Colne's Trip to Market Reaps Rewards
By Dave Priestley
Colne made the long trip to Shropshire for their first ever game against Market Drayton Town on Saturday and came away with a well earned three points thanks to a free scoring second half performance.
The Reds had looked the stronger side in the first half but the game was in the balance with the scoresheet blank at half time until Colne’s young attackers found their scoring touch to take apart the home side’s defence.
As the game got underway at 3pm, Colne might have had a penalty in the first minute when Alex Curran appeared to be pulled back in the penalty area but the referee gave only a corner kick as the ball went out of play. As play swung to the other end, Market Drayton tested the Colne defence with some enterprising attacks and Matthew Ballard headed just over the bar from a good cross before Louis Irvine saw his low shot well saved by Hakan Burton.
Colne built some good attacking moves through midfield and down the wings and Curran’s close range shot was blocked in the area after 12 minutes before Brad Knox forced a good save from home keeper Ash Rawlins with a well struck 25 yard shot ten minutes later. Rawlins was soon in action again saving a spectacular volley from Connor Hughes as the Reds continued to look for an opening goal in the end-to-end play.
After 27 minutes, Market Drayton came close when Burton made an instinctive diving save to keep out a free kick from the bottom corner of his goal and five minutes later, he kept his cool to deny Jud Ellis in a one-on-one confrontation. At the other end, Matty Morgan’s volley was blocked in the home area before Brad Lynch’s follow-up header was cleared from the goalmouth by the Market Drayton defence.
As the second half began, home keeper Rawlins presented Colne with a great chance when his clearance fell to Curran who calmly slotted the ball home to give the Reds the lead. And five minutes later, Colne went further ahead when a diagonal ball to the far post by Knox was fired home by Hughes for a two goal lead.
Market Drayton looked for a reply but were frequently caught on the counterattack and in one such move Hughes and Curran took the ball from one end to the other before Lynch forced a great save from Rawlins to push his goal-bound shot over the bar. And the Reds added a third goal after 65 minutes when Curran provided the chance for Morgan to fire an angled shot into the bottom corner of the home goal.
Town striker Ballard made a good run through the middle of the Colne defence but Burton turned his shot wide with a good save to preserve his clean sheet. And after 69 minutes, a long diagonal ball by Hughes found Lynch who took it on into the area and fired home a low shot for Colne’s fourth goal.
In the closing stages, Colne controlled the game and might have added further goals with Kyle Sambor adding his height up front to create a series of chances and Nick McNally came close when his angled shot came back off the bar. But the Reds ran out comfortable winners with a result that lifts them up the table.