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Wolves 2018

Friday night football returned to Molineux with the 18th annual Wolves FC Football Aid encounter providing fantastic entertainment for the enthusiastic home crowd! The end to end game could have gone either way, however it was Michael Ryder who proved to be the match winner, with his excellent 73rd minute strike earning his Home side a narrow 3-2 win.

Date: Friday 4th May 2018
Venue: Molineux
Wolves (Home) vs Wolves (Away)
Kick Off: 18:30 pm
Legend: Jody Craddock
Match Officials: Philip Taylor, Gary Taylor & Vic Kelly

The game kicked off in perfect conditions, with the weather bright and sunny and the pitch in immaculate condition. The Home team featured former Jody Craddock as their Legend and the former club captain was involved early on, picking up the ball from his left back slot and attempting to start attacks from the back. However the Away team, playing in all Black, were looking confident in defence and centre halves Sam Turner and John Vint put a stop to any early forays from the box from the Home team.

The Home team continued to press and almost opened the scoring on 10mins. A corner was swung into the box from the left and big striker Lee Waterfall rose highest to glance a header goalwards, however the ball rebounded back off the bar and post and when Craddock tried to force in the rebound he was closed down by Vint and his shot went high over the crossbar. 

However the Home team’s early pressure paid off soon afterwards and they took the lead on 17mins with an brilliantly worked goal. Jody Craddock won the ball in midfield and played it to No 16 Arran Tanner-khan, he then played a quick one-two with Mark Wigg and fed a perfect ball through to Lee Waterfall, who controlled the ball and expertly side footed it into the far corner of the net (1-0). 

The Away side responded well and their striker Robert Smith had an attempt on goal from outside the area, however his well struck effort was held comfortably by Home keeper Sam Godsall. Within minutes the men in black then had an ever better opportunity from the penalty spot. Robert Smith was felled in the area by Rupert Osmond’s sliding challenge and he stepped up to take the spot klick himself, the No 9 struck the ball low and hard but the agile Sam Godsall dived to his right to parry the ball away to deny the Away team!  

Buoyed by that let off the Home team went back on the attack and almost doubled their lead soon after, No 7 Michael Ryder played a clever one-two with Tanner-khan and drove into the box only to be denied by a brilliant double save from Simon Wood at point blank range. 

The Away team’s attacking trio of Smith, Watkins and Rollason were combining well and causing the Home defence problems, however the experienced centre back pairing of Feehan and Osmond were holding firm, with Legend Craddock on hand to cover from Left Back when needed. 

However the Away team weren’t to be denied and on 36mins they were back on level terms. The impressive ball playing defender John Vint picked the ball up on the half way line and drove past a defender before laying the ball off into the path of his No 17 Edward Smith, the left mid met the ball perfectly from 10 yards out and his powerful left foot shot flew past Godsall, giving the keeper no chance (1-1).

Edward Smith was full of confidence after his goal and he tried his luck from distance soon after, however his excellent effort was expertly plucked out of the air from under the cross bar by Godsall. The left mid then combined with Robert Smith to create an opportunity for the striker from distance, however Smith’s curling effort was comfortably saved by Godsall again.

However despite the pressure from the Away team it was the Home team who took the lead on 41mins. A clever one-two between Liam Flecknor and Dean Heighway
allowed the No 6 to set his right mid Michael Ryder free on the right wing, the No 7 played a pin-point cross into the middle and Liam Cameron-Prowse’s clever instant right foot flick on the turn deceived the Away keeper and the ball rolled into the far corner of the net (2-1). 

The Away team pushed for another equaliser, however that was to be the last goal of the half and the Home team went into the break with a narrow 2-1 lead. It had been an excellent, even contest so far and the watching fans would be hoping for more of the same in the 2nd half.  

Half-Time: Wolves (Home) 2 - 1 Wolves (Away)

Whatever the Away side said to each other at the break it certainly worked and they began the half in determined fashion, and when substitute Ben Woolnough picked up the ball in midfield, drove at the defence and laid it off to Sam Turner who was racing into the box, the centre half looked like making the game all square, however his low effort was well saved by Home keeper Sam Godsall. 

Back came the Home team and the lively Arran Tanner-khan was desperately unlucky when his fantastic right foot strike from 25 yards came crashing back off the underside of the bar! It was end to end stuff at this stage and a great piece of skill from Edward Smith saw the Away No 17 testing the keeper with a volley from 20 yards out.     

The Away team continued to press for an equaliser and their Captain Mark Rollason almost scored after playing a clever one-two with strike partner Smith, however his goal-bound effort was brilliantly saved by the foot of Sam Godsall. However with 58mins on the clock the dangerous strike pairing combined again for the equaliser. Robert Smith unselfishly played in his Captain in the centre of the goal and although Godsall did well to block Rollason’s initial effort the ball rebounded to Smith and the No 9 turned on a six pence and fired the ball home from 10 yards out (2-2). 

The play continued to rage from end to end as both teams looked to gain the advantage, however defences held firm and the teams remained even with less than a quarter of the game to go. The dangerous Away No 9 Robert Smith did have a good opportunity to break the deadlock, however after racing onto a through ball his attempted chip over the keeper was just too high.

Home No 7 Michael Ryder almost fired his side ahead when he intercepted a short throw out from the replacement Home keeper and chipped a shot goalwards from a tight angle, however Away centre half John Vint did brilliantly to race back towards his own goal and head the ball off the line and over the bar! However Michael Ryder wasn’t to be denied for long and on 73mins he fired his Home team back into the lead again. Jody Craddock collected the ball from a clearance and slid the ball into the feet of Ryder and the No 7 made no mistake, smashing a shot low and hard past the keeper into the net (3-2).   

The Home team had their tails up and they went close on two occasions soon after taking the lead. The 1st chance came when James Gasson brilliantly played in Arran Tanner-khan with a clever reverse flick, however the replacement keeper did well to save with his feet, next up Gasson tried his luck from fully 30 yards out, however his well struck effort was just too high and it struck the top of the crossbar and rebounded away to safety. 

Jody Craddock then collected the ball on the left and drove in-field before smashing a shot goalwards, amazingly his shot also smashed off the top of the bar! The Away team’s goal was certainly enjoying a charmed life!

Back came the Away team and the impressive midfielder Adam Watkins expertly found his striker Robert Smith with an accurate ball into the box, the No 9 turned and struck a great effort with the inside of his foot goalwards, however much to his disappointment the ball struck the inside of the post and ran along the line to safety….

Within minutes his strike partner Mark Rollason also came close, looping a header from a free-kick towards goal, however his effort was just too high and the ball rebounded off the top of the cross bar and away to safety.   

That was to be the final opportunity for the Away team to level the scores and the ref’s whistle blew soon afterwards, bringing to an end a hugely entertaining encounter. With so many chances at both ends the game could have gone either way, but in the end it was the Home team that just edged a fantastic game by 3 goals to 2.

A huge thanks to Wolverhampton Wanderers FC, Legend Jody Craddock and all our players for their brilliant efforts on the night. A special mention also to the excellent Molineux crowd that enthusiastically cheered the players on throughout the whole of the 90mins!

Full-Time: Wolves (Home) 3 - 2 Wolves (Away)

Man of the Match Home: Arran Tanner-khan
Man of the Match Away: John Vint
Moment of the Match: Sam Godsall

Home Team: Sam Godsall, Liam Flecknor, Jody Craddock, Mark Feehan, Rupert Osmond, Dean Heighway, Michael Ryder, Liam Cameron-Prowse, Lee Waterfall, Adrian Baker, Mark Wigg (C), Darren Jeffs, Arran Tanner-khan, James Gasson
Home Mascot: Alfie Cameron-Prowse

Away Team: Simon Wood, Stuart Duffell, Sam Turner, John Vint, Jamie Bristoll, Matthew Fellows, Martin Mcleod, Robert Smith, Adam Watkins, Mark Rollason (C), 
Ben Woolnough, Nicholas Herbert, Edward Smith
Away Mascot: Tilly Bristoll

Match Report written by Simon Farnan.

Official photographs are available to order from Matt Nuttall’s website here >> www.footballaidphotos.com. You can also contact Matt on Tel: 07793 818021 or Email: info@mattnuttallphotography.co.uk

If you'd like to order a DVD of the match please contact – Chillpics' Shane Wilkinson, Freelance Cameraman & Photographer on Tel: 07789 500569 or E-mail: swchillpics@gmail.com

“Scoring the winner at Molineux the stuff of dreams what a feeling thanks for the assist @MrJodyCraddock!!”
Michael Ryder - Home Team No.7

“Another great match last night with @FootballAid at the Molineux! Another goal to add to the tally. I’m aching this morning though!”
Lee Waterfall - Home Team No.9

“Great night as ever with @FootballAid, 90 mins on the Molineux turf with the legend @MrJodyCraddock always a pleasure #wwfc”
Liam Flecknor - Home Team No.2

“Another Fantastic @FootballAid event at @Wolves last night, 90 mins in defence with @MrJodyCraddock really made it even more special, even the five hour plus drive home was worth it, not so sure the 2.45am ice bath was as pleasant though!”
Mark Feehan – Home Team No.4