FOOTY BLOGGER: Gladiators are defeating all-comers

This week saw the coming of Leek Town to battle the Gladiators (not the vegetable!) which played out to a 0-0 draw.

Then it was time to venture to Belper Town’s ground for the replay, as Leek’s ground was undergoing maintenance so was unavailable for the night.

So, like any nutty Non League fan, I arrived at 6:15pm for a 7:45pm kick off, and as the rain poured from the heavens above, I snacked on the rather delicious food from the tea bar and spoke with my mate Ian about what we could possibly see from Matlock Town on the night.

Matlock had gone unbeaten in the last three, scoring four goals and getting two clean sheets, but when the game kicked off, it was Leek who would take the lead after some comical defending saw a Leek striker smash the ball home – much to the dismay of the travelling support.

I have to admit that I was beginning to get a feeling of deja vu, after only visiting Belper’s ground a few months prior when Matlock lost to Belper 3-0, but this time was different.

So when Matlock got a pen, it was Lewis McMahon to step up to attempt to send the Gladiators in level at half time.

Now, in the game prior, McMahon missed his first pen in five years and those around me wondered if that would affect his ability from the penalty spot. But all doubts were washed away as he slammed the ball into the right hand corner, and we celebrated in the rain as the ref blew up at half time.

The second half would be a different affair, with Matlock dominating.

And persistence paid off as Massiah McDonald finally put Matlock into the lead with a neat tap-in after good work from Lewis McMahon.

McDonald pinched the ball from the keeper to round him and lay off a pass to McMahon who would smash the ball home.

By the time the ref blew his whistle, I was soaked to the bone. Even as I write this, I have a cold that could rival Jack Frost. But do you know what, it was totally worth it!

I love playing at home, but there’s always something special about playing away. And when your team is on a roll (Unbeaten in four, seven goals, three conceded, two clean sheets) then you’ve got to believe anything can happen, and when you follow Matlock Town, it usually does!

Our next home match, if you fancy toddling along for a look, is a plumb tie on the 10th of November.

We’re back in the FA Trophy and the visitors are Stalybridge Celtic where manager Mark Atkins had a spell as assistant manager, so I’m sure he’d love to get one over his old club, and who knows, maybe this year we’ll get that bit of luck that the fans and players deserve so badly.

If you wish to follow me on Twitter then do. I sometimes say some witty things on there but most of it is general babbling. Still well worth a follow though, I promise!

@TheMatlockFan, and why not follow Matlock Town on Twitter to keep up with all the latest news and views from the club (@Matlock_TownFC).

Stay safe and have a great bonfire night!

James Griffiths