Alfreton Town boss Billy Heath proud of side's efforts in defeat to Nottingham Forest

Alfreton Town manager Billy Heath was proud of his side’s efforts as they began pre-season with a credible 2-1 defeat against a strong Nottingham Forest XI on Saturday afternoon.

Monday, 12th July 2021, 9:11 am
Forest winger Alex Mighten is shadowed.
Forest winger Alex Mighten is shadowed.

Brennan Johnson opened the scoring mid-way through the first-half, and although Shaun Tuton equalised just after the break, Will Swan secured the victory for the visitors at The Impact Arena.

Although Heath admitted that his team were unfortunate to lose the game, the boss was happy to get some valuable game time under their belt and with the overall performance on the day.

He said: “I was pleased with what I saw. No-one is anywhere near the level to play more than 45 minutes. They all needed a half of football.

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Alfreton Town boss Billy Heath.

“I thought both halves they did very well. The first-half was probably both teams’ more experienced sides and we found it really difficult.

“They kept the ball well and were a lot sharper than ourselves. As a whole, I was pleased. Second-half we made another 11 changes and I thought the boys did very, very well.

“We were unfortunate to lose at the end – not like the result matters – but the main objective was that we came out of it with no injuries and to make sure we got at least a half out of the legs.”

It was also the first time that Alfreton welcomed supporters back to North Street in 484 days, after they played all of last season behind-closed-doors due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Matt Rhead makes his debut for Alfreton.

The 50-year-old, who is entering into his fourth campaign in charge of the Reds, was delighted to see the fans and admitted that football isn’t the same without them.

He continued: “It makes a massive difference having the fans back. I’ve said before that last season wasn’t enjoyable at all.

“It wasn’t what football is about at this level or any level. You have to have supporters in and it was fantastic to see everybody today.

“It was a good atmosphere and it creates that buzz around the place. Both sets of supporters were fantastic.”