Penistone Church fought off a competitive Athersley Rec at Sheerian Park on Saturday – as Ian Richards side kept their title chances alive with a 4-1 win.
Nathan Keightley netted twice, whilst Brett Lovell and Sam Scrivens also found the onion bag as Church got back to winning ways on the road. Richards spoke to the awaiting media after the game and gave his assessment. “Excellent win today. Complete performance really, from start to finish. Dominated the game. Dominated in midfield throughout. I thought they were excellent in there, the three: Jordan Coduri, Elliot Firth and Ash Ellis. Then, when Danny came on, nothing changed there. The front three caused problems for them all day. Nathan got his reward with two great finishes across the ‘keeper in the bottom: textbook finishes. Scriv got his reward again. Pesh was on the left back, good composure, bottom corner.”
“The first goal was coming. Again it was a great goal by Nath but it was just from constant pressure. Then, at 1-1, obviously ten/fifteen minutes in and you’re not scoring, their ‘keeper’s inspired and their Man of the Match again today, you get a bit panicky and the goal for that was one to come out of a corner. Brett and TB have stayed in, TB’s won the first header and Brett’s just followed it in with a touch into the bottom corner.”
“I’m going to hold my comment and opinion on the officials until I see the video. Stuart was here today and I’ll look at the video but how they’ve got a penalty I don’t know! Chris Snaith hasn’t got that in him; he’s one of the nicest lads you’ll ever meet and he would never pull somebody back like that. How our goal was disallowed before half-time is very, very surprising because the ‘keeper wasn’t even going for it. You could say they were arguing that Brett’s was offside and that Sam Scrivens fouled their left back but, as I say, I’ll hold judgement until I see the video.”
“But yes, excellent performance. We can only go and win the games we’ve got. We can only control the controllables and we’re doing that. The players are playing excellently. They’re playing with a smile on their face, they’re enjoying their football, they’re working hard for each other and another dominant performance in a local derby against Athersley Rec. We wish them all the very best. I wish Luke and Pete Goodlad all the very best.”
“But we’re just focused on Penistone. That keeps our hold on second and – hopefully! – just keeps us on the tails of Worksop. Five games to go… We’re still focused on five wins. If we do that, you never know. But today we enjoy the win: we celebrate the win. I’m extremely pleased with the performance and the result, so positives all round.”