Saturday 12 November // Varanama National League // Attendance: 932 // Report by Ruth Tunnell
Maidstone United’s mini unbeaten run has been brought to an end after they were defeated by Southport. Having gone three nil down in this match, the Stones managed to pull two goals back but they were unable to force a draw.
With Kevin Lokko, Tom Mills and James Rogers all suspended, Jay Saunders was forced to make a number of changes to his side which has been more settled in recent weeks. And this seemed to unsettle Maidstone who simply did not get going until Southport had established a decent lead by not long after the interval.
The afternoon started badly for the Stones as the home side went in front with just five minutes played. A well worked corner from Jordan Lussey came to Liam Nolan who headed the ball back towards the six yard box and Jamie Allen was on hand to hook the ball into the net from close range.
Shortly after this, Lee Worgan had to be alert to come charging out of his goal as Allen raced towards the box. Worgan was out of his area by this point but he did well to slide in and dispossess the Southport player with an expertly timed challenge.
Declan Weeks then went close with an effort from some distance but there was then nothing to note until first half stoppage time. Once again, Maidstone’s difficulties in defending corners was evident once more as Lussey picked out the unmarked Nolan who side footed the ball past Worgan.
Seconds later, the Stones went within inches of falling even further behind. This time a corner from Lussey was heading towards the near post. Dan Sweeney couldn’t get to it but Jack Paxman got a touch and he accidentally sent the ball spinning onto the cross bar before it bounced to safety.
However, it wasn’t long before Southport stretched their lead after all. With 52 minutes played, Lussey played Allen in on goal and from a tight angle, he slotted the ball past Worgan.
But the Stones quickly gave themselves a lifeline in this match following the Sandgrounders third goal. Substitute Jack Evans started the move which saw Bobby-Joe Taylor find debutant Bradley Hudson-Odoi and his cross into the middle was confidently thumped into the net by Yemi Odubade.
Maidstone struggled to build on this goal though and although substitute Ben Greenhalgh got some decent deliveries into box, the Stones couldn’t take advantage. Every now and again, Southport would also get into good positions but like Maidstone, they didn’t capitalise.
This was pretty much the pattern of the remaining moments until five minutes from time. With the Stones pushing forwards, Jamar Loza managed to create room for a low shot from just inside the area but it lacked power and Magnus Norman in the Sandgrounders goal made a diving save.
As the game moved through stoppage time, the home side had a good chance to put some gloss on the scoreline as they broke quickly. Ryan Higgins put the ball into the box from the right and it came to substitute Ashley Grimes who put the opportunity wide when well placed.
The final meaningful action of the game saw Maidstone awarded a penalty when Alex Flisher went down in the box. Taylor scored his second goal from the spot in as many games but his strike came just too late for the Stones to have any time left to try and rescue a point from the match.
Southport: Jamie Allen 5, 52 Liam Nolan 45
Maidstone United: Yemi Odubade 59, Bobby-Joe Taylor 90 (pen.)
Southport: 27. Magnus Norman, 12. Andrai Jones (11. John Cofie 83), 19. Declan Weeks, 22. Callum Howe, 7. Jamie Allen, 16. James Caton (10. Liam Hynes 67), 17. Jordan Lussey (8. Ashley Grimes 83), 4. Liam Nolan, 5. Josh Thompson, 26. Ryan Higgins, 3. Neil Ashton. Subs not used: 9. James Gray, 28. Nathan Ferguson.
Maidstone United: 1. Lee Worgan, 22. Seth Nana Twumasi, 4. Jamie Coyle, 15. Anthony Acheampong, 16. Bobby-Joe Taylor, 9. Bradley Hudson-Odoi (17. Ben Greenhalgh 69), 10. Jack Paxman, 8. Dan Sweeney (12. Jack Evans 53), 11. Alex Flisher, 23. Yemi Odubade (24. Liam Enver-Marum 86), 25. Jamar Loza. Subs not used: 2. Callum Driver, 14. Tom Murphy.
Who was your man of the match against Southport?
- Bobby-Joe Taylor (33%, 29 Votes)
- Seth Nanu-Twumasi (12%, 11 Votes)
- Ben Greenhalgh (11%, 10 Votes)
- Jack Evans (10%, 9 Votes)
- Lee Worgan (6%, 5 Votes)
- Yemi Odubade (6%, 5 Votes)
- Alex Flisher (6%, 5 Votes)
- Bradley Hudson-Odoi (4%, 4 Votes)
- Jamar Loza (3%, 3 Votes)
- Liam Enver-Marum (2%, 2 Votes)
- Jack Paxman (2%, 2 Votes)
- Anthony Acheampong (2%, 2 Votes)
- Jamie Coyle (1%, 1 Votes)
- Dan Sweeney (1%, 1 Votes)
Total Voters: 89