Team Dudley extend lead at the top of Div 1
By Simon King
TD put four past Darlo
Team Dudley welcomed Darlaston to Priory Road in a top of the table six-pointer hoping to continue their recent good form.
TD got off to the perfect start when with just over a minute gone into the game Darlaston went a goal behind. A misplaced clearance from Ryan Jones found Tyrone Clarke
in space inside the 18-yard area. The striker was happy to add to his impressive seasons tally and he had time to pick his spot to beat keeper Ryan Pratt and grab his 7th of the campaign. Darlaston were now chasing the game.
The early goal gave the home side a tremendous boost and the Dudley lads were playing football as it should be played, on the deck, keeping possession and looking dangerous going forward. Darlaston were chasing shadows for a while. Chances were created for Tyrone Clarke
, the impressive James Hill
, Alex Pinches
and Vlad Lungu. Darlaston were struggling to muster any efforts on goal, tame efforts from Swann from the left-hand side and Alex Solomon from distance were the only efforts on goal in the first half.
Team Dudley doubled their lead in the 37th minute. An Alex Pinches
corner was met with a Mark Swann Clearing header, which found Lungu in acres of space on the edge of the box, his well struck shot found its way through a crowd of players giving the keeper no chance. Vlad with his 4th in 5 games to make it 2-0 at half time.
At half time we spoke about staying disciplined against an overly physical side and hoping that the officials would manage the situation.
We scored in the first minute of the second half. A needless free kick was given away by Darlaston with a silly push 20 yards out. Up stepped skipper James Hill
to curl a right foot shot around the wall and get his 3rd of the season (which also puts him one away from equaling the all-time club record).
Team Dudley now had a nice cushion but Darlaston kept probing and trying to force a reply. However they were finding a well organised TD hard to break down. Team Dudley continued to attack, looking dangerous all of the time although Mills & his coaching staff will be a little frustrated at the amount of chances wasted.
Mark Swann had a smart header saved by Team Dudley Josh Rodgers and a Danny Mayne snapshot was also dealt with well by the home keeper. In the 61st minute Darlaston did get on the scoresheet and looked like they may get back into the game. Substitute Jamie Holder heading in a Noah Diallo corner.
In the 67th minute from a corner Nathan Jones
stole in at the far post to head home past Pratt and restore the three goal cushion.
In the 79th minute Darlaston centre back Stanton collected his second booking of the game for a really poor tackle on substitute Carrick Chaney
leaving referee Nick Grey no choice but to produce a red card and leaving Darlaston to play the final 11 minutes with 10 men.
Darlaston scored a in the 88th minute. A 40 yard long ball finding Danny Mayne unmarked in the area, Mayne produced a right footed overhead kick across Rogers to make the final score 4 -2. Well taken by the striker but disappointing defending and goalkeeping from TD.
Overall a very strong performance and good result to match.