Witton Albion 0-5 Altrincham, Wincham Park (01/08/2016)
Competition: Pre-season friendly
Admission Price: £6
Programme: £1 (was reduced from £2 due to programme going to print prior to Liverpool withdrawing)
Home team’s best FA Cup performance: Round 2 – 1951, 1953 & 1991
This was my second visit to Wincham Park having seen Northwich Victoria play Boreham Wood in the 2015/16 FA Cup, but was the first seeing Witton Albion.
Witton have recently been moved into the Northern Premier League Division South having spent last season in the Northern league, and I have to say I was impressed by Wincham Park.
The ground is situated in the middle of an industrial estate about a mile outside of Northwich, in the village of Wincham. Built in the late 80’s the ground has outstanding facilities for this particular level of the pyramid. I was able to park easily right outside the ground and made my way into a well maintained ground, which is certainly equipped for football at a higher level.
I took a seat in the main stand for the opening twenty minutes and then was able to make my way around the ground throughout the game. Despite lacking a certain non league character I do think this is a great non league facility.
As for the match, having watched Altrincham a few weeks ago I noticed that they had made a fair few changes, and their travelling fans confirmed this was very much an experimental side. This was not surprising considering they open their league campaign in five days and were only drafted in for this game late last week.
Witton fielded five trialists amongst their starting XI and they were comfortably beaten by higher league team, but a team one week further into pre season.
Altrinham opened the scoring on the seventh minute, with centre half Sam Heathcote allowed the head home comfortably. The home side rarely threatened as Neil Young’s Robins looked happy to stay in first gear, and their second goal effectively ended the game as a contest right on half time with Craig Hobson’s fine header.
In truth the second half was a dull affair but former Northern Ireland international James Lawrie scored a fine long range goal on the hour mark, and Jake Moult made it 4-0 two minutes later.
Altrincham rounded off a comfortable evening with a fifth goal from Danny Hattersley, as the gulf in class on the night was evident.
There was very little on offer that would encourage Witton fans, with just over a week until they start their campaign. As for Altrincham they’ll be delighted to finish off their pre season with a fine win.
Game Rating: 6/10 – Wasn’t a great contest with Altrincham winning easily.
Man of the Match: Danny Hattersley, took his chance to impress and finished off a good night with a goal.