Nicky Platt celebrates opener against Witton Albion

Nantwich Town blitzed their local rivals Witton Albion with a stunning Bank Holiday display in front of almost 500 fans, writes Richard Scott.

The 3-0 victory at the Weaver Stadium moves the Dabbers nearer to safety above the Evo-Stik Premier League drop zone.

First half goals from Nicky Platt and Mat Bailey, along with a strike from super-sub Harry Clayton, rounded off the win.

Visiting goalkeeper Andy Robertson was sent off for a rash challenge on Matthew Kosylo, but the damage was already done as Nantwich Town stormed passed the 50-point mark for the season.

Youth team product Brandon Mighten, who was pivotal in the Dabbers FA Youth Cup run earlier in the season, was drafted onto the bench.

Witton Albion had the opening chance. A long ball found Josh Hancock unmarked in the box but his side-footed volley was palmed away by Terry Smith.

Liam Shotton found himself through one-on-one after a Sean Cooke through ball, but Robertson did well to smother the effort.

But moments later Nantwich Town took an early lead.

Nicky Platt opener for Nantwich Town against Witton Albion

Kosylo broke through the middle after four minutes and released Cooke, who with the outside of his right foot pinged the ball to PJ Hudson.

Hudson crossed short to the near post where Platt expertly volleyed past Robertson into the top corner of the net.

Nantwich did not sit back and dominated.

Mark Jones’ cross was only half cleared to Cooke and his volley was inches wide of Robertson’s post.

Daniel Andrews and Jamie Rainford had shots from distance for Witton, without troubling Smith.

Sean Cooke posed problems and he created Nantwich’s second.

His ball in evaded Platt but bounced up nicely for centre back Mat Bailey, who half-volleyed it home from six yards.

Mat Bailey fires home for Nantwich v Witton

Luke Clark was lucky to avoid a yellow card when he clattered into Cooke from behind.

Kosylo was also injured in a challenge and underwent lengthy treatment.

Rainford tried to pull Witton back into the game, but his curling, right-footed effort from 18 yards was tame and Smith caught easily on his line.

Hancock was then booked for hauling down Kosylo as he broke away on 36 minutes.

The Dabbers continued to press. Cooke’s spectacular volley from distance just dipped wide.

Just before half time, Alex Titchiner was clean through on goal for Witton, but Ben Harrison got back strongly to deny him.

Witton Albion came out all-guns blazing in the second half, but Nantwich’s defensive back line commanded their half well.

Hancock’s cross was almost a shot on 57 minutes, but it flashed across Smith’s goal.

Goalscorer Platt limped off shortly afterwards, to be replaced by Johnathan Moran.

Moran moved to right-back, allowing captain Mark Jones to move up into a central defensive midfield role.

Harry Clayton replaced the injured Shotton with 64 minutes on the clock.

Witton keeper sent off for foul on Matty Kosylo

And soon after Clayton was celebrating Nantwich Town’s third and decisive goal.

Robertson’s pass out to Joe Shaw was too short and Cooke capitalised. He nicked the ball off the defender, burst into the six yard box before calmly squaring to Clayton to finish.

A moment of madness then saw Witton keeper Robertson given his marching orders.

He was dispossessed outside his box, then took out Clayton who had the ball at his feet, before sliding into Kosylo as he shot towards the open net.

It was adjudged to be just outside of the box, but it was still to be the final action for Robertson.

red card for Witton keeper against Nantwich Town

Rainford was then brought off to be replaced by substitute keeper Dean Porter with 15 minutes to play.

Clayton was the main outlet for the Dabbers, keeping the Albion defence on their toes and looking to compound their misery.

Witton were close to pulling one back with seven minutes to go but Hancock’s shot flew over.

Dabbers manager Phil Parkinson then bloodied youngster Mighten with five minutes to go.

And Mighten might have had a goal within moments, but Hudson’s cross was plucked out of the air with the youngster unmarked.

It’s three consecutive victories for Nantwich, and two consecutive clean sheets.

Centre-back Mat Bailey, returning from suspension, picked up the Man of the Match award.

And the Dabbers will be be looking to make it four wins on the trot as they visit Blyth Spartans in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League this Saturday coming.

Nantwich Town: Smith, M.Jones (C), White, Bailey, Harrison, Osborne, Hudson, Platt, Shotton, Cooke and Kosylo. Subs: Clayton (On for Shotton, 64 minutes), Winslade, Moran (on for Platt, 57 minutes), Mighten (on for Kosylo, 85 minutes) and Hartley.

(All pictures courtesy of Simon J Newbury Photography)

Nantwich Town v Witton Albion, April 2015

Nantwich celebrate against Witton Albion

Mat Bailey and team celebrate goal against Witton

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