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Conor Bursnell3 Dec 2023 - 18:56
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Atherstone Town record the first win of the Mitch Thompson era.

Atherstone Town picked their first win under new manager Mitch Thompson with a 2-0 victory against Studley on Saturday afternoon.

Tom Smith gave the Adders the lead with a well taken first half goal, as the Adders enjoyed a positive first 45 minutes.

The visitors pushed hard for a second half equaliser, allowing Atherstone to counter attack and Jame Matthew’s to make it two and secure the points.

Next for the Adders is a run of away games, starting at Uttoxeter Town on 9th December.

Few would have expected Saturdays game to go ahead with the freezing temperatures during the week, but as the pitch was deemed playable focus had to be turned on. Studley had been very impressive against Atherstone earlier in the campaign, coming from behind to win 3-1.

This was a different Atherstone side however, who had put in an excellent performance against a strong Villa side the week before. The grit and toughness on display that day shone through again in another good performance.

The Adders got at their visitors right out the gate, and Studley were lucky to keep eleven men on the field after an early last man foul. Lewis Collins was a problem for defenders throughout, and nearly opened the scoring with a lobbed effort that was caught by the keeper.

It was mishandling by the Studley keeper which led to the opening goal, as a cross from the right hand side was dropped in a crowded penalty area. The ball arrived at Tom Smiths feet, who swept home across goal into the bottom corner.

Atherstone deserved their lead, but Studley were definitely in the game and forced Carl O’Neil into some smart saves. At the other end, Collins looked certain to make it two before half time but saw his one on one effort saved.

After a breather and quick defrost during half time, Studley came out in the second half and tested the resilience of their hosts. The Adders stood up to the onslaught, with Callum Rudd and Corey Alcock forming a good partnership and marshalling the back line well.

New addition Richard Blythe slotted into the side excellently, providing defensive support and allowing his fellow midfielders the freedom to get forward and support in attack. At the midway point of the half, Studley were just starting to edge the contest.

That was until the Adders struck a lightning counter attack, with Collins working an excellent ball out to James Matthew’s. Bearing down on goal, Matthew’s made no mistakes and rifled home into the bottom corner.

The second goal took the wind out the visitors sails, and the remainder of the game was seen out with a minimum of fuss to bring home an impressive three points. The win was the first for Mitch Thompson and his management team, and will be crucial for confidence heading into a run of away fixtures.

That run starts at high flying Uttoxeter Town on December 9th, before a trip to take on Stone Old Alleynians on December 16th. The Adders will not play at home again until 23rd December when they host Tividale.

The next few games could well shape the rest of the season for the Adders, and the support of the Adders faithful will be as important as ever. Be sure to carry on getting the boys in red and white.

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