Match Report: Northwood 0 – 1 Basingstoke Town Saturday 11th March 2023

Isthmian South Central Division – Saturday 11th March 2023
Northwood 0 v 1 Basingstoke Town Attendance 304
Where: Skyline Roofing Stadium, Chestnut Avenue, Northwood. HA6 1HR
Stoke Continue Their Title Push With Win At Northwood
Dan Brownlie’s line-up this afternoon was: 1. Paul Strudley, 2. Markus Johnson-Schuster, 3. Callum Winchcombe, 14. Simon Dunn (Capt), 5. Billy Upton, 6. Scott Armsworth, 7. Bradley Wilson, 8. Ben Cook, 9. Paul Hodges, 19. Sam Argent, 11. George Reid
On the bench: Brody Peart, James Clark, D’Andre Brown, Stefan Brown & Nathan Smart
Referee – Deryll David

This crucial game at the top of the table got underway, with Stoke attacking the covered end and a lovely ball finds down the left through Bradley Wilson, but his cross is blocked out for a corner. Northwood clear the corner.

We then attack again two minutes later and have the ball in the net, but the flag is up for offside.
It’s all Stoke, as we attack again this time through George Reid, who breaks into the penalty area on the right then slides the ball across the goalmouth, but a Northwood defender is first to it and he hooks the ball clear.
We then have a shot from Paul Hodges that flies a yard above the bar.

Northwood have an attack but Callum Winchcombe makes a timely. interception.

We then break down the left and win a corner, the cross is initially blocked out, but it comes back into the goalmouth and bounces down and Ben Cook is on hand to half volley it down and it bounces into the roof of the net GOAL! Northwood 0 – 1 Basingstoke Town (Cook 18 mins)

Stoke continue to press forward and a lovely crossfield pass from Simon Dunn sends Wilson away and as he reaches the penalty area, two defenders come to close him down, and he slides the ball inside to Hodges, who fires a shot that the keeper makes a diving save.

Northwood have a little bit of possession, but do not trouble Paul Strudley in goal.

Stoke have another neat attacking move started by Reid who finds Wilson, who then slides the ball to Cook, but his shot is blocked away.

Northwood have an attacking move but Simon Dunn hooks the ball clear.
Stoke’s next attack is with five minutes to the break, as the ball is slid through to Wilson who enters the penalty area, then slides a shot past the keeper, but also past the far right-hand post.

Northwood have the final action of the half, as a cross falls to a Northwood player, but his shot is high and wide and it flies into the cemetery, behind the goal.
The referee plays two and half minutes of added-time before blowing for halftime.

Halftime – Northwood 0 v 1 Basingstoke Town
The second-half gets underway with us attacking up the hill towards the cemetery end, and it’s Northwood who create the first attack, and a shot is comfortably saved by Strudley.

Stoke’s first attack is via a corner, and the ball falls to Argent, whose shot is straight at the keeper.
Then a superb tackle by Hodges in the middle of the pitch, then sends Reid away who looks to be offside, but the linesman does not flag and he breaks away, but his cross is behind Argent, and Northwood have time to clear.

Northwood start to come into the game and win a corner on the right, and a header is blocked off the line by Billy Upton.

Stoke then have the next two attacks as we move past the hour-mark, as a nice one-two move with Hodges sends Wilson down the left, but with Argent open, the cross is overhit and the chance is gone, We then break straight again through Reid whose shot come, cross has the keeper struggling to get back and he pushes the ball onto the bar and over for a corner, The corner finds Dunn whose shot flies over the bar from just outside the area.

Northwood are now pushing forward more and win another corner, which again is headed away by Upton.

The Northwood No.5 then goes in the book for an awful tackle on Wilson on the halfway line, who takes a minute to recover. Should have been a red in many Stoke fans view close to the action.
Wilson then looks to make Northwood pay for the tackle and he breaks down the left and cuts inside and hammers a shot that the keeper makes a full-length diving save.

Simon Dunn then goes in the book for a minimal tackle.

Northwood win two corners in the next couple of minutes, but first Upton then Armsworth head the ball clear.
Another corner, another clearance of the line by Upton, who picks up a head injury and the game is held up for him to receive treatment.

We move into the final ten minutes of the game, and Northwood continue to push forward, as we make our first change with Ben Cook being replaced by James Clark (83 mins).

Simon Dunn makes another neat interception and then gets pulled down as we move into the final two minutes.
Northwood win a free-kick and the shot beats the wall but not Strudley in goal.

Then on ninety minutes a good tackle by Dunn, has the referee blowing for a foul and the referee shows Dunn a second yellow card, followed by the red and Dunn is off.

Northwood win a corner that is punched away by Strudley. The homeside have a long throw expert who sends it in to the goalmouth but Strudley knocks it away.

We then make our second and third changes as Brody Peart replaces Bradley Wilson, and George Reid is replaced by D’Andre Brown (94 mins).

It’s now all Northwood, but another corner is defended by Armsworth.
The referee has found seven minutes of added-time from somewhere, but shows no sign of wanting to end the game.

We then win a goal-kick and the kick to the halfway line finally has the referee blowing the fulltime whistle and Stoke continue their march for the title.

Full-time Score: Northwood 0 v 1 Basingstoke Town
                                                       Cook 18 mins,
Match Thought’s
Our fourteenth win a row keeps us four points clear, although the last twenty-five minutes was another defensive battle, that we held strong and our fourth clean sheet in a row confirms how good our team sets-up and works at the back.
Ben Cook is on hand once again to get that vital goal, in his new forward attacking midfield role.
Seven games left with the Walton game looming in three weeks.
Up Next:
After two away games, we head back home to face Uxbridge next Saturday at Winklebury with a 3pm kick-off.

Match Report by Martin French..