Monday Night Football - Stourbridge v Stratford Town (7.45 pm)

Monday Night Football - Stourbridge v Stratford Town (7.45 pm)

By Nigel Gregg
11th August
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In a repeat of last season the Glassboys welcome STRATFORD TOWN for their opening home league game.


Monday, 12th August 2019 - kick-off 7-45 pm
BetVictor Southern League Premier Division Central
STOURBRIDGE v STRATFORD TOWN

Admission prices are as follows:

Adults..................................................£10
Senior Citizens (65 and over)..................£7
12-17 year olds.....................................£5
Under 12s............................................FREE
(when accompanied by a paying adult/senior citizen or season ticket holder)

The match programme (available from the Club Shop and also the Programme Hut located by the Church End driveway turnstiles) is priced at £2-50.

SEATING
Seating for spectators is located in the main stand on the far side of the ground from the Glassboys Bar. All seating is unreserved, except for the front two rows of seating in the centre block, which are for Directors, Officials and Sponsors only.

Other useful information can be viewed at -
https://www.stourbridgefc.com/a/matchday-information-for-spectators-44662.html

Both Stourbridge and Stratford Town made a winning start to the new season on Saturday. The Glassboys - with eight summer signings in the starting eleven - survived a late scare at Hitchin Town to run out 2 - 1 victors. Jordaan Brown got his first Stourbridge goal in his 43rd start to give us a 7th minute lead and debutant Kyle Finn - on loan from Hereford - added a second early in the second-half before Harry Draper pulled a goal back in the 77th minute to set up a nervy finish with Webb having a headed goal ruled out for offside in stoppage time!

A new look Stratford side overcame Needham Market 2 - 1 at home thanks to two superb strikes from range. Mitchell Glover put the Warwickshire outfit ahead but the Suffolk visitors levelled matters from the penalty spot in the closing stages only for Chris Wreh to hit a stunning 25-yard shot beyond the keeper two minutes into stoppage time to give new Stratford boss Tommy Wright a win in his first game in charge.

To add some extra spice to Monday's early season contest Stourbridge raided the visitors for three players over the summer with defender Jordan Williams, midfield playmaker Will Grocott and striker Mike Taylor all making the switch to the War Memorial Athletic Ground, although Williams was the only one to start at Hitchin.

Stourbridge ran out 3 -0 winners twelve months ago in the corresponding fixture, however Stratford went on to enjoy an excellent campaign, finishing 5th in the Premier Division Central before losing away to King's Lynn Town in the play-off semi-finals. They also won the League Cup competition to have some silverware to show for their endeavours.

LAST SEASON'S MATCH REPORT

Stourbridge got their home campaign off to a flying start as a dominant first-half display helped see off Stratford Town 3 - 0.

The Glassboys showed two changes to their starting line-up from the Barwell game. Brad Birch was preferred in place of Kaiman Anderson, while a toe injury for Aris Christophorou saw a defensive reshuffle that saw Aaron Hayden come in at right-back, meaning that Paul McCone partnered Jack Duggan at the heart of the defence with Jordaan Brown switching to left-back.

Stratford arrived at the War Memorial Athletic Ground with a 1 - 0 home win over St Neots under their belts, but they had to make a change in goal as recent signing Nathan Vaughan was unavailable so James Behan was called up in his place. Kynan Isaac also replaced Lewis Wilson in their starting elven.

After an even opening few minutes, home keeper James Wren was called into action in the 6th minute to tip a 20-yard drive from Will Grocott over the bar, but after that the Glassboys really hit their stride to control the next twenty-five minutes or so with summer signing Greg Mills to the fore as he caused a host of problems for the visitors down the left.

Stourbridge got their noses in-front after 10 minutes. Greg Mills sent over a corner from the left and Aaron Hayden rose to power home a header at the far post.

The home side doubled their advantage eight minutes later after further pressure on the Stratford goal. Mills drilled in a low cross from the left and Luke Benbow struck a first-time shot that drew a superb parried save from Behan, however Leon Broadhurst was on hand to fire home the rebound.

Stourbridge were then quickly back on the attack when a goal-kick from Wren was headed on by Birch into the path of Benbow who saw his shot from the edge of the box deflected by a defender for a corner.

Midway through the half ex-Glassboy Kieren Westwood picked up a booking for sending Rob Thompson-Brown tumbling.

Mills tried to catch the keeper out soon afterwards with a curling effort that Behan was equal to, but he wasn't to be denied with 32 minutes gone. This time he combined with Thompson-Brown before producing a sublime curler from the left-hand edge of the box beyond the dive of Behan away to his left.

Stratford needed a response before half-time and moments before the break they won a free-kick just outside the area, however Wren was in the right place to touch Grocott's attempt on goal over the bar.

Not surprisingly the second period failed to provide the same level of excitement as the visitors looked to restore some pride while Stourbridge sought to 'manage the game' to some extent.

In the 58th minute Wren had to make his third tip-over save of the night to keep out a header from sub Jordan Williams following a right-wing corner.

Stourbridge made their first change after 62 minutes with Stuart Pierpoint taking over from Hayden at right-back.

Six minutes later Callum Powell produced a pacey run down the right and flashed a low centre across the face of the six-yard box that just evaded Mike Taylor in the middle.

Kaiman Anderson took over from Brad Birch after 71 minutes and five minutes he linked up well with Leon Broadhurst down the left before the latter pulled back a cross that was just out of the reach of Mills.

Jake Evans made his first appearance of the new campaign on 79 minutes in place of Rob Thompson-Brown.

Five minutes from time Claudio Dias played a long diagonal ball into the left-hand side of the box where Westwood hit a speculative volley into the near-side side-netting.

A minute later McCone found Anderson in the left channel area and he hit a low 20-yard shot that Behan got down to save and on 88 minutes Benbow struck an early low 25-yard shot that Behan again saved.

Team - Wren, Hayden, Brown, McCone, Duggan, Forde, Broadhurst, Benbow, Thompson-Brown, Mills

Subs - Pierpoint (for Hayden 62 mins), Anderson (for Birch 71 mins), Evans (for Thompson-Brown 79 mins), Edmonds-Hill and Maher (not used)

Attendance - 733

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