|April 10, 2023||3:00 pm||MFL Premier||2022-23|
Midland Football League
Monday 10th April 2023
Tividale 2-1 Wolverhampton Casuals
Nothing Better Than a Stoppage Time Winner
Tividale ended their home campaign with another 3 points, making it three league wins on the bounce for the first time this season. It was not the greatest of games but that 93rd minute Jack Fletcher strike made the previous 92 quite bearable.
In what was the final home league game of the 2022/23 campaign. Tividale were able to welcome back Jason Wood after his weekend break but had defender Joe Hawkins unavailable on a holiday break. Wood replaced Harry Lewis who needed a rest, and the experienced Jamie Oliver came in for Hawkins.
Once again Tividale were slow starting and Casuals should have been a goal up in the 6th minute, when a Joe Clarke ball found Umaro Saho but with only Louis Connor to beat he hit the post.
Tividale’s first attack on the Casuals goal came from a Kourouyianni long throw in the 9th minute that caused the Casuals keeper Jake Granaghan initial problems but he managed to get control of the ball at the second attempt. From his long kick, Casuals forward Joe Brown just could not catch up with it and it bounced into the arms of Connor.
Tividale were ahead in the 14th minute with a well worked corner. Malcolm Melvin found Dan Smith at the front post and his flick was met by Kourouyianni and his header beat Granaghan.
Tividale were now the team on top and a quick Kourouyianni throw in the 24th minute sent Arman Khoshkhoo on his way and his shot flashed across the face of Granaghan’s goal.
A Casuals corner to the near post in the 33rd minute was dealt with by Joe Burroughs who headed behind for another corner. This time it was hit short for Brown and Burroughs in his haste to get to the forward brought him down in the box. Clarke stepped up and gave Connor no chance from the spot.
Half Time:- Tividale 1-1 Wolverhampton Casuals
In the first minute of the second period Smith played in Lewis (who had come on for Khoshkhoo after 40 minutes) but he fired just wide of Granaghan’s left upright. A couple of minutes later in the 48th. An overhit Melvin corner was retrieved and put back into the box by Lewis and Louis Ezewele met it first time but his shot came back off the upright.
That was the last of any meaningful action in a drab next 25 minutes, before all action Jack Fletcher got to a ball, he had no right to, laid the ball back to Kourouyianni whose first time cross found Smith but his scissor kick went straight into the arms of Granaghan.
Casuals then had their first chance of the half in the 76th minute when from a Roger Bosio free kick. Louis Lake rose unmarked but headed straight into the arms of Connor.
Fletcher and Smith then both had efforts. While Granaghan had to work to save Fletcher’s shot. He watched Smith’s go comfortably wide.
As the game went into the dying minutes it was Casuals who looked the team to grab a winner and they had two particularly good chances. First an 83rd minute Marcus Beckford free kick from the edge of the box was watched over the bar by Connor and then a superb Brown strike in the 88th minute that had goal written all over it, until Connor literally flew across his goal to tip the ball around the post.
But in the end, it was the home side that took the three points when in the 93rd minute Lewis found the Casuals by line and cut the ball back straight to the advancing Fletcher and without breaking stride, he hammered the ball past the despairing dive of Granaghan and into the back of the net.
Queue a shirt off celebration (and a booking for the goal scorer) and the whole of The Beeches erupting. We reckon with the amount of people who offered to pay Fletchers fine after that goal. The total would have been a very tidy sum.
In the end it was not the greatest of games, but the 3 points stayed at The Beeches and the confidence high going into our last three league games of the season all away.
Full Time:- Tividale 2-1 Wolverhampton Casuals
Tividale: – 1. Louis Connor, 2. Zac Kourouyianni, 3. Kamol Campbell (12. Harry Lewis 70), 4. Joe Burroughs, 5. Louis Ezewele, 6. Jamie Oliver, 7. Malcolm Melvin, 8. Jason Wood, 9. Dan Smith, 10. Arman Khoshkhoo (14. Renaldo Forbes 40), 11. Jack Fletcher.
Unused Subs:- 15. Cody Mullan, 16. David Solademi, 17. Oliver Fluke