Pos' and Clarence's first game ends in defeat
By Heanor Town Football Club
Heanor Town 1-2 West Bridgford
Joint-managers Paul Postlethwaite and Glen Clarence admitted after the game that the job they’ve inherited was ‘larger than expected’ as two Tim Hopkinson goals ensured the Lions were still waiting for their first win of 2019.
Heanor had much of the possession in the first-half without creating any clear-cut chances. Jamie Sleigh and Sam Birks firing wide when in good positions, before Jordan Ball’s long-range strike was tipped wide by Sam Clark in the West Bridgford goal.
The pressure seemed to spring the visitors into life and they ended the first period strongly. Bijan Pakrouz found space in the penalty area to slot into the bottom corner, only to be denied by the assistant’s flag. Oliver Pratt was Heanor’s hero as he cleared Ryan Whitehurst’s header off the line and Ben Gough managed to hold on to Pakrouz’s acrobatic effort from the rebound.
The second-half followed a similar pattern to the first. Jamie Sleigh volleying over from close-range after good work down the left-hand side.
It was the visitors who broke the deadlock in the 65th-minute, however. The Lions were caught on a quick counter-attack and Tim Hopkinson rose highest to beat Gough at his near post.
It arguably came against the run of play but the lead was short lived as Sam Birks scored his second goal in three games when he met Sleigh’s perfectly weighted cross to level in the 74th-minute.
It was a goal which should have been the catalyst for a home win, however just three minutes later, the Lions found themselves behind for a second time. Jake Carlisle’s headed clearance struck the back of Pratt and broke to Hopkinson, who found the roof of the net from five yards.
The Lions still had chances to earn a point, but Birks could only prod wide from the rebound after Sleigh’s shot was saved.
As the game entered stoppage time Jesse Vowles looked to bring Heanor level but his lifted effort went just over the crossbar after he expertly brought a long ball down.
West Bridgford held on to claim all three points and leave the Lions in 12th place in the East Midlands Counties League ahead of next week’s visit to high-flyers Radford.