Town take spoils in derby clash
STOCKPORT Town took on Cheadle Heath Nomads in a highlyanticipated derby clash.
The teams went into the fixture with Stockport sitting in 17th place, just five points off the bottom two, and Cheadle sitting sixth only three points behind second.
Stockport made the brighter start, free flowing passing between the midfield and wing backs was the theme for the first 10 minutes. Matty Hanson created the first chance of the game, beating his man on the edge of the 18 yard box, aiming a ball in for Gavin Salmon to meet but he couldn’t steer his effort on target.
Just five minutes later the first goal of the game was scored, Robbie Lofthouse played Callum Dolan through from a short free kick. Dolan then showed some fancy footwork, completing four step overs to beat his man and deliver a cross which deflected off a Cheadle defender’s leg and crept into the back of the net.
The goal gave Stockport confidence, and they created chance after chance for the remainder of the half.
The closest they came was a free kick whipped in by Robbie Lofthouse, and Festus Arthur met it with a free header but too much power on the effort saw the ball glance over the bar.
Cheadle had one half chance of note in the first half, a free kick from Stephen Kirby that was in range but he couldn’t test Town’s goalkeeper Andrei Stinca.
The first 15 minutes of the second half was in Cheadle’s favour. Ebbie Reyazan wasted two chances within two minutes.
Stockport profited from the wasted opportunities, and played a lovely move down the right hand side to feed Dolan in once again. He split the Cheadle defence with a solo run and calmly chipped over goalkeeper Aaron Tyree to make it 2-0 to Stockport.
On 76 minutes Cheadle Heath were handed a lifeline when Jack McConnell received his second yellow of the game and was sent for an early shower.
Cheadle took advantage of the extra man straight from the awarded free kick, Ashley Harrison lashing home his effort from close range. So 2-1 with 10 minutes plus injury time to go, testing Stockport’s resilience playing with only 10 men.
Manager Alan Lord introduced fresh legs to see out the game. This tactic worked, Stockport stayed strong and kept the mistakes to a minimum.
Gavin Salmon fouled Jack Benson in Cheadle’s final third, but from the follow through Salmon seemed to catch Benson with his studs but nothing malicious. The referee decided this was reckless, and issued the second red card of the game to Salmon. Stockport were down to nine men for the last two minutes, and the seconds seemed to be getting slower and slower.
But the final whistle eventually came and the three points went to Stockport Town. This win pushed Stockport up to 16th, only a point behind Eccleshall, and dropped Cheadle Heath down to seventh, tied on 34 points with St Martins, who are ahead on goal difference.