Vanarama National League North
Blackwell Meadows / 8th Sep 2018 / 3:00pm
Darlington 3 AFC Telford United 0
Scorer: Nicholson ( 35 mins, 1-0), Saunders (78 mins, 2-0) Thompson (89 mins, 3-0)
Quakers won their first home league game of the season in superb style at Blackwell Meadows.
There was so much energy and commitment in Quakers' performance, that it was a stark contrast to the lack lustre display against Altrincham a fortnight ago.
There were some excellent individual performances, with Liam Hughes, pressed into service as an emergency centre half, the man of the match.
Darlington kicked off attacking the Tin Shed End.
Quakers had the first half chance, a poor clearance by keeper Max Bramley went to Joe Wheatley 30 yards out and he squared the ball for Stephen Thompson to hit, but he pulled his shot wide.
Telford replied with a build up down the right, and the ball came out to James McQuilkin, who struck a low right foot shot that Jonny Maddison touched around the post.
Quakers had a chance on 9 minutes, when Tom Elliott won a header on the left and the ball ran for Jordan Nicholson, whose right foot shot went just over the top.
Quakers nearly took the lead on 15 minutes. Wheatley’s corner to the far post was headed back by Burn for Syers to have a header blocked, and the ball came out to Liam Hughes, who with a crowd of players in front of him, lobbed the ball just wide.
But Telford nearly led on 19 minutes when Brown pulled the ball back from the left for McQuilkin to hit, but the ball was deflected into Maddison’s hands.
And Quakers had a chance on 20 minutes when Thompson flicked on a corner for Elliott to hit first time just over the bar.
There was a great run by Luke Trotman on 28 minutes when he weaved his way into the box and pulled the ball back into the six yard box, but Syers couldn’t quite force the ball over the line.
On 32 minutes, a chance to fell to Harvey Saunders from a Syers assist, but his half volley went straight into the keeper’s hands from the edge of the area.
Quakers took the lead on 35 minutes, Thompson made a good run down the right and squared the ball for Jordan Nicholson, who ran forward and buried a left foot shot into the bottom right hand corner, his second goal for the club.
And there was nearly a second when O’Hanlon got the bye line and set up Syers, and his flick was cleared off the line.
Nicholson had a good chance for a second when he latched onto a headed clearance and got away from the defence, but he mishit his shot into the keeper’s hands.
It had been a very good first half for Darlington, with plenty of commitment and energy.
Darlington 1 AFC Telford United 0
Telford made a sub at half time, Andy Wycherley replacing Max Bramley in the Telford goal, Bramley was injured in the first half.
It was nearly 2-0 straight after the restart. O’Hanlon ran up the left from a Nicholson pass, got into the box, and from a tight angle fired into the side netting.
Syers then had an acrobatic volley deflected wide from a Burn nod down, then Saunders fired into the keeper’s hands from a O’Hanlon cross.
It was all Quakers, but they need a second.
It nearly came on 59 minutes, O’Hanlon crossed from the left, and Saunders headed against the bar, with maybe the keeper getting a touch.
And on the hour, a corner came over from the right for the impressive Hughes to head just over.
Again the woodwork denied Quakers on 74 minutes. Nicholson rolled the ball square for Syers to hit a low shot that struck the inside of the post and bounced to safety.
Quakers got the breathing space they deserved on 79 minutes, when Syers helped on a long ball for Saunders to run through and coolly lob the keeper, for his second goal of the season.
Quakers were awarded a penalty on 88 minutes when Nicholson was upended by the keeper , and Thompson converted from the spot, his 87th goal for the club
Final score: Darlington 3 AFC Telford United 0
Maddison, Trotman, Hughes, Burn, O’Hanlon, Wheatley (sub Glover 81), Elliott (sub Lycett 89), Thompson, Syers, Nicholson, Saunders (sub Morrison 89)
Subs: Aaron Burns, Henshall,
Bramley (sub Wycherley 46), White, Smith, Deeney, Sutton, Streete, Cowans, McQuilkin( Barnes-Homer 75), Brown (sub Dawson 59), Udoh, Knights
Subs: Lilley, Royle,
Booking: McQuilkin, Deeney
Referee: David McNamara