Wednesday, 22 August 2012

Emson treble makes it a happy away day for Town


ADAM EMSON continued his impressive start to life at Northallerton as his superb hat-trick gave Town their first win of the season at Alnwick on Tuesday evening.

The 28 year old, signed from Stokesley SC this summer, took his tally for Town to six in just three matches as Mark Fanning's side built on the hard-earned point against Crook on Saturday with this impressive away day performance.

For the long midweek trip up the A1, Town were without the suspended Danny Shoulder, while Colin Anderson, Gary Cook, Ian Smurthwaite and Steve Craggs were also unable to travel due to work commitments.

So Fanning's starting XI saw two changes from Saturday's exciting 3-3 draw with Crook. Stephen Banks replaced Anthony Roberts at right back, while Steve Butterworth was back in the side in place of James Bowman down the left, who dropped to the bench.

Despite the long journey, Town were fast out of the blocks and once again got the boost of an early goal. Having scored within two minutes on Saturday, Town repeated the trick again as a ball out of defence by Craig Winter was deftly flicked on by Butterworth into the path of Carl Chillingsworth. The veteran striker, who had grabbed that early goal against Crook, drilled home his third of the season from the edge of the penalty area.

It was nearly 2-0 soon after when Emson crossed from the left but Chillingsworth was off target this time as his first-time effort flew just over the crossbar. Butterworth was then unlucky to see the ball come back off the post after he chipped the advancing Alnwick goalkeeper following a sparkling solo run.

Town continued to create the better chances in the opening period and Emson was also denied by the woodwork before the break when his drive from the edge of the area skimmed the crossbar as it flew over the top.

The Town travelling army at Alnwick.

The hosts came out strongly at the start of the second half but the Town defence, which has been criticised after conceding eight goals in their previous two matches, stood firm and restricted Alnwick to very few chances.

With that strong base behind them, Town were able to regain their earlier control. Chillingsworth was denied by the Alnwick goalkeeper after a lovely right-wing cross from Stu Hardy on the hour, but it was 2-0 five minutes later.

Emson, who was now enjoying more and more influence, cut in from the left before arrowing a low drive into the far corner of the net.

Town could relax now and began to play some good football. They were rewarded with eighteen minutes remaining when Gav Parkin split the Alnwick defence and Emson added his second with a cool finish from a tight angle.

And he completed his hat-trick three minutes later. Butterworth was sent sprawling in the area and Emson confidently dispatched the spot kick to complete a perfect away day for Town and their 12 travelling fans.

"I was really pleased with the attitude of the lads tonight," said Fanning.

"We have taken stick in some quarters for the number of goals we have conceded, so to keep a clean sheet was our priority as we will always score goals. You have to be happy with a 4-0 win away from home."

Assistant manger Martin Collins was equally fulsome in his praise. "We were disappointed to only take a 1-0 lead into the break as we knew Alnwick would put is under pressure in the second half. But the defence stood firm and the second goal gave us some breathing space.

"We were pleased with the way we saw the game out and equally pleased to keep a clean sheet against a lively attack."

The night was brought to an end with a presentation to Olympic 1,500 metre finalist Laura Weightman, who was born in Alnwick, in the clubhouse after the match.

NORTHALLERTON TOWN - Briggs, Banks, Dunn, Hickman, Winter, Parkin, Hardy, Laing, Emson, Chillingsworth, Butterworth. Subs - Roberts, Bowman, Coleman.


  1. 19 goals in 3 games, it's never dull watching NTFC. Onwards and upwards!

  2. This was a great victory for the town. The following morning I drove through the town and people were dancing and singing and shouting, old men hopped on one leg and then the other, children waved their hands in the air.