Cougars make it Five out of Five
Easdale shines in tough away trip
The Cougars made it five league wins out of five on a difficult away trip to Lingfield.
Lingfield had only conceded one goal in each of their two league defeats to date, suggesting that they would be a hard side to break down. This proved to be the case but, Ashington proved once again, that they can create many chances and more importantly, finish them.
The side ran out worthy 6-1 winners. If not for a poor surface, high winds and an excellent display in goal from Lingfield’s keeper the score could have been higher.
The side comprised of Wheatley (GK) Mace, Lowdell, Bicknell (Def) Morgan, Booth, Easdale, Gorman (Mid) Hanley (CF) Subs: Paisley, Alcott, Blackburn.
Ashington were playing into the wind in the first half making it difficult. The side played a good passing game and created many chances.
Lingfield played the conditions well and using the wind were able to break with direct balls. The Ashington defence eventually got the measure of this tactic and were able to gain control. This rugged tactic forced a few corners that the side defended well. Paisley, in particular, showing hunger to get to the first or second ball to clear well.
The scoring was opened by the dependable Hanley slotting home a right footed shot from close range. 1-0.
The second followed soon after. Easdale with a mazy dribble down the left of the penalty area, beating two players, he fizzed a low driven cross along the six yard line. Morgan sniffing the opportunity, ghosted in from the right wing to side foot home. 2-0.
The next was the goal of the day. Hanley received the ball on the half way line with his back to goal. He showed good close control, spun, got his head up and lifted a well weighted pass between the centre half and left back. The high line was beaten. The ball released Easdale who backed his pace to drive towards the Lingfield goal. Showing composure under pressure Easdale drove the ball low past the despairing keeper into the bottom left corner. A great pass and a great finish. 3-0 to Ashington.
Ashington now had the wind behind them. The side were now able to pressure Lingfield and hemmed them into their own half, for all but a few occasions, for the whole of the second half.
Theo Bicknell moved to the Left wing and put in a positive display driving forward when the opportunity arose and was a constant menace. He was unlucky not to have scored on the day. The poor playing surface denying him a good chance when his striking foot got caught in a hole. The ref initially gave a penalty but this was correctly overturned by our ever present linesman Ben Alcott. Great sportsmanship and well done to Theo for accepting the officials decision without complaint.
Three second half goals followed. Hanley finish with two for the day and his 18th of the season in just five games. Booth scored after a jinky dribble and low finish. Man of the Match, Easdale, added an excellent curling right footed shot, from 25 yards, high into the top right hand corner.
Lingfield scored a break away goal. Deserved reward for a committed display.
Well done to all the players. Another solid, professional display demonstrating the need for a strong squad and the players are beginning to understand they all have a vital role to play, whether as starters or substitutes.
They are maturing as a group, coming to terms with any personal disappointment at selection, and all seem determined to grab the opportunity of game time with both hands.
They have put themselves in a solid position to kick on, improve, and push for a second successive promotion this season. There is plenty of hard work needed (at training and during games) to secure this but, to date, I cannot fault their efforts and am very proud of them, well done.
Captain: Tom Easdale
MOM: Tom Easdale
Easdale x 2