Report | Stafford Rangers 1-2 Wrexham

Macclesfield Town
Posted:Sat 15 Jul 2017

Although the scoreline might have been a close one, this was in reality a comfortable win for the visitors, who opened the scoring after just 42 seconds through Scott Boden.

Rangers were on level terms from the penalty spot five minutes later and then James Jennings decided the result shortly before the break.

Outside of the goals, it was a steady stream of Wrexham chances, as we dominated possession at Marston Road and should have scored a good few more.

While the lack of goals might have disappointed manager Dean Keates and his staff, the approach play will have encouraged them, as it did the 400+ Wrexham fans at the game.

In the first minute, with fans still entering the ground, new boy Boden chipped the advancing home keeper, after latching onto a high ball through from James Jennings, and the ball bounced on into the empty net.

Stafford were back on level terms just five minutes later, after Dan West ran into Shaun Pearson in the box and referee Ben Stott awarded a rather penalty. Bradley Fortnam-Tomlinson sending Christian Dibble to wrong way from 12-yards.

10’ Jennings on the left, jinking run to the line then crossed into the box, where a diving header from Trialist A went wide of the right-hand post.

24’ Boden in front of goal and hit a powerful shot from a Mackreth cross that the home keeper did so well to palm away for corner.

27’ More Wrexham pressure ended with Sam Wedgbury’s shot from distance being charged down by Levi Read, but the ball spun high towards to the home goal, coming to rest on the roof of the net.

29’ Patient build up play ended with Leo Smith lifting the ball into the box from the left and Boden’s flick header just carrying over the Rangers cross bar.

32’ Another dangerous break started with Wedgbury, saw the ball pass through Trialist B, Mackreth and Boden, before reaching Leo Smith and his effort was not far off target.

33’ James Jennings passed up a lovely chance, when Leo Smith danced his way round three defenders before laying the ball back for the left back to fire well over when he should have found the net.

34’ Next Boden stretched the home defence, crossed from the left, Mackreth laid it off for Trialist B to see Whitehouse pull of a diving save.

36’ The Visitors retook the lead through James Jennings’ low shot from 15 yards, after Wrexham pushed Stafford back on their heels and more good work by Leo Smith

38’ From 25 yards out Jennings saw his chance again and launched an effort that the flying keeper did really well to tip over his goal for a corner.

43’ Trialist B had a good chance when Mackreth raced away on the right crossed deep for Boden to try and head, but the keeper got a hand to it, although punching it as far as the striker, who saw his effort just skim the crossbar from 15 yards.

Ht 1-2

Four changes for Stafford at the half, included the experienced Kyle Perry, while Wrexham continue with their starting XI.

46’ Trialist A into the side netting following a corner on the left.

47’ Wedgbury collected the ball outside the area and shaped to shot, with a defender getting a block in that saw the ball spin away for a corner.

49’ Perry used his frame to win a high ball outside of the Wrexham box, but the Welsh defence were able to clear the danger.

52’ Mackreth surged forward on the right to the line, got his cross in, which forced Callum McFarlane to swing a boot inside the six-yard box and deflect the ball into his own keeper’s arms!

58’ Mackreth again causing Rangers problems on our right sent over an inviting cross into the box, that Trialist B got a clean head to, but could only steer the ball over the home goal from six-yards.

On the hour mark, Dean Keates made seven changes with only Dibble, Pearson, Wedgbury ad Leo Smith staying on and all the outfield substitutes being used.

Despite this mass change, it was Wrexham who were straight back onto the attack, with Ntumba Massanka crossing in from the left for Mark Carrington to swing a leg and divert the ball goalward, forcing the keeper in a diving save.

67’ Tums was alert to a bouncing ball over the Stafford defence, driving forward to the line, then crossing for Chris Holroyd in the middle, but under pressure the striker looked on as his effort was bundled away by Whitehouse.

Former Wrexham striker Louis Briscoe was replaced by Jake Langston on 70 minutes, while Leo Smith was also taken off and Jack Mackreth reappeared.

The referee gave a foul against Manny Smith on 76 minutes, when Pyle backed into him, the look on Manny’s faced summed up what he thought of the decision. In the end though, the free kick from 25 yards only hit the wall and spun away for a rare Stafford corner.

On 83 minutes, the ball was being played around the Stafford box and eventually was pulled back for Carrington side foot his effort on target, but a home boot knocked it away for a corner.

Holroyd got his head on the following Kelly flag kick, but the ball carried over the home crossbar.

Next up was Tums, who battled away for a loose ball and his off-balance effort was just wide of the right hand up right, as was Holroyd moments later from our next attack.

Stafford kept battling away and from a sloppy clearance in the closing minutes, they saw Wedgbury having to block a shot for a corner.

The final whistle meant the Reds moved onto a record of four wins from four friendlies - results that don't count for anything once the league season gets underway, but satisfying all the same.

Our next outing as at Warrington Town on Tuesday evening.

Stafford Rangers: Adam Whitehouse, Sam Griffiths, Tommy Cooney, Trialist A, Matt Bailey, Levi Reid, Louis Briscoe, Jack Sherratt, Dan West, Bradley Fortnam-Tomlinson, Joe Thomas.
Subs: Kyle Perry, Callum McFarlane, Richard Gregory, Richard, Batchelor, Trialist B, Jake Langston, Trialist C, Josh Craddock.

Wrexham: Christian Dibble, James Hurst (Doug Tharme 61), Olly Marx (Manny Smith 61), Shaun Pearson, James Jennings (Marcus Kelly 61), Wedgbury, Trialist A (Mark Carrington 61), Jack Mackreth (Paul Rutherford 61), Leo Smith (Jack Mackreth 70), Scott Boden (Chris Holroyd 61), Trialist B (Ntumba Massanka 61).
Subs: Owen Kirkham.

Referee: Ben Stott
Attendance: 633
Away: 400+

Photographs - Alun Roberts (Ajar)

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