Basford Grab Late Winner At Gresley
By Simon Ball-McQueen
A plucky Basford United side snatched a late 1-0 win in their Evo-Stik League Division One South debut against Gresley FC, at The Moat Ground.
Former Celtic, Lincoln City and Mansfield Town striker Ben Hutchinson scored the only goal of the game seven minutes from time, to give United a winning start to their time in Step 8 of the English football pyramid.
Manager Martin Carruthers named both of last week’s new signings midfielder Jermain Hollis and forwards Daryll Thomas in his starting eleven, whilst last season’s top scorer and player of the year Reuben Wiggins-Thomas was named amongst the substitutes, as he continued to recover from injury.
Other debuts were given to Ashley Grayson and Jake Wholey, whilst David Boafo made his second career debut, after returning to the club over the summer.
A scoreless first half saw United play some neat passing football but the South Derbyshire-based outfit had the better chances to open the scoring.
Basford’s only real chance of the half came after 4 minutes, when Josh Thornton’s effort from 20 yards out, flew just wide of the hosts’ angle of post and crossbar.
A clinical, last-ditch defensive challenge from Rob Darkin then denied Gresley a good chance at goal, six minutes later.
United goalie Saul Deeney was then called into action of 32 minutes, making a good flying save to his left, to push away Ryan King’s shot and secure that the game remained scoreless going into half time.
There is no doubt that Gresley’s home advantage is helped by their Moat Ground’s infamous hilly, sloping pitch and this certainly showed in the second half, as the Derbyshire side continued to look the more dangerous up front, keen to extend their fantastic home record, which saw them lose just one league game there last season.
Basford had a couple of chances in the second half through Thornton & Stuart Hendrie on 49 and 58 minutes respectively but it was Gresley who were left to rue a series of missed chances, including a double chance from Chris Richards on 53 minutes, who first hit the post with a shot before heading wide of Deeney’s goal, after United failed to clear their lines.
More missed opportunities for the home side, including another good save from Deeny on 80 minutes, then gave Basford their chance to ‘smash & grab’ the points three minutes later.
Hutchinson lined-up a free-kick on the left-hand side of the field, on the edge of the Gresley box and while every player on the field was preparing for a cross to be swung into the box, home keeper Liam Roberts included, the Basford striker had other ideas and fired the ball straight into left hand side of the net, leaving Roberts stranded and securing a famous victory in the long history of the club.
You can now listen to a BUFC Radio post-match interview with manager Martin Carruthers by clicking on the link below.
Video highlights are available via the following link - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zYff0wEbNM0
United’s thoughts now quickly turn to Tuedsay night’s Evo-Stik home debut, when Lincoln United are the visitors to Greenwich Avenue (7.45pm kick-off). Basford will be hoping for a bumper crowd to welcome in the new season and a higher level of football. Admission is £6 for adults, £4 concessions and £1 for Under-16s.