Glapwell dump Nailers out of cup
By David Laughlin
Belper Town were well and truly dumped out of the Evo-Stik League Cup after a below-par showing against Glapwell whom they had beaten in the league 7 days earlier.
Belper manager rang the changes for this League Cup tie and gave debuts to Steve Hernandez in goal and midfield player Jay Smedley.
Asa Ingall was surprise inclusion in the back four after previously announcing his ‘retirement’ while Jon Froggatt, Chris Wood, and Mark Barnard were all rested on the bench, and Richard Adams was out with a foot injury.
Former Nailer Matt Telling was named in the Glapwell line up joining Mickey Harcourt, Steve Kennedy and Spencer Commons who have all spent part of their careers at Christchurch Meadow.
Ruben Wiggins-Thomas made good progress down the right and put over a good near post cross in the first minute, but a defender put the ball out for a corner kick.
Glapwell lost Spencer Commons with a hamstring injury after only 6 minutes and was replaced by veteran striker Mick Godber.
The Nailers won a free kick on the corner of the penalty area in the 9th minute but Aaron Pride sent it too near Andy Richmond for a comfortable save.
However Steve Hernandez had to work much harder to keep Matt Telling’s 22 yard strike out shortly afterwards.
Glapwell took the lead in the 16th minute with a well worked goal after they broke quickly and Damien Magee provided the cross from which Ian Holmes slid home from close in.
The Nailers were wide open again in the 20th minute when Ian Holmes broke clear and drew Hernandez before chipping the ball past him and into the net.
Mick Godber missed a golden opportunity to make it 3-0 in the 23rd minute after Conor Higginson had pulled the ball back from the bye line and Godber hit it wide of the target.
Higginson ran through the Belper defence in the 33rd minute and only the outstretched leg of Hernandez prevented a goal, and moments later he had beaten the off side trap and was in a chase for the ball with Hernandez but the Belper ‘keeper just got there ahead of him.
But the Nailers were looking vulnerable in defence with almost every attack and going the other way, too many passes were going astray.
Matt Plant put a header over the cross bar from a Lee Thompson free kick in the last minute of the first half, but it was hard to recall a shot on target during the first period.
The Nailers started the second half on a positive note with Jay Smedley getting his shot on target and forcing Andy Richmond into a save.
Ian Holmes skipped past two defenders in the 56th minute and looked set to seal the tie for Glapwell but somehow he managed to screw his shot wide.
But the visitors tightened their grip in the 61st minute when Aaron Pride conceded a soft penalty after bringing down Conor Higginson in the penalty area and Ian Holmes didn’t waste the opportunity to claim his hat trick by slamming home the spot kick.
The Nailers reduced the arrears three minutes later when Rob Paling found Justin Jenkins (pictured) with an accurate through pass and the Belper striker struck the ball hard and true past Richmond.
Any hope of a Belper revival were dashed in the 73rd minute when Glapwell broke quickly down the left with Higginson and his cross to the far post was nodded in by Mickey Harcourt who clearly relished scoring against his old club.
Belper’s chronic habit of giving the ball away cheaply almost cost them again when they were caught cold in the 76th minute but Harcourt blasted a great chance wide, however the Nailers’ embarrassment was complete two minutes later when Conor Higginson ran through on his own to round Hernandez and tap the ball home.
While Belper won’t dwell too long on being eliminated from the League Cup, the manner of their defeat even with a weakened side, was not appreciated by the home support.
Belper Town: Hernandez, Pride (Wood 64), Rushbury (Paling 45), Smedley, Plant, Ingall, Wiggins-Thomas, Thompson, Debrouwer (Froggatt 53), Jenkins, Peel. Sub. Not used: Barnard.
Glapwell: Richmond, Harcourt, Magee, Varley, Kennedy, O’Hare, Telling, Walker, Holmes (Timons 80), Higginson (Brown 80), Commons (Godber 6). Sub. Not used: Kimberley.
Referee: Mark Hutchinson (Bingham)