Saturday 27th March 2010
AFC Telford United: Not available
Hyde United: Mark Halstead, Dean Stott, Mark Lees, Scott McNiven, Ricky Mercer, Nathan D'Laryea, Matty Burke, David McNiven (Daniel Douglas-Pringle), Scott Mooney (Domaine Rouse), Kevin Holsgrove, Nathan Arnold (Lee Rick). Subs not used: Ben Rowbotham, Chris Rimmer.
All the ingredients were there for an excellent afternoon of football. It was a pleasant spring day, a flat pitch, superb stadium and a big crowd. Just one problem, the Tigers didn’t turn up. How a team can be so good at home and then turn in a display like this remains a mystery. The scoreline doesn’t really tell the whole story. It could have been so much worse if not for the woodwork and the heroics of Hyde ‘keeper, Mark Halstead!
Scott Mooney had a header just wide in the first minute and Nathan Arnold was inches wide later in the half, Apart from that, Ryan Young was never called to make a save. All the action was reserved for the other end. Halstead had already made two excellent saves and Telford had struck the woodwork before Mark Beesley grabbed the first on 24 minutes after Hyde had lost possession in Telford’s half.
Two more brilliant saves from Halstead before Matthew Blair put the home side two up just before the break, Halstead got his hand to it, but couldn’t keep it out. It brought to an end a first half not helped by a referee who appeared to be influenced by the large home crowd, but that couldn’t mask a woeful performance from Hyde.
Neil Tolson showed his frustration by withdrawing David McNiven and Mooney at the break and giving a debut to Domaine Rouse but things didn’t change significantly in the second period despite a constant change of formation. Halstead continued to hold Telford at bay whilst his team-mates were all at sea. Beesley hit a post before two goals in the last five minutes from Andy Brown and Danny Carey-Bertram gave the scoreline a more realistic look. The only positives for the Tigers were the performance of their highly rated on loan ‘keeper and the fact that they got off very lightly indeed at 4-0.