Wakefield AFC hit goal trail ahead of big home derby with Horbury Town
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In midweek they were in irresistible form as they were five up by half-time in front of 430 at home to Yorkshire Amateur and went on to win 7-0 with Billy Mole hitting a hat-trick and further goals coming from Ashley Flynn (two), Mason Rubie and Jaydan Sandhu, writes Austin Ainsworth.
The good form continued at Armthorpe Welfare at the weekend as they recorded a 4-0 success.
Wakefield dominated proceedings from the first whistle to the last. They did not have to wait long for the chances to start coming either, their best in the opening stages coming in the 14th minute when striker Flynn nearly added to his two goals in midweek after he pounced on to a crafty flick from Mole to race in on goal. However, his first-time shot was parried away by the keeper and the marksman was made to wait for his third goal for the club.
His wait lasted all of 15 minutes, with the number nine opening the scoring with a well timed and well executed side-foot finish from six yards out, after centre-back Jack Durkin rose high to nod a pinpoint Callum Charlton cross into his path.
Armthorpe had other ideas, though, and, belying their lowly league position, refused to let their heads drop as they threatened to mount a comeback either side of half-time.
Almost immediately after Wakefield had scored, a loss of concentration nearly proved deadly when the ball was given away on the edge of their penalty area, allowing Armthorpe’s Scott Dixon to cleverly lay the ball off for Leon Osborne to shoot; Wakey ‘keeper George Bristol racing off his line and showing sharp reflexes to deny the striker the equaliser.
That alarm bell was there for Wakefield going in to half-time and it continued to ring just after the re-start when a rare period of sustained pressure from Amrthorpe nearly resulted in an Aaron Pilkington own-goal, when his defensive header from a free-kick looped back and over a scrambling Bristol’s head, who just stretched far enough to tip the ball over the bar.
Wakefield did regain their metronomic passing rhythm and again started to carve out good chances to double their lead. Flynn should have done so when Mole charged down the Armthorpe defender to win the ball high up the pitch, before running in on goal and squaring for the former, who, having timed his run to perfection, misjudged a straightforward looking finish from eight yards out to push the ball wide.
Wakefield’s persistence, and composure in the face of ever-increasing aggression and off-the-ball antics from Armthorpe paid off on the hour when centre-back Robbie Miller doubled the lead.
The move started from a Danny Youel free-kick which was blocked on the edge of the area, allowing the ball to roll out to Oliver Rodriguez on the right wing. He showed fleetness of thought to chest the ball down and volley a cross toward the near post which was met by the head of Miller; the defender scoring his second goal for the club, the last of which interestingly also came away to Armthorpe last year.
Substitutes Kieran Ceesay and Jake Morrison were at the heart of several further good chances for Wakefield, before the game soured in the 70th minute when a fracas delayed the game for five minutes.
Miller was at the centre of it, seemingly reacting to something said to him off-the-ball by the player he had been marking closely, Bruno Holden.
The two were held apart as first Holden, then Miller, were shown red cards.
Wakefield ultimately showed composure and maturity to put the incident to one side and continued to construct intricate passing sequences with the greater space on the pitch available to them now the game was 10 v 10.
Two more goals followed, the first with just under 10 minutes to go when captain Danny Youel capped a fine performance with his first goal of the season when he fired a low shot to the near post from 30 yards out.
Morrison added a fourth for Wakefield in the closing stages when substitute Nathan Hawkhead drove through the centre of the pitch to thread a ball through to Jaydan Sandhu, who unselfishly squared for the striker to score his second goal of the season.
Just as in the victory over Yorkshire Amateur, despite the dominant scoreline, Wakefield goalkeeper Bristol was made to work for his clean sheet with some fine saves in stoppage time to ensure Wakefield completed their fourth league shut-out in a row.
“It was a day that we had to adapt our game plan due to the physicality of the game, as well as to the pitch itself, which was hard and uneven,” said Wakefield manager Gabe Mozzini.
"What pleased me the most was the fact that we adapted to these conditions well and sped up our build up during transitions.
"Second bit is how we coped with a team trying to make the game too physical in an attempt to stop us from playing our usual football.
“Our starting 11 seems fairly settled now and our system finally came together with these players. I'm definitely pleased about that.
"But, we still have players going away (and suspended), so the depth we have on the bench will be very important if we want to fight for the title.”
On the red card, he said; “I don't know exactly what each player has done and said, but I thought it was naive of Robbie to engage in that situation.
"Once you engage in it, it becomes a gamble and you never know how the referee will deal with it. So, we expect more experience from our players.”
On Armthorpe’s tactics he added: “One thing is to play with heart and grind out results. Another thing is to do dirty things behind the referee’s back with the sole intent of provoking players. Is that how they want to get points? It shouldn't be.”
Wakefield now turn their attentions to a home derby with Horbury Town this Saturday when they are hoping to draw the biggest crowd so far since they moved to Wakefield Trinity’s ground.
Horbury go into the match in 19th place after a goalless draw at home to Beverley Town and a 4-3 defeat in midweek at Staveley MW when Jak Kelly and James Cusworth (two) were on target.
Nostell MW took their goal tally to 24 in their first seven NCE Division One games, but lost 6-3 at Retford.
After finding themselves 3-0 down at the break they kept battling in the second half with Jordan Kershaw (two) and Liam Ormsby netting, but saw their five-match unbeaten run ended.
Nostell face Glasshoughton Welfare at home this Saturday.