|October 14, 2023||3:00 pm||MFL Premier||2023-24|
Midland Football League
Saturday 14th October 2023
Highgate United 4-1 Tividale
in football there are times when you just don’t see a performance coming and this was one of them. As disappointing as our results have been, I don’t think Tividale have been guilty of a lack of effort, well not until this performance. As good a side as Highgate are, they will never get an easier 90 plus minutes run out than this one.
Highgate were at the visitors from the off and created their first chance after 3 minutes when Tividale keeper Louis Connor turned away a Kartel O’Neil-Martin shot. Two minutes later and Highgate centre back Shay Palmer waltzed from his own half to the edge of the Tividale box forcing Connor to make another save.
Connor could do nothing about the next Highgate attack on 7 minutes when a crossfield ball found James Wilcock who cut in from the right, played in O’Neil-Martin who steadied himself and placed the ball into Connor’s top right hand corner.
Tividale’s first chance fell in the 14th minute when a Cody Mullen cross was headed wide by Dominic Dell. But two minutes later it was normal service resumed when O’Neil-Martin had his shot blocked from a Wilcocks pass. On 22 minutes Tividale went close again when Joe Burroughs found Cain Smith but his shot went across the face of goal and just the wrong side of the post.
Tividale seemed to be making a game of it in the second quarter of the game, but Highgate were still the better side and Connor had to make another save in the 41st minute to deny Wilcock after great work from Charlie Shaw and Connor Mooney in the build up.
As the half came to a close Tividale’s James Douglas played a ball blind that went straight to O’Neil-Martin but he decided to go for the spectacular and loft the ball over a stranded Connor, but the ball came back off the cross bar and Douglas was back to clear.
Half Time:- Highgate United 1-0 Tividale
Within a minute of the restart Highgate had a chance to extend their lead when Corey Currithers got his head to a Ben Vallance cross, but Connor got down to make a comfortable save.
Two minutes later and completely against the run of play Tividale were level, and in possibly the only way they looked like scoring. A Callum Gillies free kick was missed by Highgate keeper Reece Francis and the ball Highgate centre back George Cleet and flew into the net.
The scores were level for 10 minutes when a Josh O’Grady shot took a deflection off Jakob Burroughs and Connor did well to get his hand to it but Mooney was on hand to tap the rebound home and put Highgate back in front. Just past the hour mark and a Dell header from a Townsend cross went wide of Francis’s post. The dangerous O’Neil-Martin then curled an effort just wide of Connors left hand post on 62 minutes.
With the visitors now struggling to contain the home side, it was just a matter of time before the lead was extended and on 71 minutes it was. Again Tividale fail to clear their lines and the ball comes out to Carithers on the edge of the box and he beats Connor with a fine effort from distance.
Tividale had a rare foray into the home half with 10 minutes to go, when Edwards broke free down Tividale’s right but his shot was pushed away by Francis a save made better as he had Dell bearing down on him. Highgate added a fourth in the 90th minute when Wilcock went another of his rampaging runs and crossed the ball to an unmarked Mooney 6 yards out and in the centre of the goal and he fired past Connor to make it 4-1 and end Tividale’s misery
Full Time:- Highgate United 4-1 Tividale
Tividale: – 1. Louis Connor, 2. Zac Kourouyianni, 3. Callum Gillies (5. Kamol Campbell 68), 4. Jakob Burroughs, 6. Joe Burroughs, 7. Taylor Townsend, 9. Dominic Dell, 10. James Douglas (8. Jake Lloyd 68), 11. Ryan Snape (17. Ewan Edwards 59), 14. Cody Mullen, 15. Cain Smith.
Unused Sub:- 12. Elliot Sumnall, 16. Max Morris