Gladiators into semis after bad-tempered encounter

Matlock Town 3 Farsley AFC 1

Matlock’s quest for success in two cup competitions gained pace with victory in a bruising Doodson Sport League Cup quarter-final clash at the Reynolds Stadium on Tuesday night.

But victory came at a cost with Matlock suffering a catalogue of injuries, none worse than the thigh injury to top scorer Lewis McMahon in his first start back after an ankle injury sustained seven weeks ago.

McMahon was helped off after a dreadful challenge from Matt Dempsey which brought the Farsley full-back just a yellow card when a sending off looked to be the only decision available to Leicester referee Geoff Law.

And Farsley’s physical nature was to be a problem for Matlock all game, but one they coped admirably with to claim a deserved victory.

McMahon fed the returning Massiah McDonald on the left and received the return ball which he chipped a couple of yards wide early on, but Matlock then took a firm grip on the tie netting twice in seven minutes.

Midfielder James Ashmore got the show on the road with a wonderfully constructed 12th minute goal.

Laurence Gaughan, deputising for the cup-tied Lee Featherstone at left-back, guided a slide rule pass to McMahon who swiftly spotted the surging run by Ashmore who fired accurately into the far corner from 12 yards.

And it was soon 2-0 when from a free kick on the right, a powerful header from McMahon rocketed over goalkeeper Tom Morgan.

Gaughan had a header flash just wide before the break, and after it Farsley looked much more of a threat.

McMahon’s departure left behind an uneasy atmosphere but did result in a debut for Geoffrey Gouveia ten minutes into the half, and by the 58 minute mark, the Gladiators had one huge foot in the last four.

Davies did well to lay a short pass out to the supporting Ashmore on the right whose inviting cross gave the unmarked McDonald the chance to bullet home a header from six yards.

Farsley found a route back five minutes later thanks to over elaboration from the otherwise excellent Gaughan, who was robbed by Gareth Grant who ran through and beat Jon Kennedy with a crisp finish.

Gouveia saw a shot deflected just wide and Kennedy saved well from Mallory before the game was out, Adam Yates also having to hack clear a Mallory header to ensure the two-goal cushion was maintained and a semi-final place secured.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Matlock: 1 Jon Kennedy 2 Micky Harcourt 3 Laurence Gaughan 4 Martin Foster 5 Adam Yates 6 James Lukic 7 Gareth Davies 8 James Ashmore 9 Massiah McDonald 10 Lewis McMahon (Geoffrey Gouveia 55), 11 Ben Algar Subs not used: Will Dennis, James Travis, Nick Buxton

Farsley: 1 Tom Morgan 2 Matt Dempsey 3 Simeon Bambrook 4 Rob O’Brien 5 James Riley 6 Rob Etherington (Matty James 55) 7 Adam Priestley 8 Brice Tiani (Chris Walton 27) 9 Steve Mallory 10 Gareth Grant 11 Ryan Harrison Subs not used: Owen Davies, Ben Higginson.

Ref: G Law Att: 126 Star Gladiator: Gareth Davies

by Ian Richardson