MATCH REPORT: Bedworth United 0-1 Walsall Wood

Bedworth beaten by late goalmouth scramble as Walsall Wood steal all three points.

New signing Ryan Hand was thrown straight into the starting eleven and almost had an assist in the third minute. A brilliant cross was attacked by Liam Murphy but his header was put wide.

Walsall Wood were dominating the ball but not really creating anything apart from long range efforts that were never troubling Liam O’Brien.

Liam Murphy did try his luck from range but his 25 yard effort drifted wide.

On the 30th minute, Bedworth came close to opening the scoring. A brilliant through ball by Luke Rowe found the forward run by Chris Cox but his cross which would have found an unmarked Liam Murphy was well cancelled out by Dale Eve.

Despite having less possession, Bedworth were still causing problems. Academy prospect and debutant Harvey Westwood ran through on goal in a wide area, his pull back was intercepted only as far as Ryan Moore who struck a shot with his weaker foot that was comfortably saved by Eve.

Overall a pretty quiet first half with not much goal action for spectators.

Half Time- Bedworth United 0-0 Walsall Wood

In an unusual turn of events, as Corey Cooper was running out of the tunnel and back on for the second half, he went down injured and had to be substituted before the game had even restarted!

In the 50th minute, Walsall Wood should have been reduced to ten men. Abel Alabi brought down Westwood who was threw on goal and should have been shown a second yellow card. However, the referee only awarded a freekick to The Greenbacks. From the resulting free kick, Luke Rowe curled a beautiful shot that cannoned off the crossbar.

Bedworth had been the better side in the second half and the press from Murphy and Westwood was causing The Wood problems. Westwood did well to win the ball back deep in the Walsall Wood half, and Reece Blackmore raced on to the loose ball and powered forward before getting his strike away from distance but went just over.

Abel Alabi again was lucky to escape another red card. Blackmore played a nice through ball into Murphy whop only had the goal to beat but Alabi brought down Murphy and as the referee was about to send the centre back down the tunnel, Murphy was judged to be offside so the red card was overturned.

But on 75th minute against the run of play, Walsall were awarded a penalty. Ryan Moore was judged to have brought down Mitch Botfield. Olaloko stepped up but Liam O’Brien got down brilliant to his right and push away for a corner. The resulting corner Anthony Swyer was again brilliantly denied by O’Brien again.

However from consecutive corners, The Wood finally were able to beat O’Brien. A goal mouth scramble was difficult to see who bundled the ball over, seemingly by Mitch Botfield. 1-0 to Walsall Wood after 81 minutes.

Bedworth had the last chance to try and salvage a point. A drilled crossed from Blackmore was glanced on by Parrot but he could only see his header whistle wide of the post.

Despite being the better side in the second half, Bedworth lose their first home game of 2024. The Greenbacks will be looking to rectify results against play off hopefuls Harborough Town on Saturday 3rd February.

Special mention to Harvey Westwood and Adam Hayles who made their league debut, who have come through the academy.

Full time- Bedworth United 0-1 Walsall Wood

STARTING LINE UP:

Bedworth: O’Brien, Moore, L Rowe, Parrott, Burke (Hayles) , Hand, Cox (C Donaldson), Blackmore, Murphy, Sammons, Westwood

Unused Subs: M Donaldson,

Attendance:154