Report | AFC Telford 0-1 Blyth Spartans | National League North | 22/23

Graham Fenton’s side put some breathing space between them and the drop zone thanks to a Cedric Main header in the first half and an Alex Mitchell penalty save secured a third 1-0 win in just 8 days, the first time Spartans have won three league games in a row since April 2019.

Blyth had the first half chance of the game when in-form Rhys Evans burst down the right flank and swung in a cross that landed at the feet of Curtis Round but his effort from close range was immediately blocked.

The early stages of the half were fairly even with both times probing the others defence for a week spot with large spells of the first 20 minutes being a midfield battle.

The first big chance of the game would fall to Telford as a cross came in and landed at feet of striker Moore on the edge of six-yard box, but he was unable to control it properly and got the ball tangled in his feet before losing it and Alex Mitchell pounced on the loose ball.

It was Spartans turn next to have a go at goal as a ball into the box was headed into the air by Telford’s Nathan Cameron and is then half cleared by teammate Brad Bood who could only clear the ball straight into the path of Jordan Hickey who’s shot would fly over the bar.

25 minutes in and Spartans pressed down the right flank once again with Rhys Evans bursting down the wing and unleashing an inch perfect cross into the box that found Spartans forward Cedric Main who nodded home to put Spartans 1-0.

Telford would then take control of the rest of the half with a serious of crosses and corners that the Spartans defence dealt with well. The only clear-cut chance the hosts had came in the 40th minute where Telford skipper Evans won the ball in midfield, played a one-two with a teammate and struck an effort at goal that Mitchell was able to parry.

In the second half the game would open up a bit as Telford had the best of the opening five minutes, culminating in Gibson and Moore moving the ball around the edge of the box before the later fired an effort over the crossbar.

The Bucks then nearly made it 1-1 minutes later when forward Daniels stuck a shot from 25 yards out that was saved by Mitchell but he had to scramble to collect the ball.

On the hour mark Spartans their first change when Spellman was brought on to replace Curtis Round.

Moments later a long throw is played into the box, and it appeared to be Jordan Hickey who dragged down Telford centre back Flowers in the penalty area resulting in a penalty for the Bucks, with no protests from Blyth the players. Daniels stepped up and fired a low effort to Alex Mitchell’s left hand side where he was able to comfortably parry the shot away.

Michael Richardson made his return to the side as he was subbed on for Troy Chiabi and he nearly had immediate impact as he played in Main who muscled past Flowers and found some space in the Telford box but his shot was pushed away for a corner.

From the resulting a corner a bizarre moment followed as from the corner Telford centre back Flowers stuck a foot out and inadvertently rocketed the ball towards Young in the Telford goal who made a great reflex save with his feet to deny what would have been a horrendous own goal.

Telford then began throwing just about everything they could at Spartans and nearly equalised 77 minutes in when a ball came into the box and struck a Spartans defender and nearly rolled over the line but Mitchell was able to scramble across the line and get rid of it.

The hosts kept up the pressure and from a corner Flowers fired a ball towards goal and it cracked the outside of the post and went out of play. Blyth began to employ some well executed time wasting tactics as the game went on, naturally frustrating the Telford players and the home crowd.

The Bucks then won a free-kick just about 20 yards from goal in a great position but Livingstone struck the shot well over the bar.

In the four minutes of added time Telford threw bodies up the pitch an attempt to grab a late equaliser but they were unable to really worry Mitchell or the Spartans defence and Blyth held out for a vital win.

Attendance | 1064 (65 away fans)

AFC Telford | Young, Burke, Bood, Evans (c), Cameron, Flowers, Piggott, Moore (Livingstone), Allen, Daniels, Gibson.

Blyth Spartans | Mitchell, Evans, Liddle, Lees, Hickey, Round (Spellman) 60’ ,McGowan, Deverdics, Main, Cousin-Dawson, Chiabi (Richardson) 77′

Unused subs | Elsdon, Dopson, Gillies

Posted by BSAFC Community