Nantwich goal v Shaw Lane - Joe Mwasile celebrates

An early strike from Joe Mwasile was enough to give Nantwich Town a vital victory at Halesowen, writes Ryan Batty.

Mwasile gave the Dabbers the lead on 15 minutes when he fired the ball into the top corner for his second goal of the season.

It was the good first chance of the game as a ball through the defence was going towards David Forbes.

But Mwasile got there first and confidently smashed the ball home.

The Dabbers dominated the first half, but a free-kick on the right-hand side forced new keeper Myles Boney into a fine save to prevent the equaliser.

After 25 minutes, the Dabbers almost doubled their lead as a lovely move on the left saw Caspar Hughes, Sean Cooke and Courtney Wildin link up.

Wildin curled in a cross that almost found the head of Harry Clayton, but the forward was unable to get it on target.

On 30 minutes, McDonald spotted the keeper off his line and attempted to lob him from 50 yards, his effort drifting narrowly wide of the post.

Mwasile almost had his second soon after as he fired one in the six-yard box, Platt made the save, but Forbes’ rebound was just over the bar.

The final chance of the half fell to Cooke who beat a man on the edge of the box before shooting low but Platt was on hand to make a fine one-handed save.

Early in the second half, Cooke went down in the box, but the referee waved away penalty claims for the visitors.

Nantwich controlled the tempo, yet the hosts looked fiercer after the break.

Halesowen made their first change on the hour, as Roland Agbor replaced Kyle Morrison.

A minute later, Matt Bell found room for a shot and cracked one towards Platt, which the keeper almost dropped.

With 20 minutes to go, both sides made a change, as Mwasile was replaced by youngster David Neligwa.

Bradley Lewis came on for Enock Ekongo for the hosts.

Lewis was almost sent straight back off though, as he made a late challenge on Bell, but the referee only showed a yellow.

A nice move from the Dabbers involving Caspar Hughes, Wildin and Clayton saw the latter fire narrowly over the bar as they searched for a second goal.

The two sides made their final changes with 10 minutes to go, as Steve Jones replaced Forbes for the Dabbers, while Yasin Al-Massry came on for Matthew Barnes-Homer.

With five minutes to go, Nantwich almost allowed the hosts back into the game as they gave away a free-kick on the edge of the box.

Nantwich defended it well as the wall’s initial block went for a corner that was dealt with well.

That proved to be the last clear chance of the game, and Nantwich came away with three points, climbing up to 16th in the process.

Nantwich are back in action this week as they contest their re-arranged Cheshire Senior Cup fixture with Sandbach on Wednesday evening, at the Sandbach Community Football Centre for a 7.45pm KO.

Nantwich Town: Boney, Morgan (Phillips 30′), Wildin, Bourne, McDonald, Bell, Mwasile (Neligwa 70′), Hughes (C), Clayton, Cooke, Forbes (Jones 80′). Subs not used: Hall, Cotterell

(pic courtesy of Jonathan White)

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