AFC Didsbury 1 - 1 Stretford Victoria
AFC Didsbury: Leighton, Musson, Rogers, Battersby (C), Mackie, Stiff, Creasey, Bishop, MacHugh (Trecarichi), Harrison, Quaye (Bermingham).
Man of the Match: Battersby
Didsbury steam-train slowed down at Victoria
Didsbury’s 100% start to the season was ended in a tough match after conceding a late equaliser.
The home side started well and put Stretford Victoria under pressure, most notably when Adam Musson picked out Matt Harrison in the box, whose attempt was just off target. The pace and guile of Stretford’s front two meant Didsbury’s back line didn’t have as much time as they would normally have to play the ball between themselves and as a result Stretford were able to press very high up the pitch.
At half time Didsbury were frustrated but content with a decent first half performance. In the second half, with the wind behind them, Didsbury seemed to stutter, inviting pressure from the off, but Stretford still failed to register a shot on goal. After a lunge on Quaye, Creasey delivered a pinpoint cross from the resulting free kick, and Didsbury’s captain, John Battersby, timed his run to perfection to loop a header over a helpless Stretford goalkeeper.
As the clock ticked down, Didsbury were desperate to grab a second to put the game to bed. However, with stoppage time approaching, a long punt up field fell to the feet of the Stretford number 9, who unleashed an unstoppable half-volley that nestled in the corner of the Didsbury goal. Soon after, the full-time whistle went and Didsbury were left to contemplate what might have been. An early season set back will hopefully focus the squad for future games, but overall a draw was a fair result.
Words by Ollie Quaye