Clinical Poppies run out 4-2 winners away to Merthyr Town

Jan 20th, 2018

Kettering TownNerthyr Town

Merthyr Town 2
Morgan 61
Traylor 85

Kettering Town 4
O’Connor 9
Howe 28
Stevens 53
Solkhon 56

A lacklustre display resulted in two points dropped for Kettering Town last Saturday and they now have a tough away trip to Merthyr Town to try and get back on track in the campaign for promotion at the end of the season. With the bookies favorites Hereford closing in on the leaders at the top it looks more likely that Kettering will be trying to get promoted via the play-offs.

Goal!GOAL: The rain is falling down at Pennydarren Park as the two teams get the match underway. A lot of huffing and puffing but nothing to really spark this game into life yet. Finally, Poppies win a throw, the ball finds Howe who plays in Aaron O’Connor and the Poppies striker spins and fires into the net past Oliver Davies in the home goal. Good start, it’s 1-0 to the Poppies.

A couple of headers from defender Tom Marshall for Poppies, the first goes well wide and the second is halted by the offside flag. A Merthyr effort flies just over the crossbar from 25 yards out. The match beginning to improve now as both sides settle into it more. Warning signs for the home side as Howe clips the crossbar when he probably should’ve scored after great build up play from Toseland out wide.

Goal!GOAL: Just moments after he hit the crossbar, Rene Howe pops up to make amends and heads the Poppies into a 2-0 lead much to the delight of the traveling faithful. O’Connor turns provider for that one and Kettering looking good so far for their two-goal lead.

Goal!GOAL: Kettering are looking even better now as they increase their lead to 3-0. The referee plays a good advantage on the halfway line and the ball finds it’s way from Howe through to Matty Stevens who fires it past the keeper and into the net. No sluggish first-half for the Poppies today!

The play switches to the other end and Paul White makes two saves to keep his side’s lead intact. Tipping a long range effort over the crossbar and then getting down well on a one-on-one breakaway to deny a clear-cut chance opportunity for the Martyrs to reduce the deficit. Kettering have eased their foot off the pedal as Merthyr blaze an effort over the crossbar.

Half-time:   Merthyr Town 0   Kettering Town 3

Goal!GOAL: Second-half underway, Kettering will need to make sure they don’t allow the home side back into this match after taking a 3-0 lead. Kettering starting to press forward again and a last ditch clearance from the Merthyr defence denies a fourth. Not for long however, in their next attack Kettering score goal number four with Brett Solkhon supplying the finishing touch.

Goal!GOAL: The home side haven’t given up by any means and they pull a goal back just minutes later as they break out of defence fast and catch the Poppies defence napping for once. Paul White is finally beaten by Kerry Morgan after a some good inter-passing by the home side nets them a deserved goal. It’s 4-1 to Kettering with more goals to come?

Goal!GOAL: The game has quietened down a little. Still chances at both ends but not as clear-cut openings as before as both sides starting to tire. A switch for Poppies as Hoenes replaces Howe. White makes another fine save and at the other end Milnes blasts high over the crossbar. It’s not over yet as Merthyr reduce the deficit through Ian Traylor to make it 4-2 to Poppies heading into the final ten minutes or so.

Back-to-back saves by Poppies keeper Paul White as the home side are buoyed by their goal and looking to try and get something from this one. Having been comfortably in front, Kettering are having weather a last minute storm from their hosts. The final whistle sounds on a good away victory for Kettering who tale over top spot again but Hereford keep on winning and are right on their shoulder with four games in hand.

Att: 556

Kettering Town: White, Thomas, Toseland, Orrin, Marshall, Mulligan, Solkhon, Howe, O Connor, Stevens, Milnes. Subs: Hoenes, Meikle, Barker.

Merthyr Town: O.Davies, Tancock, A.Davies, Harris, John, Evans, Franklin, Bowen, Jenkins, Traylor, Morgan. Subs: Hanford, Williams, Price, Prosser, Mahagan.