NINE-MEN POSH GET JOB DONE

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Sean Tay­lor

PETER­BOR­OUGH are not renowned for their de­fen­sive re­silience but they showed it in abun­dance at Ch­ester­field as they held on to win with nine men, much to the delight of proud boss Gra­ham West­ley.

The at­tack­ing flair usu­ally as­so­ci­ated with Posh was ab­sent in north east Der­byshire with the wet, blus­tery con­di­tions not con­ducive to free-flow­ing foot­ball.

But Tom Ni­chols’ de­but goal still saw them re­turn home with all three points, de­spite hav­ing two men sent off.

De­fend­ers Michael Smith and Ri­cardo San­tos were the ones to see red and it was then all hands to the pump for West­ley’s side.

Ch­ester­field piled on the pres­sure but the ball would just not fall favourably for them as Peter­bor­ough pro­duced block af­ter block.

“We showed or­gan­i­sa­tion, ap­petite, de­ter­mi­na­tion and re­silience in abun­dance,” said West­ley.

“They are at­tributes that even the best flair sides need to de­velop and it is fan­tas­tic to see play­ers so tal­ented dig­ging so deep to win points.”

Peter­bor­ough scored ten min­utes into the sec­ond half. Erhun Oz­tumer’s in-swing­ing cor­ner hung for an age in the wind and when Ch­ester­field goal­keeper Tommy Lee, who felt he was fouled, strug­gled to get to the ball at his near post, Ni­chols turned it in from close range.

The vis­i­tors’ joy was tem­pered just three min­utes later when Smith was sent off af­ter re­ceiv­ing a sec­ond yel­low card fol­low­ing a trip on Jay O’Shea right on the edge of the area.

San­tos fol­lowed him in the 78th minute when he was shown a red card, again for two yel­lows, af­ter bring­ing down Rai Si­mons.

Asked about the red cards, West­ley added: “I think when you ask ques­tions you make a com­ment and you’re prob­a­bly ask­ing me about them be­cause you’re won­der­ing if there was con­sis­tency.

“Did Ri­cardo and Michael de­serve to walk be­cause of their per­sis­tent or vi­o­lent foul play? I don’t think so. I wouldn’t have given ei­ther player a red card, but I’m not the ref­eree.”

Ac­tion else­where was lim­ited. In the first half Lee stuck out a foot to deny Shaquile Coulthirst while at the other end Ben Al­nwick kept out Lee No­vak.

Peter­bor­ough thought they had the lead af­ter 37 min­utes. Oz­tumer’s curl­ing ef­fort brushed Lee’s fin­ger­tips and hit the cross­bar, with Lee An­gol head­ing in the re­bound but from an off­side po­si­tion.

In the sec­ond half, Lee was al­most em­bar­rassed by op­po­site num­ber Al­nwick when his wind-as­sisted kick forced him to tip the ball over. Ch­ester­field boss Danny Wil­son said: “I thought we matched them through­out the game, it was never ob­vi­ous one team was near the top and one near the bot­tom.

“Peter­bor­ough de­fended very well at times and also had a bit of luck and un­for­tu­nately we’ve not been able to force a goal.

“I don’t think you can deny we de­served some­thing. We didn’t have that lit­tle bit of luck, or qual­ity at times, but I think it was pretty even against a team in and around the top six.”

PIC­TURES: Me­dia Im­age

STAR MAN JAY O'SHEA Ch­este

rfield MATCH WIN­NER: Peter­bor­ough’s Tom Ni­chols turns the ball home

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