Saturday 15th December 2007
Hyde United: Craig Dootson, Chris Brass, Chris Lynch (Gerry Harrison), David Morley, Peter Band, Mark Innes, Dale Stephens, Steve Pickford, Matthew Tipton, Gareth Seddon (Nathan Wharton), Nicky Clee. Subs not used: Chris Simm, Dale Johnson, Lee Cartwright.
Nuneaton Borough: Acton, Collins, Franklin, Curtis, Moore, Cowan, Palmer, Pritchard, Brown, Jordan, McIlwain. Subs: Quailey for Jordan, Oddy, Williams for Pritchard, Edmund, Burgess
Hyde stormed to the top of Blue Square North with an emphatic victory over in-form Nuneaton Borough at Ewen Fields. The visitors struggled throughout being unable to control the lively Hyde forwards and could have been five goals down by half-time had the Tigers had a bit more luck in front of goal.
On a superb playing surface and an excellent referee in charge this was a thrilling game from start to finish/ Although Nuneaton came up against the Tigers at their best, they showed glimpses of the team which had recently won the Team of the Month and may well be play-off contenders come the end of the season.
In a one sided first half, it was very much the Gareth Seddon show. He opened the scoring for Hyde on nine minutes when he picked up a pinpoint pass from Matthew Tipton and hammered the ball past Darren Acton into the corner of the net. He had already twice gone close and then on twenty one minutes had the ball in the net, but was foiled by an offside flag.
However five minutes later he broke clear and smashed his shot against the crossbar, but Tipton following up cracked the ball home for Hyde’s second. Before half time the Tigers hit the woodwork three more times. First Chris Lynch hit the bar with a cross from the left before the irrepressible Seddon broke clear again to strike the base of a post. Right on half time Nicky Clee had a fierce shot against the bar. It had been pretty much one way traffic although Craig Dootson in the Hyde goal still had to make two terrific saves as the game ebbed and flowed.
The visitors stepped up the pace after the break but they found the Hyde defence in resolute form with David Morley outstanding. Brian Quailey and Danny Williams were introduced upfront for Nuneaton but it was still Hyde more likely to score. Seddon and Tipton both went close as the visitors continued to find the Hyde forwards too hot to handle. All afternoon they struggled to cope with the pace of Seddon and the great support play from Tipton and Clee and in all honesty they did well to only concede two goals.
In the final minute, man of the match, Dootson made a superb save from Andy Brown to end an entertaining and pulsating afternoon and send the home fans home happy.
On this sort of form, Hyde are certainly serious championship contenders. There were plenty of excellent individual performances which added to an impressive overall team showing on a bitterly cold afternoon.