By far the most assured and accomplished 45 minutes of football in the current era saw the Rams grab a well deserved and valuable three points at a wide open and windswept Grantham Town on Saturday.
GRANTHAM TOWN 0 RAMSBOTTOM UNITED 1
South Kesteven Sports Stadium
Saturday 28 March 2015
Such was the sense of desolation as the wind screamed in off the Lincolnshire steppes, making any sustained attempts at constructive football an exercise in futility, the appearance of Genghis Khan from the bench would have caused little more than a murmur of surprise.
By dint of circumstances, suspensions and injuries, the Rams had a much narrower set-up than has been the norm and looked much more compact as a result. Having battled into the wind in the first half and restricting the home side to a single clear cut chance, a header that sailed over the bar, the ball was in touch more than in play and the ball boys has more touches than most of the players.
The Rams driven on by an outstanding performance from Ian Benneett seized control straight from the restart and dominated the rest of the game. So solid were the back four that Grant Shenotn did not have a shot to save during the whole match.
Bennett, aided and abetted by David Kuba-Kuba and Jamie Rother, harried and hassled and got a well time tackle in when needed, as well as launching a series of sharp counter-attacks. It was by that route that the Rams grabbed the crucial winning goal on 52 minutes. Kuba-Kuba nipped the ball away deep in his own half, hurdled a tackle and carried the ball forward almost the full length of the pitch. Receiving the ball back from Jon Robinson in the ‘D’, he arched his body to keep the ball down and sent it flying into the bottom corner.
The Rams do not seem capable of scoring scruffy goals these days.
After that, only a certain lack of composure prevented the Rams from carving out more clear cut chances but thought that they had doubled the lead with 20 minutes left when Lee Gaskell sent in a wind assisted javelin of a shot from 30 yards which flew past the keeper but bounced out rather than in from the inside angle of the post and bar.
Apart from a single moment of alarm when Mark Ayres and George Bowyer left the ball to each other and presented a clear scoring chance which was screwed wastefully wide, the Rams never looked like giving up the lead and set said for home, buoyant and boisterous.