Wrexham
1-0
Sutton United

Kennedy 79

Date
19 April 2019
Competition
Vanarama National League
Attendance
5,264
Referee
Peter Gibbons
Lineup
1 Ross Worner
2 Dale Bennett
21 Roarie Deacon
7 Tom Bolarinwa
15 Craig Eastmond
25 Jon Barden 85 Bellikli
33 James Dobson 67 Thomas
28 Brett Williams
9 Gime Toure
10 Jonah Ayunga 78 Kearney
19 Harry Beautyman
SUBSTITUTES
3 Aswad Thomas
11 Dylan Kearney
12 Crossley Lema
30 Jude Mason
34 Neset Bellikli

For the second week running a battling performance went unrewarded for Sutton, who frustrated Wrexham for 78 minutes before finally succumbing to a scrambled goal from a set piece. It was particularly harsh on U’s makeshift defence, which lined up exactly as against Leyton Orient, despite the availability of Aswad Thomas after suspension, and again restricted one of the National League’s top sides to half chances. With Orient, Salford and Solihull all winning it was crucial for Wrexham to pick up all three points as well to have a chance of a top three finish, and there was considerable anxiety on and off the pitch until Kieran Kennedy pounced on a corner that was never properly cleared and lifted the ball beyond Ross Worner and the covering defence in to the top corner of the net.

The first half saw Wrexham enjoy the majority of the possession without causing Worner any major inconvenience after an early attack which saw the keeper come out and dive at the feet of Chris Holroyd, both players requiring treatment. Craig Eastmond picked up an early booking for a late tackle on Bobby Grant as the winger got to the ball on the touchline that bit quicker, and it was Grant who had possibly the best opening for the home side when he met Mark Carrington’s cross with a header that lacked both power and direction from a good position. Apart from that Wrexham were restricted to long range shots that were hopeful and harmless, Carrington going closest with a shot that rippled the back of the net from above, and although Sutton created little themselves, Gime Toure did twice try his luck, the first shot comfortably held by Rob Lainton and the second dipping over the bar.

After the break, the pattern largely continued although there was a hint of more attacking menace from U’s, and Wrexham found themselves struggling to make any impression on another solid defensive effort from Sutton, with tackles won, shots blocked and interceptions made, and it said everything that Worner’s most anxious moment on an afternoon when he would have hoped to avoid anything unusual, was an enormous goal kick from Lainton that threatened to do to him what Jamie Butler had done at Hemel Hempstead three years ago until Worner stretched back to tip the ball away for a corner, a necessary save with it now being possible for a goal to be scored directly from a goal kick.

Wrexham had used all three substitutes with still nearly twenty minutes left, and frustration was growing until a corner from the right was headed goalwards, Eastmond headed the ball out from under the bar but it fell for Kennedy to lift it back in to the net. U’s immediately brought on Dylan Kearney, who had been waiting on the touchline, and there were half chances as Brett Williams headed wide from a free kick and then just failed to get a touch on Harry Beautyman’s cross from the left, but the home side had just done enough to keep their hopes of a top three place alive, and right at the end Jason Oswell might have added a second when he couldn’t quite make contact with an excellent cross from Luke Summerfield.

Wrexham: R Lainton, K Roberts, M Carrington, P Rutherford(sub L Summerfield 59), S Pearson, K Kennedy, B Grant(sub J Oswell 72), L Young, S Beavon(sub J McGlashan 72), C Holroyd, A Wright. Subs n/u C Dibble, J Jennings. Booked: Young

Link to photos: Here