GNE suffer Derbyshire Cup defeat on penalties
Glossop North End exited the Derbyshire Senior cup at the second round stage after suffering defeat to Alfreton Town on Tuesday night at the Impact Arena.
Management duo Pete Band and Lloyd Morrison made 3 changes to the side that beat Market Drayton just 3 days earlier. Jamie McLellan came in at centre half in place of Curtis Jones. Pete Boyle started in the GNE frontline in place of Dominic Marie and Alex Elliott slotted into the midfield in place of Jack Tuohy. New signing Kane Hickman occupied a place on the bench for the Hillmen.
It was a quiet start to the game at both ends of the field as the teams settled into the game. Alfreton were first to register a shot on goal after a break down the right hand side led to Russ Saunders being forced into early action, thankfully the shot from Craig Hobson was lacking and was straight at Saunders.
GNE were forced into an early first half substitution when Josh Stachini was taken off with an injury with just under 20 minutes played, although it seems it is only a minor injury for Stachini who should be ok for Saturday. Ollie Thornley came on to replace Stachini and slotted in a left back.
Just one minute after making this change the Hillmen were to find themselves a goal down as Alfreton scored. Declan Bacon given an easy route into the GNE box tight to the by line on the right hand side, he had plenty of time to drill a low ball into Josh Gowling (still up the pitch from a previous set piece) to tap in from close range, Alfreton 1-0 GNE after 20 minutes.
However, GNE reacted well to the goal and were soon back on level terms. A sublime cross field ball fell to the feet of Adam Latham who got in over the top of the defence to square the ball for Mitch Bryant who slammed the ball home low into the goal, a great team goal from GNE 1-1.
The rest of the first half was a midfield battle between the two sides, the hosts thought they should have been awarded a penalty when Jamie McLellan fought with Craig Hobson in the box, the referee waved away the protests. The hosts ended the half on top but the score remained Alfreton 1-1 GNE.
At half time the Hillmen made a substitution with Jack Tuohy replacing Mitch Bryant.
The second half started much like the first half with both teams taking a little while to get going again after the break. GNE were looking promising in the wide areas with Adam Latham and Jack Tuohy proving a handful for the Alfreton full backs, numerous corners were however cleared by the hosts.
Jason Hill then looked to fall awkwardly on his right arm and was treated on the field before being substituted. This allowed Kane Hickman to enter the field and make his first appearance for GNE since re joining from Buxton.
GNE had a strong penalty claim when Pete Boyle appeared to be brought down deep in the Alfreton box, again the referee was having none of it. Up the other end Alfreton had a big chance to win the game after Reece Styche fired wide from a 1 on 1 position after Darren Thornton had initially misjudged a clearing header to leave Styche through on goal, a lucky escape for the Hillmen.
Glossop absorbed further late pressure from the hosts and after the regulation 90 minutes the score was 1-1, meaning the game was to be decided on penalties.
The first 8 penalties were all scored by both sides, Jack Tuohy, Matty Russell, Adam Latham and Pete Boyle all scoring for GNE and the shootout level at 4-4. Craig Hobson then stepped up to make it 5-4 to Alfreton, GNE needed to score to stay in the shootout. Darren Thornton was to take the fifth penalty for GNE, his penalty came crashing off the post and bounced off the keeper to be saved and meant that Alfreton Town had won the penalty shootout.
Despite the result GNe gave a good account of themselves and will look to build from this going into another important league fixture on Saturday when they visit Chasetown.
Matchday Report by Dan Bates
Photograph by Darren Clay