Date:Tuesday February 12 2013
09 Feb, 13:00
Stockport County came out of Wales on Saturday afternoon feeling dreadfully unlucky not to be bringing any points home with them after a fantastic second half performance had the title challenges Wrexham on the ropes for much of the second half.
However the first half was a typical 2012/13 County performance. We started competitively but struggled to defend a cross and Joe Clarke got ahead of the defence to slot home past Richard O'Donnell in the County goal.
County then got into the game more on a really wet boggy pitch, but nearly lost Jon Nolan minutes later when he received just a yellow card for a strong challenge on Jay Harris. You could tell by the reaction of the County players who went charging over to the referee they were perhaps worried about the referee's ability already.
Alex Kenyon had a close chance, but it was effectively watched over the bar by Chris Maxwell.
Danny Hattersley had the best chance, his downwards header bounced infront of Maxwell and Maxwell did not look at all confident in making the save as he awkwardly fell on the ball and pushed it clear.
Darije Kalezic must have put a rocket up the back side of the County players at half time. They were out first, minutes before the Wrexham players and ready to go. The last player on the pitch was Neil Ashton, not forgotten by the 700 travelling County fans for his actions at Edgeley Park earlier in the season and was reminded of those as he defended the second half directly in front of them.
The County fans turned up the volume as County pushed forward, first of all Alex Kenyon was body checked and a penalty should have been awarded to County. Minutes later Hattersley was brought down on the edge of the area, both times the referee waved play on to the bemusment of most in the ground.
However it was the next moment that defined the game for County. As Connor Jennings broke down the right hand side he played through Andy Halls on the overlap. Halls first time effort was blocked by Maxwell, but it came back to Halls and he headed over the top of Maxwell and the defence towards the goal. However Mark Cullen decided he wanted to put the ball over the line for his first County goal, but he was at least two yards offside as Maxwell had made his way towards Andy Halls.
It cost County to be honest, and they never recovered from that. People questioned when a change would come and why we didn't bring Whitehead on when we were on top. Whitehead and Macken did come on, but ten minutes later and the momentum had gone. County continued to give their all but struggled to hold the ball up without Hattersley upfront.
However the referee would have the final say in the game, a corner awarded to Wrexham was smashed home by Wright on the clearance despite the Wrexham players being all over Richard O'Donnell in an obvious foul. Ogleby made it 3-0 minutes late as County committed many bodies forward to try and get back in the game.
Jennings got a late consolation back for County from a Jon Nolan free kick, but in reality County deserved much more from the game and were robbed by the referee.
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Date:Tuesday February 12 2013
|County 0 Stalybridge Celtic 3
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