Evostik Northern Premier League
Saturday 24 Novmber 2018
Grantham Town 1 North Ferriby United 2
Danny Durkin 9 Jake Martindale 4; Gary Bradshaw 55
This second league win of the season has been a long time coming but Ferriby were the better team on the day and thoroughly deserved their win.
In some ways it was a scrappy and niggly game but Ferriby kept their composure and organisation for the full 90 minutes.
The Villagers got off to the best possible start with Jake Martindale putting them ahead after just four minutes in their first serious attack. Good work on the right between Jack Smith and Alex Wollerton allowed Tom Waudby to fire in a low cross. It looked as if home keeper Jordan Wright had taken it but the ball slipped from his grasp and Martindale was on hand to sweep the ball home.
The lead lasted just five minutes. A long ball found Danny Durkin in space. Lewis Exall rushed out of his area to challenge but with little chance of winning the ball. Durkin had time to lob the keeper and the ball dropped just inside the post.
Durkin was something of a problem all afternoon for Ferriby with his pace and ability to find space. However, he rarely had his own way against a very solid, determined and well-organised Ferriby back-four. Jack mail and James Piercy were solid in the centre and won most of the aerial challenges. James Williamson and Wollerton gave little away on the flanks and both found time to push forward.
Gary Bradshaw, who is now a striker turned midfielder, helped to control midfield and was well-supported by Smith, Waudby and debutant Josh Vickers. This allowed Callum Harrison and Martindale to press the Grantham defence all afternoon. The home side never truly looked comfortable at any time. They were often forced to play back or play hurriedly and gave possession away.
Ferriby gave their fans a few heart-stopping moments but this was to be expected as Grantham had more of the possession and territory for good periods of the game. However, for once, The Villagers were unflappable on the whole. There were no rash challenges, few free-kicks were conceded and they were able to put Grantham under pressure throughout the game.
There were a few attempts on goal by both sides after the opening goals but nothing went close until half way through the first-half when Max waters drew two saves from Exall.
Ferriby countered with a Bradshaw shot that was well saved one-handed by Wright. With half-time approaching, Waudby hit a shot straight to Wright.
The half-time scoreline was probably a fair reflection of the half.
Ferriby started the second-half brightly. Harrison saw a cross-shot shave the far-post with nobody able to get a touch on it. Bradshaw clinched all three points in the 55th minute. Martindale was fouled in the area but with the ball breaking free to Bradshaw in front of goal, the referee played the advantage and Bradshaw duly added to his record-breaking goals total for Ferriby.
Eleven minutes later, A Harrison flashed across the face of the goal and again, there was nobody who was able to touch it home. That was The Villagers’ last real attempt on goal.
Grantham upped the pressure but their impatience saw them make too many errors and the goal threat was limited. A couple of efforts went wide or high and one shot was cleared off the line but Ferriby still looked to have the better of the game.
Given the number of goals that Ferriby have conceded late in the game this season, the final 15 minutes were a nervous time for The Villagers small band of travelling fans.
However, the side’s game-management was spot on and they ended up deserved winners. The win should provide a big confidence boost and put the players in good spirits for next Saturday’s home game with Lancaster City.
With manager Paul Foot being unavailable due to a prior commitment, Assistant Manager Joe Lamplough was in charge of the team for the game. It probably goes without saying that he was delighted with the result and the performance,
“The result is nothing to do with Pauls and myself, it’s down to the players. The way the lads applied themselves today was absolutely brilliant and credit to them. I told them on the bench at the end that i didn’t want them jumping up and down just because we’ve done our job for the first time in many games.
“I’m buzzing for them, to be fair, We’ve got to take that ahead of us because it means nothing if we don’t go ahead next week and apply ourselves in the same way.
“We should be going into games wanting to win and backing ourselves to do that. Paul and myself have been telling the lads that they’ve got to get to the next level of football and I think they showed that they have done that today.
“The back-four did well in terms of pushing-up and controlling the game from this back. This allowed us to get forward more and allows everybody else to get tighter in midfield and at their defence.
NFU: Lewis Exall, Alexander Wollerton, James Williamson, Gary Bradshaw, Jack Mail, James Piercy, Tom Waudby, Jack Smith, Jake Martindale (James Nichols 81) , Callum Harrison (Charlie Dunkerley 76), Joshua Vickers (Jordan Windass 88). Subs not used : Alex Knox Joe Lamplough,
Grantham Town: Jordan Wright, Ross Barrows, Oliver Luto, Jacob Fletcher (Kemal Yenibertz 71), Josh Spencer, Charlie Ward, Max Watters, Fernando Bell-Toxtle, Danny Durkin, Tom Siddons, Jamie McGhee (Kuwesi Ofushine 58) Subs not used: Malcolm Podier, Ryley, Choz Charlesworth,