Pre Season Friendly
Saturday 28th July 2018
NELSON 1 RAMSBOTTOM UNITED 3
Report by Jon Haslam
Ramsbottom United made the short trip to Little Wembley on Saturday afternoon to take on Nelson in their latest pre-season fixture hoping to continue the momentum from the second half performance from Tuesday nights victory over a youthful Fleetwood side
The starting eleven had a more familiar look to it than of late with just a single trialist taking his place in a back 3 alongside regulars Thompson and Ellison.
It was the Rams that made the perfect start when, with barely a minute on the clock Luke Jordan received a superb pass from Jack Higgs before the wide man sped past the fullback before sending a low cross into the danger area before finding its way to Lee Gaskell and the frontman made no mistake from close range to give the visitors an early lead.
Nelson were finding it difficult to make an impact on the Rams rearguard in the opening exchanges with the visitors looking an attacking threat in the wide areas with Dean and Jordan getting into some promising positions but the final crosses into the penalty area struggled to find their intended target.
The hosts would equalise with half an hour on the clock somewhat against the run of play when a swift breakaway opened up the Ramsbottom defence and Nelsons unmarked right winger sent a low shot past the outstretched hand of Ashton from just inside the penalty area.
For the remainder of the half the game was a fairly even affair with goal mouth action at a premium as both sides found it difficult to put together any serious attacking fluency and the referee brought the first 45 minutes to a conclusion with the scores level at a goal each.
After the restart it was Nelson that had the first goal scoring chance when a flowing move set up a presentable opportunity but the strike from the edge of the area failed to trouble Ashton in the Rams goal.
As so often happens in pre-season fixtures both sides utilised their substitutes bench fully as a number of changes punctured the flow of the match although the home side perhaps looked the more likely to create a goalscoring opportunity with the hour mark approaching.
Ramsbottom United flickered into life from an attacking perspective when the classy Higgs unleashed a long range attempt which just cleared the angle of post and crossbar.
As the weather conditions worsened and with fifteen minutes remaining Nelson almost took the lead when a corner caused chaos in the Rams defence before the crossbar came to the visitors rescue twice in quick succession, the ball was then cleared midway into the Nelson half and a defensive slip was seized upon by Jerome Wright who confidently strode forward before clinically finding the back of the net to give the Rams the advantage.
The goal seemed to give the visitors a boost which lead to a number of chances being created in the closing minutes of the contest as Nelson pushed forward looking to restore parity
. With only moments remaining the result was put beyond any doubt when a trialist crossed from the touchline and Dominic Maries stooping header fizzed past the home keeper to register his second goal in successive appearances.
As the final whistle sounded Ramsbottom United ran out 3-1 winners in a match that was probably closer than the final result would show but with another 90 minutes under the belt both teams could take some positives from a competitive run out designed to ensure that both squads are fully prepared for when the league action begins in the coming weeks.
Ramsbottom United:- Ashton (Stinca 68 mins), Henry, Dean (Trialist 46 mins), Trialist (Trialist 65 mins), Thompson, Ellison, Jordan, Higgs, Marie, Gaskell (Trialist 61 mins) Wright.