Pete Tonge tells how Vics got the job done against Padiham on Saturday…
IT was a match in which Padiham will count themselves as unfortunate to come away from with nothing.
Padiham started the match positively, and pressed Vics back, with Vics relying on trying long balls over the top for the pacy Matty Birchall and Josh Winder to run on to.
Vics were defending well however with Roman Allen, the replacement for the absent Brandon Barski, looking assured alongside the ever impressive Rudy Misambo.
However, Padiham opened the scoring after 29 minutes as a good quick movement led to Marcus Perry firing a shot past the despairing dive of Chris Cheetham into the net.
This sparked Vics into passing the ball more, and with Padiham resting on their laurels for a bit, it allowed them to have more of the ball.
They were then gifted a way back into the match on the stroke of half time, when a ball was played into Matty Birchall in the area. Birchall shielded the ball well from Luke Thompson who gave the ref no option than to give a penalty as he continually manhandled Birchall and pulled him to the floor.
Birchall stepped up to confidently fire the ball home to send the Vics in level at half time.
Vics started the second half a little better, and took the lead in the 56th minute as Birchall ran at his defender in the box who couldn’t cope with his trickery and promptly brought him down for another penalty.
Again Birchall stepped up and this time slammed the ball high into the top of the net giving Hamnett no chance in the Padiham goal.
Now it was Padiham having all of the game now and they nearly drew level seven minutes later as Perry cleverly chipped the keeper but the ball flicked off the crossbar and over.
Cheetham was being called into action regularly now, and at times the Vics goal led a charmed life.
In the last minute of normal time, Ryan Winder was sent to the sin bin for a comment he made to the ref, meaning the Vics had to play out the rather extended injury time with 10 men.
But no matter how hard Padiham pressed, Cheetham was equal to the task which included an absolutely top class save low to his right in the last seconds of the match to ensure the three points went to the Vics
A somewhat disjointed display by Vics, but 3 points is 3 points. Credit to Cheetham for a top class display of keeping, while Birchall did well to keep doing what he does best with little or no service.
Vics are away to Litherland REMYCA on Saturday at 3pm and then host Skelmersdale Utd on Wednesday at 7.45pm.
Northwich Victoria 2 Padiham 1
NWC Premier Division, Saturday 28th August 2021, at Wincham Park, Northwich
Vics: Cheetham, Camozzi, Misambo, Allen, Fleming ( Roberts 73′), Sherlock.( Curtis 62′) Winder R , Clarke , Mather, Winder J, (Kelly 83′) Birchall. Un-used sub: Whyte.
Goals: Northwich Vics: Birchall 45′ Pen, 56′ Pen. Padiham: Perry 29′
Bookings: R Winder (Sin Bin) 90′