Stamford AFC still waiting for first three points at home
There were two red cards and three goals in Stamford AFC’s game on Saturday but the Daniels’ wait for three points at the Zeeco in the Evo-Stik NPL this season goes on.
Stamford AFC lost 2-1 to Workington despite the visitors being reduced to 10-men for 46 minutes of the match.
The Workington skipper Gari Rowntree was the man who was given his marching orders shortly before the break, with his side 1-0 up thanks to a strike from Joseph McGee in the 38th minute.
Despite playing a man down Workington doubled their lead midway through the second half when Philip McLuckie found the back of the net.
In a rare attack the Daniels pulled a goal back just three minutes later when Lewis Carr converted a corner, with a heavy deflection off Workington’s Joshua Calvert.
With 10 minutes left to play Stamford stopper Richard Knight joined Rowntree in the changing rooms early, dismissed for handling the ball outside the box.
His dismissal all but ended any hopes of a Stamford comeback and the new manager Andrew Wilson must wait for his first victory with the club having presided over three loses and a draw since taking the reins from David Staff.
The Stamford side had a new look to it, with four players heading out of the club since Staff left on September 22, Wilson has now signed three new players and all were involved on Saturday. This week striker Nabil Shariff returned to the club and he was thrown straight back into the thick of the action, with Wilson short of striking options having seen Greg Smith and Ryan Robbins leave the club and Jordan Smith pick up a six game ban for misconduct charges dating back to Stamford’s now infamous loss to Ashton United.
Ellis Myles, re-signed last week, started at left back and another new signing, defensive midfielder Roger Lee from Rugby Town, started on the bench.
However the selection which raised the most eyebrows was skipper Richard Jones having to make do with a place on the bench with Carr and Dominic McGarr taking the centre back spots, alongside Myles and Nathan Fox at wingback.
Jon Challinor moved up to midfield and wore the captain’s armband.
Shawn Richards continued his return from injury with a first start at the Zeeco, playing in an advanced position.
But the new look team were under pressure from the off. Workington almost took the lead just three minutes in, McLuckie directed a header goalwards and it took an outstanding save from Knight to keep the score at 0-0.
Challinor had the first of the Daniels’ chances, but his shot from an Andy Hall corner was comfortably saved by Workington keeper Jonny Jamieson. It was one of just three shots on target that Stamford managed all afternoon.
Mistakes at the back have killed Stamford this season and they almost undid themselves again midway through the half, McGree latched onto the ball after the hosts lost it in their own half and he went past Knight but Myles just got back to block the effort.
However McGee could not be denied for long and he neatly chipped the ball over Knight for the lead.
Workington were looking more likely to add a second but then a minute before the break Rowntree was dismissed for his second yellow card offence after taking out Challinor, having already been cautioned for a physical challenge on Myles.
The Daniels came out with intent in the second half but struggled to breakdown the visiting defence.
Andy Hall had a shot from distance and Nathan Hicks found the side netting but until the scrappy goal that was as good as it got.
True to form the second Workington goal came from a Stamford error, a poor clearance from a corner saw the ball fall to McLuckie who finished from close range.
Stamford chased an equaliser having pulled a goal back through Carr, but were caught on the break by McLuckie and Knight, out of position up-field, cynically saved a shot with his hands forcing the referee to show him red. McGarr took over in goal and made a great stop to deny Gareth Arniston a goal late in the day.
Dan Clements could have earned Stamford a point but his late shot, set-up by some nice play by Shariff, was blocked.
The Daniels host Ilkeston tomorrow (Tuesday) night, 7.45pm ko.
Stamford AFC: Richard Knight, Ellis Myles, Nathan Fox (Will Rawdon), Jon Challinor, Lewis Carr, Dominic McGarr, Andrew Hall, Nathan Hicks (Jordan Neil), Nabil Shariff, Dan Clements, Shawn Richards.
Subs unused: Richard Jones and Roger Lee.
Workington: Jonny Jamieson, Jacob Simpson, Gari Rowntree, Kyle May, Sam Smith, Anthony Wright, Philip McLuckie, James Earle, Matthew Tymon (Gareth Arnison), Joseph McGee (Joshua Calvert), Conor Tinnion.
Subs unused: Robert McCartney, Liam Studholme and Alex Mitchell.