Three chances, three goals - that summed up Ilkeston’s first-half at the New Manor Ground on Saturday and it was enough to win them this match in impressive fashion.
What’s more, the sequence came in the space of just 11 minutes, the Robins blowing away their opponents who were unable to muster much of a fightback in the second-half despite pulling a goal back early on.
Ilkeston were fully deserving of the three points, not just for the goal blitz but also for defending well throughout to deny a United side who offered plenty going forward but lacked a crucial cutting edge in the final third.
The visitors had started very well, Andy Welsh and Liam Brownhill having shots blocked on the way to goal and Matty Wolfenden put through the middle but seeing his attemped lob gathered by goalkeeper Jordan Smith.
The Robins had barely mustered an attack until the 25th minute, but that’s when they got their knives out, sliced through United three times and won the points.
Che Adams has courted plenty of attention from scouts recently and proceeded to show exactly why.
Receiving the ball just inside his own half he set off for goal and never looked back, holding off two challenges before sliding the ball superbly past David Carnell for a magical opener.
Any thoughts that might signal United to double their efforts were silenced just three minutes later as Ilkeston made it two.
Luke Shaw found Kane Richards and he jinked his way to the byline before pulling the ball both past Carnell and back to Rob Duffy who nodded home from six yards out, a defender on the line unable to keep the ball out.
Joe Fox put a good chance over the top for United moments later, but on 36 minutes Ilkeston essentially ended the game as a contest when James Reid’s fine pass found Duffy and he returned the earlier favour to Richards by sending him in on goal where he rounded Carnell and finished well to make it three.
Luke Ashworth put a header wide from a corner right on half-time, but United didn’t know what had hit them and faced an uphill struggle to get any points - something they usually achieve against Kevin Wilson’s men.
The Robins nearly made it four early in the second-half when a poor Carnell clearance found Duffy who beat a defender but couldn’t find a way past the United keeper who saved low down.
Any hopes United had of getting anything would rely heavily on getting an early goal back and they did just that, Jerome Wright going down in the penalty area under a challenge from Shaw before picking himself up to net from the spot on 53 minutes.
They would have further chances too. Wolfenden mis-hit when in a great position ten yards out, Ashworth headed over from a free-kick and Mike Norton blazed a volley over from the edge of the box.
At the other end, Richards lobbed just wide and Adams twice went close late on, but the Robins would ride out any furter United pressure to take the points and move into sixth place.
Saturday, October 18, 2014:
Ilkeston: 1 Jordan Smith 2 Luke Shaw 3 Kieran Wallace 4 Matt Baker 5 Joe Maguire (c) 6 Jack Lane 7 James Reid 8 Callum Chettle 9 Rob Duffy 10 Kane Richards (Ashley Hunter 90) 11 Che Adams (Tyrell Waite 90). Subs not used: Danny Gordon, Mike Williams, Eli Bako
FCUM: 1 David Carnell 2 Liam Brownhill 3 Lewis Lacy 4 David Birch (c) 5 James Knowles (Callum Byrne 83) 6 Luke Ashworth 7 Matty Wolfenden 8 Joe Fox (Greg Daniels 50) 9 Mike Norton 10 Jerome Wright 11 Andy Welsh (Tom Greaves 50) Subs not used: Tom Brown, Chris Lynch
Ref: G Stretton
Star Robin: Kane Richards
Report by Mark Duffy (Twitter - @DuffersSport)
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