Warrington Town 2 - 0 Bamber Bridge (01/01/19)
Alan Bateson reports from Brig's New Year's Day in Cheshire
Bamber Bridge suffered defeat once again at the hands of Warrington Town and for the 3rd game in a row against the Cheshire outfit.
Despite a missed penalty, Mick Taylor's men will feel they did enough to earn a point, but ultimately the home side took all three points because they where clinical in front of goal.
A first half of few chances, but Brig played some nice controlled passing football and certainly gave as good as they got from their lofty hosts. After a lacklustre start from both sides, the game came to life in the 17th minute. Danny Roccia in goal for the visitors made a fine save from a close range shot, the rebound being blasted wide. From the goal kick, Brig broke down the left and won a corner. The in swinging corner was dropped by the keeper and Ali Waddecar was 1st to react and aimed a shot for the top corner, the keeper leapt to his left to fingertip it away for another corner.
Ali Waddecar again came close on 30 minutes, this time a curling 20 yard effort, superbly saved at full stretch by The Yellows keeper. Brig were starting to ask questions of the home defence and on 40 minutes were awarded a penalty after Matt Lawlor was fouled following a floated free kick in to the box. Ali stepped up and placed his spot kick to the keepers bottom left hand post. The keeper guessed right and dived to his left to make a fine save. Brig continued to dominate the last few minutes of the 1st half, but the referee called time on proceedings leaving the Lancashire side to rue their missed opportunities.
The 2nd half started in fast failing light with the floodlights barely making any difference. However, there was still sufficient light for Warrington to find the net on 47 minutes. A move down the left wing led to a low cross across the Brig box, it wasn’t cleared and home striker Connor McCarthy was able to poke it home unchallenged at the far post.
Bamber Bridge responded and continued to play their neat passing game. They where finding chances however, hard to come by as the dominant Warrington back line held firm. A Chris Marlow volley that the keeper saved comfortably was as close as Brig came before Warrington doubled their lead on the hour. A weak looking shot from McCarthy was fumbled by Roccia and the ball squirmed from his grasp and trickled over the line leaving Brig with a mountain to climb.
With the game effectively won, Warrington where content to allow Brig plenty of midfield possession while keeping them at arms length. Brig made three 2nd half changes, Danny Forbes and Chris Marlow were both replaced following knocks, with Chris Churchman and Darren McKnight coming on to replace them. Kieran Young came on to replace loanee Lucca Navarro with 5 minutes remaining.
Brig almost conjured a consolation goal in the final moments of the game when after fine combination play between Waddecar and Lawlor on the left led to a fine cross, Phil Doughty rose well from 8 yards and although his header had the keeper beaten it dropped inches wide of the post. The referee added 3 extra minutes before calling a halt to the game and Brig where left to reflect on a decent display but with nothing to show for their efforts. The home side will no doubt consider this to be a routine victory in their pursuit of promotion.
Full Time: Warrington Town - 2 Bamber Bridge - 0
Bamber Bridge: Roccia, Spooner, Dodd, Doughty, Lawlor (Capt.), Dawson, Waddecar, Forbes, Dudley, Navarro, Marlow
Subs: Linney, Churchman, McKnight, Young, Rigby
Match reporter: Alan Bateson
Photos: Full gallery of photos available here: Match photos on Flickr