Saturday 22 December 2018
Evo Stik Northern Premier League Premier Division
Nantwich Town 3 Basford United 2
Basford made three changes from the side that started against Chesterfield last week. New loan signing Rev James took his place in the line-up and there were returns for Stef Galinski and Courey Grantham, with Deon Meikle, Greg Tempest and James Reid dropping to a strong looking bench.
James made an instant impact, his cross giving Matt Thornhill the opening he needed to smash in a shot to give Basford the lead with barely two minutes played (pictured).
In the ninth minute, Nat Watson had an opening after a poor kick by home keeper Will Jaaskelainen, but he was off target with his shot.
The miss proved costly as the home side levelled a minute later. Sean Cooke found Joe Malkin, who fired past Kieran Preston.
Basford were forced into a sixteenth minute change, as the injured Jerry Nash was replaced by Greg Tempest.
Nantwich took a 22nd minute lead after a spell of pressure, Preston saved from Joe Mwasile, but Jamie Morgan turned the rebound in from a tight angle.
Grantham showed good skill to get clear of Joe Stair, but his shot cleared the bar and as play switched to the other end Preston made a fine save to tip Cooke’s effort over.
Watson was next to be high with a shot as both sides showed their attacking intent, and Stef Galinski tried his luck with a header that was blocked.
Six minutes into the second period Grantham bore down on goal but was foiled by a last gasp tackle from Tony Mullarkey, then Grantham drew an excellent save from Jaaskelainen.
The home keeper topped that save after 63 minutes when he denied Nat Watson.
With Zak Goodson on for the injured Carr, Basford pushed forward in search of an equaliser, but with fifteen minutes remaining the home side extended their lead. Callum Saunder’s long range shot came back off the bar and Malkin reacted quickly to pounce on the rebound to score.
The lively Goodson reduced the arrears with a shot six minutes from time and as Basford attacked in force Thornhill‘s shot was too high.
Nantwich were reduced to ten when Matt Bell received a second yellow card on 90 minutes.
Late pressure failed to secure an equaliser, but the Basford side pushed the league leaders all the way and will go into the Christmas fixtures in good heart.
Mickleover Sports on Boxing Day and Warrington Town on Saturday are the visitors to Greenwich Avenue, with both games kicking off at 3pm.
Basford: Kieran Preston, Liam Bateman, Cieron Keane, Jerry Nash (Greg Tempest 16), Lewis Carr (capt) (Zak Goodson 71), Revamelle James (James Reid 60), Jack Thomas, Nat Watson, Matt Thornhill, Courey Grantham.
Subs: Deon Meikle, Saul Deeney.
Updated 12:31 - 9 Jan 2019 by Neil McGowan