Sorry end to season for Matlock as they lose 4-0 to Barwell

It was an unhappy end to the season for keeper George Willis, who now returns to parent club Sheffield United. Pic Martyn Harrison.
It was an unhappy end to the season for keeper George Willis, who now returns to parent club Sheffield United. Pic Martyn Harrison.

Matlock’s awful start cost them any hopes they might have had of finishing their season on a high at Barwell, as they lost 4-0 on the final day of the campaign.

The hosts were two goals to the good inside ten minutes, brought about by some awful defending.

When they added a third eight minutes before the interval, it was effectively game over before a late free-kick rubbed salt in the Matlock wounds.

Midfielder Brady Hickey was allowed to run through unhindered to meet a pass from the left and drive clinically past George Willis from the edge of the box after only three minutes.

It was a lead that was doubled soon after, when Jamie Towers burst in from the left and fired past a hapless Willis 15 yards out.

Matlock were unfortunate on 15 minutes when skipper Micky Harcourt thundered a header straight against the crossbar from a corner on the right.

But Towers struck again on 37 minutes as he nodded Alex Tomkinson’s cross from the left past Willis.

All three goals had emanated from that flank prompting Niall McManus to replace Jason Paling.

Two more changes were made at the interval which led to a great improvement from Matlock with Danny Holland and Joel Purkiss replacing Siddall and Dawes.

Within 90 seconds of the restart, Adam Yates looked to have reduced the deficit only for Edward Nisevic to boot his header off the line.

Then, within another minute, Holland somehow scooped a Jordan Ball cross over the bar from six yards when he looked certain to score.

But Barwell made the Matlock task look hopeless when the Gladiators lost possession 20 yards out and Liam Needham, given an almost impossible pass to deal with, brought down Tomkinson.

Hickey curled a superb free-kick into the top corner with Willis, diving to his right, having little chance of keeping it out .

The rest of the contest was all Matlock with chance after chance being missed.

Goalkeeper Liam Castle pulled off a point blank save from Holland from Cribley’s cross before Holland put a volley wide.

The only consolation for the Gladiators is that there was no last-day relegation points at stake.

Matlock: Willis, Paling, Algar, Nelthorpe, Yates, Harcourt, Cribley, Needham, Siddall, Ball, Dawes.