A mellow performance on a misty afternoon saw the Rams ease through into the next round of the Buildbase FA Trophy much more comfortably than the score line might suggest.

Harry Williams Riverside Stadium
Saturday 29 October 2016
Buildbase FA Trophy 1st Qualifying Round
Attendance: 216

It is no coincidence that the the more consistent performances in recent weeks have coincided with the return of Grant Spencer to the team. On Saturday he set the tone, made sure each part of the team was in harmony and until his enforced departure after the hour controlled the game setting up any number of openings with neat and timely forward passes. A bit more composure in and around the box would have seen a much wider margin of victory.

If Spencer was excellent on the day Ryan Salmon was simply outstanding – irresistible in his running and irrepressible in effort he lead the line from the first moment to the last.

TheRams goals were identical in construction and almost in execution. After Salmon had twice forced his way to the bye-line without result a whipped in cross from the right was headed with precision by Gareth Seddon towards the inside of the far post. Tom Brocklehurst in the Prescot goal did wonderfully well to get across his line to make what at first seemed a great save- but at full stretch the force with which he hit the ground propelled the ball out of his grasp to the feet of Salmon who  gratefully sidefooted into the empty net.

With Spencer orchestrating most of the openings the Rams dominated the game. Prescot offered little threat going forward but while largely subjugated were never conquered and put in honest resistance. As such The Rams had to wait a further 30 minutes for their second goal. It was threatening to be a very frustrating afternoon for captain Gareth Seddon. Put through twice by Spencer he first shinned wide from a narrow angle and then could not get enough elevation on his attempted chip over Brocklehurst how saved easily. Frustration then turned to joy as he twisted his head to a hard hit cross fromBrad Roscoe to send a header from almost the edge of the box swerving and dipping into the corner past a despairing keeper. A goal worthy of winning any match.

With the loss of Spencer shortly after the Rams performance became somewhat discordant allowing Prescot some possession and territory. Even so The Rams did not look like conceding until in the 4th and last minute of added time James McCulloch, lingering on the edge of the area seized on a moment of indecision to steal in and spoil the day of debutant keeper Charlie Albinson who was deserving of a clean sheet.

Ramsbottom United: Charlie Albinson, Bradley Roscoe, Joshua Askew, Alex Meaney, Luke Thompson, Paul Linwood, Damian Green, Grant Spencer, Ryan Salmon, Gareth Seddon, Matthew Atherton.  Subs: Lee Botham, Jake Cliffe (for Seddon 70mins), Nathanial Taylor, Oliver Crankshaw (for Atherton 62mins), Dean Stott (for Spencer 74mins).

Prescot Cables: Tom Brocklehurst, Danny Flood, Bram Johnstone, Rob McIntosh, James McCulloch (capt), Michael Simpson, Phil Bannister, Sam Staunton-Turner, Rob Doran, Lloyd Dean, James Edgar.  Subs: Joe Nicholson (for Staunton-Turner 45mins), Ben Cartwright, Joe Herbert (for Simpson 86mins), Nathan Quirk (for Johnstone 74mins), Josh Nicholson.

Referee: Samuel Barrott (Huddersfield)

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