Heaton Stannington 0-2 Shildon
Wednesday 15 July 2015
On a sunny summer evening at Grounsell Park, the Stan hosted Shildon from the northern League first division in front of what was a large crowd for a friendly. Shildon lost out on the title last season only in their final match. Again a few home players were either injured, including Hoggins and Campania, or on holiday. There were debuts for Lewis Axon and substitute Sam Grieveson.
Both teams started positively and although they come from a railway town, Shildon did not treat the match like a ‘train’-ing session. After six minutes, the Stan headed a corner over. There was then a good move begun and ended by Telford, who had a particularly good first half, which resulted in another corner. The ball from the corner was cleared and the rebound was put high over the bar by Imray. Carr took the ball from a Shildon forward and ran up the park passing to Wright, who lost the ball. The Shildon counter attack was blocked. In the nineteenth minute Wright, who did not look match fit, put a free kick wide while three minutes later Telford ran with the ball and shot just over the bar. There were more Stan attacks, including another shot by Wright that went wide, but they could not get through the Shildon defence. Shildon also were keen to score and a header from a cross into the box was caught well by Backhouse. The Stan keeper, who was vocal throughout the half, got down and blocked another Shildon attack when it looked like the forward was going to get round him. The half ended 0-0 which seemed a fair score for both teams.
All but one Stan substitute came on for the second half replacing Backhouse, Axis, Weeks, Imray, Westphil, and Wright. Although the Stan gave a good show, Shildon had the better of the second half and more chances to score. Replacement keeper Rule was called into action almost immediately. There were chances at both ends early on with the best coming for Shildon in the fifty third minute when the Stan defence misjudged the Shildon forward’s run though Rule made a good save with his feet. Five minutes later and a Shildon forward broke free again but Rule put his shot out for a corner. Shildon were getting more and more shots in although the Stan defence managed to deal with them. The Stan eventually had a good chance to score when Yates shot just wide from a cross from the right. It was Shildon though who took the lead in the eightieth minute. Paul Connor steamed down the left and miss hit his cross which deceived both the Stan keeper and himself. His initial reaction was therefore one of surprise rather than of celebration. The Stan did not give up and put Grieveson on for Rowntree and a Dodsworth shot was caught by the Shildon keeper. With seven minutes to go, Shildon made it 2-0 when a run down the right saw a cross missed by Wear. This allowed Shildon’s Connor, who was behind Wear, to tap the ball into the net. Shildon had a few other attacks although the Stan also continued to try and push forward. The game finished 2-0 to Shildon and although this was a friendly, it was a competitive match.
Stan Team: Backhouse; Scott; Axon; Weeks; Wear; Imray; Telford; Westphil; Wright; Rowntree; Carr.
Subs (all used): Stoddart; Quine; Bailey; Cairns; Yates; Dodsworth; Grieveson.