Posted by: Laura Hammond
Sun 5th February 2023
Written by Will Sendel
A brace from Jordan Thewlis and a goal for Matt Rhead ensure Alfreton’s victory over Boston United in the National League North yesterday (Saturday, February 4).
After some fluid football from both teams it was Boston who managed to draw first blood at the Impact Arena. Ethan Sephton’s left sided cross was met by a superb back-heel volley from Jake Wright, who managed to put the ball past George Willis’ stretched arms in the 20th minute.
The visitors’ lead was brief, with a foul on George Cantrill in the opposition box giving the Reds a chance to equalise from the spot just seven minutes later.
Matt Rhead’s penalty was denied by an excellent save from Boston goalkeeper Brooks, who dived low to his right to stop the shot. Celebrations in the away end were shor- lived, however, with Rhead slamming the rebound into the bottom right corner.
The game saw both sides continue to play attacking football, with Billy Heath’s men coming closest to taking the lead when Rhead’s headed effort beat the goalkeeper only to be cleared off the line by Tom Platt.
Alfreton’s persistence paid off, with Jordan Thewlis managing to force a header into the opposition goal to give Alfreton a 2-1 lead going into half time.
Despite an impressive first half display from Boston, the second half saw the visitors lose their composure, which allowed Alfreton Town to play their fast aggressive football even more effectively.
Their best chance came after a failed clearance from United’s keeper was hoovered up by Lund, who danced forwards before the ball was played to Southwell. A low hard shot forced a great save from Brooks and a corner for the home side.
Pressure from Alfreton continued throughout the half, which was rewarded in the 73rd minute. A corner ball found Thewlis, whose looping header landed in the back of the net to give him his second of the match.
Tensions in the game grew more apparent throughout the last 15 minutes, with the ref struggling to stamp his authority on either side.
Both sets of staff made their frustration more vocal as the game went on, reaching its peak when Alfreton’s goalkeeping coach Adam Sollitt was shown a red card for a comment made in the 94th minute of the game.
A relentless performance from the Reds saw the game finish Alfreton Town 3 – 1 Boston United, extending their unbeaten run in the league to eight games.
Speaking after the game, manager Billy Heath praised his team for their impressive determination.
“These boys have got a lot of character. It’s what we expect of them. When the ball went in, we got back into the game quickly. We could have had six goals today.
Credit to all the players, they work really hard. They’re putting massive shifts in. There is a real unity, they look after each other. They are a real team.”
The victory takes Alfreton Town up to 10th in the National League North, just two points outside of the playoffs with three games in hand.
Attention now turns to Tuesday’s clash against Curzon Ashton, where the Reds will hope to climb further up the table into the playoff places.
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