Williamson heads late winner
Shrewsbury Town 0 (0) v Port Vale 1 (0)
Tuesday 13 August 2013
Shrewsbury Town Reserves: Anyon,Hickman, Delfonseo, McQuade, Richards, Lampkin, Woods (Fletcher 54), McAllister, Denton (Watkins 76), Anderson, Ginnelly (Burton 54).
Subs not used: Easthope, Carpenter.
Port Vale Reserves: Sam Johnson, Cheye Alexander, Ben Jefford, Ryan Lloyd, Doug Price, Tom Morris, Chris Shuker, Chris Birchall, Ben Williamson (Jordan Hugill 79), Louis Dodds, Kaid Mohamed (Wilson Carvalho 79).
Subs not used: Ryan Boot, Louis Tambini, Dominic Dell, Nathan Smith.
Vale got the Reserve fixtures off to a winning start with a mix of squad players and first year professionals but made hard work of a game that they dominated for long periods, eventually coming through by a single goal with just 16 minutes remaining. Although ex Vale custodian Joe Anyon had a good game dealing with almost everything that Vale threw at him the main reason for the score line was profligacy in front of goal.
The misses began in the 4th minute when a nice flick by Dodds put Williamson clear on the right but his cross was mishit by Lloyd from 15 yards and the ball flew over the bar. Alexander then won the ball just inside the Shrews half and his 40 yard run, beating 4 players was halted on the edge of the box by a foul; unfortunately Shuker’s free kick failed to beat the first man, which happened all too often. Another good move between Williamson and Mohamed saw the latter in on goal but this time Anyon blocked the ball at the near post for a corner.
Just after the 20 minute mark a throw allowed Williamson to cut in to goal and his cross hit a defender and drifted just past the far post with Anyon stranded and this was followed by a Lloyd cross that evaded all the vale forwards and was eventually hacked clear. Shrewsbury first real threat came after 26 minutes when a quality cross was met by Denton, whose diving header flew over the bar with the goal gaping. Vale responded when Dodds played in Williamson who cut in from the right and his low drive was kept out by Anyon’s feet.
After 30 minutes a Jefford throw enabled Williamson to beat his man and move in on goal from the left but he dragged his shot well wide of the near post. Dodds then had the best chance of the half. He cleverly beat his man and ran on at goal with a couple of defenders in his wake, but as Anyon advanced Dodds placed his shot just wide of the post when a goal looked inevitable. The home side than looked dangerous but Alexander cut out a dangerous looking cross.
The last 5 minutes of the half saw Birchall, who was playing a defensive role, get forward and his shot to the far post was pushed away by Anyon and then Alexander set up Lloyd whose shot bounced off the top of the cross bar into the empty stand. The final opportunity saw Anyon beat away a shot from Mohamed and the rebound saw Dodds’ shot drift past the far post.
The second half was scrappier with Shrewsbury having an early shot just wide but generally Vale still had the ascendancy and saw a drive by Shuker beaten away by Anyon and Williamson blasting a couple of shots spectacularly wide. The goal finally arrived after 74 minutes as Mohamed went on a long diagonal run from left to right across the front of the retreating defence before feeding Shuker and his driven cross saw Williamson run in front of Anyon to power his header home.
Shrewsbury saw a 20 yard effort from one of the subs go wide before Vale’s only real scare with 6 minutes remaining as Johnson fumbled and the loose ball was hit goal wards but Lloyd blocked this to save any blushes. Hugill shot just wide from distance as Vale saw out the game for a victory.
Match Report - Lindon Roberts