Telford 0 Chorley 1 - Report

Elliot Newby returned to haunt former club AFC Telford United with a deflected second-half winner to seal Chorley’s first league win of the season.

The former Bucks favourite played a key role in helping Telford avoid the drop in the 2017/18 season but condemned Gavin Cowan’s men to a disappointing evening at the New Bucks Head.

It was ex-Telford man Jamie Vermiglio whose side chalked up a vital three National League North points, their first of the league season and first in the league for almost exactly 12 months.

Cowan’s men were lively in spells in an even first period but the visitors delivered a fortunate late sting in the tail through Newby, the hosts dropping a place to sixth after a third game without a win at home.

Jordan Davies and Dom McHale were bright for Telford, who went closest through a Jason Oswell header and late free-kick from substitute Aaron Williams but Cowan’s men would have hoped to create more in an underwhelming second period.

Bucks defender Shane Sutton joined the ever-growing list of Telford injury absentee list.

The fractured little toe that Telford’s Welsh stopper picked up early on at Darlington on Saturday meant he joined Courtney Meppen-Walters, Brendon Daniels and Henry Cowans as influential Bucks men sidelined.

Ross White moved into Cowan’s back three alongside Zak Lilly and Theo Streete.

There was a home Telford debut for Eddy Jones at left wing-back. The on-loan Stoke teenager impressed on his Bucks bow in the victory at Darlington.

Midfielder Andy Bond, who also made his Bucks bow having signed from step three Matlock Town, did not keep his place in the side. Bond was replaced by Jack Byrne, who returned from a one-match suspension.

Cowan kept faith in man of the moment McHale, after two goals in his first two games including a match-winner in the north east, and striker Davies, who created both goals at Darlo.

Jamie Vermiglio’s Chorley went into the contest winless in five National North games in what has been a season of mixed emotions.

The Magpies, relegated from the National League last season and rock bottom of National North, have captured the imagination in a brilliant FA Cup, in which they have progressed through four rounds - including a victory over League One Wigan - to reach the second round.

The visitors might have a televised clash against Peterborough to look forward to on the horizon, but they started well at the New Bucks Head and showed little sign of their stuttering league form.

Chorley’s Andy Halls zipped a low 30-yard strike narrowly wide via the fingertips of Russ Griffiths in the opening stages. The visitors’ follow-up corner was helped back into the middle before Harvey Smith’s header was smothered by Griffiths.

Telford hit back instantly, McHale and Davies lively from the off. The latter worked hard to win a corner and Streete’s rising drive flicked just wide.

But the visitors were guilty of passing up a gilt-edged chance 10 minutes in. Former Buck Newby was allowed room down the right and his low cross found Ollie Shenton unmarked but the attacker could only drag a low finish across goal from 10 yards.

Lee Vaughan used the ball well down the Telford right, linking well with tireless forward Davies, with talented technician McHale troubling the Chorley backline.

Most of the visitors’ threat came from distance. Shenton’s swerving strike from 30 yards was parried by Griffiths, who was pleased to see Chorley’s attackers flagged offside. Moments later Scottish striker Harry Cardwell, formerly of Reading and Grimsby, saw a curled free-kick from just outside the penalty area crash off the stanchion.

Cowan’s men weren’t without their moments in front of goal. Davies set to McHale on the edge of the box, who jinked past a challenge before shooting at keeper Matt Urwin. Defender Lilly also headed a corner wide for the hosts.

Telford’s best chance of the half came and went on the stroke of half-time. Oswell started it, with a neat ball out to the right flank. Vaughan delivered a perfect cross to the back post and former Wrexham man Oswell beat his defender but could only head over from close range.

It was the sort of opportunity the powerful forward usually gobbles up.

Telford were unconvincing in dealing with an early second-half Chorley set-piece and Lewis Baines’ fierce half-volley was travelling towards goal before it struck a team-mate.

Davies almost conjured something from very little for the Bucks. Streete’s powerful header kept alive a half-cleared free-kick before the Welsh striker lashed a volley over on the swivel from the edge of the box.

The home side kept their foot down. Neat McHale footwork led to the schemer crossing low for Davies, who had worked some room in the box, but could not sort his feet to get a shot away.

Vermiglio made a double change on the hour, going in search of all three points, and one of his changes, Lewis Reilly, delivered a wicked ball from the right that striker Connor Hall could only steer over with his flicked header.

No Bucks change was forthcoming and the visitors struck with 20 minutes to go. Mike Calveley charged through the middle and fed Newby towards the left of the box.

Newby checked in on to his dangerous right foot and was fortunate in two instances, first with an untimely Streete slip before seeing his low drive take a telling touch of a Bucks defender, wrong-footing Griffiths at the keeper’s near post.

The hosts needed to rally. Boss Cowan waited until the 77th minute to introduce James Hardy and Williams for Williams and White.

It was Chorley closest to adding to the scoreline, as superb Streete defending was required to deny Cardwell from close range.

McHale’s free-kick from near the right corner flag stung the palms of Urwin as the Bucks hunted a late equaliser.

Williams was presented with a late free-kick deep into added time but his strike was safely claimed by Urwin on a frustrating evening for Telford.

Teams

AFC Telford United (3-4-1-2):

Griffiths; Streete, Lilly, White (Hardy, 79); Vaughan, Walker ©, Byrne, Jones; McHale; Oswell, Davies (Williams, 79).

Subs not used: Rawlins, Bond, Barnes-Homer.

Chorley (4-3-3):

Urwin, Birch, Leather (c), Baines (Reilly, 61), Calveley, Halls, Smith, Newby, Hall, Cardwell (Marah, 90+4), Shenton (Garratt, 61).

Subs not used: Putnam, Conn-Clarke.

Referee: Michael Barlow

Attendance: Zero

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