Altrincham (6th) vs Kettering Town (18th)
Vanarama National League North
Saturday, 8th February 2020
Kettering. Then Telford. Then Telford again. Now, Kettering!
Just 11 days ago, Alty ran out two-nil victors following a flawless away performance at Latimer Park. Josh Hancock opened the scoring for Alty with a moment of individual brilliance before Jordan Hulme instinctively put the Robins two ahead before half-time.
Post-match, Paul Cox pulled no punches in his assessment of Town's "below par" performance. He will be hoping, then, for a much improved display tomorrow afternoon and Alty will have to be very wary of a side that will have learned a lot from such a recent encounter.
"Tonight, it wasn't in our DNA - we were second best all over the pitch. It was flat and I always try to be honest with players. We huffed and puffed but we never really got going, and we can't afford to do that."
Kettering followed up with a goalless draw at Curzon Ashton and a 3-0 victory over Brackley Town in the Northamptonshire Senior Cup this past Tuesday night.
The Robins are back in red hot form, particularly at the J. Davidson Stadium where they remain unbeaten since an opening day defeat at the hands of York City. Tuesday night's 5-2 defeat of AFC Telford may well have been as emphatic an attacking display as we have ever seen during Phil Parkinson's tenure, and he will be very keen to take maximum points from this encounter before going in to a huge run of fixtures against promotion hopefuls. Alty's next seven games include Spennymoor Town (twice), Kings Lynn Town, York City and Chester.
Saturdays match against Kettering Town is our designated match for Football v Homophobia and the squad will wear FvH tshirts in the warmup. We host the FvH National Awards Ceremony on Friday, and their key people are joining us for the match.
Altrincham: LWWDW (F11 A6)
Kettering Town: WWLLD (F3 A4)
28/01/19 - Kettering Town 0-2 Altrincham
19/02/11 - Altrincham 3-2 Kettering Town
28/09/10 - Kettering Town 3-3 Altrincham
16/03/10 - Altrincham 2-0 Kettering Town
05/09/09 - Kettering Town 2-0 Altrincham
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18 mins: Daniel Nti (Kettering Town)
63 mins: Toby Mullarkey (Altrincham)
Vanarama National League North
Saturday, 8 February 2020 at 3pm
The J.Davidson Stadium
REFEREE: Mr James Westgate
ALTRINCHAM : 1. Tony Thompson, 2. Shaun Densmore, 3. Connor Hampson, 4. James Jones, 5. Tom Hannigan, 6. Jake Moult (c), 7. Dan Mooney, 8. Josh Lundstram, 9. Jordan Hulme, 10. Josh Hancock, 11. Craig Mahon. Subs: 12. Max Harrop (78 for 7), 14. Luke Wall, 15. Lewis Walters (78 for 11), 16. Toby Mullarkey (41 for 3), 17. Joel Torrance
KETTERING TOWN (Pale blue and white striped shirts, pale blue shorts and socks): 1. Paul White, 2. Gary Stohrer, 3. Matthew Taylor, 4. Luke Graham (c), 5. Michael McGrath, 6. Ben Milnes, 7. Daniel Nti, 8. Tre Mitford, 9. Connor Kennedy, 10. Alistair Smith, 11. Lindon Meikle. Subs: 12. Aaron O'Connor (71 for 8), 14. Brett Solkhon, 15. Michael Richens, 16. Jason Laws, 17. Jordan Aghatise.
The points were shared at the J Davidson Stadium after Toby Mullarkey’s header cancelled out Danny Nti’s early opener for Kettering Town.
Man of the match Dan Mooney set the pace of the game early on as his ambitious long-range effort flashed over the bar. Kettering gradually took charge though & opened the scoring in the 18th minute. Lindon Meikle crossed deep into the Alty box and Nti burst forward to nod it past Thompson.
5 minutes later, Connor Hampson went down with an injury and was replaced late in the half by Toby Mullarkey, a managerial decision that turned out to be crucial. Overall, the Robins had a poor half, struggling to get the ball up the field and failing to register a shot on target.
Phil Parkinson's side started much brighter after the interval. James Jones took off on a great run from the back and slipped Jordan Hulme into the box, however he was shut down by three Kettering defenders.
The visitors came close to doubling their lead just after the hour mark. Matt Taylor’s cross found Alistair Smith, but he could only manage a weak effort at Tony Thompson- a big let-off for Alty, who had defended the situation poorly.
Shortly after, at the other end, the Robins came close again. A great ball from recent signing Craig Mahon put Hulme in one-on-one, but goalkeeper Paul White was quick of his line to take the sting off the shot and divert it wide.
The Robins finally pulled level from the resulting corner. Mahon’s delivery met by Toby Mullarkey, who stooped to powerfully head superbly into the far corner from 8 yards.
The Altrincham fans urged their team to go for a winner, but Kettering looked the side more likely to clinch the game.
For the final 20 minutes, chances for the home side were few and far between. A poor ball from Hancock let Gary Stohrer deep into their defence, but his shot blazed over the bar. Not long after, a cross from Ben Milnes gifted Smith a golden opportunity to steal all 3 points, but he squandered his chance and the ball went wide.
Deep into added time, Tony Thompson gave the home fans a bit of a scare by spilling a routine shot. Luckily, he was able to regather the ball and spare his blushes. The match ended 1-1 & the Robins stay 6th in the table & maintain a play-off position.