Saturday 10th February 2024 – Northern Premier League
Ilkeston Town 2-3 Lancaster City
Lancaster gained revenge for a 4-0 defeat earlier in the season and brought Ilkeston’s five match unbeaten run to an end.
The game started brightly with both teams looking for goals. A fine run by Jamie Walker created a chance for Tom Cursons whose shot was blocked by a defender. Lindon Meikle then won a corner which brought the opening goal on 11 minutes. The corner was taken by defender Sam Parker whose in-swinger found a way into the far corner of the net. Lancaster twice had efforts disallowed for offside but they were soon to pull level through a David Norris close range header on 19 minutes. Then in the blink of an eye they were ahead. This time it was a well taken strike by Charlie Bailey from the edge of the area into the corner of the net. Ilkeston retaliated and great play by Ben Starkie created a real chance for Cursons but he blazed over. Starkie produced another penetrating run forward but he too couldn’t keep his shot from flying over the bar so an entertaining first half ended with City ahead.
Within two minutes of the restart Lancaster had doubled their lead with Bailey scoring again. Ilkeston set about retrieving the situation but risked being punished by City’s counter attacking. Meikle created another opportunity for Cursons but again his effort was too high. Declan Eratt-Thompson then had his shot pushed round the post by the busy visiting keeper, Andre Mendes. Walker was next to threaten when his effort whistled by the post. City were defending well and Norris nearly made it 4-1 from a counter attack but he pulled his attempt just wide. Five minutes from time Tom Marshall unleashed a 30 yarder which Mendes did well to turn past the post but Ilkeston’s pressure finally brought a reward in the closing minutes when they were awarded a penalty after Meikle was brought down in the area. Mendes parried Tom Marshall’s first attempt but couldn’t keep out his follow up. Lancaster saw out the added time and victory was theirs.
Written by – John Attewell