Magnificent Matlock Town cruise to Senior Cup final win
Magnificent Matlock won the Derbyshire Senior Cup in style and with consumate ease as they thrashed Gresley for the second time in three years at the Proact Stadium on Tuesday night.
This was without prolific Marcus Dinanga finding the scoresheet as a Marc Newsham double and strikes from Michael Williams, Jake Green and Niall McManus saw Matlock home at a canter.
The Gladiators were 7-0 winners in 2015 and a repeat and probably more emphatic scoreline looked on the cards when the Evostik NPL Premier Division outfit made it five against the side from a division below midway through the second half.
That was where the pain ended for the Moatmen who apart from an encouraging opening quarter of an hour were outclassed and taken to the cleaners by men from the Premier Division .
Gresley needed to score early to put Matlock in trouble but apart from a busy start from the underdogs which saw Matt Melbourne strike the post without knowing too much about it in a 21st minute scramble, they rarely troubled Town custodian Phil Barnes thereafter.
Matlock had threatened themselves in that opening period but once Newsham had smashed a twenty yarder towards goal, and goalkeeper Max Atkins was both surprised and embarrassed by the venom in the 24th minute shot, Gresley were on to a loser.
It was the catalyst Town needed to increase the tempo and put the Moatmen to the sword again and an outplayed Gresley can have few complaints about the outcome.
Newsham netted on 24 minutes, the lead could easily have been stretched when Dinanga fired across goal soon afterwards. Michael Williams, McManus and finally Dinanga after a flowing move of quality might all of stretched the Gladiators’ advantage before on 42 minutes Williams was on hand to nod home from a corner on the right to give Gresley the proverbial mountain to climb.
Their hopes of a fightback were dashed clinically when Newshamstabbed in a Ted Cribley cross three minutes after the resumption.
The gulf in class looked to be more than a division’s difference as Matlock stroked the ball about with possibly a stroke of arrogance. Soon Jake Greenregistered his first goal of the season direct from a 54 th minute free kick which gave Max Atkin little chance of keeping out.
Cribley had two presentable opportunities to add to the Moatmens’ anguish before a crisp McManus shot finished off a marvellous flowing move to complete and compound Gresley’s misery.
But scarcely anyone in red could fashion a response and both Cribley and surprise substitute Paul Ennis could not profit from chances to make it 7-0 in a Proact final again.
Skipper Adam Yates lifted the impressive trophy to the cheers of Matlock fans who will reflect on a terrific campaign.
MATLOCK TOWN: Phil Barnes, Liam Marsden, Jake Green, Joe Doyle-Charles, Adam Yates, Dwayne Wiley, Niall McManus, Michael Williams (Cleveland Taylor), Marc Newsham (Paul Ennis 68), Marcus Dinanga (Jamie Yates 75), Ted Cribley.
OTHER SUBS: 15 Andy Wright 16 Niico Degirolano
REFEREE: Danny Middleton (HEANOR).
BEST GLADIATOR: Marc Newsham.