A View From A Stockport County Fan
A post by 'IncognitoCounty' in the match thread.
In truth it was a poor game - the first half especially.
If it had been possible for both teams to be losing at half time then that's what they both deserved!
We were sloppy giving the ball away too often and you weren't much better. I though first half we tried to play through you too much and you were pretty compact - almost like you'd come to play for a draw. We did put one good move together which with a better finish could've put us 1 up - you seemed to have several half chances but nothing clear cut until the penalty. From our point of view, the ref had been abysmal all first half, and even though we felt aggrieved at your penalty, it was probably a penalty (albeit a soft one).
There was a deep cross into our box, our keeper went up to catch it and fumbled it forward - your striker was first to the ball (with his back to goal and with several defenders on the line and around him in the box) and our keeper brought him down clumsily. As I say, it was quite a soft pen (your lad seemed eager to throw himself to the ground and grab the ball), and the 1 min added time in the first half had very much elapsed. It was a shocking spot kick though. Must've been at least a foot wide of the left hand post.
To me that passage of play summed the first 45 mins up. We made a stupid, clumsy mistake, but were let off the hook by you failing to capitalise.
Second half I thought County were much better, but still not great. Cullen hit the post for us after a long ball from our keeper he did fantastically to make something of it. We had a bit more luck (that seemed well overdue for the season!) and from a throw in midway in your half, somehow the ball squirted through into the box for Danny Hattersley - who I thought had been poor all game - to finish really well from a tight angle. Proper poachers goal.
As I say, on balance of play we probably didn't deserve it at that point, after the first half performance. I thought after that bit of good fortune, we got on top though. Too often this season we have scored and conceded straight after, but it was refreshing that we looked a bit more composed. Our passes started to find their targets and we started to use the space better getting our full backs into some good positions.
Our second followed soon after. Our CM brought the ball forward and was sliced down on the edge of your box - definite yellow. Newton took the free kick and scored - great strike considering it wasn't very far out at all. Your keeper seemed wrong footed. Here's the goal on youtube if you're interested.
We continued to dominate possession for another 15 mins or so before you started coming back into it, but after that you didn't really threaten very much aside from a few long shots, even though you saw most of the ball in the latter stages.
I thought it was very funny on the way home in the car when our radio commentator said about our new CB that hasn't played yet 'I've seen him downstairs (I think he meant in the players lounge), he's a big lad'.
Also, well done to the Imps fans that made the trip over. Bitterly cold night, but it was a good effort from the 75 or so the made the journey. Not often a crowd of that size in the uncovered railway end can be heard from the Cheadle End.
Match Report: Stockport County 2-0 The Imps
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