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MATCH REPORT: Rylands 1-0 St Martins

The saints travelled away to Gorsey Lane to take on top of the table Rylands FC in what turned out to be a game in which both sides battled well and it resulted in a 1-0 win for Rylands.

First half:

The early minutes of the game looked strong from St Martins as they piled on plenty of pressure as Rylands attempted to pass it out from the back. Although the saints played good pressure, the first chance of the game fell to the home side to as they found themselves with a chance on the edge of the box, took a shot but George Austin watched the shot drift past his post. This was shortly followed up by our first chance of the game which fell to Karl Bailey, he was played through but still had a defender to beat as he attempted to fire an early shot and catch the keeper out in the bottom right hand corner but the Rylands goalkeeper got down to it to deny Bailey. The game then went quiet as both sides were trying to figure each other out and get a goal but neither were succeeding; The saints did get themselves very close though as a free kick was played in from the right hand side, it pinballed around the box until it fell to Tawanda Melusi who managed to get a shot towards goal a couple yards out but it drifted inches wide of the post. There was one more St Martins chance before the two sides headed in for half time; a low powerful ball was played in across the box but the Rylands defender just beat Karl Bailey to what would’ve been a tap in. It was a deadlock at the break.

Second half:

The second half carried on where the first half finished as both sides were struggling to break each other down. George Austin did get his first real test of the game as a Rylands played in a very dangerous cross which could’ve gone anywhere, ended up bouncing off of a St Martins defender which forced Austin to pull off an impressive reflex save to keep it out. St Martins did struggle for a little portion of the game as rylands carried on creating chances from crosses into the box and the saints couldn’t seem to get a steady set of play to attack for themselves. This ended up resulting in the home side taking the lead late on as they scored from a corner which was unfortunate for the hard worked St Martins side. We then had to restart as we looked to get something from this game with only 5 minutes left of the game. The Saints unfortunately came away with the loss in a game in which they battled well.

Written by Liam Vaughan

Photo: Rylands Football Club

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MATCH REPORT: St Martins 9-1 Stone Dominoes

St Martins FC hosted Stone Dominoes FC in a exhilarating game of football which involved some lovely attacking play from St Martins who ended up scoring 9 goals and taking a well deserved three points in a 9-1 home win.

First half:

There is only one word to describe the first half and that is: Hectic. It became apparent right off kick off that the saints were already in their top gear as they created plenty of chances within the first three minutes of the game; they then went and scored in the sixth minute as MOTM Karl Bailey picked up his first goal as a cross was played in, the Dominoes keeper couldn’t keep hold of it and spilled it to gift Karl Bailey an open net and he smashed it home for his and St Martins’ first of the game. St Martins then carried on searching for another as they carried on piling the pressure after their first and they eventually got it as in the sixteenth minute Tom Ash finessed his shot from the edge of the box and placed it in the bottom right hand corner and then only four minutes after, the saints had grabbed their third as a low cross was played into the box and the dominoes defender attempted to clear it but ended up putting it in his own net. The saints didn’t settle for three as they kept fighting for more and found it only 41 seconds after their last goal! Karl bailey slotted away his second of the game. There then was a slight six minute break from all the madness as dominoes started to slowly get back into it and they found their first chance of the game as they fired a shot from the edge of the box but it was easy pickings for George Austin, but dominoes were looking better; unfortunately for Dominoes Tom Ash went down the other end and fired a peach of a shot from roughly 25 yards out to find the bottom left hand corner and grabbed the saints fifth of the game. As Dominoes looked to get back into it, their captain Luke smith drove down the left hand side of the pitch as he found himself in some space, took on the St Martins defence and then slotted it past George Austin for what can only be a consolation goal for the away side. That was the end of the first half as St Martins went in with a four goal lead.

Second half:

The second half was a lot more composed from Dominoes but St Martins very much kept their momentum as straight from kick off they kept the same pressure and movement from the first half. The first chance of the half fell to on form Karl Bailey on the edge of the box who attempted to place it in the top right hand corner which forced an impressive save from the Dominoes keeper. The start of this half was a lot calmer than the first as Dominoes showed more drive and defended well, the saints did carry on playing their lovely interlinked one touch passing, which was something they kept up all game, to try and break down the improved Dominoes defence and it almost produced as in the 60th minute as Karl Bailey got himself another chance, a driven ball was played into him in the box but he couldn’t produce a clean enough touch to finish it. Although he made up for it in the 69th minute as he was played wide open thanks to a Tom Ash assist which provided Bailey with his Hat-Trick, he then got his fourth in the 71st minute and made it a six goal difference; although he didn’t stop there as he scored his fifth goal in the 89th minute. The game was finished by a goal from Calum Graybrook who found himself with space in the box and slotted it past the keeper in the bottom right hand corner to finish Dominoes’ miserable afternoon and high praised St Martins came away with three points and 9 goals.

Hartey Wealth Management Man Of The Match: Karl Bailey

Report written by Liam Vaughan

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MATCH REPORT: Alsager Town 1-1 St Martins

The Saints travelled away to play Alsager FC in a game which brought plenty of chances for saints and a bit of fortune for Alsager in a game which resulted in the points being shared at WoodPark Stadium in a 1-1 draw.

First half:

The first half was interesting and showed how the rest of the match was going to be played out. The saints pressed very well early on and this resulted in us seeing plenty of ball and being the dominant side, we had our fair share of chances in this first and throughout the game but we had a reoccurring segment of creating the chances and being inefficient with out finishing. We had an early disadvantage as Calum Bennet received a harsh red card for what seemed to be an misunderstanding with the referee but this didn’t take away from our momentum as we carried on attempting to find that unlocking key into the Alsager defence and get a goal before half time but it was to no avail as the first half ended at a goalless deadlock between the two sides.

Second half:

The saints started off the second half the same as the first half as they came out strong, with good pressure and there was a short spell of good passing from the saints to create a couple chance but were unlucky not to get the leading goal. Alsager got their first noticeable chance of the game as their midfielder picked up the ball on the edge of the box, went for goal but George Austin watched it roll wide of the post. Shortly after the home side did break the deadlock with a very unusual goal as their winger played in a cross which took an unfortunate bobble and dinked over George Austins head to put them 1 ahead. The saints attempted to respond quickly as Karl Bailey picked up a good chance on the edge of the box but couldn’t keep the shot down and in the end didn’t trouble the Alsager goalkeeper. The saints then carried on trying to respond as they kept their heads up and created plenty of chances but had the same problem of lacking the final finish; that was until the seventy fourth minute where a corner cross was played into the box where MOTM Stuart Dickin put it away for the deserved equaliser. The game was seen out with much of the same as the saints had a few chances, Alsager had a good chance but it was denied by a good George Austin save. To end off the game there was a very good chance on the edge of the box to get the winner but it was put over the bar and the game ended level.

Overall, St martins played well and we’re very unlucky not to come away with all three points as they had plenty of chances but could not finish.

Match report by Liam Vaughan

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MATCH REPORT: St Martins 1-2 Maine Road

The saints hosted Maine Road FC in a game which we struggled to break into and lacked a creative spark throughout the game.

First half:

The first half started off with a shock for st martins as the visitors ended up getting themselves the lead after only 4 minutes as their number 9 Daniel Burgess was put through after catching the st martins defence off guard and slipping in 1 on 1, forcing George Austin to come off his line and was chipped to make it one nil to the visitors. The saints attempted to respond quick as only in the tenth minute we seen two quick chances fall to Tawanda Melusi and Karl bailey; Most noticeably Tawanda Melusi’s chance which found him open in space for a header after a long cross in the box but couldn’t get the connection to put it in the back of the net for the equaliser. St Martins then went on to dominate possession for about 10 minutes although Maine Road FC lacked possession they seemed more deadly when on the ball on the attack, nevertheless we carried on creating chances as Karl Bailey got another very good chance as George Durrel played a low ball into the box which was inches away from Karl Baileys boot to get the equaliser. The remainder of that half was fairly lacklustre from the saints as we struggled to create anything after our last chance and went into the break trailing by one.

Second half:

Second half was a change of momentum for both sides as the tides were constantly changing but both struggled to break the others defence down and get a goal. The game was fairly quiet until we picked up a corner in the sixty sixth minute which was played into the box and bounced off of numerous boots in the box and nobody for st martins could put their foot through it to put it in the back of the net and the visitors found themselves very fortunate not to concede there. As the saints continued to find their chances where they could, we found ourselves with a header in the box but it was put whiskers wide of the post and it was looking imminent that we were going to get their leveller sometime soon until the visitors found themselves through on goal once again and it was taken around George Austin who was scrambling for the ball and did do well at first as we stopped the original shot of their attacker but couldn’t claim it as it was eventually put away into an open net and all hope looked lost for us after a very lacklustre performance. We did however manage to get a late goal in the dying minutes of added time from a cross into the box which scrambled around and was eventually put away, unfortunately it was too late to recover and we ended up losing 2-1 despite our late recovery effort.

Overall it was a game in which we struggled to get into, we lacked a creative spark and attacking energy although we did find our chances where we could get them.

Report by Liam Vaughan

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MATCH REPORT: St Martins 0-2 Stockport Town

The saints hosted Stockport town at home today, it was a game we struggled to get into throughout and ended up deservedly losing 2-0 to a strong Stockport Town performance.

In the first 10-15 minutes both sides played with good energy but nothing of significance was being created by either side as they were both trying to unlock each other’s defences; in the 25th minute we seen our first chance fall to striker Karl Bailey for what seemed an early Christmas gift from the Stockport defenders as they slipped up a pass at the back and Karl bailey was put through but it was a tough tight angle on the right hand side of the box and it just drifted passed the post. The visitors struck first as they broke on a counter attack and Jack McConell played a powerful low ball from the left hand side and the saints defence failed to clear it successfully as it was put away for an own goal in the 30th minute by Jackson Hassanyeh for a deserved lead for Stockport. As we were heading into a well needed half time break George Austin made a very good save to deny the Stockport forward Jack McConell for a second. We went into halftime looking to reorganise and get back out for a better second half.

The second half started with a substitute as Jay stoker made way for Tawanda Melusi. The second half was a lot of the same as we struggled to connect our passes and create chances and very early on Stockport took advantage of this and took their chances as Stockport forward Callum Dolan forced a parry from George Austin which landed to Callum McConnell who tapped it away from the rebound in the bottom left hand corner. We found a chance in the 66th minute as a ball was played in the box and it bounced around which ended up forcing a double save from the Stockport keeper, we also forced another chance in the 72nd minute as we forced another good save from a headed chance. The rest of the half was uneventful as we carried on struggling to create significant chances.

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MATCH REPORT: St Martins 2-2 Stone Old Alleynian

The saints hosted Stone Old Alleynian on a cold, wet Saturday afternoon for a good afternoon of football that resulted in 4 goals being scored; Karl bailey was goal hungry and grabbed himself a brace and the visitors scored two long range goals to result in the points being shared in a 2-2 draw.

First half:

We started off this game slow and the visitors seen plenty of the ball as they dominated possession and their attackers showed their quality in their interplay but couldn’t create a clear chance early; the saints remained composed defensively as Alleynian carried on attacking. The saints did slowly start to find their bearings as in the 21st minute we had our first chances as there was three quick successions of low balls being played across the box but nobody could provide the finishing touch. The saints continued to keep up this momentum when Karl Bailey grabbed himself a goal in the 23rd minute after a delightful long range pass from Calum Bennet resulted in Karl Bailey slotting in a delightful little finish to make it 1-0 and then not only two minutes later he grabbed his brace and extended st martins lead to 2-0 as he chased down a back pass to the oppositions goalkeeper and pounced to take it around the goalkeeper and put it away in an open net. Just as st martins started to look comfortable with this 2-0 lead, the visitors came back in the 33rd minute as Alleynians James Lee hit a lovely strike from 25 yards which hit the crossbar and went in and nothing the keeper could’ve done to keep that one out. As The saints were recovering after conceding they went through and had a chance cleared off the line as the keeper was caught off his line and chipped. St martins had the lead at half time.

Second half

Looking to extend their lead in the second half as the saints subbed on Tawanda Melusi for Calum Bennet at the start of the second half. The visitors saw the first chance fall to them as a powerful low ball was played near post but it was to no avail as none of their attackers could get a touch onto it to equalise. A few minutes went by and then talleynians Kyle Blake found himself with space 25 yards out and hit another worldie which tucked into the top left corner to make it 2-2. As St Martins looked to reshape and recuperate after conceding another they got themselves a corner which knocked around the box and fell to Tawanda Melusi’s feet to give him a golden opportunity but the Alleynian defenders were quick to put their bodies on the line and block his shot. The saints then began to pick up the pace as they were putting pressure on the visitors defence playing some nice quick passes and this ended in a chance coming to Brendon Price as he was played through for what seemed a certain goal but the Alleynian goalkeeper made an impressive save to keep it level. Neither side could find themselves a winner as they both would not break defensively and the game finished 2-2 after an impressive 90 minutes from both sides.

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MATCH REPORT: Ethelstlon Cup: Wellington Ams 1-2 St Martins

The Saints travelled to telford for an Ethelstone cup match with Wellington Amateurs on what looked like a tough pitch and a physical side from the outset. The Saints left top scorer Karl Bailey on the bench along with Durrel and Millington with one eye on Saturday’s game vs Stone OA. Walters, Melusi, Ash, Dickin where all unavailable on the night.

The home side started the game much stronger and took the lead within four minutes. A corner was cleared back to the taker and his cross was met by the head  of the midfielder to put the home side one up. The home side continued their good start but looked likely to concede at the back and on 16 minutes, Jordy Davies got to the byline and crossed for Callum Graybrook to finish. The Saints started to take control of the game, with Harvey Plimmer really looking dangerous on the break against a slow back line. The home side where picked up a couple of bookings for late tackles and they where getting frustrated. The Ams keeper was in inspired form, considering he is usually an outfield player and he pulled off a great save to deny Hands and just before half time Davies smashed the post after good work from Price. Jay Hands was again thwarted by a good save from the home keeper.

Half time 1-1

The first action of the second half was a red card for the home side. Ams actually started the half well, but on the touch line, the Ams 10 got into a something and nothing with Bennett, as Stoker tried to break it up, 10 went for him and threw his head at Stroker and received a straight red for his troubles.

The Saints should have had a clear penalty not long after with a clear push in the back of Davies but somehow the referee didn’t give it. On 65 minutes, there was a second red for Ams, a cross come in the box and the No 9 and Davies jumped for the ball, the Ams player didn’t like Davies challenge and proceeded to headbutt him, and received his marching orders. Davies was booked for his reaction to the headbutt and Ams No 5 was booked for his involvement afterwards.

Stevens tried to shake it up introducing the three lads from the bench and with two men advantage, the Saints should of seen the game off but Ams worked hard and made it difficult. Price should of but us ahead on 81 but somehow miskicked from a yard, Bailey forced a good save save from the keeper as well. The Ams keeper really was fantastic on the night.

In the last minute, the ball was worked out left and the cross came in and was headed home with a great header from Karl Bailey to get us through to the next round where we will face league and local rivals FC Oswestry Town at Yocking Park in 2019.

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MATCH REPORT: Cheadle Town 0-1 St Martins

The saints travelled to Stockport to take on Cheadle Town FC for a very tight 90 minutes of football. Chances went either way but a late strike from Brendon Price was the difference maker as St martins ended up snatching a late 1-0 win.

First half:

From kick off you could see how the saints wanted to play, they put a lot pressure on the Cheadle Town defence very early on. Both sides did play well on the ball on attack but st martins were showing their danger from counter attacks in this first half as Karl Bailey had a chance in the 21st minute from a quick counter but he couldn’t find the net as it just went wide of the post.

Goalkeeper George Austin had a very impressive game as he denied the Cheadle Town attackers of any chance of a goal as he was quick off his line, confident and kept the saints in the game at times; Cheadle Town also had a good chance as they played a long ball over the top over the Saints defence which lead to an open net but the forward couldn’t put it away. Score was level at the break

Second half: 

Cheadle Town started the second half very strong as they came out and played quick and the Saints defence did find themselves on the back foot at time early on but managed to stay composed and keep the score level. The home side were the first with a big chance in this second half as their striker was through one on one after a long ball played over the Saints defence but George Austin pulled out another very impressive save to deny the forward.

The Saints then found themselves getting back into the game with counter attacks once again and the Cheadle towns defence did look exposed from these counter attacks as The Saints kept digging at their back line to find a goal; finally in the 71st minute the saints had themselves another counter attack, connected a few passes which led to Karl Bailey playing a back heel pass to set up Brendon Price who slotted it in the bottom left corner just out of the keepers reach to win the game and secure three points for The Saints.

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MATCH REPORT: St Martins 1-1 Wythenshawe Town

The Saints faced 6th place Wythenshawe town at home for a very tight 90 minutes of football and 3 points would’ve meant a whole lot to either side had they have got it, as wythenshawe sit in 6th just below St Martins who are in 5th.

First half 

It wasn’t the start The Saints could have asked for as wythenshawe had picked up an early corner, crossed it in and The Saints players couldn’t get a touch onto it to clear it as Wythenshawe’s captain Chris Middleton had already nodded it in to the back of the net; admittedly it was a slow start to the game from The Saints as Wythenshawe created some chances but we slowly got our bearings and started attacking with a lot of confidence we had a lot of good movement, good passing and that all led to our first goal in the 13th minute as our midfielders and forwards played some very nice link up play, worked as a team and got the result as Callum Bennet blasted a shot at the Wythenshawe keeper and he couldn’t keep it out as it trickled into the back of the net to equalise.

It was an exciting first half which was full of action, the game had a reoccurring theme which was that the momentum constantly shifted between both sides; the Saints were creating plenty of chances as Tawanda Melusi found himself with some space in the box after some good build up play but the Wythenshawe defenders were quick to close him down before he could get his shot off. Wythenshawe’s Captain Chris Middleton did score a second but it was flagged offside.

Second half 1-1

As both sides were looking to break this deadlock in the second half The Saints came out with a game plan, they applied a lot of pressure and were very determined when they had the ball at their feet as only in the 56th minute the team were passing through the midfield very well, they found space for David Easthope on the edge of the box but his shot just skimmed the outside of the post.

The saints kept up the momentum from the first half as they carried on creating plenty of chances as Brendon Price had a low cross played into him from the right side but he just wasn’t quick enough to finish it; Wythenshawe also created their fair share of chances but nothing clear cut as both sides resolute defending quickly shut down the chance of any goals. The Saints tried to make an impact sub with Callum Graybrook coming off the bench to replace David Easthope in the 84th minute but with such little time Callum struggled to make an immediate impact in terms of a goal as the game ended level.

Full Time 1-1

The saints struggling to get the winner as the points were shared at home after a very good 90 minutes of football between these two sides. It was very entertaining and fair to say that both teams deserved to take away a point; both teams were very organised and the score line shows it, they both dominated certain sections of the match but nobody could find the winning goal to grab all three points. Onto the next. 

Report written by Liam Vaughan

Photo: Andy Easthope

https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipMsxv4KncR2OX_Qn5bZnAZggFVvLaEiJQsyUHum3blj1RdqtRSJLQJx88Bqt_1NTg?key=VE1lUWUyVU9jT1E1N3A2RFBrRmtyWk94elN5X1Rn

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MATCH REPORT: Wem Town 0-1 St Martins

The Saints travelled to a familiar foe in the shape of Wem Town for the 1st round of the TJ Vickers Premier Cup for a place in the quarter finals.

Manager Dan Stevens shuffled the pack again, with a debut for George Durrell, and starts for Walters, Stoker, Ash, Graybrook amongst others.

In truth, the game lacked quality for 120 minutes, especially in the final third. The Saints dominated possession from start to finish as Wem played deep and tried to counter attack. The first real chance came from Millington after five minutes but he dragged shot wide when in a good position. There were lots of half chances and nearly moments for the Saints in the half but in terms of really opening up Wem, it never really came. The best chance came right on half time, when a short corner was delivered and it dropped to Ash in the six yard box, and the keeper produced a good point blank save and Ask couldn’t convert the follow up. Wem never really offered much bar the odd long range effort for the whole half. The most entertainment in the half was the handbags that saw Dickin and Hands get booked, yet they were probably the least guilty of the flair up.

Half Time 0-0

The second half followed a similar pattern and Price had the best chance of opening the scoring when he met a Graybrook cross but his stretched effort was clawed away by the keeper. Easthope was introduced for Durrell and his creativity helped put Price in on goal but the keeper again made a good save with his legs. Wem should of been reduced to 10 men in the second half when the right back, who had been booked for a foul on Price in the first half, lunged in from behind on Price again, and everyone was expecting a second yellow but the referee, who has a really poor game for both sides, failed to give the second yellow. This disjointed the game and Austin was next to get a whack for his troubles on the knee and then Tom Ash had to be replaced due to a late tackle.

The Saints almost won it in normal time, when a cross was headed back across goal by Karl Bailey but it hit the post and the follow up could not be converted.

Full Time 0-0

Extra time was just three minutes old when The Saints finally took the lead in the most unlikely circumstances. A corner was won and taken short between Graybrook and Price, Price crossed and the Wem Centre half headed it straight in the far top corner from the centre of goal. A bizarre own to say the league. It should of been wrapped up by half time. First Bailey cut in from the left, smashed a low shot and it hit the post, the rebound came 6 yards out to Jordy Davies who somehow managed to fire the ball over the bar, a real contender for miss of the season. Bailey had another chance to get on the score sheet, doing some great work down the right, getting into the box and firing between the keepers legs but somehow it ended up wide, maybe the pitch played a part.

Full time (AET 0-1)

All in all a comfortable night for the Saints who defended well and limited the home side to no real efforts at goal. A lot of work to be done in attacking areas for the Saints who looked really blunt at times in the final third and decision making was poor at times. That said, it’s our name in the hat for the last eight of the cup and that’s what matters all in all.