Matlock Town FC 2 : 0 St Neots Town FC
Matlock Town FC 2 : 0
St Neots Town FC
Saturday 02 November, 2013 15:00


FA Trophy Second Round Qualifying


MATLOCK TOWN      2       ST NEOTS TOWN     0


Iain Parr’s final match in charge of St Neots ended in an FA Trophy defeat at the hands of Northern Premier League side Matlock Town in the Peak District.   This brought to an end St Neots’ interest in National competition this season but it came as Parr was forced to field a largely experimental line up with half a dozen of his first team squad either injured or unavailable.  However the side were unlucky not to have at least brought Matlock back to St Neots for a replay for they had much the better of the second half and their defeat was only confirmed by a goal against the run of play two minutes from time.   This was defeat from which there were so many positives to be gained.   Jake Woolley leading the line with determination and skill was unlucky not to have featured on the score sheet and Alasan Ann already utilised as a striker and central defender was slotted in at full back to give an almost faultless performance.   Elsewhere the first time midfield pairing of Dave Deeney and loanee Liam Hurst were more than adequate and the return to the starting line up of Lewis Hilliard saw him almost back to his best.   The new Manager due to be named early in the week will start his tenure with selection problems as the missing players return to the squad for next week’s league visit of title favourites Hemel Hempstead.


Heavy rain just prior to the match ensured a difficult slippery surface and both sides took some time to find a rhythm.   There were just two early shots on goal from Liam Needham and Micky Harcourt dealt with comfortably by Niall Conroy and then after 18 minutes Matlock went ahead with the first real chance of the match.   Corey Gregory went over an inswinging corner to a packed six yards box where St Neots goalkeeper was crowded out and the unmarked Micky Harcourt rose to head firmly into the net.   St Neots were unlucky not to level three minutes later when Jay Davies was fouled 25 yards from goal and Lewis Hilliard’s perfectly placed free kick had to be acrobatically turned over the bar by home keeper Jon Kennedy.   Conroy did have to make one important save from Lavell White but St Neots were gradually beginning to dominate the game with Kennedy doing well to block a narrow angled shot from Woolley and Jay Davies playing just behind the striker bringing two saves from the keeper as he sought to keep his goal intact.


After half time the pattern of play continued with St Neots dominating possession but they lacked a cutting edge up front.   From a Woolley cross Bobby-Joe Taylor fired over the bar and Hilliard carved out two further openings bringing a good save from Kennedy but then seeing a fierce shot blocked with the keeper beaten following a Taylor corner that was not cleared.   Matlock sent on a couple of substitutes hoping to capture more of the play but with St Neots growing in confidence much of the play was towards the home goal.   A lengthy effort from Dave Deeney passed the wrong side of a post and St Neots then sent on two attacking substitutes Lewis Wilson and Joe N’Guessan to try to find the equaliser they deserved.   As often happens when a side is dominating the opposite effect happens and two minutes from time in a very rare Matlock visit to the St Neots penalty area a James Ashmore cross eluded the back peddling defence and the ball fell kindly for Danny Holland who wrapped up his sides’ place in the third round draw with a crisp finish.   St Neots had the last word deep in added time as substitute Lewis Wilson brought the save of the match from Kennedy who pushed the ball over the bar but by then it would not have mattered.




St Neots: ConroyAnn, Ford, Crowie, Hoyte, Deeney,Hilliard, HurstWoolley, Davies, Taylor

Subs: Wilson (for Taylor 76 mins), N’Guessan (for Ford 86 mins), Sharman, Palmer and King.

Cards: Ford (Y – 28)



MatlockKennedy, Harcourt, Leesley, Ashmore, Haggerty, Yates, Needham, Gregory, Holland, McMahon, White

Subs: Grayson (for McMahon 63 mins), Foster (forGregory 73 mins), Radford (for White 86 mins),Featherstone and Leese.


GoalsHarcourt (18 mins), Holland (88 mins)




Referee:  Adam Clayton (Manchester)


John Walker