Ilkeston FC continued their commanding run of form with a comprehensive victory at Coronation Park on Boxing Day, further adding to the Badgers’ misery.
It was the Robins’ fourth league win in a row as they continue to climb the table, with Eastwood still searching for their first victory under player/manager Chris Shaw.
Ilkeston boss Kevin Wilson afterwards declared his side’s display as ‘average’, but that was of little comfort to the hosts who never recovered from being three goals adrift at half-time.
The decent stuff began in the ninth minute when the Robins built pressure on the right. Matt Richards was on the other side of the pitch but cut inside and scored with precision when the ball was crossed.
In 26 minutes, Aaron Hooton had a header saved by Badgers keeper Richard Stainsby. The striker drove the loose ball across the face of goal and the home side were mightily relieved.
But that lasted less than a minute when they were undone by another fine move.
As the ball came over, left-back Steven Smith looped home a header which seemed to take an eternity to drop into the net.
In 34 minutes, Greg Simmons blasted a free-kick well over the Ilkeston goal as the Badgers sought a way back into the game.
But the points were effectively sealed by Ilkeston in the 45th minute when Hooton eased a long pass into the path of Richards, who drilled the ball home low and true.
Eastwood briefly caused a few alarms for the visitors early in the second-half with a goal from Paulo Piliero, once a star in a fine Ilkeston Town young reserve side.
In the 49th minute, he cut in from the right, found space and exploited it with a left foot shot past keeper Chris Martin.
Would the Badgers find a way to dig themselves out of a three-goal hole? The answer was “no” because llkeston regained a grip, with Ryan Wilson blending imaginative passing and undervalued work as a defensive shield in midfield.
In 58 minutes, Ilkeston scored again with a goal which oozed determination but was ultimately granted by a linesman.
Gary Ricketts and Hooton ended up face down on the pitch with Eastwood defender Josh Raven as they contested a right wing cross. The ball skidded towards the net but Stainsby claimed he managed to scoop it off the line.
The linesman came down firmly in Ilkeston’s favour, Hooton ultimately awarded the goal he deserved in a fine display.
That was as good as it got for either side but that was fine by the visitors as Eastwood were left licking their wounds once again.
Wednesday, December 26, 2012
Eastwood: 1 Richard Stainsby 2 Jake Green 3 Josh Raven 4 Mitch Hanson 5 Romaine Graham (c) 6 Danny Elliott 7 Greg Simmons (Vijay Selvam 71) 8 Danny Hall (Gary Breach 46) 9 Matt Harris 10 Lavell White 11 Paolo Piliero. Sub not used: Chris Shaw, Travis Munn, Bradley Munn
Scorer: Piliero 49
Ilkeston: 1 Chris Martin 2 James Cullingworth 3 Steven Smith 4 Laurie Wilson 5 Greg Pearson 6 Russell Cooke (Ellis Storey 46) 7 Jack Watts 8 Ryan Wilson 9 Gary Ricketts (Dereece Gardner 82) 10 Aaron Hooton 11 Matt Richards (Russell Peel 85)
Subs not used: Joe Wilcox, James Reid
Scorers: Richards 12, 45, Smith 27, Hooton 55
Att: 512 Ref: E Smart (West Midlands)
by Rod Malcolm