AFC Didsbury 2
Davyhulme Park 3
Goals: Creasey, Battersby
Assists: Harrison, Creasey
Man of the Match: Creasey
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Musson (Bermingham), Turner, Battersby (C), Mackie, Vasko (Peat), Whiteley (Corcoran), Creasey, McDonald, Harrison, Corbett.
AFC Didsbury were unfortunate to find themselves on the losing side, in a hard-fought encounter, against table toppers Davyhulme Park, at Simon Field.
Didsbury were the quickest out of the blocks, carving out an opportunity in the opening minute. After good pressing from kick off, the ball was stolen in midfield before being worked out to Matty Harrison, who's teasing cross wasn't cleared by the Davyhulme defence and fell to Neil Creasey to a slot home from 12 yards.
The visitors worked their way back into the game with a period of sustained pressure, looking dangerous from set pieces and it was through this route that they managed an equaliser. A header was blocked at a corner and fell to an opponent who was able to stab home from within the six yard box.
The home side continued to look a threat on the counter, with Pavol Vasko often getting the better of the opposing left back. However, both midfields dominated the majority of play for the remainder of the half.
Didsbury again started brightly in the second half, Tom Whiteley heading over from a Mike Corbett free-kick, before Harrison skewed a chance in the box
after Whiteley got on the end of another Corbett cross.
Tempers flared briefly soon after, following a committed challenge by Colin McDonald. The Davyhulme number 10 threatened to munch on McDonald's ear and threw a punch lazier than Froch's jab. He was, however, to make the next major contribution and made Didsbury pay for their missed opportunities.
Davyhulme worked the ball through to their number 9 who managed to round James Leighton and square to the number 10 who stroked home.
It wasn't long until parity was deservedly restored when Didsbury captain, John Battersby, turned home a free kick from man of the match, Creasey. From there, Didsbury, and in particular, the centre half pairing of Battersby and Jon Turner, contained every attacking foray from the visiting side. However, their hard work was undone by a dubious and controversial offside call that allowed the Davyhulme striker through on goal and score the games' decisive
In the dying minutes, John Corcoran found himself free in the box and looked likely to salvage a point for the hosts, only to see his shot saved by the feet of the keeper and the 3 points taken by the visitors.
A spirited display from Didsbury, who deserved a point, but instead must take something from their next fixture to end the year on a high note.
Words by Mike Corbett
AFC Didsbury 1
Sierra Stars 2
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Rogers, Johnson, Battersby (C), Bermingham, Peat (New), Creasey, Whiteley, McDonald, Harrison, Corcoran.
Man of the Match: Battersby
AFC Didsbury slumped to a 2-1 defeat against Sierra Stars, after leading for much of the game.
Brimming with confidence after their positive result last week, Didsbury started the match brightly, taking the game to Sierra stars and causing the defence problems. The early pressure paid off when Matthew Harrison latched
onto a Tom Whiteley through ball - the Sierra keeper could only parry Harrison's shot into the path of John Corcoran, who coolly slotted home from eight yards out.
Continuing their early dominance, Didsbury were unlucky not to go two-up a minute later when some good work down the right by Rick Peat led to another great chance, which was volleyed inches over from 12 yards by Whiteley. The Didsbury forward four of Colin McDonald, Peat, Harrison and Corcoran persisted to work hard throughout the first half, creating opportunities, pressuring the Sierra back line, and probably should have extended the lead as a result of their good work.
As the first half wore on, however, the real stars of the show for Didsbury proved to be their four defenders. Club captain and man of the match, John Battersby, marshalled the line superbly, and the Sierra Stars forwards were forced to feed off scraps up until the end of the half.
Didsbury went into the break very much on top, and looking the more likely side to push on in the second half and add to their tally.
Whatever was said by the manager of the Sierra Stars at half-time seemed to work however, and the second half of the match took on a completely different tone, with Sierra exerting real dominance, retaining the ball well, and limiting Didsbury to a counter attacking display.
Having said this, the Didsbury defence continued to stand firm, and for all of their possession, Sierra never really threatened James Leighton in the Didsbury goal. The home side should probably have even put the game out of reach mid-way through the second half with several excellent breakaway opportunities, all of which were squandered by when the attackers really should have done better.
With 15 minutes to go, and Didsbury still hanging on to their slender lead, Sierra managed to break down the defence with a slick passing move, which ended with some good footwork and a cultured finish from the Sierra forward - a forward who if the FA took talk sport's advice on punishing divers, would be facing a retrospective 6-game ban for an outrageous attempt to con the referee into giving him a penalty just minutes before his goal.
Sierra, now clearly sensing the opportunity for all three points, piled on the pressure. Almost immediately, they won the ball in midfield, and crossed a deep ball into the box. Confusion reigned within the battle-weary defence, and a late run from the Sierra forward was rewarded with the winning goal.
The game became very open during the last 10 minutes, with further opportunities for both sides to score, however Sierra managed to hold on for a deserved three points and a first win against AFC Didsbury in their history.
Didsbury must now look to pick themselves up and work hard to put this result right in the Memorial Cup next weekend. I'm sure they can do it.
Words by Tom Whiteley
AFC Didsbury 3
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Mackie (Bermingham), Johnson, Battersby (C), Jaffray, Vasko (New), McDonald, Whiteley, Peat (Hay), Harrison, Corbett (Corcoran).
Goals: Whiteley, Harrison, Corbett
Assists: Vasko, Whiteley, Hay
Man of the Match: Whiteley
Didsbury settle into their new home by putting three past Fallowfield
After an opening day defeat, Didsbury were keen to make sure that they took the full three points from their first competitive game at their new home on Ford Lane.
Goalkeeper, James Leighton, was simply a spectator in the first half, as Fallowfield failed to hit a single shot on target. Didsbury’s Rick Peat came close after half an hour, as his shot from 30 yards forced the Fallowfield goalkeeper into making a full stretch save. However, the deadlock wasn’t broken until deep into the half when winger, Pavol Vasko, played the ball through to midfielder, Tom Whiteley, who opened up his body and curled his shot into the top right corner of the net.
The score remained 1 nil at the break, but soon into the second half man of the match, Whiteley, found himself in the opposition box and neatly fed the ball through to Didsbury’s number ten, Matt Harrison, who calmly side footed into the bottom corner.
Didsbury were clearly starting to get into their stride now and continued to create a number of good chances. Harrison was left red faced when he was presented with a golden opportunity from five yards out, but the striker couldn’t hit the target and his shot ricocheted off the post.
Didsbury made a number of changes in the final stages of the match and substitute, Mike Hay, seemed to make an almost instant impact. He used his pace well down the right flank and his cross found Mike Corbett in space in the box. Corbett’s first shot was saved but he was first to react to the rebound and made no mistake with his follow up attempt.
Three goals and a clean sheet was the sort of result that Didsbury had hoped for from this fixture and will certainly fill them with confidence going into their next game.
Words by Adam Musson
AFC Didsbury 0 - 5 Moss Side
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Mackie, Rogers, Johnson, McDonald (C), Wallace (Harrison) (Bermingham), Creasey, Berté, MacHugh (New), Trecarichi (Stiff).
Man of the Match: Mackie
Didsbury knocked for five.
Didsbury couldn't stop Moss Side claiming the championship in their penultimate game of the season.
The match started off in an even contest with both teams sharing possession of the ball. The opening goal was out of keeping of the style of play both teams started with. A deep cross was floated to the back post for Moss Side's giant
striker to nod an easy header in from 5 yards.
The game went from bad to worse when a second, albeit fortunate, goal was scored. The ball rattled round the Didsbury box and fell kindly for a Moss Side player to meet the ball with an acrobatic bicycle kick, which nestled into the top corner.
The opening spell of the second half saw an early free kick scored and then a well taken finish by Moss Side to go 4-0 up.
The life was taken out of Didsbury by now and the fifth was only a matter of time, a ball over the top, with the striker, not picked up by the referee, seeming to be 5 yards offside. He took the ball in his stride and squared it to an on rushing winger to make it five.
Didsbury have one game remaining and a win will secure 3rd place, providing Manchester United Supporters Club beat Nello James. Results have certainly been disappointing in 2013, after such a bright start to the season. However, a 3rd place finish in only their first season in the top flight, would certainly provide Didsbury with a strong platform to build on for next season.
Words by Jonathan Mackie
AFC Didsbury 3 - 6 Nello James
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Jaffray, Mackie, Johnson (Rogers), Bermingham, Quaye (McDonald), Stiff, Harrison (C), MacHugh, Berté, Richardson (Creasey)
Goals: Jaffray, Quaye, Stiff
Assists: MacHugh (2), Harrison
Man of the Match: Harrison
Didsbury hit for six despite Quaye's farewell performance
Ollie Quaye bid farewell to his AFC Didsbury compadres with a virtuoso performance in a match where Didsbury once again fell short of their high standards. Another damaging defeat leaves the side in freefall and desperately looking for a return to early season form and confidence.
The side gave themselves a mountain to climb early in in the first half, with slack defending seeing them 2 goals down within 15 minutes. Shortly after, a free kick won by Sam Richardson, was cleverly played down the right flank, bypassing the Nello James wall and full-back Ben Jaffray showed typical poise and a delicate finish to place the ball into the far corner.
Then the games’ champagne moment came, when Luke Berté picked out Kieran MacHugh in space down the left, who turned and spotted Quaye in space. MacHugh then delivered a perfect defence splitting pass to Quaye, who dropped his shoulder, sold the defender a dummy and thundered a left-footed thunderbolt into the top corner. Unstoppable. Didsbury ended the half the stronger but were unable to take the lead.
The second half was uneventful until Quaye was penalised in the box for ‘impeding’ a winger who had already lost control of the ball, and shortly after the penalty was converted. The gap was then widened to two goals as more mistakes were punished by Nello James.
Didsbury briefly looked to impose themselves on the game when Mike Stiff converted a powerful penalty, after Matt Harrison had been scythed down in the area. However, after some miscontrol by Jonathan Mackie led to a fifth goal for the away side, this pretty much ended any hopes of a comeback. Nello James then punished Didsbury with a sixth goal, as the home side through men forward as a last resort.
Another disappointing result that will be difficult to take, but the club must ensure they can arrest the recent slump as soon as possible.
Words by Ollie Quaye
AFC Didsbury 1 - 4 Nello James
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Musson, Mackie, Battersby (C), Bermingham (Rushton), MacHugh, Stiff (McDonald), Bishop, Creasey, Wallace, Corbett.
Man of the Match: Mackie
Didsbury fall at the first hurdle in this year’s John Old Cup, after a 4-1 defeat at the hands of Nello James.
The away side were gifted an early lead after some sloppy midfield passing by Mike Stiff. The ball was handed to a Nello James midfielder, who then found his striker in space and scuffed his shot in at the near post.
Their lead was then doubled after a corner was only half cleared and the ball fell kindly on the penalty spot, only for another Nello James striker to find the bottom corner through the crowd of players.
Didsbury managed to pull one back in the second half when a long ball was controlled by Kieran MacHugh, who unselfishly squared the ball for Mike Corbett to bag his 14th goal of the season.
Two minutes later, the game was effectively killed off by Nello James, when a long ball wasn't dealt with by Didsbury captain, John Battersby, and the Nello striker kept his composure to score.
The home side seemed to lack cohesion and their usual composure, and this was exploited with five minutes to go. Nello grabbed their fourth when the striker found space as Didsbury went to three at the back to chase the game.
Didsbury now find themselves with only the league to play for and as the title seems somewhat out of sight, the team must pull together to ensure that they still put on a string finish to their first season in the top flight.
Words by Jonathan Mackie
AFC Didsbury 3 - 2 Inter Mancs
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Musson, Johnson, Rogers, Jaffray, Stiff, Bishop (C), Mackie, Wallace (Berté), Harrison, MacHugh (New).
Goals:Bishop, MacHugh, Stiff
Assists: Harrison (2)
Man of the Match: Harrison
AFC Didsbury dug out a hard fought victory against a determined
Didsbury started the game slowly, conceding a sloppy goal within the opening 5 minutes after a shot was blocked and the rebound was bundled in by
the opposing striker.
However, that seemed to wake Didsbury from their slumber as they struck twice in 10 minutes. The first came when Mike Stiff looked long with his throw and his delivery fell to Matt Harrison, whose flick-on found the Didsbury’s Captain, Chris Bishop, who headed home from close range. Didsbury’s quick-fire second came when MacHugh curled a sumptuous free kick across the face of goal and into the bottom corner to complete the turn around.
The crucial 3rd was scored moments before half time when Harrison was felled in the box, for Stiff to side foot the resulting penalty into the bottom corner.
Inter Mancs began to press higher up the pitch and seemingly looked like they would make their way back into the contest. Didsbury keeper, James Leighton, had to remain on full alert, most notably when he was forced to make a fine save at full stretch, after an Inter Mancs free kick appeared destined for the top corner.
The continuous pressure from the away side did eventually pay off when the referee awarded a penalty for a push on an Inter Mancs forward, which was duly dispatched to make the game 3-2.
Both teams had chances to score further goals, but Didsbury dug deep to grind out the victory and remain second in the table.
Words by Jonathan Mackie
AFC Didsbury 4 - 3 Sierra Stars
AFC Didsbury: Westhall, Jaffray, Rogers, Mackie, Bermingham, Wallace, Stiff, Creasey, Quaye (Hargreaves), Trecarichi, Harrison (C).
Goals: Quaye, Trecarichi, Harrison, Creasey
Assists: Harrison (2), Creasey, Quaye
Man of the Match: Creasey
Christmas Cracker as Didsbury see off the Stars
Owing to scheduling and bad weather, Didsbury took to the field not having played a competitive match in 3 weeks.
Fears of match sharpness were allayed early on, following a throw-in from the left, Matt Harrison executed a neat turn and laid the ball off to Ollie Quaye, who wrong-footed the keeper at his near post.
The joy was short lived however when Neil Creasey mistimed a last ditch tackle to give away a penalty at the other end, which was despatched into the far corner giving keeper William Westhall no chance.
Almost instantly Creasey atoned for his earlier error, arrowing a free-kick from the right perfectly towards Paul Trecarichi, who made a darting run to the near post and produced a crisp finish high into the roof of the net.
When a Didsbury corner was cleared to Creasey, he found Quaye who nodded the ball over the head of the last defender, and Harrison raced onto the knock-down, and fired his shot left footed across the Sierra goalkeeper. Harrison was involved again with the 4th just before half time, when quick thinking from him and Creasey at a short corner led to Creasey’s deflected shot ending up in the back of the net.
The second half brought a change around in fortunes for Didsbury, as they seemed to lose focus and soon after the break they lost a goal when poor marking allowed a tap in following a ball played square across the area.
Soon after Sierra pulled back another when a curling effort from the edge of the area flew into the net after Didsbury switched off. After this there were good chances for both sides, but Didsbury held firm and go into the Christmas break with a deserved victory.
Words by Ollie Quaye
AFC Didsbury 3 - 1 Davyhulme Park
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Rushton, Rogers, Battersby (C), Jaffray, Stiff, Bishop, Creasey, Harrison, Corbett, New (Quaye).
Goals: Corbett, Battersby, Bishop
Assists: Harrison, Creasey
Man of the Match: Leighton
Following a heavy defeat in their previous game, AFC Didsbury responded well to record their 5th league win of the campaign against a spirited Davyhulme side in what was a very entertaining game.
AFC Didsbury started the game brightly with top scorer Mike Corbett causing the Davyhulme defence problems. It was Davyhulme who took an early lead when their centre forward headed in a superbly flighted cross from the left side following an incisive counter attacking move.
The majority of the first half was then played in the Davyhulme half, with AFC Didsbury dominating possession and creating several good openings which were not converted. The pressure was eventually rewarded five minutes before the break when a long pass from the Didsbury left back, Ben Jaffray, found Matthew Harrison in space on the right wing. Harrison’s perfectly weighted through ball picked out a well-timed run from Corbett, who finished in clinical fashion.
The second half followed a similar pattern to the first half with Didsbury enjoying large spells of possession and Davyhulme continuing to threaten on the break.
The second Didsbury goal came when good work from winger Gareth New forced a foul in the left wing position. Neil Creasey delivered a superb ball into the box from the resulting free kick which was met with a towering header from Didsbury captain, John Battersby.
A third goal came midway through the second half which effectively killed the game. A Creasey corner was only partially cleared and the ball fell to Chris Bishop who scored with a brilliantly struck half volley into the top right corner from twenty yards out.
With a two goal lead Didsbury were able to see the game out comfortably as a late spell of Davyhulme pressure was unable to produce any clear cut chances.
Words by Ben Jaffray
AFC Didsbury 0 - 5 Man United SC
AFC Didsbury: Rogers, Musson (Bermingham) Johnson, Battersby (C), Mackie, Stiff, Bishop, Creasey, Quaye, Wallace, New.
Man of the Match: New
Didsbury succumb to Halloween horror show against Manchester United Supporters Club.
Didsbury slumped to their first defeat of the season in depressing style as they were beaten comprehensively.
A threadbare squad and centre back, Wayne Rogers, acting as a stand-in goalkeeper, did not excuse such a sloppy start that saw Didsbury concede inside the first minute. Shortly after, a somewhat debatable penalty was given against full back, Adam Musson, for obstruction. Rogers managed to get fingers to the shot but still couldn’t keep it out, leaving Didsbury two down and reeling within ten minutes.
Aside from a few chances from set pieces, Didsbury never got back into the game in the first half and conceded a third just before the break. With bench options limited and morale sapped, the second half was a procession for Man United’s Supporters Club and they starved the home side of the one thing they required to get back in the game. Possession.
While Didsbury’s Gareth New made some good ground down the left wing, there was little end product and often no-one to support him in the box. A corner from Neil Creasey found Ollie Quaye but his downwards header was well saved. Quaye later found himself through on goal but he failed to convert what turned out to be the best opportunity of the game for Didsbury.
After another two goals, the tally reached five and the Supporters Club were good value for their win. This had been the worst result in the club’s history and a dejected Didsbury left the field with heads facing the floor, knowing that some drastic improvements need to be made if they wish to remain as genuine title contenders in this league.
Words by Ollie Quaye