Rangers arrived at Glasshoughton Welfare in the shadow of Castleford’s Xscape Snozone aiming to get all three points to continue to put the pressure on the rest of the NCEL Division One. The pitch was heavy, and the grass had been left long, but compared to the tractor marked pitch Rangers faced last season, it was at lease playable.
Winterton were without Elliot Broughton, who was there supporting the lads, and spotted tucking into Cornish Pasty and peas with his one good arm. Ben Silburn took Elliot’s place for his second start of the season, after impressing at the Workshop cup tie a week or so earlier. Will Peers was unfortunately missing with a slight knock.
The match kicked off after the third minutes silence in succession, with the match falling on the weekend of Armistice Day. Glasshoughton made the better start, but then Rangers started to play their way into the game. Rangers showing some glimpses of good play, with some good interlinking play between Adam Lee and Nelly. Ben Silburn was unlucky that he was not able to make contact with a good driven cross from Luke Anderson.
On the half hour mark, Rangers won a corner and the big lads from the back went up for it. Kes went up to challenge for a header, rolled over the back of the Welfare defender, and landed awkwardly on the back of his neck. A worrying 5 minutes followed with a number of the Rangers players assisting the Manager and Coach in assessing Kes’ injury. It was good to see Kes able to walk slowly off the pitch with the help of the manager Rob Watson, and be able to watch the rest of the game from the bench. Let’s hope he is OK and makes a good recovery this week. James Coulbeck replaced Kes, to play the remaining hour of the match at centre-half.
Glasshoughton had a good group of 20 ‘youths’ who were making loads of noise behind the stands, with a number of songs, mainly borrowed from Leeds United. They serenaded Rangers’ snapper, Paul Tong, with a number of songs, the lyrics to which cannot be reproduced here!
After the half time break, Rangers went about Glasshoughton looking to break the deadlock. Welfare have a superb polish ‘keeper, who had a great game earlier in the season at West Street, and he continued to a frustrate Winterton throughout the second half. It was also not good to see Adam Lee be helped off the pitch after jarring his knee in a challenge.
With 2 minutes left Rangers won a penalty, and the Rangers fans on the sideline couldn’t watch, and the Welfare ‘youths’ behind the goal delighted in causing as much disruption and noise as they could muster to put off Luke Anderson. With the ‘keeper being such a large agile frame Luke knew he was going to have to hit it hard and well, which he did, but was unlucky to see the ball ricochet off the crossbar. Rangers kept going and won a freekick 22 yards out, which Nelly struck brilliantly, only to see the ‘keeper dive full length to tip the ball round the post.
At the final whistle it was the Rangers players disappointed, and the Welfare players happy with the shared point. On balance Rangers had the better of the game and earned a clean sheet despite losing a key member of the defence in the first third of the game.
Rangers stay top of the league, albeit on goal difference, but set up nicely with this week’s trip to Bradford to face second placed team Campion.
Glasshoughton Welfare 0 Winterton Rangers FC 0
Saturday 10 Nov 2018 – Att: 87 (HT 0-0)
Weather: 8C / Heavy skies
Pitch: Heavy with long grass
Distance from Winterton: 45 miles – 50 mins
Cornish pasty & peas (£2.50) (7)
Programme (8) (£1.50)
Away Ground Rating (7)
Ground Friendliness (5)
Referee & Linesmen (9)