In-form Glasshoughton Welfare take aim at top six

Pointing the way: Glasshoughton Welfare joint manager Darren Holmes.
Pointing the way: Glasshoughton Welfare joint manager Darren Holmes.

Glasshoughton Welfare maintained their charge towards the play-off places in the Toolstation NCE first division with a resounding home win against sixth-placed Shirebrook Town at the TJs Arena.

Welfare found themselves one down early in the first half, but a brace from Ryan Ferguson and further goals by Tom Carr and Tom Hullock saw them through to a 4-1 win in a great end to end game.

Both sides were much changed from the game at Shirebook in September when Welfare lost 2-0 and for this game they made changes after the win at Armthorpe last week. Andy Horbury and Sam Pashley came back into the side with Lewis Akeister unavailable and Jamie Simpson dropped back onto the bench.

Horbury missed a great chance in the first minutes when he poked an easy effort wide from six yards with only keeper Gavin Saxby to beat.

At the other end Glasshoughton stopper Matt Zaniewski saved a Declan Brewin effort with his legs.

Welfare had other chances with Horbury shooting wide and Saxby pushing a Ferguson effort away with the follow up efforts blocked.

Shirebrook took the lead on 20 minutes when Carter Widdowson nudged in a low Jordan Claxton corner.

But the hosts were level 10 minutes later when Connor Rollinson was deemed to have been fouled some 35 yards from goal and the resulting Tom Carr free-kick had to be seen to be believed as the venomous kick soared past Saxby into the net.

It was now all Welfare and Rob Oldham just failed to get on the end of a delicious chipped ball from Ferguson.

They went ahead in the 40th minute when Saxby saved from Carr and another effort was cleared off the line only for Ferguson to fire the rebound home.

Tom Hullock came on for the injured Matt Cunliffe at the start of the second half and he made an immediate impact, following up to drive home as Saxby initially saved man of the match Carr’s effort.

The visitors were not to be outdone and Zaniewski brilliantly clawed a volley away from his goal before blocking another effort with his legs.

Welfare increased their lead on 56 minutes when Hullock’s deft header found Carr on the right and his low cross was fired home by Ferguson at the far post.

Never say die Shirebrook came back again and Zaniewski had to block an effort with his legs before holding a Mark Robinson shot just under the crossbar.

Substitute Simpson had a late great chance to get another for Welfare but with only Saxby to beat his final touch took the ball wide and his cross could not be forced home.

Oldham saw his rasping 35-yard drive pushed for a corner by Saxby, but in the final seconds Zaniewski was given a straight red card as he reacted to an opposing player trying to hold his hands at a corner kick.

Glasshoughton take on another top six side this Saturday when they host fifth-placed Selby Town in the league, kick-off 3pm.