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Akrigg hails first half performance in win at AFC Liverpool

5 months ago By Callum Chadwick

Manager pleased as Widnes record back-to-back victories

Joint boss Steve Akrigg admitted that he was "finally happy" as Widnes recorded a second consecutive league victory with a 4-2 win at AFC Liverpool.

Widnes dominated proceedings during the opening 30 minutes that produced four goals - three of them coming within a four-minute spell. Brad Smart, Sam Sheen and Jack Banister were all on the scoresheet, before goalkeeper Jack Cookson gifted his former side a fourth on the half-hour mark, putting the ball into his own net.

AFC Liverpool rallied in the second half, with James Sloane and James Howell both finding the net.

"The first half was superb," Akrigg said.

"The first 30 minutes was absolutely top-drawer - on a completely different level to them. 4-0 at half-time could have been a lot more.

"After 30 minutes, I felt that complacency crept in and we allowed them back into the game. They've only scored two because of us, and not the other way around.

"You have to give them some credit for picking themselves up for the second half, but from our point-of-view, we didn't look after the ball well enough. We were leaving ourselves outnumbered at the back for whatever reason.

"If you look at the amount of chances we had, I don't think that you could have moaned if we were close to double figures. That's not being disrespectful to AFC Liverpool but for the first half, there were times that we were moving the ball around that well that they looked like they were stood still.

"I spoke last week about moving the ball around quickly which forces the defence to shift which leads to mistakes. Three or four passes produced goals for us today which is great football to watch - something that we're good at."

Leading comfortably in the second half, joint bosses Akrigg and Kev Towey took the opportunity to give players a rest ahead of a tough run of fixtures that sees Widnes play four games in nine days.

He said: "Even Kev will admit that he's getting on know and needs a rest from time to time.

"We pulled Kev, Brad Smart's had a breather and Sean Myler has had a bit of an ongoing issue. It was a chance to give Chris Lomax, Lavo (Danny Laverty) and Sam Henry playing time and to see the game out.

"We eventually saw the game out, but not in the manner that I would have liked."

High-flying Hanley Town visit the Select Security Stadium on Saturday with Akrigg expecting a tough, physical battle against the Staffordshire-based side.

He said: "It'll be a really tough game.

"We've watched them and they're a side that like to get plenty of balls in the box - they're very good at what they do but it's up to us to counter that.

"I honestly think that if we play the way we did in the first 30 minutes tonight, not many teams will be able to live with us.

"Moving the ball that quickly is so hard to defend. As I say, once we play our style of football, we get results but once we get away from that, we struggle.

"Six points from our last two games. Two straight wins. I'm finally happy."

Updated 23:32 - 29 Nov 2017 by Callum Chadwick

Where next?

Widnes seal double swoop for Henry and Doran Confirmation of four recent arrivals at the Select Security Stadium
Towey and Akrigg to appear on Radio City Talk Co-bosses talking promotion and Macron Cup success on Tuesday afternoon

Tue 15 May
First Team Burscough
Cup 2 – 1
Mon 7 May
First Team Ashton Athletic
League 0 – 1
Sat 5 May
First Team Irlam
League 1 – 3

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