Richards strike secures well-earned draw
A stunning strike from Matt Richards saw the Nailers draw in their second home game of the season against Evo-Stik Northern Premier League side Mickleover Sports.
Despite playing a team a league above, the Belper side managed to match the visiting side and played out an impressive draw.
Mickleover took the lead in the game through Andy Dales after starting to pressure the Belper goal early in the second half through the likes of former Nailer Evan Garnett and Bradley Grayson.
But the Nailers looked to instantly reply to going behind and found their way back into the game through Richards.
His spectacular curling effort found the top left corner perfectly; giving the Sports keeper Nick Draper no chance of saving it.
Belper thought that they had taken the lead through Bryan Dakouri who coolly slotted his effort into the back of the net late into the game, but the linesman controversially ruled it offside.
The same happened to Mickleover moments later; although their effort seemed to be more clearly offside than the previous Belper one.
Both sides were limited to very few chances in the first half; which can be put down to some excellent defending from both sides. Max Thornberry; who made an exceptional tackle to deny what looked like a clear-cut chance for Garnett, and John Guy particularly stood out defensivley.
The main offensive output for the Nailers seemed to be coming through forward Dexter Atkinson who made some excellent runs and showed a lot of class on the ball against a physical Mickleover defence.
With a number of key players missing for Belper on the day, some of the players had the opportunity to stake their claim for a spot in the first team and give Paul Donnelly and Anthony Danylyk difficult decisions to make when the new season finally comes around.
The Nailers are next in action on Tuesday night as we welcome a Chesterfield XI to the Marston’s Stadium; kicking off at 7:30pm.