County Shine as Curzon Slump | National League Roundup 28/08

Two of Greater Manchester’s National League sides were in action this weekend, with contrasting results for both Stockport County and Curzon Ashton.

County Off the Mark with Southend Victory

Stockport County Player Dribbles

Credit: Stockport County

John Rooney’s 16th minute strike was enough to give Stockport County their first victory of the 2021/22 season, with the Hatters toppling recently relegated Southend United 1-0.

Creating space for himself on the edge of the box, last season’s National League player of the year opened his account for this campaign with a sharp finish beyond Steve Arnold in the Shrimpers’ goal. Lighting up Roots Hall in an illuminous pink away strip, Stockport excited in front of the BT Sport television cameras, controlling possession for much of the first period.

Fighting back in the second half, Phil Brown’s men created a number of chances for themselves, yet the home side were met by an impenetrable County defence. Marshalled by colossal centre-half Ash Palmer, Stockport were able to thwart Southend’s late pressure to secure their first three points of the campaign.

An instant response for County after their disappointing opening day defeat to Dagenham & Redbridge, Simon Rusk will be keen to see his side extend their strong form against another League 2 dropout in Grimsby Town on Tuesday evening.

Curzon Caught Out by Belting Boston

Curzon Ashton were unable to add to their early-season points haul, with the Nash conceding a dramatic injury-time goal away to Boston United.

Boston United Player Penalty

Credit: Boston United/ Russel Dosset/

Having equalised in the 85th minute through former Stockport winger Adam Thomas, ten men Curzon had thought they’d rescued a point at York Street, yet Fraser Preston struck in the 92nd-minute to give the home side three points. Cameron Wilson was harshly shown his marching orders after 57 minutes, yet it didn’t stop a spirited Nash side push on for a result.

Danny Elliot had put the home side ahead from the spot midway through the first half, with the Pilgrims coming close on a number of occasions after that. Chris Renshaw was forced into a number of saves for Curzon throughout the opening 45 minutes, yet the Curzon shot-stopper stood tall to deny the Boston onslaught.

Speaking to Curzon’s YouTube channel after the match, manager Steve Cunningham believed his side deserved more than they ended up with:

“Not a great first half, fantastic second half and then the cruel part of football kicks in. Unfortunately I’ve got a group of lads in there with their heads down despite me telling them I’m really proud of them”.

For Curzon, further tough tests are around the corner, with Darlington the visitors to Tameside on bank holiday, before a trip to face Leamington next weekend.

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