The Marketmen suffer heavy home defeat
By Paul Munn
Rushden shine on their visit to Bloomfields!!
A wet and rainy October afternoon welcomed AFC Rushden & Diamonds on their visit to Bloomfields. Both sides looking to improve their league standing, on a day where both could have been battling in another competition. The Marketmen starting line up Samuel Squire, on loan from Cambridge United, make his home debut.
The match start well for the Marketmen as they had two corners in the opening couple of minutes. The second one resulted in a chance for Adam Mills, but he saw his header go wide.
They continued to press and were unlucky when following some good play saw Luke Ingram burst through on goal, but unfortunately he could not finish it off.
Rushden themselves were coming into the game and finding their passing range, which allowed them to have two early shots on goal. One of which went high over the bar and the other going wide of the post.
Then another chance for the Marketmen came just after the 10 minute mark when a well delivered Tariq Issa corner found Joseph Marsden near post, but he couldn't direct the ball on target and the free header went wide.
Moments later a Luke Ingram break saw him find Adam Mills out wide, who played the ball in, Gareth Heath couldn't find the space for a shot and returned the ball back to him, but alas his second cross was a little too deep for the Marketmen attackers.
Midway through the half Rushden began to create more opportunities, a good ball out wide right put the defence under pressure and drew the foul. The free kick was delivered well but a good clearance by Jeremiah Kamanzi kept the Marketmen's goal intact.
However a couple of minutes later Rushden broke forward again which resulted in the number 6 having a shot which was parried away by Jake Jessup, however the ball was picked up by their number 7 who passed it across the box for the number 10 to slot home from close range. 1-0 AFC R&D.
With the Marketmen trying to get back on terms, Luke Ingram was coming forward with the ball when he was tripped and fell awkwardly. He received treatment on a wrist injury and seemed to be in a little bit of discomfort, however he came back on with his wrist bandaged up. The resulting Gareth Heath free kick did not produce anything for the Marketmen as the Rushden defence cleared it before the Marketmen attackers could pounce.
The Marketmen had another opportunity when Reece Dobson broke down the right flank and put in a decent cross to find the head of Gareth Heath, but the keeper managed to save it at the expense of a corner. Before it could be taken Luke Ingram left the field due to the wrist injury and was replaced by Reece Dobson. It was reported afterwards that it was a break.
Rushden in all honesty should have doubled their lead when a quick break saw them with a 3 on 2 advantage. The number 7 weighed up his options and to the annoyance of most Rushden fans he choose the wrong one. The chance went begging.
Approaching half time the Marketmen created a chance using the route one method. A long clearance by Jake Jessup was nodded on well by Gareth Heath providing a chance for Adam Mills to have a shot, but this time the visiting keeper was equal to it.
The last action of the half saw a Reece Dobson shot saved following some good build up play.
Half Time: Needham Market 0 vs AFC Rushden & Diamonds 1
The second half started badly for the Marketmen, when shortly after the restart Rushden strung together a passing move that opened up the Marketmen's defence and allowed Rushden's centre forward to double the visitor's lead. 2-0 AFC R&D.
Could the Marketmen respond? the answer on this occasion was yes, when 3 minutes later a corner was delivered into the box which was met by the head of Daniel Morphew directing it into the back of the net to pull one back. 2-1 AFC R&D.
A few minutes later Rushden were on the attack again, a good ball from midfield found their right back in some space, he took it towards goal and shot, but Jake Jessup saved well with the shot from the rebound going over the bar.
Shortly afterwards, Tariq Issa found himself in some space in the middle of the field, he played a good through ball to Reece Dobson, he took it on and tried a shot, unfortunately it was saved.
This was followed by a Marketmen free kick which was delivered in by Gareth Heath, the Rushden defence managed to clear it but it fell to Jeremiah Kamanzi who blazed his shot over the bar.
The visitor's were starting to dominate proceedings passing the ball around well and causing problems for the Marketmen.
Midway through the half they pressed forward once more sending the ball into the the Marketmen's area, where the defence managed to half clear the ball, but it fell to Rushden player who let fly and a good save by Jake Jessup was required.
Two minutes later Rushden attacked down the right and sent a decent cross in, it eluded their on-coming attackers allowing the Marketmen to clear. It unfortunately feel t their number 6 who took on a long range shot from 25 yards out, it screamed into the top corner giving the keeper no chance. 3-1 AFC R&D.
Could the Marketmen get themselves back into it again? A few minutes later Reece Dobson picked up the ball in the Rushden half and took it forward, sensing an opportunity he tried a long range shot, but it was beginning to sum up the Marketmen's day as it sailed high and wide.
Tariq Issa brought the ball forward and played a good ball out to the right, where Joseph Marsden picked it up and crossed it in, alas no Marketmen attacker could get to it and was gathered by the keeper.
A minute later the Marketmen were awarded a free kick in the Rushden half, the ball was played in towards the danger area, but it was dealt with by Rushden's defence before they could create anything.
With ten minutes left on the clock Rushden broke forward once more, the move was cut short by a mistimed challenge. The resulting free kick was swung into the box where the head of Rushden's number 16 was there to meet it and he duly put it passed Jake Jessup for the fourth goal. 4-1 AFC R&D.
The visitor's could have added to their tally soon afterwards, when after a good passing move set up a shot which Jake Jessup had to produce a great save to deny them.
Not a great deal was going right for the Marketmen as they struggled to put a move together in an attempt to muster at least a consolation.
Then the Marketmen suffered another setback when Jamie Griffiths went down with an ankle injury. He was unable to continue and was helped off the field having only been on for 15 minutes or so. After the game Jamie left Bloomfields on crutches and his injury was reported to be ligament damage.
As the match entered it's 90th minute Rushden launched a long ball forward, which was not dealt with by the defence and left their number 15 through on goal. He calmly slotted it passed Jake Jessup to top off a great day for Rushen and add more misery to what was already a bad day for the Marketmen. 5-1 AFC R&D.
In summary, it was a bad day at the office for the Marketmen, not only for the scoreline but losing two players to injury. I'm sure many of you reading this report will have their own views on the game, as will the management team, who I'm sure will be doing the utmost to rectify the situation the best way they can.
Full Time: Needham Market 1 vs AFC Rushden & Diamonds 5
Needham Market: Jessop: Dye, Sturgess, Kamanzi (Griffiths 69 (McLaughlin 86), Squire, Morphew (D), Marsden, Heath, Ingram (Dobson 32), Issa, Mills
Subs not used: Shorten (GK)
AFC Rushden & Diamonds: Heath, Reynolds, Brown, Westbrook, Dolman, Rodgers, Gyasi (Hopkins 89), Farrell (Curtis 70), Bowen (Lorraine 80), Diamond, Hicks
Subs not used: Dean, Pickworth