Saturday 20th January 2007
Hyde United: Craig Dootson, David German, Chris Lynch, Lincoln Adams, Michael Taylor, Nathan Wharton, Gerry Harrison (Lee Rick), Steve Pickford, Dale Johnson (Paul Gedman), Gareth Seddon (Matt Landregan), Nicky Clee. Subs not used: Steve Brackenridge, Jean-Paul Ndjebayi.
Blyth Spartans: Bartlett, Hedley, Williams, Leeson, Snowdon, Forster, Graham, Lowther, Dale, Gildea, Moffat. Subs: Peacock, Fenton, Christensen, Hanlon. Sent Off: Gildea (33)
The Tigers welcomed back leading scorer Gareth Seddon from suspension and the fans did not have to wait long as he fired Hyde in front after just nine minutes and then added another with a sweet finish after seventy five minutes as Hyde ran Blyth ragged in the second half..
On a sunny but very blustery day at Ewen Fields the game got off to a dramatic start as Liam Gildea was booked after just five minutes for a two footed challenge on Steve Pickford. On another day it could have been a straight red, but he did not take advantage of his good fortune as he then went in very late on Nicky Clee and received a second yellow after 33 minutes. He could have no complaints.
After Seddon had put Hyde in front, the visitors responded immediately with Matthew Moffat clipping the post before Robert Dale found himself in acres of space on the left before scoring with a shot across Craig Dootson on 31 minutes, but their joy was short-lived as they were down to 10 men two minutes later.
Hyde restored their lead on 42 minutes after great play between Dale Johnson and Clee allowed Clee to hammer the ball high into the net.
Blyth showed their customary spirit at the start of the second half and went out for an equaliser but after a combination of Dootson and Lincoln Adams had scrambled the ball off the line, it was all Hyde. Johnson, who had been a threat to the Blyth defence all afternoon burst clear on 62 minutes and scored with a clinical finish. The Tigers were now mauling Blyth as Seddon grabbed his second.
Lee Rick replaced Gerry Harrison and Paul Gedman replaced Johnson and with his first touch hit the post before having a goal disallowed at the death for offside. In between a neat interchange between Dave German and Rick allowed the seventeen year old to grab his first senior goal for the Tigers after impressing in the reserves.
In this sort of form it is hard to discount Hyde as serious play-off contenders as Blyth are generally tough to break down as they proved at Droylsden last week, but on this occasion they had no answer to Hyde’s all-round superiority and lightning forward play and the result could have been more emphatic by the end.