REPORT | Maidstone United 2-1 Wrexham

Macclesfield Town
Posted:Sat 19 Aug 2017

Unfortunately, the talking points around this game mainly centred on the match referee and no doubt the video will show if his decisions on the day were correct.

The facts were five yellow cards and a straight red one were waved in the direction of Wrexham players – with both Mark Carrington and Manny Smith being sent for early baths.

All this despite the Welshmen taking an early lead through Alex Reid, only for the Stones to level minutes later and then score what was to prove the winner before half time.

The day got off to a bad start, as a late change saw Christian Dibble making his debut as a replacement for Chris Dunn - the pair had been warming up together earlier, so either injury or illness had forced Dunn out, with Olly Marx moving onto the bench.

And there was an early taster for Dibbs, as he picked out a shot from Jack Richards in the first minute and then from Delano Sam-Yorke a few minutes later.

The visitors took the lead on 10 minutes, when Paul Rutherford raced down the right wing and his cross was met on the edge of the Maidstone six-yard box by the head of Alex Reid, who rose to plant his effort in the corner of the home net, giving for Wales U21 keeper Lee Worgan no chance.

Yet just five minutes later and the Stones were level, as following a foul by Shaun Pearson on the half way line, the free kick was floated into the box and United’s centre half Alex Wynter rose highest to head passed Dibble for the equaliser.

There was a booking for Mark Carrington on 19 minutes.

Following Jennings’ booking for dissent on 26 minutes the ball bounced around inside the Wrexham area and was put into his own goal by a defender, but happily, the whistle had been blown for an offence prior!

A soft free kick awarded against Manny Smith lead to Maidstone’s second goal, conceded on the edge of the area, towards the main stand side the ground. The initial ball in was blocked, but deflected away outside the ‘D’ and sat up nicely for Jack Richards. He shaped himself for a low shot, that might well have taken a deflection on its way passed a stranded Dibble after 33 minutes.

Our only other chance of the half, fell once again to Reid, who did get his head to a left-wing cross, but this time Worgan was able to gather the effort.

As we approached half time, some quick inter-play between Sam-Yorke and Richards, saw the latter given room for a shot in the Wrexham area, but his effort was blocked for a corner.

Ht 2-1

There was an injury to Richards on 52 minutes and he was replaced by new boy Zavon Hines.

A free kick to the Reds on 56 minutes, saw the Jennings try his luck, but the ball didn’t dip enough and Worgan was able to usher it over his cross bar.

A double switch on 59 minutes, saw Ntumba Massanka on for Boden and then Akil Wright for Rutherford.

The Stones forced a great save from Dibble a few moments later as corner was only half cleared and Tom Wraight crossed for Pigott to fire goalwards.

On 66 minutes, Dibble had to be alert to deny Pigott, who directed a flashing header on target.

The game bubbled over on 72 minutes as Manny Smith tackled back on Pigott, the Stones’ player went to ground in the box and the referee pointed to the penalty spot.

The official also decided it was not a genuine attempt to play the ball, so pulled out a straight red card.

After the turmoil of the previous few minutes, Dibbs went down to his right to save Pigott’s spot kick.

At the following corner, there claims from the Wrexham defence that Dibble had been caught with an elbow as he jumped to catch the cross. Despite consulting his assistant, nothing more was given by the official.

With a two-man advantage, it was hard for the Reds to down field too often and as Pigott was running the line well for the home side, forcing Dibble into another excellent save following across by the ever dangerous Wraight.

For one fleeting moment on 87 minutes, our hopes were raised for the possibility of an equaliser, as a free kick bounced around in the six-yard box and seemed to almost sit up Wright, but just as quickly the amber shorts snuffed out the danger.

As we moved into added time, Dibbs came to the rescue again with a flying save to push away another Pigott header.

The last action was a Wrexham free kick 22-yards out, which Massanka took and while it had some power behind it, the wall did its job.

Maidstone United: Worgan, Hare, Prestedge, Wynter, Okuonghae, Sam-Yorke (Paxman 84), Wraight, Anderson, Reason, Richards (Hines 52), Pigott. 
Subs: Paxman, Twumasi, Willard, Phipps.

Wrexham: Dunn, Roberts, Pearson, M Smith, Jennings, Rutherford (Wright 59), Carrington, Wedgbury, Kelly (Hurst 74), Reid, Boden (Massanka 59).
Subs: Dibble, Mackreth.

Referee: S Allison (Wiltshire)
Attendance: 2,192
Away: 188

Bookings -
Maidstone United: Hines (68, time wasting)
Wrexham: Carrington (19, foul), Jennings (26, dissent), M Smith (33, dissent), Roberts (37, foul)

Sendings-Off -
Wrexham: M Smith (72, denying a goal scoring opportunity), Carrington (72, second yellow, dissent)


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