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Southern League Premier Division

Northwood Line-up


Rob Bullivant



Joe Devera



Fergus Moore



Jason O'Connor



James Shipperley *



Wayne Carter



Danny Julienne +



Dean Clark



Sam Hatton #



Peter Dean



Gavin Hart




Aaron Ferdinand



Shayne Demetrious #



Dave Nolan *



Ashley Aimakhu +



Michael Lavender


Halesowen Town 4  Northwood 1

 Report by Robin Piper 

Northwood’s losing streak continued as they conceded four goals on their trip to the West Midlands. Jason O’Connor returned to the starting line up in central defence, whilst there was a first start for on loan Sam Hatton in midfield. Gavin Hart switched to the left flank in place of absentee Rob Courtnage, with Danny Julienne moving to the right.

Woods started brightly and created an opening within the first minute. Dean Clark slotted a quickly taken free-kick through to Peter Dean, who was unable to get any purchase on his shot.

However, Northwood’s bright start was extinguished as they conceded a soft goal on four minutes. The Woods’ defence was caught napping as a short throw-in resulted in Simon Forsdick heading home unchallenged at the far post.

To their credit, Northwood battled away and worked a number of useful openings. Clark had two bites at the cherry following a free-kick on the edge of the box whilst Wayne Carter’s effort from the rebound was charged down. Julienne was let down by a poor touch when well placed and Carter couldn’t keep his shot down after a slick Northwood move.

And Woods were punished for their lack of quality in the final third as they fell further behind in the 24th minute. James Francis, son of the first £1m man, was the catalyst as he created an opening for Martin Myers, whose shot squirmed under the body of Rob Bullivant.

However, Northwood had a great chance to reply, only for Julienne to drag his shot wide of the far post following good work from Peter Dean.

And after Joe Devera had cleared off the line, Halesowen effectively put the game beyond Northwood with a third goal on 35 minutes. O’Connor was unable to deal with a long ball into the Woods’ half, his miscue falling to Francis, who followed up his shot against the post to tap into an empty net.

Woods needed a miracle, and hopes were raised of a comeback as Hart capitalised on poor defending to score his second in two games to reduce the arrears in the 38th minute.

However, after an initial Northwood burst early in the second period, the game was settled as Halesowen completed the scoring on 63 minutes, Chris Smith latching onto a far post cross to fire past Bullivant. The hosts should have added to their tally moments later as Alex Cowley fired wide in a one-on-one with Bullivant.

Dave Nolan and youngster Ashley Aimakhu, promoted from the youth team for his first senior appearance, were introduced for James Shipperley and Julienne respectively. However, Northwood were unable to make any headway against a resolute home defence.

Shayne Demetrious replaced Hatton for the closing minutes, but Woods had nothing left to offer as they contemplated their fourth consecutive defeat which leaves them in the extra relegation spot a point behind their Ryman and Unibond rivals.