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MATCH REPORTS 1976-77

 


Saturday 12th March 1977
LIVINGSTONE SLAMS THREE FOR WOODS
NORTH GREENFORD UNITED 1  NORTHWOOD 6

Northwood made it nine wins in a row on Saturday and stretched their Middlesex League unbeaten run since November 6 at the expense of North Greenford United. It was another magnificent performance by Northwood despite treacherous surface that defied good football and the victory was made to look even more significant as their hosts had taken points from both Yeading and Ham on their ground in the previous fortnight.

Roger Livingstone netted his first hat-trick for the club, but it was the all round team effort that caught the eye, particularly after the first 20 minutes that saw Northwood feeling their way on the bumpy surface.     

Once the initial burst of enthusiasm from the hosts had died away it was almost all one-way traffic, and it was from midfield that Northwood drew most confidence. Tidd, who had a magnificent game against his old club, Harvey and Gould ruled the middle of the park at will, and they provided the service that the hungry Woods strikers of Ellis, Cooper and Livingstone thrive on.

The front three were running the home defence ragged and it was only a matter of time before they broke the deadlock. Cooper broke away from his marker in the box, and although turning away from goal he was felled by Lomax. Gould once again found the net beyond the diving Marshall from the penalty spot.

It wasn't long before the Woods were further ahead and this followed a neat header on by Gould. The ball fell into the path of Cooper, who advanced on the retreating hosts back four and while they waited for the lay-off, Cooper unleashed a ferocious drive from fully 35 yards that Marshall could only help into the net.

A comfortable half-time lead was soon stretched to three after the interval, and it came from a fine build-up. The move evolved from Harvey and Tidd, and the chance was set up for Livingstone, who drew the keeper before slipping the ball home with his left foot. The Woods’ defence had a very quiet time, and what they had to do, they did with accomplished ease.

Alan Merison was strong at the heart of the defence, and Heslop showed his best form yet again. It was something of a surprise when North Greenford pulled a goal back to give brief hope to their supporters. It came from the penalty spot after the referee adjudged Heslop to have handled after a dreadful bounce in the box.

However, Greenford's hopes were short lived. From the kick-off the ball was swiftly into the Greenford half via Harvey and it reached Cooper on the right. A perfect cross from Cooper deep into the box was met with a fine leap from Livingstone and a header that crashed into the net.

Northwood laid siege on the hosts’ penalty area for long periods. Ellis went close to scoring on several occasions and when he did find the net it was ruled out for offside. Cooper hit the crossbar and the same player had a chip shot cleared off the line, after he had rounded the keeper.

A fine move between Harvey, Tidd, and Livingstone formed the basis of the build-up for Northwood's fifth goal, and when the final pass left Tidd free on the right his cross was met by Harvey on the half-volley and the ball flew past Marshall into the net.

Woods had their hosts pinned down, and they were in no mood .to show mercy, and the ball moved continually into the Greenford area, and even the Woods defenders were joining into the attacking bonanza that had their hosts bewildered.

Northwood could have reached double figures if all the chances they set up had been converted, but they had to settle for six, and this final goal came from Livingstone once again, to complete his. hat trick. Robin Tidd reached the line and whipped the ball into the path of King, on for the injured Gould, and he in turn laid the ball across the goal for Livingstone to poke into the net.

Northwood: Currell, Heslop, O’Donnell, Merison, Mills, Harvey, Tidd, Gould, Livingstone, Ellis, Cooper, sub. King.