Campion AFC vs Littletown AFC
Date: 23rd January 2016
Venue: AA Van Hire Stadium
Referee: Mr. Jeremy Illingworth
Ivan Willis (c)
Little chance for little town
Goals from Gavin Armitage and Adam Jarrett did enough to halt a Littletown comeback following a first half hat-trick from Craig Nicholls to secure a 5-2 victory for Campion AFC.
James Bicknell’s team got off to a flying start as Craig Nicholls managed to net three goals inside 30 minutes to give his side a comfortable lead going into half time.
But a powerful shot from Littletown’s Matthew Bugg followed by a well-placed Joe Jagger free kick looked to make the second half interesting before a left-footed finish from Armitage and a Jarrett header late on restored Campions 3 goal lead to seal the win.
Campion looked to attack right from the first whistle, pressuring goalkeeper Mike Smith with an abundance of crosses and nearly broke the deadlock inside 10 minutes when Matt Warden played a great ball into Craig Nicholls in the box, only to see his shot denied by Smith’s legs.
He was not to be denied for long though, Nicholls received an aerial ball in space at the right hand side of the box and with his first touch, deftly lobbed the onrushing keeper to open the scoring on the 14th minute.
Nicholls doubled the lead just 12 minutes later. A through ball found the forward one-on-one with Smith, who could do nothing to stop Nicholls skipping to the keepers right before finishing into an empty net.
The hat-trick for Nicholls was complete with a superb strikers finish on the 28th minute. Nicholls managed to squirm his way free on the right hand side of the box before hammering a shot in off the post.
There was almost a fourth goal from the striker just 5 minutes later when he found himself facing Smith one-on-one again. Nicholls tried to replicate his second goal by taking it to the left but excellent work from the goalkeeper saw Nicholls pushed wide out of danger.
Littletown had a chance to respond late on to give them something to build on at half time. A cross from the left fell just behind Matthew Bugg in the penalty area but the striker couldn’t connect with an acrobatic overhead kick well enough to trouble Ivan Willis in goal, allowing Campion to enter the interval with their 3 goal lead intact.
But Bugg started the second half as he finished the first as Littletown looked to capitalise on growing complacency amongst the Campion team. The forward managed to dribble his way free of his marker and into the box before firing a powerful effort behind Ivan Willis to make it 3-1.
It didn’t take long for Littletown to grab their second. Just 2 minutes later, Joe Jagger curled a powerful free kick round the wall and into the right side of the goal to give his team hope of making an emphatic comeback.
Gavin Armitage eased the pressure on the home side though shortly after the hour mark. Attacking from the left flank, Armitage managed to beat Smith at his near post to give Campion a two goal cushion.
That cushion was restored back to three goals just before full time when substitute Adam Jarrett cut in from the right hand side to go one on one with the goalkeeper. Jarrett needed two chances to convert with his initial shot being parried upwards by the left glove of Smith. Jarrett did well to follow up the rebound, heading the ball over the downed keeper and into the net to wrap up a dominant 5-2 victory for Campion.