Ilkeston FC 1 Marine 0
Ilkeston FC’s season came to a close with a victory on Saturday as fellow mid-table dwellers Marine were beaten at the New Manor Ground.
As end of season ‘dead rubbers’ go, this wasn’t a bad encounter, despite the Robins having their Player of the Year Joe Maguire sent off just 12 minutes in.
The numerical difference was never particularly evident for the remainder, Matt Richards’ goal just before half-time instead proving the pivotal moment.
Ilkeston were on a high following their Derbyshire Senior Cup success just four days previously but started a little slowly, Nick Rogan afforded space to put an overhead kick just wide for the visitors five minutes in.
Then came Maguire’s unfortunate end to an excellent season, as he went in heavily on Michael Ordish who otherwise looked likely to be through on goal, and the referee wasted little time in producing a red card with little protestation from those in red and white.
If anything, the match was a lot more even after that than it had been before, Richards’ free-kick from out wide going just too high, Rogan seeing another shot blocked by the head of Ryan Wilson as it headed towards goal, and then James Reid volleying just wide from the edge of the penalty area for the home side.
Rogan was the biggest Marine threat and he was just wide with a long-range effort on 26 minutes, before Richards set off on a fine run from inside his own half which ended with a weak but troublesome shot that keeper Ryan McMahon had to push wide for a corner.
But the only goal arrived on 40 minutes and was relatively simple. A short corner was played to Laurie Wilson, and his cross was glanced home by Richards with the faintest of touches.
There was still time before the break for Reid to blaze over from six yards out after Richards’ pull back, but the lead was Ilkeston’s at the interval.
The second-half wasn’t quite as lively but chances still came and went, while there was also a farewell appearance for Robins defender Russell Cooke, who had announced his retirement from the game during the week.
Ordish forced Chris Martin to tip a decent effort from 25 yards over the top, and the same player produced a similar outcome from a free-kick out wide on 73 minutes.
Indeed, Marine were looking likely to get an equaliser as time went on, Robbie Lawton just too high from distance and then a Matty Brown sizzler seeing Martin airborne again to help the ball over the crossbar.
At the other end, Richards forced McMahon into a save low down to earn a corner eight minutes from time, but the closest the game would come to a second goal was in injury-time, when a Marine corner from the right was met by Brown but his header clipped the top of the crossbar and ended up safely behind the goal, the referee ending the game, and the season, shortly afterwards.
Saturday, May 4, 2013
Ilkeston: 1 Chris Martin 2 Liam Mahon (Russell Cooke 52) 3 Ryan Wilson 4 Michael Williams 5 Joe Maguire 6 Greg Pearson 7 James Reid 8 Laurie Wilson (c) 9 Gary Ricketts (Aaron Hooton 88) 10 Callum Chettle (Kane Richards 76) 11 Matt Richards Subs not used: Akil Wright, Danny Gordon
Scorer: M Richards 40
Marine: 1 Ryan McMahon (c) 2 Shaun Dowling 3 John Shaw 4 Matty Brown 5 Danny Grannon 6 Robbie Lawton 7 Shaun Doherty (Matty Devine 46) 8 Alan Burton (Liam Rice 64) 9 Will Jones 10 Nick Rogan 11 Michael Ordish. Subs not used: Phil Brazier, Callum Williams
Ref: Mark Griffiths (Doncaster)
Star Robin: Matt Richards
by Mark Duffy