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REPORT | Eastleigh 0 – 2 Wrexham AFC

Stunning first-half goals earn victory on the road

10 December 2022

Match Reports

REPORT | Eastleigh 0 – 2 Wrexham AFC

Stunning first-half goals earn victory on the road

10 December 2022

Stunning first-half goals from Ben Tozer and Elliot Lee fired Wrexham to victory away to Eastleigh in freezing conditions at the Silverlake Stadium.

Tozer broke the deadlock with a brilliant curled finish, and Lee doubled the advantage in style on the stroke of half-time.

Wrexham had chances to add to their lead after the break too, but ensured they maintained their unbeaten run and returned to winning ways in front of more than 800 travelling supporters - a number that included co-chairman Rob McElhenney.

Phil Parkinson made just one change with the team which drew away to York City last weekend, with goalscorer Tom O’Connor starting ahead of James Jones.

Wrexham started brightly, and with just a minute on the clock Paul Mullin cut inside onto his left foot and curled an effort just wide across goal.

Callum McFadzean was next to try his luck, slicing a left-footed volley over from Ollie Palmer’s knock-down on four minutes; the ball just not dropping for the wing-back.

Anthony Forde then crossed for Luke Young on six minutes, but his header from the edge of the area was saved comfortably by Joe McDonnell.

Young had another sight at goal in the 17th minute, ghosting into the area to receive Forde’s low pass, but his fierce shot was blocked.

Tozer gave Wrexham the lead just a minute later, however, with a stunning finish – curling first time into the top corner after coming in from the left to receive Young’s low pass.

Eastleigh’s frustration showed when captain Osseynou Cisse talked his way into the book on 23 minutes, though the hosts were nearly level shortly afterwards.

JJ McKiernan raced onto a pass in the area, after a fast-paced attack on 25 minutes, and shot early but his left-footed effort clipped the bar and went over.

It was only a slight reprieve for the hosts, however, and Young went close again on 29 minutes – shooting low into the side-netting after running into the area on the right.

Palmer then headed down for Lee in the 33rd minute, who let the ball drop and shot powerfully only for the ball to deflect wide.

With Wrexham playing good football in the freezing conditions, a further three Eastleigh players were booked before half-time for bad fouls – Ryan Hill on Young, Charlie Carter on Lee, and JJ McKiernan on McFadzean.

And the Red Dragons got a deserved second goal on the stroke of half-time – with a finish every bit as impressive as the first, this time from Lee.

The midfielder played a one-two with Aaron Hayden, and curled a 20-yard effort up and over goalkeeper McDonnell – who could only watch as it dipped under the bar and high into the net.

It was nearly three immediately after the break, when Mullin was fouled on the edge of the area, but O’Connor curled his free-kick into the side-netting.

Palmer flicked on for Mullin on 54 minutes, who in turn found Lee, but this time the midfielder curled a low shot wide after running at pace at the defence.

Eastleigh’s response was to introduce Tristan Abrahams and Vincent Harper midway through the half, and Alfie Lloyd with 15 minutes remaining.

But Wrexham continued to push for a third goal – Jordan Tunnicliffe heading wide at the back post on 75 minutes.

Lee then went close to another spectacular goal on 77 minutes, chesting down on the edge of the area and volleying goalwards, only for McDonnell to produce an excellent save.

From the resultant corner, Lee received possession and fizzed a low cross across goal, but Mullin could not turn it at the back post.

Aaron Hayden was next to go close – heading just wide at the back post from Young’s deep corner on 80 minutes.

McFadzean then fed Tozer on 86 minutes, who cut inside and shot low on his right foot, but McDonnell saved at the near post.

Sam Dalby and James Jones were introduced very late on, and Wrexham saw the game out to claim a clean sheet and three points on the road.

Line-ups:

Wrexham: Howard, Hayden, Tozer, Tunnicliffe, Forde, Young, O’Connor, McFadzean, Lee (J.Jones 90), Mullin, Palmer (Dalby 87)

Subs not used: Lainton, McAlinden, Mendy

Eastleigh: O’Donnell, Camp, Maghoma, Langston, Kelly, Cisse, McKiernan, Carter (Lloyd 74), Hill (Harper 67), Rutherford (Abrahams 67), Whitehall

Subs not used: Hesketh, Panter

Referee: Sam Mulhall

Attendance: 3,986 (813 away)

Bookings:

Eastleigh: Cisse (23, Dissent), Hill (30, foul), Carter (34, foul), McKiernan (41, foul), Langston (72, foul), Whitehall (88, foul)

Wrexham: Forde (83, foul)


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