Vanarama National League North
Blackwell Meadows / 1st Sep 2018 / 3:00pm
Darlington 0 Alfreton 1
Goal: Johnson 2 mins
Quakers were beaten by an early goal, but could count themselves very unlucky not to come out of the game with a point after creating several good chances.
Quakers went a goal down early in the second minute. A long throw by James Clifton was flicked on by Tom Denton for Bobby Johnson to sweep past Maddison from a couple of yards.
Quakers had another scare on 5 minutes, when another throw came in from the right, for Sheils to head just wide.
Stephen Thompson tried to reply, when he won the ball about 30 yards out and tried his luck wit ha 30 yard shot that went wide of the left hand post.
Quakers had a penalty appeal turned down on 16 minutes when Jordan Nicholson whipped the ball from the ball for Harvey Saunders who seemed to be pushed, but the referee waved play on.
Quakers created a good chance on 22 minutes when Nicholson cut in from the right and set up Trotman, whose low shot was saved at the foot of the post by Ramsbottom.
And they had a great chance on 26 minutes when Thompson curled a free kick over from the right for Johnny Burn to head just wide of the left hand post.
But Alfreton nearly made Quakers pay with a quick break that ended with Chettle shooting straight at Maddison.
However, Quakers went up the other end, and Nicholson found space on the left to cross to the far post, where Thompson headed over the bar.
Half time 0-1.
Alfreton posed danger at the start of the second half when Josh Gowling nodded down a free kick at the back post just six yards out, but David Syers scrambled the ball away.
However, Simon Ainge popped up at the other end to support his attack, and curled a right foot shot just wide.
Styche then picked the ball up on the left, cut in, and hit a low shot that Ramsbottom saved one handed.
Ramsbottom then had a massive let off. Styche tried his luck with a 30 yard right foot shot that went straight at the keeper, but he fumbled it, and fortunately for him, it went over the bar.
Another chance came along on 71 minutes when Hughes lifted the ball through for Saunders to run on to, but Ramsbottom parried his shot.
Quakers opened the Alfreton defence up on 76 minutes when Burn found Thompson on the left, he got around the back and set up Syers , who was denied by a last ditch tackle.
Sheils was then dismissed for his second yellow, a foul from behind on Syers.
Styche then curled a free kick from 25 yards out just over the bar after Saunders was fouled.
Quakers had a great chance on 88 minutes. Trotman weaved his way into the box on the right and just managed to pull the ball back for Nicholson to pull a left foot shot wide.
In stoppage time, Thompson charged in from the left, but his low shot was held by Ramsbottom.
Darlington: Maddison, Trotman, Burn, Ainge, Elliot; Hughes, Syers; Thompson, Nicholson, Styche, Saunders.
Subs: Glover, Bancroft, Banks, Kaba, Morrison
Alfreton: Ramsbottom, Clifton, Wilde, Platt, Gowling, Sheils, Johnson, Hotte, Denton, Peniket, Chettle
Subs: Middleton, Nicholson, Bacon, Riley, Clackstone
Booking: Sheils, Wilde, Hotte
Sending off: Sheils