Hallam FC 4 – 0 Retford FC
Another Tuesday night at Sandygate brought the Hallam faithful out in remarkable numbers, a crowd of 412 making the pilgrimage to the World’s Oldest Football Ground! The opponents were Retford FC, and following Hallam’s goal fest in recent back-to-back victories, there was a buzz of expectancy in the evening air!
Hallam began the game well, dominating play and looking dangerous. A Hallam corner in the 15th minute was whipped into the box, and it was Julian Lawrence who rose high above the Retford defence to head the ball into the back of the net.
On 30 minutes, Iren Wilson was unlucky not to add his name to the score sheet when his shot hit the underside of the Retford bar. Somehow the ball contrived to not bounce over the line, and so the score remained at 1 – 0.
Kicking towards the Shed End, Hallam continued to dominate, and in the 42nd minute, great work on the wing led to the ball being crossed into the Retford box. A clumsy challenge by the Retford defence stopped a certain Hallam goal, leading to a penalty being awarded and the Retford defender being shown a straight red. The effervescent Julian Lawrence stepped up to power home the penalty, much to the delight of the home fans in the Shed End and around the ground.
With half-time looming, Hallam found themselves two goals to the good, and Retford reduced to 10 men for the rest of the game.
Hallam began the second half in the same manner as they had played the first; crisp passing, threatening runs, and an obvious delight in playing entertaining football. On 58 minutes this creativity was rewarded when a period of wonderful team football was finished off by a blistering shot from Liam Royals. 3 – 0 to Hallam, and a chant of “It’s just like watching Brazil!” ringing out around Sandygate!
And indeed it was just like watching Brazil when, in the 60th minute, Brandon Bradbury scored an exquisite goal, skipping around the Retford defence before deftly chipping the ‘keeper. 4 – 0 to the Countrymen, and the game essentially won.
Still Hallam continued to press. Late in the game Chris Salt was unlucky to have a goal ruled out for offside, before a shot from Steve Woolley came back off the Retford crossbar. It was all Hallam, and at full time the Sandygate crowd gave a standing ovation for a masterful performance from a team that has well and truly found its stride. Three wins in three, and 20 goals scored. Hallamites could get used to this!
Full time at Sandygate – Hallam 4 – 0 Retford.
Paul & Lucy Bell