Encouraging signs for Matlock after they brush Coalville aside

Niall McManus
Niall McManus
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Matlock will remember fondly their first ever visit to Owen Street after a first class performance, four goals and a resounding away victory to maintain their excellent September sequence of results.

Marc Newsham and Michael Williams scored braces in each half respectively, but it could have been a great deal worse for the newly promoted Ravens with Marcus Dinanga having an effort disallowed and Ted Cribley striking the bar, plus other opportunities going begging.

Coalville’s Twitter account said Matlock were the best team they had faced this season, which was high praise indeed after suffering a 4-1 defeat.

All Coalville had to show for their efforts was a Nathan Watson consolation but by then the damage had been well and truly done with the Gladiators four goals in front.

An unchanged Matlock squad got quickly into their stride and netted inside eight minutes. They had initially threatened two minutes earlier when Marcus Dinanga’s unselfish and strong running on the right saw him feed Niall McManus whose probing low cross narrowly missed the onrushing Newsham.

But Newsham was soon celebrating, blasting home an unstoppable penalty after a clumsy challenge from Jarrod Holmes had sent Cribley sprawling in the box.

In the next minute McManus crossed again, but Dinanga went for the spectacular finish and failed equally spectacularly allowing Coalville to clear. Dinanga then had a 16th minute goal disallowed for offside after Adam Yates had chased a back post corner and returned the ball to the opposite post from the left.

Matlock continued to dominate as for the second game on the trot, they dominated midfield. Joe Doyle-Charles must have covered every blade of grass at Owen Street, ably assisted by Williams, who could be the signing of the season. With Cribley and McManus providing width, Matlock again looked a potent attacking force.

Defensively, Coalville were outgunned, going forward they showed a little more promise, Watson turning well to fire narrowly wide from 20 yards in their first dangerous moment on 31 minutes.

All that did though was to give the visitors increased impetus. Home skipper and goalkeeper Sean Bowles needed two attempts to hold Dinanga’s strike but Matlock doubled their lead in the 34th minute. Again, Holmes was at fault as McManus picked his pocket far too easily and squared to Newsham to poke his shot under Bowles from 12 yards.

Cribley’s weaving run from the left ended with him shooting fiercely and narrowly over the bar before Ravens’ boss Tommy Brookbanks made a double change as early as the 38th minute. On came former Gladiator Will Dennis to join another former Matlock defender Dean Freeman, with Alex Dean also being introduced at the expense of Holmes and Josh Raven.

Phil Barnes pushed away an Alex Troke shot soon afterwards but Coalville, clearly frustrated at being outplayed, should have been down to ten men two minutes before the interval, Brad Munn escaping with only a yellow card for a horrible two footed lunge at Dinanga.

Coalville’s faint hopes of a recovery evaporated within five minutes of the restart as WILLIAMS shrugged off Dennis after a free kick was ineffectively dealt with to rifle gleefully past Bowles. Within two minutes a Williams free kick passed narrowly wide before on 58 minutes, Cribley cut in from the left in now one of his trademark runs to lift a deft finish over Bowles and clip the bar.As the chances continued to come, Dinanga drove across the face of goal with both Newsham and Cribley well placed.

After McManus chipped into Bowles arms after spotting him off his line, Matlock made it four on 74 minutes, counter attacking at devastating pace, Jake Green being the provider for Williams to finish in style.

The only blot on the Matlock performance was conceding just two minutes later, Dennis crossing from the right and WATSON turning the ball home from a few yards out.

But their fourth successive win in league and cup was comfortably in the bag with the 70 strong Matlock fans in the paltry 134 crowd going home with much to enthuse about.

Matlock: Barnes, Marsden, Green, Doyle-Charles, Yates, Wiley, McManus, Williams, Newsham (de Girolamo 79), Dinanga (Travis 86), Cribley (Yates 86). Subs not used: Wilson, Jameson.

Referee: Mark Howes (Solihull). Attendance: 134. Best Gladiator: Joe Doyle-Charles.