Saturday 11th November 2006
Hucknall Town: Smith, Hanson, Cowan, Cooke, Briscoe, Wilson, Olanipekun, Legg, Ricketts, Hearn, Williams. Subs: Handyside, Burns, Fox, Moore, Sims. Sent Off: Briscoe
Hyde United: Craig Dootson, David German, Chris Lynch, Earl Davis, Michael Taylor, Paul Howarth (Paul Armstrong), Gerry Harrison (Danny Caldecott), Steve Pickford, Dale Johnson, Gareth Seddon, Paul Gedman (Steve Brackenridge). Subs not used: Lee Rick, Mark Kerr.
With a strong gusty wind blowing straight down the ground and both teams struggling to find the net in their last couple of games, this game was a good candidate for a goalless draw and after the first few exchanges it should have had fans running to the betting shop as both sides found the conditions hard to cope with. However everything changed on 24 minutes when Dale Johnson pounced on a loose ball, after Hucknall had failed to clear a corner, to put Hyde deservedly in front.
The Tigers’ joy was short-lived as six minutes later, man of the match, Liam Hearn lashed the ball home as Hyde’s defence looked on. In a crazy two minute spell, five minutes later, the home side grabbed two more with Hyde’s midfield backing off. First Andy Legg scored from the edge of the area and then Laurie Wilson struck a beauty past a surprised Craig Dootson.
From looking reasonably comfortable, Hyde suddenly found themselves two goals down and no way back despite having the wind advantage to look forward to in the second half. Paul Armstrong replaced Paul Howarth at half time to strengthen the overrun and ineffective midfield.
Although he injected more energy, he soon found himself booked and was later hacked down by Wilson. A small fracas ensued as Wilson lay on top of him, but it was all over in a matter of seconds. After deliberation with his assistants, referee, Mr Turner then surprised everybody by sending off Michael Briscoe and booking Gareth Seddon. A clear case of mistaken identity all round. Mr Turner, who had a dreadful afternoon, had earlier sent Tony Ellis from the bench for a comment made following another debatable decision.
Hyde continued to huff and puff in the wind, but Hearns had grabbed his second on 65 minutes to put the game beyond them although Seddon did pull a goal back with seven minutes left. Earl Davis also had a header cleared off the line, by then it was too little too late.
Once gain it was Hyde’s midfield which was completely overrun and at times, non existent. Steve Pickford had no support and that affected his own game too. The defence were constantly under pressure, whilst the forwards got no decent service at all. A change of personnel and/or formation is urgently needed if the Tigers are to achieve what they should this season.
Report by Tony Beard.