Pictures and captions Kindly supplied by the young David Evans.
A bit of a football special this week – a couple of reports and some orphaned footage I couldn’t fit in elsewhere: David Evans covered the Uttoxeter match and his son, Simon, the game from Cleethorpes tlast week – so pull up a chair and a brew and we’ll kick off.
Yesterday afternoon (Saturday 15th September 2018) Walsall Wood FC took a trip out into central Staffordshire to face Uttoxeter at their Oldfields ground – and came home after a cracking, tense math with a two-all draw that’s clearly unfinished business.
David Evans was there, and liked what he saw…
Uttoxeter 2 v 2 Walsall Wood
A beautiful autumnal afternoon and a beautiful setting in Uttoxeter to watch a fine display of hard fought yet sporting cup-tie soccer between two proficient and determined teams. The elegant cricket pavilion stood proud and solid away in the distance, its outdoor tables forlornly displaying the numerous relinquished empty pint glasses glinting in the gentle thin sunshine, and the delicate aroma of best beefburgers and chips crept over the freshly cut grass. The scene was set. The contest was set to thrill and delight, in equal measure.
Wood started brightly and scored a precious early first goal, to the chagrin of the home bench, whose passionate cries echoed shrill and curt for a while. Above the huffing and puffing, the click of boot on boot, the whack of squarely booted caseball, and the calling among the players.
Two teams of match-fit athletes, adept and crisp in their passing, running and shooting, brought this game into sharp focus. Youthful players on both sides ran like the wind, leapt, rolled, anticipated, out-manoeuvred, were robbed of the ball by superb tackles, headed with gusto and drive. This afternoon’s spectacle had everything- except that deciding, winning goal, that is.
Substitutions were made by both sides, and with good effect, bringing fresh players to replace those who had taken the game to their opponents and whose limbs and lungs were tired by the contest. There was no letting up in the pace or industry of the players. Not in this game; not today.
The final whistle was blown after extra time had been played out. This was no stale-mate game. It is unfinished business. The replay, here at Oak Park, should be one for the archives
There’s also the following footage which was published by the ever-excellent The-Wood.tv after the Stourport match review was published from 1st September:
Additionally, I have some images and a great review of the Walsall Wood away match at Cleethorpes last week (Saturday 8th September 2018) which the Woodmen sadly lost to the seasiders.
Simon Evans said:
Images kindly supplied by Simon Evans
Cleethorpes 4 V 1 Walsall Wood
Cleethorpes kicked off and from the start went straight at the Wood. Kyle Rowley heading clear within the first two minutes. Cleethorpes kept pressing and on 13 minutes they opened the scoring. A free kick eluded everyone in the box, Lloyd Ransome misjudged it and the ball ended up in the net: 1-0.
From the restart Cleethorpes gained possession, a dangerous cross was well claimed by LLoyd Ransome in the Wood goal. Wood went on the offensive, Javia Roberts broke free his cross eluded everyone in the box. After 20 minutes, Dean Rathbone’s 20 yarder hit the post via the keepers fingertips, the corner was cleared.
Cleethorpes attacked, a great tackle in the box by Mitchell Tolley, whilst everyone was expecting a corner, the referee pointed for a penalty, which was despatched 2-0. Wood then had a couple of free kicks which the Cleethorpes defence coped with.
Half time: 2-0
Wood started the second half, a couple of quick free kicks came to nothing. On 58 minutes Javia Roberts broke free but the shot was high.
Cleethorpes capitalised on some Wood overplay to make it 3-0. Wood then had a great chance, a pull back to Joey Butiln who was six yards out – his power blaster was goal bound, the keeper going the wrong way but his leg deflected the ball over the bar.
On 68 minutes a Cleethorpes free kick was headed in 4-0.
Wood responded and a couple of minutes later Kyle Rowley headed home 4-1. Cleethorpes were then down to 10 men for a challenge on Dean Rathbone. Kyle Rowley then had a couple of chances, his headers going over following freekicks.
The last attack saw Woods sub bear down on goal, there keeper making a fine save.
FT Cleethorpes 4 – 1 Wood
Cheers to David and Simon for great reports and images, and also to Russell for his great match footage, and of course to all down at Oak Park for more great community focussed football.
It’s all for The Good of The Wood!