|West Didsbury & Chorlton||2|
A cool damp evening in Nelson saw a pretty uneventful first half with little to get the crowd excited apart from news from the tea hut on when the pies would be ready. West kept good shape and possession but found the Nelson defence hard to break down with few clear cut chances. Tommy Walsh was sent clear after 4 minutes but the home keeper read the danger and raced off his line to get to the ball first and clear. On 11 minutes Lee Shillito fired over the bar from 20 yards after good work on the left by Jones and Aston and apart from these half chances both defenses were well on top. It was 30 minutes before Nelson had any sort of attempt on goal when a long range effort was well wide and 5 minutes later West responded with an Aston header from a Shillito free kick on the left wing with the ball flashing past the post and Jones unable to get a touch to convert. After 40 minutes Nelson had their first real chance when a free kick from outside the area was headed behind for a corner and after that both teams settled for 0-0 at half time.
Nelson started the second half much better and upped the tempo playing with more pace and purpose and on 49 minutes were unlucky when a header went wide after a couple of slips in the West defence as the damp pitch surface became more difficult. A minute later and the home side were ahead when Callum Jones was dispossessed on half way and a great through ball split the West defence for Nelson player manager Robert Grimes to open the score.Nelson then got the bit between their teeth as West regrouped after a couple of injuries and enforced substitution. Tre Baldwin Willis replaced Lee Shillito after 52 minutes and then Lewis Schofield came on for Dave Conlon a couple of minutes later.
West were then saved by the upright as the game opened up to provide a thrilling second half with chances at either end. On 64 minutes Lewis Schofield shot wide from a central position and 5 minutes Nelson had a lucky escape when their central defender headed against his own bar and then Tre shot over. The final substitution for West saw Lee Malkin replace Tommy Walsh after 73 minutes as West went all out for an equaliser. Ten minutes later on 85 minutes it was all square when Lewis Schofield cracked home a fantastic free kick from 20 yards giving the Nelson keeper no chance. Unfortunately the lead lasted a mere 2 minutes when, yet again, we were punished from a corner when a header down was turned home from 3 yards by the unmarked Nelson substitute to restore the lead. West however were not finished and refused to lie down and on 88 minutes Callum Jones equalised from a Schofield corner to leave the final score 2-2, and for the second time in 4 days we notched twice in the last 5 minutes.
A very encouraging and gutsy whole team performance against a very good Nelson side who on this form will be in the mix at the end of the season.
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