Wheatley's unbeaten run continues
Unbeaten in the last two, the Wheatley were starting to show the form of a team full of confidence and Sunday’s encounter confirmed this. Chris Quaife stole the show as the Wheatley dominated the game running out comfortable winners. It was Quaife’s second that will take the headlines. A cross form the by-line found the Wheatley centre midfield on the edge of the box, who released a rasping 20 yard left footed volley beating the outstretched Horsforth keeper. Quaife, who was overjoyed with his second goal of the morning, had put the Wheatley ahead twenty five minutes in when a tucked a lose ball past the keeper at close range.
A delayed kick off had seen a bright start from both side with nice touches with intricate passing moves. Horsforth looked like they had the potential to cause central defenders Turnbull and Hibbert problems, however their bright start failed to materialise into a potent threat. With both sides using the width well it was Quaife who capitalised on a loose ball in the box, shimmying nicely from right to left and placing the ball past the static keeper. Horsforth never really recovered from the blow failing to test the Wheatley back four. Eric Banna’s new role at right back ended abruptly as he had to depart with two dislocated finger. Al Hey came off the bench making his first appearance in two due to a calf strain.
With fifteen minutes til the interval Quaife was on hand to double the Wheatley’s lead. His sublime finish had a touch of class about it matching his performance in the centre. Along with partner Andy Wheeler, the two dominated the middle of the park mopping up the lose ball. Wheeler’s touches were particularly impressive with some lovely turns in the centre allowing him time and space to spread the play. He also came close to notching in the second period with a pile driver that rattled the cross bar. Wheeler’s thirty yard effort dipped over the keeper only to rebound off the frame. His effort would have certainly eclipsed that of Quaife’s in the first half.
Cockcroft looked sharp upfront playing off the last man. He had a low shot which was vitally blocked. His ability to role off the last man meant he caused havoc all morning. A second half turn left him one on one with the Horsforth keeper who stayed big to deny the Wheatley front man. Arundel and Emmott hugged the touchlines all game providing the Wheatley with some real options and quality. Danny Bott could only look on as he was suspended. Dave Healy returned from a lengthy injury with his usual trickery and consistency. At full back he was rarely tested.
The Wheatley were able to impose themselves on the game passing the ball around with conviction and a swagger at times. They limited Horsforth to one shot on target which keeper Kroon was equal to. He got a strong hand to forceful shot from inside the box.
Quaife’s performance and two goals rightfully earned him man of the match. Powell’s men, who haven’t conceded a goal in 180 minutes, march on with another home tie next week.
Match Report by Kroony