The Cobras were beaten by a solitary goal on a wet Friday night in Belper despite a good overall display in which they created five good chances of their own. The game was played on Friday to allow Belper United officials and fans the opportunity to go and watch Belper Town in action the following day in their FA Cup tie at Notts County – we hope you enjoyed your afternoon.
Dave Hoole gaves debuts to striker Jack Warwick (twin brother of Lewis) signed from AFC Mansfield and midfielder Josh Ing who has joined from Maltby Main.
Belper started well although they failed to create any clear cut chances as the Cobras defence held firm, with the returning Will Harcourt at the heart of everything. Indeed the first real chance fell to Clipstone’s Billy Page in the 13th minute when Josh Ing made a great run down the right hand side and pulled the ball back to Billy Page whose attempt on goal was blocked.
Jack Warwick then had a header from a corner cleared off the line just before the half hour mark and Harcourt also went close with a header from a free kick.
The best chance of the half fell to Jack Warwick in the 44th minute when a Jason Foster put him in on goal but a lack of match sharpness was apparent as he put his effort wide of the post with the goal at his mercy.
The home side applied consistent pressure during the first 20 minutes of the second period as the Cobras struggled to get their game going.
After 65 minutes Belper United scored the only goal when a long clearance by ‘keeper Max Bennett isn’t dealt with by the Cobras defence which allowed Curtis Williamson to get to the goal line and pull the ball back across goal to the impressive Sam Ridgard who fired home from inside the area despite a challenge from substitute Connor Nowaczyk.
That goal prompted the Cobras into action and a minute later a head on from substitute Jonathan Collo fell nicely to Jack Warwick on the edge of the area but he could not get his shot past ‘keeper Bennett’s outstretched arm.
The Cobras pressed forward in a frenetic last fifteen minutes and Collo was twice denied an equaliser by the bar and then Belper ‘keeper Bennett. Ing also created a chance from himself but shot straight at Bennett whilst substitute Nowaczyk had two opportunities but was unable to find the target on either occasion.