Maltby Main 0
Long Eaton United 2
Long Eaton ended Maltby Main’s run of four consecutive wins by sealing a 2-0 victory in South Yorkshire on Saturday.
The match was played on a pitch heavily damaged by the weather and not conducive to flowing football.
After a scrappy first-half, midfielder Blaine Hancock, now a regular starter for Long Eaton, netted to give the visitors the lead. He latched onto a through ball from his captain Shaun Rickford to have the travelling supporters singing in the rain.
Maltby tried valiantly to drag themselves back into the game but this merely provided more space for the visitors, and ten minutes after going in front, Long Eaton doubled their advantage.
Hancock again was the man with the Midas touch – this time with a free-kick on the left which he whipped in hoping for a flick header but the ball avoided everyone, including the Maltby defence, and snuck into the far corner of the net - the flummoxed keeper a mere spectator.
Hancock’s double secured the points for Long Eaton, pushing them up to 16th in the league.
Speaking after the game, manager Charlie Palmer accepted his team had found the rejuvenation they required, and praised his back four for their clean sheet, their seventh of the season.
Long Eaton turn their attentions to the Cup as they play host to Coleshill Town in the second round of the FA Vase competition on Saturday.
Report by Adam Slater