Second-half - second Nantwich goal - Sean Cooke fires it into the bottom corner during stoppage time v Stafford

Sean Cooke’s dramatic 95th minute winner completed an amazing late comeback for Nantwich Town in their Boxing Day clash with Stafford Rangers.

He seized on to a loose ball during a penalty box scramble and fired into the bottom corner to send the hone fans wild.

Two minutes earlier, Joel Stair’s header had levelled for Nantwich as they seemed to be heading for defeat against their local rivals.

A bumper Boxing Day audience braved the cold and rain at the Weaver Stadium for the league clash.

The match was preceded by a minute’s applause to celebrate the life of beloved club stalwart Ivan Robertson.

Ex Stoke City favourite Ricardo Fuller started up front with Joe Malkin, and the Dabbers had most of the play in the first half.

Cooke had a couple of free kicks which were well saved of deflected away.

Malkin’s header from a corner went close as Nantwich pressed but could not break through before half-time.

First-half - Joe Malkin on the ball (1)

First-half – Joe Malkin on the ball

Meanwhile, Joe Davies had to head off the line for Nantwich in Stafford’s best attempt.

The visitors went ahead on 66 minutes against the run of play.

Former Dabber Jon Moran managed to get on the end of an in-swinging cross from Grayson to power it past Greg Hall.

On 71 minutes Fuller almost levelled when substitute Joe Mwasile’s floated cross was headed firmly but hit the upright and bounced into the arms of Stafford stopper King.

Stafford were reduced to 10 men on 82 minutes when Coulson was sent off for a second bookable offence after pulling down Fuller who was leading a counter.

Five minutes of injury time went up and seemed to spur the Dabbers into action.

Second-half - first Nantwich goal - Joel Stair heads in to equalise during stoppage time (1)

Second-half – Joel Stair heads in to equalise during stoppage time

Will Saxon had a great chance to level on 91 minutes but planted a header wide.

But two minutes later, Stair was left unmarked at far post and ghosted in to head the equaliser.

And then Cooke’s dramatic last second winner completed a remarkable victory for Nantwich which leaves them in 8th place in Bet Victor Northern Premier League.

They are back in action on New Year’s Day when they travel to Cheshire rivals Witton Albion.

(Images courtesy of Jonathan White)

Second-half - Ricardo Fuller header hits the post (1)

Ricardo Fuller header hits the post

First-half - Joe Malkin rises to head at goal (1)

First-half – Joe Malkin rises to head at goal

Pre-match - a minute’s applause to celebrate the life of beloved club stalwart Ivan Robertson (2) (1)

Pre-match – a minute’s applause to celebrate the life of beloved club stalwart Ivan Robertson

Ivan Robertson raises the trophy after Nantwich Town win the Cheshire FA Senior Cup Final 2018-19 (2) (1)

Ivan Robertson raises the trophy after Nantwich Town win the Cheshire FA Senior Cup Final 2018-19

Aerial view of Nantwich Town v Stafford Rangers

Aerial view of Nantwich Town v Stafford Rangers

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website, to learn more please read our privacy policy.

*

Captcha * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.