Matlock Town drew 0-0 against Sheffield FC in what was the first game back for fans. Sheffield FC gave them to a very competitive game for a side that are a league below them.
The home side started the game off brightly Byrne doing one of his signature crosses and Liam Hughs got on the end of it but hit It just over the bar. Sheffield FC did fight back soon after with Alex Wonham cutting in on the right hand side and winning a corner for the away side.
The gladiators continued to dominate in the opening period of the game with Callum Chippendale playing a beautiful ball into the box but Adam Chapman did good to clear .
In what turned out to be a extremely even affair for most of the game Sheffield almost scored the first goal of the game with a free-kick cross deflecting in the box but Jon Stewart collected well.
A ball up from the Matlock number 1 then was headed down by Hughes to Byrne who beat his man a tried to play a through ball but just about had to much on it. Dolan, who will be a player to watch this season with his quick pace and skills, then took a hard a low cross body shot after beating 2 players.
The midfielder then had another chance 3 minutes later this time hitting the post after being through on goal. Another opportunity came soon after with Matlock being the better side over the first 25 minutes. An indirect free-kick because of a passback was laid off to the side and hit hard but nothing came of it.
Sheffield FC won a penalty in the 30th minute in which appeared to be a miscommunication between the Matlock goalkeeper and defender which led to the keeper taking out Viggers. Viggers stepped up to take the penalty and hit it to the right of the keeper but he did well to redeem himself for the foul and saved it.
The home side then had a penalty shout with Byrne being pushed over in the box but the referee waved the calls away . There were a few good moments towards the end of the half the best of which coming from a Sheffield freekick which was fired straight towards the keeper as we went into the break all square.
As the teams came out for the second half the news of a shocking substitute for Matlock with a change in keeper happened. Jon Stewart had picked up an injury which is set to leave him on the sideline for 6-10 weeks. But the big news was with no back up goalkeepers the Manager of Matlock Paul Phillips put on the gloves and came out of retirement.
And he had an involvement early on coming out to smash the ball away from danger. The opening look in came from Matlock in the second half when a corner hit just to high and the keeper collected it well.
Matlock had the majority of the ball winning a number of freekicks in what was a rough showing For the rest of the game with lots of challenges being put in. They continued to have the ball in the midfield but just couldn’t create anything to get the shot away.
A nasty tackle from behind from Sheldon resulted in a free-kick for Matlock which was taken nicely and met the head of Kendall but went just wide.
Sheffield did get into the game more when the Matlock manager turned keeper was caught off his line and Prior took a shot but luckily for him it was wide of the mark.
After being out for so long from injury, King did a good Job on the wing to loop a ball into the box and Hughes winning yet another header but yet again just couldn’t get enough on it.
The game ended as it had been for most of it with both sides having a lot of the ball but struggling to get the final shots away to gain that goal.