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Match Report  |  Morpeth Town vs Gresley FC


Morpeth Town  5
Foalle 32, 43'  |  Sayer 53  |  Potter 63, Potter 90
Gresley FC  1
Smyth 54

Evo-Stik NPL League East Division

Craik Park, Morpeth, Northumberland,

Saturday, 20th October 2018,


Morpeth Too Good For Gresley

It was easily seen by Morpeth’s performance that surely, they must be a clear favourite to take this season’s Evo-Stik NPL East title come next April.

According to many of the Gresley faithful who made the ridiculously long journey to Northumberland Morpeth are the best side Gresley have faced by a country mile so far this season.

It also shows why it is believed by many non-league followers that the Ebac Northern League are all but in name a step 3 league and nowhere near a step 5!

Teams from that league have dominated the FA Vase over the last decade with calls in some circles for teams from the Northern League should be placed in the FA Trophy, such is their strength.

Morpeth themselves won the Vase in 2015-2016 beating Hereford 4-1 before going on to gain promotion as runners-up to Marske last season from the Northern League.

Gresley were without defender Jamie Barrett (Family reasons) Matt Roome, Dexter Morris-Clarke, Ryan King, Carl Slater, Zaki Evans and Connor Ward ( injury, illness or unavailability).

However, they did welcome back top scorer Martin Smyth who missed the last game due to work commitments.

It was soon evident that the home side were in no mood to sit back and were on the front foot from the start with David Carson firing wide from just 12 yards with the goal at his mercy after just 6 minutes.

The pressure continued with Gresley keeper Ben Allsop denying new signing from Whitley Bay, Jack Foalle by tipping a well struck shot from 18 yards over the bar.

Gresley thought they should have had a penalty on 27 minutes when Smyth was brought down in the area by Julian Petrache but the referee waved away the protests.

A minute later it was Morpeth’s turn to see a good penalty shout waved away as Foalle was heavily challenged by Kane Jellyman.

On the half-hour Gresley manager Gary Norton was forced into a change with Harry Lansdowne limping off to be replaced by Alex Steadman. The substitute was soon in the action as he slipped the ball to Kieran O’Connell who in turn found Smyth but the low shot was comfortably dealt with by home keeper Dan Lowson.

Morpeth’s pressure paid dividends on 32 minutes when Foalle scored a tremendous goal curling his shot from 25 yards into the top far corner giving Allsop no chance.

The home side were threatening to increase their advantage with Ben Sayer bringing another good save from Allsop who tipped his shot around the post.

Morpeth didn’t have long to wait however, as they doubled their lead with a minute of the first half remaining. Foalle, who had scored 10 goals in consecutive games for his previous club, showed just what a good and dangerous striker he is by being in the right place at the right time tapping home from close in Wayne Phillips’ low cross from the left.

Gresley started the second half brightly with Eric Graves forcing a good save from Lowson with a shot on the turn from 15 yards out.
Morpeth responded and increased their lead on 52 minutes with Sayer hitting a 30 yard free kick from wide on the left which beat Allsop.

Gresley didn’t let their heads drop and were back in the game two minutes later as they scored as tremendous goal themselves.

After a foul had been conceded 25 yards out Smyth struck an unstoppable free kick into the top right hand corner of Lowson’s net.

Any hopes of a Gresley comeback, however, were dashed on 63 minutes as Morpeth regained their three goal lead by scoring another outstanding goal as Tom Potter’s curling shot from 25 yards found the top right hand corner of the net.

Following some good play from Steadman down the right he picked out fellow substitute Kane Lee but the final shot from 12 yards flew over the bar.

With the long journey starting to take its toll on the visitors, Gresley fell to another goal with the 90 minutes up as Potter’s shot from the edge of the area beat Allsop.

Morpeth’s nickname is the Highway Men but there was no highway robbery today as they fully deserved their win and will be there or there about come the end of the season but it will be interesting to see how they and fellow former Northern League colleagues Marske cope with their share of the 4 hour plus journeys especially as the winter weather starts to take it’s toll on matches. At least Gresley have got this one out of the way while the weather was nice!

Morpeth Town
1 Daniel Lowson
2 Danny Carson
3 Chris Reid
4 Ben Sayer
5 Julian Petrache
6 Jeff Henderson
7 David Carson Yellow Card
8 Sam Hodgson
9 Jack Foalle
10 Wayne Phillips (c)
11 Tom Potter
Subs
12 Keith Graydon
for 4 - 71 mins
14 Michael Turner
for 6 - 84 mins
15 Jordan Fry
not used
16 Stephen Turnbull
not used
17 Graham Pickering
not used
Gresley FC
1 Ben Allsop
2 Mark Branch (c)
3 Lucas Harrison
4 Albert Lansdowne
5 Kane Jellyman
6 Luke Morgan
7 Cameron Steele Yellow Card
8 Eric Graves  Yellow Card
9 Martin Smyth
10 Kieran O'Connell
11 Harry Lansdowne
Subs
12 Callum Riddell
not used
14 Alex Steadman
for 11 - 30 mins
15 Jake McIntosh
for 6 - 70 mins
16 Kane Lee
for 7 - 61 mins
Other Match Info

Referee: Jonny Urwin (Hebburn)

Attendance: 411

Star Player
Martin Smyth

Martin Smyth

His free kick was worth the long trip alone