MELLOR 1 ROCHDALIANS 0

For the second successive home league match Mellor Firsts recorded a 1-0 win against high flying opponents in a thrilling match.

Rochdalians came to Wood Lane in second spot in the league, boosted by a 6-1 mauling the previous week of Bedians.

But they found Mellor's back four as daunting as the Great Wall of China.

Cody Wharton in goal had only one real save to make, whereas his opposite number was far busier.

Kev Cooney, Matt Cotton and Matt Jamieson all put in good shifts and Dave Whelan's hungry tackling was a counterpoint to Chris Coram's subtle passing.

The win puts Mellor right back in contention and maximum points from two games in hand could see the side climb from eighth to equal top.

 

A header by Josh Granite (far left) finds the far corner for the only goal

 

On a heavy pitch Mellor took a while to flow.

The visitors dominated the early exchanges with neat interpassing, which at times was possibly over elaborate.

Rochdalians' management team constantly urged its players to cross the ball but the men in blue often looked for the perfect crossing opportunity.

The first real hint of drama came on 10 minutes when Rochdalians fired a free kick 24 yards out straight into the wall and a follow up shot was blocked too by a phalanx of bodies.

On 16 minutes Tom Byrne made an important tackle to concede a corner and from the flag kick Rochdalians shot over.

On 20 minutes Kev Cooney slipped in Matt Cotton but the ball skewed off his foot and went wide.

Granite and Cotton close in on Rochdalians' keeper

 

After 25 minutes Mellor began to assert themselves and match the flowing football of the visitors.

There was controversy on 40 minutes when Matt Jamieson blocked a fly kick by the opposing keeper and then fouled him with a tackle from behind as the man in green tried to retrieve the ball.

The keeper then pushed Jamieson twice in the chest. Referee John Melia showed them both yellow.

Mellor almost went ahead three minutes after the break when Matt Cotton's strength set up a chance for Matt Jamieson but a last ditch tackle deflected his goal-bound shot inches over the bar for a Mellor corner.

On 53 minutes Whelan stung the keeper's hands with a drive and the ball came back to Matt Cotton who fired wide from 12 yards.

A defender clears as Matt Jamieson prepares to volley

 

Matt Peck replaced Paul Swann on the right on 54 minutes.

On the hour Cody Wharton had to drop down smartly to his left to hang on to a cross-shot from Rochdalian's left flank.

Then a minute later a raking free kick from Jamieson was tipped over by Rochdalians' keeper.

The reprieve was temporary. On 62 minutes Dave Whelan took a short corner and fed Chris Coram whose curling cross to the far post was headed back across goal by Josh Granite and into the net, despite a frantic attempt to clear.

The game began to open up and the pace of Peck, Cooney and Jamieson might have picked off Rochdalians had Mellor's out ball been a little more considered.

The visitors pressed without really causing too many alarms in Mellor's rearguard.

Peck set up Jamieson for a thunderous shot from 23 yards which Rochdalians' keeper dealt with comfortably.

On 72 minutes Ben Beer's tackle broke up an attack and the defender surged forward on a 65 yard run ending in an attempted chip which caused more damage to the parked cars than Rochdalians' goal.

It was a symbol, however, of Mellor's resolve and ability to hit the away side on the break

 

Mellor attack a corner

 

On 74 minutes Cody Wharton misread the situation and let a deflected shot go behind for a corner. From the flag kick he redeemed himself by punching clear but Matt Cotton was forced to concede a second corner.

Mellor withstood the pressure and on 81 minutes a Whelan corner landed in the six yard box where Cotton tried to hook the bouncing ball over the keeper but succeeded only in clearing the bar by inches.

Referee Melia played a full five minutes of added time but Mellor held on for a deserved win.

 

Jamo lets fly

Ben Beer like Devon Loch in the 1956 Grand National...that ended in tears too

Kev Cooney tries to get in a shot

Dave Whelan shoots from the edge of the D

 

The Seconds travelled to Eagle Reserves in the Wray Cup and lost 6-4.

They led at 3-2 when Danny Hayes was sent off for handling the ball on his own goalline.

The extra man gave Eagle the impetus they needed to progress to the next round.

Bruce Clarke scored twice, Danny Hayes and Scott Cassidy also netted.

Terry Boon was Man of the Match.

The games featuring the Thirds and Fourths were postponed.

 

 

 

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Josh Granite...scored the only goal for the Firsts and was Man of the Match
Tom Byrne ..excellent at the back
Bruce Clarke....scored twice for the Seconds

Terry Boon, ...Seconds' Man of the Match

Danny Hayes...scored for the Seconds and then sent off