11 Dec 2019
by Brian Flynn
Altrincham suffered a damaging defeat at Bradford (Park Avenue) on Saturday, with a performance that was unrecognisable from the previous week’s heroics at Portsmouth in the FA Cup.
It was a former Alty fans favourite, Nicky Clee, who only signed from Ashton United on Thursday, who created both goals for the West Yorkshire side, who belied their bottom of the table position to deservedly secure a third league victory of the season.
Clee and Oli Johnson combined well in the 12th
minute to set up a simple close-range tap-in for Tom Clare, who scored on his debut, having signed from Boston United and that set the tone for the game as Alty struggled to reach any sort of acceptable level.
Jordan Hulme went closest to equalising midway through the first half, latching on to a wayward Billy Priestley header before rounding Joe Green in the Bradford goal but his effort from just inside the area hit the crossbar.
There was a further blow for the visitors when John Johnston pulled up with a hamstring injury and had to be replaced by Luke Wall.
The second half saw the Robins dominate possession without managing to create any chances and it was Tony Thompson who was the busier keeper, making a fine save from Jon Royle midway through the half, however he was helpless to prevent Park Avenue sealing the points in the 88th minute as Oli Johnson broke the offside trap to latch on to a slide rule ball from Clee to round Thompson & slide the ball into the empty net.
Altrincham’s Assistant Manager, Neil Sorvel, described the performance as “possibly as poorly as we have played in the 3 seasons that we have been at the club. We didn’t create enough and in this brutal league anyone can beat you if you are not somewhere near the top of your game. We need to respond to this kick up the backside to get back on track this Saturday in the FA Trophy game at Farsley Celtic”.
FT: 2-0, the Robins can bounce back against Farsley Celtic on Saturday next week in the FA trophy.
5 minutes added time onto the 90: 90 Minutes.
goal for Bradford as Alty are caught on the counter again as Johnson cuts through the Robins defence, takes it round the keeper and taps it in: 89 Minutes.
Alty are pressing forward to find an equaliser but are struggling to break through Bradford's rigid defence, 10 minutes to go: 80 Minutes.
Phil Parkinson makes his final substitution with Max Harrop replacing Tom Peers: 67 Minutes.
Clare is booked for late challenge on Hancock on the edge of the box: 66 Minutes.
Jake Moult is replaced by Tom Hannigan: 61 Minutes.
Hancock is booked after late challenge on Shaunton: 54 Minutes.
Mullarkey makes a brilliant last ditch tackle on Hurst but injures himself in the process: 52 Minutes.
Alty get the second half underway: 45 Minutes.
HT 1-0: 45+3 Minutes.
3 addition minutes injury time: 45 Minutes.
Luke Wall replaces the injured John Johnston: 35 Minutes.
Injury for Alty as Johnston pulls up after running on to a long pass, looks like a hamstring injury: 33 Minutes.
The Robins almost equalise as Johnston whips in a fast paced cross finding the feet of Hulme who gets the shot away but is saved by Green: 30 Minutes.
CLOSE!, Hulme hits the bar after latching onto a poor header back to Green from Bradford's defence, knocks it past the keeper but smashes it against the bar: 22 Minutes.
An excellent save from Thompson keeps Alty in the game as Knight has a free header a few yards from goal: 18 Minutes.
Goal for Bradford PA as Alty are caught out on the counter-attack with hurst bursting down the left-wing finding Clee in the box who squares it to Clare who taps it in the back of the net, 1-0: 12 Minutes
The Robins start on the front foot, putting pressure on Bradford PA with Williams spreading the ball on the left wing towards Peers who races for the ball with Green but the Bradford keeper gets there first: 5 Minutes.
The home side gets us underway: 1 Minutes.
5 Minutes to kick off , Come On Alty!!!!
Bradford PA starting 11: Green, Toulson, Staunton, Lowe (C), Priestley, Royle, Knight, Hurst, Clare, Johnson, Clee.
Alty starting 11 here are the Horsfall stadium: Thompson, Densmore, White, Jones, Mullarkey, Moult (C), Johnstone, Williams, Hulme, Hancock, Peers.