First home win secured

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Gladiators 4

Alliance Healthcare 3

The Gladiators completed a season’s triple over Alliance Healthcare and gained their first ever home win in Division Three of the Alfreton Sunday League.

The game was played on a heavy pitch that seemed to suit the away side as they raced into an early lead. The Gladiators were finding it difficult but Simon Bridges seized on a defensive mistake to equalise.

The first half seemed all one way towards the Gladiators’ goal. The back four of David Furiness, Jason Haymes, Kev Marchant and Andy Corker were performing well. However, in the 35th minute, an Alliance shot hit the crossbar, bounced down and came out.

The referee was unsure if the ball had crossed the line, but, in an act of true sportsmanship, Gladiators’ supporter Scott Walker, who was stood on the line, informed the referee it had gone over and the goal was given.

The Gladiators started the second half playing better football and hit back through Simon Bridges, but this was his last action as he pulled a muscle in scoring.

Moments after the goal, Alliance attacked. A sliced cross put them back in the lead.

The Gladiators won a corner, headed out to winger Dan Spriddle, who arrowed it into the top corner from 25 yards out, a real contender for goal of the season.

The game continued to flow and could have gone either way but a throughball by Toby Rice put Stu Pearson through to score the winner.

Gladiators were pushed back for the last five minutes but two fingertip saves from Nick Hall ensured Gladiators took the points and moved off bottom spot. The Gladiators play Hilcote away in the semi-final next week.