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First Team

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3

Blyth Spartans

Mon 1 Apr 2019 | National League North | Home

Stadium

Tamside Stadium

Attendance

218

Referee

Steven Copeland

Kick-Off

19:45

As Curzon hosted Blyth Spartans under the lights at the Tameside, it was Blyth who came out comfortable winners by a margin of 3-1.

As the game got underway, neither side really controlled the opening exchanges, with various long balls and optimistic passes being tried by both sides. The first chance of the game came for Blyth when a long ball was headed away for a corner. This proved dangerous when the resulting corner missed everyone, only to be put wide by the man at the far post, a lucky escape early on for Curzon.

From this, Curzon themselves broke away and earned themselves a corner in the opening exchanges, just showing how end-to-end these opening exchanges were. The resulting corner was cleared with ease, and Blyth had possession and control of the ball.

 

After a spell of possession, Blyth opened the scoring when their wide man was allowed too much space. The winger cut inside past Danny Shaw and shot straight at Cam Mason in goal, who parried straight into the path of Dan Maguire, who belted the ball home at the first time of asking.

 

With their one goal lead, Blyth began to take control of the first half, having much of the ball. This allowed them to further exploit Curzon’s clear weaknesses out wide and create further chances for themselves.

A half chance came for Curzon when Blyth wastefully lost possession in the middle of the park, however Joel Senior squandered the chance when his cross failed to beat the first man. This theme appeared to continue as Curzon continued to be wasteful in the opportunities being gifted to them. Reece Deakin looked bright at times, however the Blyth defenders read him well and cancelled his attacking presence out of the game early on.

 

As we moved further into the first half, Curzon continued to have the ball, however their play was sloppy and with no conviction. The ball was given away in midfield countless times, and the Blyth attackers pounced at the opportunity every time, with only bits of quality being needed to take full advantage.

 

The sloppiness in Curzon’s play was highlighted after a corner on the 23rd minute mark. After the corner was defended by Blyth, the attacker was allowed to break and made a 70-yard run, completely unchallenged. Luckily the shot was blazed over the bar, but this highlighted the lack of desire present in this Curzon Ashton side.

Blyth doubled their lead not long after, when the Blyth wide-man simply strolled into Curzon’s penalty area and cut the ball back, where it was calmly placed into and unguarded goal.

 

As the 1st half came to a close, the match had slowed down for both sides, seeing Blyth play the ball around with no real conviction. One final chance came for Curzon in the first half when Ryan Brooke broke on a misplaced pass by Blyth, but the cross was poor and used the complete wrong technique, and the chance was gone.

 

It was an incredibly poor half for Curzon, seeing no real quality or desire to right what had been done wrong. Blyth on the other hand had bossed the game without really stepping out of first gear.

 

Blyth started the 2nd half quickly, with a long-range effort that was straight into the hands of Curzon’s number one Cam Mason. From that moment, Curzon began to take control of the 2nd half. They held possession of the ball for lengthy periods of time, and a quick passing succession saw Curzon break forward, before McAttee tried a cleaver flick to no success.

When Blyth had the ball, Curzon’s midfield showed a much-improved desire to win the ball back and put pressure on the visitors, a huge improvement from their lacklustre efforts of the first half.

 

Curzon also began to show a great deal more attacking promise in the 2nd half. Luke Wall looked dangerous going forward and had the beating of his man on many occasions, but that little bit of quality was lacking slightly. Curzon pulled one back after a corner saw the ball scrambled home by Johnathan Hunt.

The momentum seemed to be with Curzon from that point, with McAttee driving forward various times, but Blyth were organised and battled well to keep the home side out. After battling at the back, Blyth’s only option was to sit back and allow Curzon to play, which they did. Luckily for the visitors, various chances were missed; the home side just lacking slightly in the quality department.

 

Almost against the run of the play in the 2nd half, Blyth regained their two-goal cushion after the ball was given away in midfield. Sloppy play in the middle of the park saw the ball given away, and Blyth broke in numbers and used their great deal of quality to capitalise on the chance gifted to them.

On the whole, a performance that lacked a great deal in quality from Mark Bradshaw’s men from start to finish. At times, the desire of the lads may have been questioned, but what can be said is that the lads showed character to bounce back and show an improvement in the 2nd half.

Match Report by Jack Earl

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