactly at half way place in the League and the three goals here in the debit column wiped out their plus goal difference. It was an early start and in glorious sunshine the hosts raced out of the blocks, Slater forcing an excellent early save from Jamie Mottershead. The Knutsford ‘keeper probably knew then he was to have a busy afternoon.
Greenalls, free scoring of late, made a breakthrough on 23 minutes. A looping left wing cross form their sharp wide man Lee Deakin was bundled in at the far post by Ben SLATER. Mottershead bundled Slater into the net along with the ball, a hint that the ‘keeper was not happy with the challenge.
However with Hughes and Toone rattling challenges in midfield there was a more determined edge about the home side. Knutsford meanwhile suffered significant disruption with two substitutions made before half time, Pickford limping off having aggravated a back injury and Jenyons withdrawn with a swollen ankle. Simon Williamson was forced into an emergency centre back role and performed impressively. Indeed given the disruption Knutsford were contributing some good football into the contest, although through midfield they were unable to get any good service to front man Steve Lunt. He had to make his own openings and struck a fine shot just over the angle of cross bar and post immediately after Padgate’s opening goal. It was Knutsford’s best effort thus far.
The Reds had an escape as Deakin, from point blank range, contrived to smash his shot against the woodwork and, almost tit-for-tat, Lunt did likewise at the other end his left foot shoot beating goalkeeper Craig Clarke but hitting the foot of the post.
A high ball into Padgate’s six yard box saw Lunt leap higher than defender Jupp and Clarke beating both to the ball but his header went agonisingly past the same upright.
You had the feeling his first goal was coming for the striker, but it was not to be on this day. Despite that the impression grew that Padgate were more likely to claim a second and indeed the goal that been coming duly arrived on 85 minutes but not without controversy. From a corner Steve DOWSETT apparently handled the ball over the line in a goalmouth melee, even his team mates alluded as such, but the goal was given and the game was up.
Notwithstanding an excellent Knutsford passing move involving Tom Schofeild, Liversedge and Lunt which came to naught the title contenders had the last say. A ball rolled across Knutsford’s penalty area gave DEAKIN the easiest of tap in’s .
Greenalls Padgate St. Oswalds …3 Knutsford …0
TEAM: Mottershead; Jackson M, Jenyons (Liversedge 44 mins), Jackson S, Wilkinson (Mackenzie 81); Schofield T, Rezeyan, Warburton, Pickford (Jones 20 mins) Williamson; Lunt. Subs(n/u)Harrison,Schofield M. *On Saturday Knutsford entertain Tarporley Victoria for the first time in the Cheshire League. Kick Off in the game at Manchester Road ,sponsored by Bob Farnon Tyres, is 3.00 pm.