Grantham Town 3, Newton Aycliffe 2
By Ryan Livingston
Newton Aycliffe face another first this weekend as they entertain Stocksbridge Park Steels in the Isuzu FA Trophy.
It will be Aycliffe’s first ever Trophy game, their promotion to the Northern Premier League bringing with it entry to the competition which is reserved for teams in Steps 1-4 of the National League System.
This First Qualifying Round fixture takes place at Moore Lane on Saturday 9 September (kick off 3pm). Admission is £9 adults, £6 concessions & £3 juniors. Please come along to support your local team in this national competition.
Newton Aycliffe embarked on their longest trip of the season to Grantham Town last Saturday and were perhaps unfortunate to bring at least a point back up the A1.
It couldn’t have started any worse for the away side, with a goal for Grantham within 7 minutes, Sam Muggleton with a long throw into the box that went over everyone in a blue shirt, and Gregg Smith was in the right place at the right time to score with minimal effort.
But that lead wouldn’t last long, with Aycliffe equalising with a well worked Liam Adamson goal after some very intricate passing in the oppositions box to make it 1-1 within 12 minutes.
The remainder of the first half was end to end, but Aycliffe were slowly beginning to edge it. Liam Adamson was unlucky to not get on a pass quick enough, Jacob Mallison fired wide after an impressive attack and McKenzie Diciccio almost obtained a debut goal but headed it over the bar.
Sadly, the second half saw Grantham get more comfortable, and Daniel Cameron was consistently put under pressure.
The Gingerbreads would find the net, but it was ruled out for offside and the home sides momentum would continue, Kuwesi Ofushine would fire it into the box, and despite the ball initially getting hoofed away, Ethan Bojang found it and rocketed it in from outside the box to make it 2-1.
Aycliffe would keep going forwards, Charlie Dawson with too tame a shot, and eventually Aycliffe would equalise, a scrappy goal, but the ball somehow found Oscar Eckley-Aldsworth and it was 2-2 in the 85th minute.
But within seconds of the referee announcing five minutes for extra time, Aycliffe would fall apart, and Kuwesi Ofushine found the net after some haphazard defending.
This makes it yet another away loss for Aycliffe, but with four home games on the trot, they will be hoping that home advantage will lead to them getting more points on the table.
In the meantime, they’ll be hoping to progress in the FA Trophy with the winner of Saturday’s game travelling to either Mossley or Vauxhall Motors on 23 September.
Above pic, by Yvonne Wood, shows Aycliffe ‘keeper Dan Cameron denying a Grantham forward.