Cheadle Town 0 v 1 Vauxhall Motors
A 62nd minute bullet header from defender Matty Carlin settled this tight NWCL Division One South fixture in favour of Mick McGraa’s side – as they recorded their 17th straight away victory whilst improving their position at the top of the table.
But Motors had to be at their resilient best to thwart a Cheadle Town side that had won five from an unbeaten six during January to be crowned Club of the Month. Motors keeper Ryan Crump had to be alert early on to deny Greg Daniels before Michael Burkey broke through only for home keeper Marcus Burgess to save his shot. Town’s Harry Hatton then sliced wildly at a great cross from the left while Ben Holmes fired over the bar at the other end, during a goalless first half.
The hosts put extra pressure on the Motors goal at the start of the second half with Patrick Davin firing just over the bar but then the Motormen began to assert themselves more on their opposition and just after the hour mark, they got their reward. Danny Cross gained a corner on the right from a decent move and the inch-perfect flag kick by Holmes was powered home by Carlin from eight yards out to break the deadlock, for his third goal of the season.
Then on 70 minutes Crump produced one of the saves of the campaign to thwart Davin’s strong header that looked destined for the top far corner from a right wing cross – a crucial and brilliant save that earned Motors another win. Soon after Andy Lunt lobbed over the bar from a half decent opening and in the closing stages, Haydn Cooper was denied by Burgess when clean through.
But that superb Crump save and the brilliant Carlin header did enough to earn Motors a 7-point lead over their nearest rivals – and they still have two games in hand!
Vauxhall: Crump, Mason, Heath, Carlin, Mitchell, Rule, Cross (Drummond 72), Cooper, Cox (Hamm 68), Holmes, Burkey. Subs not used: Kelly, Fair, Brandon.