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Downton 0 - 3 Alton

Posted: 16.01.18

Alton welcomed back Mark Taylor after a long injury on Saturday and Matt Petts returned in goal and there was a long awaited league debut for Ryan Thomas, as Alton put Downton to the sword.

In fact it was Petts who kept Alton in the game as with the score two nil, he saved a penalty, which helped to deflate Downton and allow Alton to return with all three points.

The game started on a bobbly pitch and with Downton employing the long ball game there was not much finesse to the game, Alton tried to get the ball down and play, but all to often the pitch played a part and the ball bobbled at an inopportune moment.

Alton had the first chance when Thomas cut in and was fouled as he was about to shot, Danny Knee's free kick was saved by Lewiarz in the Downton goal. Captain Matt Graham played the ball down the wing for Knee to run onto, but unfortunalty for Alton there was no one to turn the ball home. Downton had a free kick that was cleared before Petts had to be alert to save a header from a long throw.

Downton's Charlie Cooper hit the post before Alton took the lead. Max Paddon blocked a clearance, and played the ball to Mark Corbett and he in turn found Taylor Watts whose left foot shot gave the keeper no chance.

Watts had across shot saved before Thomas looking for a debut goal shot wide, Paddon shot wide before Petts was called into action as Alton lost the ball in midfield, and Petts got down well to turn the shot from Cooper for a corner.

Danny Knee forced the Downton keeper into a fine save, before slack defending by Alton allowed Zac Ford a free header but he couldn't keep his effort on target. Matt Graham put in a fine free kick and it just evaded Mark Taylor at the far post.

Alton were guilty of more slack defending right at the end of the half when a cross found Tommy Aldridge, with the freedom of the penalty area, but he missed controlled the ball which allowed Williams to clear.

Alton started the second half determined to put the game to bed with the second goal, Knee got through and again Lewiarz was equal to it with a save, Corbett's cross was headed over by Thomas before Alton's determination was rewarded with the second goal. Graham's corner was headed goal wards by Corbett, and in the ensuing melee Ben Williams forced the ball home.

Watts, Knee and Corbett had further chances to increase the lead, before Mark Taylor was adjudged to have committed a foul in the box. Matt Petts stood tall and correctly dived to his left to save Cooper's spot kick and then recovered to make sure the rebound went safely wide.

With Downton pressing forward gaps were appearing behind their defence, Watts got clear but no one could get on the end of his cross, Knee got through beat the covering defender but just lifted his shot over the bar.

Alton got the killer third goal when after playing an advantage Danny Knee got down the right and his pull back was slammed home by Corbett. This goal took the stuffing out of Downton, although they managed to hit the bar in the final minute. But Alton held on for the three points, special mention must be made to centre backs Mark Taylor and Ben Williams who were subjected to ninety minutes of long ball humped up to the centre forwards and with the very odd exception they won all their battles.

Alton will look to take this form forward to next week when they travel to play Verwood Town.


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