The Marketmen put 8 passed Hitchin Town!!
By Paul Munn
2 games, 2 wins, 6 points,12 goals and top of the table………not a bad start!
The first home game of the 2018-19 season, against Hitchin Town, turned out to be a spectacular night for the Marketmen with an 8 goal tally, 6 of which came in the first half and included 2 hat-tricks, one for Luke Ingram and one for Joseph Marsden. Thus sending the Marketmen top of the table, albeit it’s still very early days.
As this is the inaugural season of this league the Marketmen must now also hold several league records. All this achieved in under a week…….
The same starting XI as Saturday took the field, with the only change being amongst the subs with James Carragher replacing Tyler Rose.
I the early stages of the game the long clearances from Jake Jessup caused problems for the visiting defence
The first goal of the game came after 7 minutes when a good corner from the left was whipped which was met by Luke Ingram who nodded home from 6 yards out. 1-0 NMFC.
Hitchin did have their moments and did test the hosts defence with a good 30 yard run from their number 7 that required good solid defending.
The Marketmen continued their ascendancy passing the ball about well and they nearly doubled the advantage with Luke Ingram turning provider setting up Adam Mills who shot just wide.
There was an early booking for the Hitchin number 6 who can have no complaints after a foul on Luke Ingram.
Minutes later the Marketmen, looking dangerous and passing the ball around well, did double the lead when a good cross from Jake Dye found the head of Adam Mills, which crashed against the crossbar and Luke Ingram neatly finished the rebound. 2-0 NMFC
Although on top the Marketmen had to be careful not to let Hitchin back into the game, who created some decent half chances. First of them led to a scramble in the Marketmen’s area which was cleared, another Hitchin effort had to be blocked by the legs of Jake Jessup, who a minute came out for a ball but dropped the ball which had to be scrambled away for a corner. Unfortunately from the resulting corner no one had picked up Hitchin’s number 6 who planted the ball passed Jake Jessup. 2-1 NMFC.
The Marketmen responded almost immediately, as they were awarded a free kick after a high tackle on Joseph Marsden. Gareth Heath delivered it perfectly into the box and Jamie Griffiths’ head did the rest by sending the ball in the back of the net. 3-1 NMFC with just over the first half gone.
The Marketmen continued to create chances; Jake Dye providing a great cross which Adam Mills could not quite finish off and a great run by Jamie Griffiths who in turn fed Adam Mills which produced a good block from the visiting defence.
The Marketmen launched another attack on 34 minutes when Joseph Marsden started a run down the right wing and finished a move down the right, running down the wing he found Luke Ingram who delivered the ball back for Joseph Marsden to slot home. 4-1 NMFC.
5 minutes later a clever through ball found Adam Mills bearing down on goal, he was brought down in the area by the Hitchin number 6, who having been shown a yellow earlier was shown a red card by the referee and trudged back to the dressing rooms. Joseph Marsden made no mistake from the penalty spot placing the ball in the bottom right hand corner. 5-1 NMFC.
On the stroke of half time Needham were awarded another penalty when a move saw the ball reach Jamie Griffiths in the area and he was brought down by a despairing Hitchin challenge. Joseph Marsden once again duly obliged placing the ball in the same spot to complete an 11 minute hat-trick on his home debut. 6-1 NMFC.
The Marketmen in this mood probably didn’t want the half to end, but Hitchin no doubt were glad to hear the half time whistle.
Half Time: Needham Market 6 vs Hitchin Town 1
The second half had a lot to live up after the 7 goal feast in the first 45 minutes. It continued in the same vein with Needham looking the more dominate.
A couple of great cross field passes by Callum Sturgess found Joseph Marsden and Jake Dye respectively, but alas both moves did not amount to anything.
However around the hour mark, Callum Sturgess did provide a great cross which Jamie Griffiths headed over the bar. That was Jamie Griffiths’ last touch of the evening as he was replaced by Reece Dobson. Another Marketmen substitution made at the same time saw the hat-trick man Joseph Marsden making way for Daniel Morphew.
In the following minutes Jake Dye again played a good ball finding Luke Ingram who in turn found Adam Mills, alas the assistants flag went up. Then it was the turn of substitute Reece Dobson to be involved 3 more Marketmen attacks. The first saw him receive the ball from Luke Ingram, who had run at the Hitchin defence, alas his shot went over the top. The second one saw Reece Dobson just fail to reach a good long ball from Adam Mills and finally Reece Dobson turned to provider sending a decent looking cross, but no one could quite connect and finish the job.
Hitchin plugged away looking to get some reward from the game and may have got some, when a slip by Keiran Morphew almost let them in but Jake Jessup racing from his goal got to the ball first and cleared the danger.
With 75 minutes gone Needham pressed on once more and won a corner, which resulted in a good delivery to the far post which found Luke Ingram who headed home to complete his hat trick. 7-1 NMFC.
A couple of minutes later the Marketmen made their final substitution when George Exworth replaced Jeremiah Kamanzi.
Some afterwards Luke Ingram had a change to add to his goal tally after some work, alas his shot went over the bar.
But it was Hitchin who curved a glorious chance late on in the game when a good cross from the right found their striker unmarked who missed the target with a free header from 18 yards out. This merely summed up the visitors evening.
During the first minute of added time Needham rounded off the evenings’ performance, with a move that saw Luke Ingram get to the by-line and send in a great ball in which Adam Mills decisively volleyed into the roof of the net. 8-1 NMFC. Metaphonically this was the icing on the cake and maybe the cherry as well.
This brought proceedings to a close with the Marketmen delighted with their good polished performance and Hitchin Town probably glad to get back to Hertfordshire following their second successive defeat.
Full Time: Needham Market 8 vs Hitchin Town 1