Stafford Town’s recent unbeaten run at home came to an abrupt end as they were thumped 6-0 by fifth-placed Wythenshawe Amateurs at Evans Park, turning in one of their poorest performances of the season. Perhaps most concerning was the manner in which Stafford capitulated after conceding the first goal, highlighting the fragile confidence currently within the squad following their recent downturn in form. The match began in blustery conditions with Wythenshawe having the wind in their favour, although the conditions became less of a factor as the game progressed. After Ryan Taylor had an early penalty appeal turned down for what looked like a mere tangle of legs in the box, Wythenshawe had their first real shot in the 11th minute which was easily saved by Stafford ‘keeper Henry Smith. There was controversy in the 19th minute as a Wythenshawe ball forward was glanced backwards by Ryan Blagbrough as he attempted to intercept, the Wythenshawe forward subsequently latching onto the loose ball to finish before seeing the goal ruled out as he was adjudged to have been offside on the initial pass forward and forced Blagbrough into attempting the header. Stafford were managing to stay in the game but appeared to not be getting the break of the ball at crucial moments, seeing some initially neat interplay come to nothing in the 26th minute. Wythenshawe missed a great chance to take the lead two minutes later; the ball was worked into the box from the right, Stafford defenders diving in to leave a free shot that was put wide. Debutant Matt Pinder then had a chance for Stafford in the 31st minute as he cut in at goal from wide on the left, but he opted to shoot with the outside of his right foot rather than his left and failed to work the goalkeeper. Although Wythenshawe had undoubtedly been the better side, Stafford were still in the game and would have settled for getting to halftime goalless with a view to regroup, but in the 36th minute they cheaply conceded possession in their own half, a simple ball forward into the box leading to a driven finish. Stafford then capitulated, a series of weak tackles on the edge of the box in the 40th minute allowed a Wythenshawe attacker to bundle his way into the penalty area with the ball before poking home. The third came five minutes later, Stafford opened up by two simple forward passes and a low finish that put the result beyond doubt. HT 3-0 Wythenshawe Amateurs. After an early low cross by Nathan Scott was cut out and Chris Anderson headed over from a Josh Wilson corner, Wythenshawe continued their dominance of the match, displaying an excellent balance of attacking without becoming stretched or over committing. In the 63rd minute another good ball forward into the Stafford box saw the Wythenshawe frontman display great strength to hold off a defender before finishing. More good play by the visitors on the edge of the area in the 69th minute carved Stafford open again, ending with another composed finish. Wythenshawe completed the scoring just over a minute later, a mix up between Smith and his defenders as they attempted to deal with a high ball forward left him out of position and he was subsequently lobbed. Wythenshawe then introduced their contingent of substitutes to merely manage the remainder of the match, their attacking threat consequently diminished and Stafford saw more of the ball, but the best chance they could muster was an 84th minute Wilson free kick into the box that resulted in a side foot volley by Anderson that hit the bar. FT 6-0 Wythenshawe Amateurs. Stafford have little time to dwell on their performance with the visit of Maine Road on Tuesday 1st February before another Manchester away day to face Barnton on Saturday 5th February.
As always the best of the action can be found at Stafford Town TV: https://youtu.be/PNZzDgNo7j8