Gloucester City 3 NFU 2 (NLN)

Vanarama National League North
23 April 2016

Gloucester City  3  North Ferriby United  2                                           
Scorers: NFU: Wayne Brooksby 60; Curtis Bateson 66
Scorers: Gloucester: Billy Jones 13pen; Omar Sterling-James 20; Chris Knowles 39

Attendance: 431

Ferriby dropped to third after this defeat. The Villagers had nobody to blame but themselves after a dismal first-half in which they conceded three poor goals and had only one attempt on goal.

Ferriby were outplayed in the first 45 minutes. They were second-best in every department. Passes were regularly misplaced, tackles were missed and Gloucester were far quicker to the ball and more determined in the tackle.

Gloucester pressed from the beginning but only had one goal attempt in the first 12 minutes as they did not significantly trouble Ferriby’s defence. This changed after 12 minutes. Luke Hopper was played in and he went down under a challenge from Adam Nicklin as the keeper dived at his feet. The referee awarded a penalty but issued only a yellow card to Nicklin as there were a number of defenders in a position to prevent a goal attempt. Billy Jones sent Nicklin the wrong way from the spot to open the scoring. On the play, Ferriby could not really complain.

Seven minutes later things went from bad to worse. A long ball caused major indecision in the Ferriby defence and with Nicklin coming out Omari Sterling-James took the ball round him to score in to an open goal.

Ferriby could just not get going and their occasional attacks caused no threat at all to Gloucester. With half-time approaching it seemed that Ferriby may go in just two goals behind but it was not to be. On 39 minutes Billy Jones floated a free-kick just beyond the far post and Chris Knowles had a free header to score Gloucester’s third. There was no challenge at all from Ferriby’s back-four or Nicklin on the cross.

Disappointing as the first-half was, The Villagers could have little complaint about the scoreline. Their only goal attempt was a Wayne Brooksby free-kick in the final minute of the half taht sailed over the bar.

The second-half belonged to Ferriby as they gave a more determined performance. However, they had given themselves too much to do and still missed too many tackles and gave away possession too often.

The Villagers pulled a goal back after 60 minutes with their first on-target shot of the game. Brooksby controlled a clearance from Ferriby’s defence on the right wing. He took the ball in-field for a few yards before lobbing City keeper Jasbir Singh from some 40 yards. The goal stunned everybody.
Three minutes later, Mark Gray’s header from Russ Fry’s free-kick went narrowly wide with Singh beaten.

After 66 minutes The Villagers were just a goal behind with almost a carbon copy of the first. Curtis Bateson picked-up Tom Denton’s header and lobbed Singh from 35 yards.

The game was nearly all Ferriby after that. Bateson saw Singh hold a shot above his head. Danny Clarke hit a shot on the turn straight at the keeper. Nathan Hotte was particularly unlucky when Sing made a very good save to push away a powerful shot.

Ferriby did get the ball in the net after 83 minutes but there were no complaints when Brooksby was given off-side.
Ferriby’s second-half performance probably merited them taking a point but, to be honest, they made too many errors and were out-battled too often. That is not something that can be said of Ferriby too often.

Ferriby Manager Billy Heath commented:
“We lost the game in the first-half. It was a bitterly disappointing performance and not what anybody expects from a Ferriby side.

“We did better in the second-half and our goals were the highlights of what was a scrappy game. However, it was too little, too late.

“We have to lift ourselves for the game at Lowestoft on Tuesday. We can still clinch second-spot but need to be looking at both of the last two games.”

NFU: Adam Nicklin, Ben Middleton (Sam Topliss 79), Josh Wilde,  Wayne Brooksby,  Ash Palmer, Mark Gray,  Danny Clarke (Ryan Kendall 86), Russell Fry,  Tom Denton, Nathan Hotte, Curtis Bateson (Danny Emerton 90+1). Subs not used: Ross Armstrong, Tom Nicholson,

Gloucester City: Jasbir Singh, Mike Green, Billy Jones, Spencer Hamilton, Sam Avery,  Joe Hanks, Tom Webb, Chris Knowles, Omari Sterling-James (Louis Robles 81),  Luke Hopper (Colby Bishop 74), Ed Williams Subs not used: Calvin Dinsley, Lewis Hall, Marc Richards


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