Derwent 2nds resist valiant Langwith comeback

– Derwent take the lead twice

– Langwith fight back to level on both occasions

– Derwent secure win through man of the match Nicholson

– First win in Premier Division for Derwent 2nds

Derwent 2nds claimed a crucial 4-3 win against Langwith 1sts – resisting two comebacks from the men in yellow – to secure their first victory of the new Premier Division campaign. In a fascinating, tight game, Langwith twice came from behind to draw level before Derwent put the game to bed through man of the match Rob Nicholson. It was a fantastic advert for college football, with some high quality football on show leading to a goal-filled encounter.

After a cagey opening few minutes, it was Derwent who went ahead through lone striker Nicholson. He met a free kick curled in from the right with a looping header which evaded the efforts of Le Cornu in the Langwith goal. Derwent doubled their advantage on 28 minutes, with Langwith skipper Tom Benney inadvertently flicking on a long throw straight into the path of Tom Mulligan who finished left footed. Langwith then began their first fight back with right-winger Morton slotting home after a perfectly weighted ball through from Ben Grindell. The game was again all square through Morton’s second, finishing nicely from a Gohil assist. Derwent missed a controversial penalty just before half-time, with Le Cornu making up for his error with a decent save down to his right. Derwent were to go ahead again, with Low’s shot being deflected in after a valiant attempt from Langwith captain Benney on the line. Langwith came on strong and were duly rewarded, with Marcus Campbell’s low, rasping drive nestling in the corner. It was all to be in vain however, with Nicholson scoring his second just 4 minutes later.

The match began with a few scrappy exchanges, neither side being able to keep possession for long. Langwith were slightly on top, with playmaker Gohil having a shot saved after some nice skill. A Langwith corner after 10 minutes nearly led to the first goal, with Derwent right back Whittaker nearly flicking into his own net. A couple of minutes later it was Derwent who took the lead against the run of play. Jules Delay whipped in a free kick from the right and Nicholson was able to get on the end of it, looping a header over the Langwith stopper.

Nicholson was causing the Langwith backline some issues, with his height and pace posing a threat from dead ball situations. Derwent kicked on from their opener, with Ntephe and Low both missing decent chances. Their endeavour was rewarded on 28 minutes, aided by a mistake from Langwith skipper Benney. Not able to get up high enough to meet a long throw, he flicked the ball into the path of Tom Mulligan who finished left-footed.

Langwith must have felt hard done by after going two goals behind, and they pushed on, looking to get back into the game. They started to look more dangerous, with a slick counter attack ending in a shot being easily saved by Cooper in the Derwent goal. However, they eventually got their reward through winger Morton, who slotted home coolly after an inch-perfect through ball from Grindell.

They subsequently found themselves level only a few minutes later, with Morton securing his brace. Some skilful play on the edge of the box by Gohil led to a chance for the right-winger, who duly dispatched the ball past Cooper.

Derwent were awarded a controversial penalty seconds later – Le Cornu rushed out to gather but Nicholson was able to touch the ball past the stopper before acrobatically evading the keeper’s challenge. Langwith were incensed but Le Cornu made up for his mistake with a solid stop from Low’s penalty.

It was indeed Langwith who started the second period stronger, with Pegg and Parsonson both having decent headed opportunities. However, Derwent withstood the pressure and took the lead again through the rapid Low. A counter attack from deep in their own half found Nicholson on the edge of the box who slid Low in to finish well past Le Cornu, with Benney failing to clear despite his effort on the line.

The game then settled a bit, with Langwith taking the initiative. Derwent keeper Charlie Cooper was called upon to make a couple of decent saves from Pegg and Morton, with Gohil guilty of missing a golden chance to equalise after Morton’s effort. They were finally able to level through Marcus Campbell. The centre back, having moved into central midfield for the second half, hit a fierce drive which evaded several bodies and nestled in the bottom corner.

It looked ominous for Derwent but to their credit they were ahead again only 4 minutes later, with Nicholson bagging his second. It was again the Low-Nicholson combination that undid Langwith, with Low sliding Nicholson down the right and the striker obliged with a powerful effort finding its way into the far corner.

Langwith pressed on looking for a deserved point but it was not to be, with the Derwent defence holding on well. A late penalty appeal was dismissed after Morton was crowded out, and Derwent walked away with a crucial victory as they look to avoid relegation in their first Premier Division campaign.

Winning captain Matthew Elvin had this to say: ‘I thought we fought really well and the boys worked really hard for each other. We had a couple of leads but gave away two sloppy goals; I think we can improve at the back a little bit. We shut up shop with 15 minutes to go and were under the cosh a little bit but defended really well. We did really well going forward, Rob Nicholson was again a class act, they couldn’t handle him that’s why they were chopping him down left, right and centre. All in all very happy with the win and I fancy our chances of staying up after that’

Opposing captain Tom Benney said ‘It was a very good game really, end to end with lots of chances. I thought we looked really good when we passed the ball and were patient with it, but too many times we probably rushed it and tried to play the killer pass too early. I thought some of the decisions were probably a bit harsh, but we played really well despite that and definitely deserved something from the game, we were unlucky to lose. Once again we had a great game against Derwent, it was a really good advert for college football’.

Vision MotM: Rob Nicholson (Derwent)

Derwent 2nds: Cooper; Whittaker, Conner, Elvin (c), Reynolds; Ntephe, Askham, Mulligan, Low, Delay; Nicholson. Subs: Stones, Castiglione, Simpson

Langwith 1sts: Le Cornu; Pegg, Campbell, Pickersgil, Benney (c); Hudson, Parsonson, Vidal, Morton, Grindell; Gohil. Subs: Chaimo, Ope, Hannah