Away league match played on 26 February 2022.
Kicked off at 3:00 PM

Stafford Town’s visit to Abbey Hey turned into the away day from hell as they were humbled 6-0 by the Manchester side. Everything seemed to go wrong for Stafford, beginning with a motorway accident leading to players arriving late and although the kick off was delayed by fifteen minutes, the usual preparations were impossible. Stafford were second best in any case, but to make matters worse a harsh red card for Declan Arber with five minutes to go until halftime allowed Abbey to completely dominate the second period and put Stafford to the sword. After a second minute Stafford attack and cross down the right ended with Charlie Swingwood firing over the bar from distance; Abbey took a fifth minute lead, one of the forwards swivelling to finish in the box following a cross from the right. Stafford looked somewhat ragged defensively and their lack of organisation saw Abbey pose a number of problems with minimal effort. An Abbey overload through the middle saw some superb goalkeeping by Henry Smith, who was off his line sharply to block an initial shot and bravely put himself at risk to disrupt the follow up. Morgan Payne then dragged a shot wide in the 15th minute as he latched onto a flick on by Arber. Smith was off his line again to stop another attack through the middle in the 25th minute before a good move by Stafford saw them work the ball across the pitch and down the right, Jamie Weldon seeing his eventual cross headed wide. Abbey then shot wide as Stafford lost possession on the edge of the box before having a goal correctly ruled out for offside five minutes later when the ball was put in at the back post following a cross-shot. Things became much tougher for Stafford five minutes before the break when the referee adjudged Arber to have deliberately elbowed an Abbey defender in the face as he challenged for a high ball, although Arber protested that he had caught the defender with his hand and the contact looked to be accidental in any case. Abbey had two good chances to extend the lead before halftime, Swingwood making one excellent block in the box and the other opportunity was headed over. HT 1-0 Abbey Hey. Abbey certainly made their numerical advantage count in the second half, some neat combination play upfront giving Stafford nightmares throughout as they were unable to deal with the constant overloads created. In only the second minute of the half a diagonal ball out to the Abbey left saw the ball subsequently delivered into the box, a clever touch leading to a shot across goal that hit the post before going in. The result was beyond doubt five minutes later, Abbey poking the ball home after Stafford afforded too much space through the middle. Abbey were rampant, having another shot across goal in the 58th minute. Minutes later, Smith pushed another shot out for a corner following a diagonal ball into the box, the resulting delivery leading to a shot that deflected into the net to make it 4-0. Stafford already looked very leggy, the fifth goal coming in the 71st minute as Abbey worked the ball down the right before playing the ball inside and firing across goal into the corner. Things were threatening to get really embarrassing as Abbey attacked down the right again before shooting over, with some Stafford players possibly guilty of throwing in the towel. Another Abbey attack and cross down the right ended with an unmarked forward shooting wide in the box before Abbey got their sixth with five minutes to go; another cross from the right flicked in at the near post. FT 6-0 Abbey Hey. The fixtures continue to come thick and fast for Stafford, starting with a rearranged trip to North Staffordshire rivals Abbey Hulton United on Tuesday 1st March before the visit of another playoff hopeful to Evans Park in the shape of New Mills on Saturday 5th March.

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