Wrexham Reserves 1-0 Tranmere Reserves

By Matthew Jones
Last updated : 22 October 2007
Although some Wrexham fans might tell you that their first team squad should be playing at a level equivalent to reserve team football, tonights game was always going to a tough test for Tranmere as they fielded a side yet again without any first team experience compared to their Wrexham counterparts who fielded ten professionals.

Rovers were set to struggle from the start, as leading scorer Terry Gornell missed the match through injury, whilst Peter Kennedy started in goal thanks to a back injury to Shane McWeeney. There were starting places in midfield for Danny Moran and Ryan Fraughen as Tom Beahon partnered Josh MacAughley in attack. The back four was the same defence that started last weeks game against Chester.

The first half was tight as both sides defences stood strong against any opposition attacks. Early chances came from set-pieces, with Aaron Cresswell hitting a the cross-bar with a sweet free-kick from 25-yards whilst Danny Moran put one shot wide for Rovers.

Wrexham however were able to snuff out much of what Tranmere through at them, with Welsh international Steve Evans (who played for his country against Cyprus last week) winning any long balls over the top thanks to his clear height advantage over striker MacAughley?

Tranmere had a few chances, with Fraughen and Henry playing good through-balls along the ground, but often attacks were halted by the assistant-referee flagging for offside, with Tom Beahon in particular the culprit here.

Despite having two wingers on the field in Moran and Corrigan however, Tranmere failed to use their width which helped the experienced Wrexham back-line.

Wrexham had a couple of chances themselves, with a couple of chances flashing wide of the posts from distance, whilst their best chances were coming from corners.

Evans was again involved in their best chance of the half as he connected with his head at the far post from a corner but only a smart save from Kennedy, clutching on the ball under his cross-bar, kept the game level at half time.

The second half however saw Wrexham have some much better chances. A couple of shots flashed over and wide whilst good defending and a magnificent save from a deflected long range shot by Kennedy kept the scores level until the 74th minute when Ryan Mitchell miss-judged the bounce of a long ball allowing the Wrexham striker in on the corner of the area who shot across goal, hitting a great finish and leaving Kennedy with no chance.

Rovers looked to change the game and put defender Joel Richardson on upfront as a replacement for MacAughley and immediately the tempo of the game was upped as Tranmere looked to get back in it.

The ball was played to feet alot more and Rovers created a number of chances but ultimately never worked the 'keeper. Moran in particular began to see alot more of the ball on the right-wing and put in a couple of good crosses but there was no natural striker on the pitch for Rovers which didn't aid their chances of a goal.

Holmes miss-hit a shot from distance whilst after a magnificent tackle prevented Henry from scoring Rovers had strong claims for a penalty moments later when the same man was brought down near the penalty spot.

Kennedy again showed fine form in the Rovers goal with a couple more great saves, including one magnificent finger tip save when the ball looked destined to be heading into the net following a Wrexham shot.

In the end, Rovers couldn't quite get back in the game. However, with Shaun Garnett fielding such a young and in-experienced side, even more so compared to the amount of experience the Wrexham side boasted, the result was brilliant and it is probably fair to say that they at least deserved a draw.

Tranmere matched their opposition through-out the game and strong performances through-out the side, especially from all four defenders and goalkeeper Kennedy show that Rovers fans can hopefully look forward to some more youth breaking on to the scene in the next two or three years.

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