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AFC Telford 3 Stockport 2 - Report and pictures

By Joe Edwards | AFC Telford United | Published: | Last Updated:

AFC Telford United finally ended their wretched run at home as substitute Jordan Murphy struck to seal a 3-2 victory against Stockport County.

This was the first National League North win at the New Bucks Head for Rob Edwards, coming at the sixth attempt.

John Marsden opened the scoring for the Bucks against his former club, but Matthew Warburton soon pulled the away side level.

Marcus Dinanga then put Telford back ahead but, again, the Hatters came up with a quick response, through Bohan Dixon.

It was a nervy second period and Murphy had the deciding say by firing home to seal a much-welcome three points.

Of course, Telford went in having lost all five previous fixtures at home this season.

And Stockport's away form was poor - losing four and winning one before this encounter.

The Bucks made just one change to the side that started the 5-1 trouncing against Harrogate Town on Saturday as Jon Royle came in for Henry Cowans, who was among the substitutes.

Skipper Shane Sutton was marking a familiar face in former Newton team-mate Jason Oswell.

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Rain was pouring down as the game got under way and the visitors had the lion's share of possession in the opening 10 minutes, playing a lot of short passes on the wet surface.

But it was Telford who took an early lead, 13 minutes in, via the penalty spot.

They burst forward down the right, with Marsden heading against the bar after Elliot Newby's cross.

Jordan Gough miscued on the rebound, but Anthony Dwyer then poked the ball towards goal only for Jimmy Ball to handle it on the line.

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He was booked, although he could have easily been shown a red card, and Marsden made no mistake from the spot, sending Hatters goalkeeper Ben Hinchliffe the wrong way.

In very similar fashion to the Harrogate encounter three days prior, though, the Bucks' lead did not last long - 10 minutes to be precise.

The ball was cut back from the right to Warburton and his low drive went in via the right hand of Jas Singh, who, in all honesty, should have kept the shot out.

Then the real test started for Telford, who caved in previous games after conceding.

They had Royle cautioned just after the half-hour mark, for a late lunge on Sam Walker, and were struggling to retain possession.

Stockport were being wasteful too as the two sides were skipping the midfielders and opting to play long balls in search of the strikers.

The Bucks then changed their approach, looking to utilise Newby's pace and trickery down the right - and it paid dividends as they went back in front after one of his crosses, three minutes before the interval.

His teasing ball across the face of goal was finished off, on the volley, by Dinanga.

But, again, the away side drew level in quick fashion.

Right on the stroke of half-time, Hatters debutant Dixon was not closed down and his fierce strike from 20 yards out flew into the bottom corner.

Telford kept things the same for the start of the second period but the visitors made two substitutions, bringing on Scott Duxbury and Chris Smalley for Adam Thomas and Darren Stephenson.

And they had Warburton go close in the 48th minute, with his effort being spilled by Singh in the difficult conditions and then hacked away.

The Bucks made a change just prior the hour mark, putting Murphy on in place of Dwyer.

They twice went close to retaking the lead soon after as well, with Sutton bundling wide from a few yards out after a corner and Marsden forcing a fine save from Hinchliffe.

Marsden then drew another sharp stop as Stockport were struggling to get out of their own half.

The visitors seemed rattled, and the Bucks' spell of pressure resulted in another goal in the 71st minute.

Murphy, who used to play for Walsall and recently joined from Stourbridge, struck the ball low and hard past Hinchliffe from the edge of the area - a lovely finish.

Telford introduced Cowans in place of Marsden and needed to show some mental toughness, and display good game management, to hold onto their lead in the closing stages.

And they did as they sat deep until the final whistle, which was met with relief and elation in equal measure from the Bucks faithful.

Teams

Telford (3-5-2): Singh; Johnson, Sutton (c), White; Newby, Royle, Lussey, Marsden (Cowans, 74), Gough; Dinanga, Dwyer (Murphy, 57)

Subs not used: Hayden, McGrory, Martinez (gk)

Stockport (4-3-3): Hinchliffe; Thomas (Smalley, 45), Cowan, O'Halloran (c), Hampson; Ball (Walker, 85), Walker, Dixon; Warburton, Oswell, Stephenson (Duxbury, 45)

Subs not used: Smith, Brazel

Attendance: 853

Referee: Sam Mulhall (Cheshire)

Joe Edwards

By Joe Edwards
Trainee Multi-Media Sports Journalist - @JoeEdwards_Star

Sports reporter for the Express & Star and Shropshire Star.

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