Revolution Premier League
Derwent seconds ultimately edged out Langwith firsts to record their first victory in the top flight, in what proved to be an incident packed game at the 3g. Certainly, Derwent Seconds have shown that they have both the grit and determination as well as ability to compete in the Revolution Premier League this season. Such a display is even more noteworthy in light of last weeks 6-1 humbling to James as they bounced back in tremendous style against a resilient Langwith side.
The opening minutes saw Derwent settle into a passing rhythm as the ball was splayed across the full width of the pitch. However, Langwith were soon harrying their opposition in an attempt to salvage possession for themselves. This pressing swiftly paid off as the first chance of the game presented itself to Langwith’s Dyaus Gohil who’s swerving shot from range soared over the crossbar.
Nevertheless, Derwent were becoming increasingly difficult to break down, with their robust midfield basis of Mark Askham complimented by the equally resolute Eloka Ntephe and Jules Delay. Such was Langwith’s exasperation to regain possession, that ill-discipline crept into their play. This proved costly as Delay’s dangerous free-kick was met by Nicholson who’s superb looping header glided over langwith keeper Steve Le Cornu to open the scoring.
This sparked a rather open period in which Derwent largely dominated as they sought to force home their advantage. Efforts from Ntephe and Jack Low epitomised the dynamism and endeavour of their attacking play which cut Langwith open time and time again. It was not long before a second goal followed and it came somewhat fortuitously for Derwent. A long throw by Delay penetrated Langwith’s area while their captain, Tom Benney was momentarily disorientated as he glanced his header straight into the path of Tom Mulligan who made no mistake from close range. Despite the fortunate nature of the goal, it was a merited lead precipitated by persistent pressurising that forced such an error to occur in the first instance.
It may be harsh on Langwith to accuse Derwent of complacency once they had taken a two goal lead, such was the quality of Langwith’s response. Ben Grindell produced a sensational pass that found sprightly winger Matt Morton bearing down on goal. Derwent keeper Charlie Cooper got a hand to it, but it wasn’t enough as the ball trickled into the net despite retreating defender Matty Elvin’s best efforts to prevent it from crossing the line. Langwith displayed renewed energy and their forward play became all the more potent as they sought an immediate equaliser. Sure enough, it didn’t take long before both teams were level. Benney atoned for his previous error with a clever ball down the wing to Gohil who’s own awareness should equally be recognised as he anticipated support. This arrived in the form of the impressive Morton who collected Gohil’s pass and neatly shifted the ball between his feet before slotting the ball past the helpless Cooper in goal.
Derwent would be forgiven for feeling sorrow for themselves after suffering such a cruel counterpunch by their opposition. However, they responded in quite contrary fashion as the game became increasingly more open as it reached the break. Striker Rob Nicholson typically latched onto a through ball before the onrushing Steve Le Cornu was deemed to have fouled him in the area as Derwent were awarded a penalty kick. Langwith felt aggrieved and were visibly convinced that Nicholson had fallen to ground rather theatrically. Justice, however, was served immediately as Le Cornu saved Jack Low’s penalty before Delay blazed over the rebound in what was the last piece of notable action before the break.
The second half began in similar style with both sides seeking an early goal. The best chance fell to Langwith’s Louis Pegg, after Benney’s pinpoint cross found him unmarked in the box. Unfortunately for Langwith, Pegg failed to direct his header as it sailed harmlessly over the bar. Langwith would come to rue this spell in which they were quite plainly on top with chances aplenty. Another soon followed after Marcus Campbell’s free kick was met by Parsonson ahead of Derwent’s flailing keeper Cooper yet the ball flew over the bar, much to Cooper’s relief.
It proved to be a moment of individual skill from Low that saw Derwent regain a foothold in the match. Cutting in from the left, he weaved his way into the penalty area before his effort crossed the line despite Benney’s desperate attempt to prevent a goal which only acted to help it on its way into the net. Both side’s defensive discipline was lacking which, in turn, granted each team’s forwards the pleasure of exploiting such frailties. Soon, Langwith levelled again after another customary run and cross from the impressive Benney was poorly cleared. The ball fell kindly for Campbell who’s shot fizzed through the crowded area with the unsighted Cooper unable to prevent the ball from finding the net.
The game remained for the taking for both sides as it reached its conclusion. With both teams equally poised, it was again a moment of combined magic by Derwent’s Low and Nicholson that sealed the game; their partnership proving troublesome for the Langwith defence throughout. Low’s marauding run resulted in a clever through ball to Nicholson who took the shot early and first time from a tight angle, finding the corner magnificently. It was an appropriate finish, crowning what was a enthralling match and one which typified the entertainment and excitement of college football.
After the game, Derwent seconds captain. Matty Elvin spoke to Nouse saying, “We gave away a couple of sloppy goals and I think we can improve a little bit at the back in order to shut up shop. However, with twenty minutes to go I think we defended really well.”
He continued by praising the forwards saying, “They worked really hard for each other and Rob Nicholson was a class act, they couldn’t handle him. All in all, I’m very happy with the win.”
Meanwhile, Langwith captain Tom Benney said, “It was end to end, there were a lot of chances. I thought we looked pretty good when we passed the ball. We probably rushed the ball too often trying to play the killer pass too early. I thought some of the decisions were harsh but we played really well despite that and I think we definitely deserved something from the game. We were very unlucky.”
Derwent Seconds: Cooper (GK); Whittaker, Conner, Elvin (C), Reynolds; Askham, Ntephe, Delay, Low, Mulligan; Nicholson. Subs: Stones, Simpson, Castiglione.
Langwith Firsts: Le Cornu (GK); Pegg, Campbell, Pickersgill, Benney (C); Hudson, Parsonson, Vidal, Morton, Grindell; Gohil. Subs: Okusanya, Chaimo, Hannah.
Man of the Match: Rob Nicholson