Sunday, 17 February 2013

Emson treble sees off Stokesley to keep Town in promotion hunt


A MAGNIFICENT hat-trick from Adam Emson,  his 28th, 29th and 30th goals of the season, ensured the Town revival continued with this comfortable victory over Stokesley SC on Saturday.

Town began the day on the back of a 3 match winning run and they dominated from start to finish without ever having to get out of second gear, although Emson's finishing was in a different class. His third goal in particular was a thing of real beauty, chipping the ball nonchalantly over Stokesley goalkeeper Thomas Laverick after leaving a trail of defenders in his wake.

Manager Mark Fanning made just one change to the side that had won 4-2 at Seaham last weekend - Steve Butterworth replacing the now departed Pete Bulmer on the right side of midfield.

The game had been in doubt right up until Saturday morning due to standing water on the pitch, but thanks to hard work of the ground staff it was deemed playable by referee Steven Watson, although it remained very heavy.

Town were on the front foot from the start and twice Butterworth came close to breaking the deadlock in the opening seven minutes. Firstly he fired over at the far post after a lovely cross-field ball from the impressive Ian Smurthwaite, before seeing a close range effort blocked by defender Phillip King.

But it should have been 1-0 in the 19th minute. Gav Parkin's corner from the left hit the top of the crossbar and fell invitingly to Emson at the far post, but with the goal gapping he somehow blasted over the top.

However, the leading scorer would more than make amends ten minutes later. A long ball from the back by Danny Shoulder found Emson on the halfway line and he easily beat his man before racing towards goal with the air of a man who was not going to miss. And as Laverick came out to narrow the angle, he coolly slotted the ball home from 18 yards.

The only danger going into half time was that Town had not managed to find a second goal. Grant Hickman saw an effort pushed onto the roof of the net by Laverick before Butterworth and Dunwell both came close.

Fanning had expressed on his troops during the interval just how vital it was to kill the game off and they came out for the second half looking determined to do just that. Emson was denied by Laverick at full stretch within four minutes of the restart, but it was 2-0 seven minutes later.

James Bowman, who was having another fine game down the left, burst into the penalty area, and when the ball broke to Mickey Dunwell, he showed great awareness to square for Emson to tap home.

Town could now relax and began to knock the ball round as well as was possible on the difficult surface. Dave Alderson nearly made it 3-0 after getting on the end of Emson's left-wing cross two minutes later, while Butterworth beat Laverick with a 20 yards chip only to see the ball land on top of the net.

But Emson completed his hat-trick twenty minutes from time to finally put the game to bed. Parkin's long ball sent him clear again and this time the former Stokesley man chipped the ball over the advancing Laverick from 12 yards - a great way to bring up 30 goals for the season.

The visitors did grab a consolation almost immediately with a fine strike from Greg Upton, much to the delight of his grandfather who was watching from the stands, but it was Town who had the final word soon after.

Parkin was again the creator with a lovely free kick to the far post where Bowman rose highest to nod his third goal in the last four matches.

"It was a very good three points," said Fanning at the whistle. "We controlled the game but I was a little concerned at half time that we had not got the second goal.

"It was comfortable in the end and with others around us dropping points it was a vital win."

Town now face Whickham twice in three days, first in the League Challenge Cup at the RGPS on Wednesday evening, before a trip north in the league next Saturday.

TOWN - Briggs, Alderson, Smurthwaite, Shoulder, Hickman, Parkin, Butterworth, Laing, Emson, Dunwell, Bowman. Subs - Dunn, Banks, Winter, Caisley, Anderson.

STOKESLEY SC - Laverick, Jones, Bivens, McManmus, King, Upton, Redman, Bradley, Hodgson, Bonner, Asanjo-Bravo. Subs - Porritt, Doherty, Kamara, Butterworth, Ballantyne.

REFEREE: S. Watson.



  1. Colin Anderson needs to be given more time on the pitch than he has been getting recently. Fans player of the year last season to bench warmer this year is not what the fans want to see. As a local fan i would like to see more local lads in the starting 11.

    1. Isn't it more important to get quality lads as opposed to local lads? If the manager thought that the local lads were good enough then I'm sure he would love to play them week in and week out.
      For me its not about individual players getting more time on the pitch, its about what they do as a team and what they are doing at the moment seems to be working. Everyone has their opinions on players and as fans I'm sure we dont see half of what goes on with players and the manager, look at Gredziak, at the end of the day he chooses the players and the team based on what he thinks will be a winning strategy.

  2. Agree with the above comments, manager picks the side and lives and dies by his selection, should not be influenced by others at the club no matter what their titel, name or position is.

    If local lads are good enough they will play but at the moment they are squad players and thats all. They have alot to learn about playing in the Northern League and most players from this area lack metal strength to play at this level, if a tough hard league to play in and most player from around here will not have it in the DNA to play, we live in a privileged area and they have been brought up that way. We are going for the title and could cost one was sent off the other week for a rash takle, ok we won the game but on another day it could have cost us points. Col at the moment is forth choice striker and that the way it is, he will get his chance.

    1. Really disappointed with this and similar comments which are very much subjective to a few individuals who may well have their own personal agenda!! Northallerton and surrounding areas are very lucky to have extremely talented players and young developing coaches. However, for some reason those who have very LITTLE knowledge of football based on their arm chair experience seem to think that players from urban areas are much more talented. Not the case, local players need to be recognised and appreciated much more if Northallerton Town is to evolve into a sustainable club. You cannot always buy success and if you do then it isn't always sustainable. Get behind and encourage local players. Is it any wonder the club has bad reputation locally?

  3. I'm very concerned about the condition of the pitch this season, I hope it does not become our down fall.

  4. DNA, what about Dawson's Renisons and Bennett. There are number of good player playing local but some of the better ones are not involved with our club. I have watched local football for years so I can state this with confidence.

  5. Don't help having two teams playing on it no matter how hard our ground staff work. Its been years since two teams have use the main pitch so this is a challenge for Les and Dave.

  6. Bee careful with the speel cheque gye's