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Saturday 2 January 1999: Meadow Park

CITY vs. Rothwell Town

Dr Martens League Premier Division


City's Team

City grabbed a dramatic late winner to grab a much needed win against lowly Rothwell on a sticky Meadow Park pitch. With two games in as many days having taken their toll on the squad several players were rested as Hughes tried a bit of Chelsea style squad rotation. With Burns missing due to suspension Fergie was restored in midfield, Gary Thorne took the place of Holloway at right-back while Mings dropped to the bench to make room for Wyatt to start having impressed as sub at Salisbury the previous day.

City took to the field showing off clean new shirts, a shame for the laundry people the pitch was so muddy, with especially the T-End goalmouth looking like it had been transplanted from the Glastonbury festival (thank God for the Supporter's Club new pump - fit it soon!). The sticky six yard box played a starring role in the early minutes as Rothwell's Jowatt missed a gaping goal from all of 2 yards. A cross from City's left caught out Kemp and Mokler, but the on rushing Jowatt somehow contrived to leave the ball in the mud with a spectacular air shot that everyone but Moks and the poor Rothwell left back thought was pants wettingly funny.

City were however having difficulty even getting to the point where they could embarrass themselves in front of goal. Without Webb or Burns there seemed few ideas from midfield, Fergie putting in a couple of weak long distance efforts that caused Hughes in the Rothwell goal little trouble. Mainwaring saw City's best first half opportunity go begging when he received a Tucker pass and having turned his marker shot weakly too near Hughes.

A forgettable first half sparked into life when Wagstaff threw himself over Mokler to win a penalty duly put away by Marshall. You can only presume the Ref took sympathy on Wagstaff's ginger sufferings, because there was clear daylight between him and Mokler. Having seen Rothwell's finishing though, you could see why they wanted a penalty. City tried to come back before the interval but the only opportunity was wasted when Kemp took an in swinging corner off the head of home debutant Niblett.

City took the initiative from the re-start with the increasingly assured Wayne Thorne charging down the left and forcing an early corner. However Rothwell charged straight back at Gloucester with Mokler repeatedly needed to charge out and beat forwards to dangerous through balls. The unfortunate Jowatt had chance to make amends for his earlier howler but having once rounded Mokler he found himself off balance and skewed his shot wide. A few moments later Dunlop's deep cross clipped the City crossbar and the City defence seemed to be hanging on desperately. Hughes then made a brave substitution with Gary Thorne being replaced by Mings, leaving Hemmo and Wyatt to charge down there respective wings.

The elder Thorne had barely stormed into the dressing room when the substitution was immediately justified. Wyatt's corner was met by Kemp and with the Rothwell defence unable to clear the danger Mings turned sharply to slam the ball in from close range. With the Tiger's tails now up Rothwell found themselves flung back on their heels. Wyatt and Hemmings supplied a stream of crosses, but despite a lot of hard work neither Mainwaring or Mings could quite get on the end of them. Wayne Thorne was replaced by Holloway in the last few minutes following a blow in the stomach, and it was a typical Holloway charge against tired Rothwell legs that proved decisive. His deep cross was met by Hemmings whose neat header was tipped over by Hughes in the Rothwell goal. As City penned the visitors in their area it seemed they would have to settle for a point. However a Wyatt corner was only half cleared and Hemmings at last saw reward for his persistence. Another fantastic curling low cross was met by Mings who stabbed the ball into the net for a classic last gasp winner that may prove crucial as City seek to keep our lingering hopes of catching Nuneaton alive.

Mokler W2-1
G.Thorne Half-time
W.Thorne 0-1
Callinan Att.
Kemp (c) 442
Niblett City Scorers
Wyatt Mings (66,89)
Fergusson Bookings
Mainwaring Callinan
Tucker Position
Hemmings 5th

Holloway (for W.Thorne,84) WLLDDW
Mings (for G.Thorne,58) Report
Bennett T.Towel

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