EvoStik NPL Division One (North)

Saturday 28 December 2015

By Gary Owen

If ever there was an advert for local, non-league football, this was it – incident packed, and two sets of players giving their all on a leg-sapping heavy pitch.

Both sides created chances from the off, but it was the hosts who struck first as the ever impressive Billy Hasler-Cregg scampered away down the right flank to cross low for James Hampson, whose first time effort gave Liam Flynn no chance.

Mossley almost hit back straight away, but the equally impressive Godwin Abadaki’s shot lacked sufficient power to trouble Steve James in the Droylsden goal.  That was not before visiting skipper Andrew Keogh was inches over with a dipping volley, but Droylsden were good value for their interval lead.

Tom Pratt missed an early second half chance for the Lilywhites, but he atoned for that earlier miss on the hour mark when he rounded off a smart Mossley move at the far post.  However, in the build-up to the attack, referee Mr. Clayton accidentally collided with a player, and was out cold for a few concerning moments.  Given the official’s incapacity at the time the goal was scored, the laws of the game prevented the goal from standing – despite two other officials having perfect sight of an otherwise faultless goal.  It was somewhat ironic given the same official had to retire from the reverse fixture, with the game completed by just two officials (one referee and one assistant).

The disallowed goal only served to provide added impetus to Mossley, who deservedly struck level when a long ball found Abadaki, who beat James to the ball and finished, despite the home keeper getting a good hand to the ball.

Lee O’Brien and James Hampson both tested Flynn in the closing stages as Droylsden put on a final rally, and The Bloods thought they had snatched a winner in the eight minute of added time when Ben Barber’s shot struck the post, but Brandon Zibaka’s conversion of the loose ball was denied by an assistant’s flag, before Mr. Clayton finally brought an exhilarating match to an end, with the points shared between these two Tameside rivals.

DROYLSDEN:                       James, Antoine-Clarke, Barber, Wood, Hampson B., O’Brien (Zibaka, 88’), Grimshaw, Rouse, Hampson J., Edmondson-Rouse (Smith, 78’), Hasler-Cregg.  Subs. not used – Howe, Pino, Hewitt.

MOSSLEY:                            Flynn, Henson, Wilshaw (Cheetham, 85’), Thomas, Dean, Bennett, Keogh, Fish (Robinson, 71’), Short (Carroll, 71’), Abadaki, Pratt.  Subs . not used – McGrath, Chilaka.

Referee:                                 Mr. Alan Clayton (Hyde)

Attendance:                           233

Category: Match Reports