Minnesota visit is hailed a huge success by both clubs

American side Minnesota United arrived at the Autoworld Arena on Monday night and provided a treat for everyone in attendance.

A total of 358 spectators saw United win 3-0 in a game which was closer than the final scoreline suggests (see page 43), but it was also a night for making new friends and establishing links between the two clubs.

Matlock chairman Tom Wright said everyone involved in staging the game should be proud of their efforts.

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He said: “It was a great night for Matlock Town and the non-league game. Minnesota are obviously a very good side and we can be proud of our players’ efforts in what was a good competitive match.

“It was lovely to host them and we’ll have so many special memories of the night. They were lovely people and we’ve made some great friends.

“A lot of people at Matlock worked very hard both beforehand in arranging the game and on the night itself, so I’d like to thank them and congratulate them as they should be immensely proud.”

Matlock chief executive Keith Brown received an e mail from Minnesota’s Alexander De Rosa on Tuesday which read: “It was a pleasure meeting you and the Matlock Town staff last night. I want to express my sincere gratitude for all the hospitality shown to the team and staff.

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“We were massively impressed with the town, the club and the fans as a whole. Don’t hesitate to ask if there’s anything the club can do for you in the future.”

Gladiators boss Mark Atkins also enjoyed the night, adding: “It was a good competitive game although I would liked to have faced them with a full side. Minnesota are a very good side but I felt we did ourselves justice and our fitness levels were fantastic.”