|Barton Town Reserves||1-1||Reckitts AFC|
|Finnis 58||Medcalf 43|
|2||Charlie Wright 🔻Lacey 63|
|5||Clay Bryant (c)|
|6||Stephen Cooper 🟡|
|8||Luke Kershaw 🔻Forman 75|
|9||Jack Crofton 🔻Goluch 81|
|10||Jack Finnis ⚽|
|11||Adam Whall 🔻Salter 63|
|12||Josh Lacey 🔺Wright 63|
|14||Kian Salter 🔺Whall 63|
|15||Jake Forman 🔺Kershaw 75|
|17||Daniel Goluch 🔺Crofton 81|
Report by Liam Graham
There was an air of excitement at the Easy Buy Stadium on Saturday with a freshly cut and marked pitch, boots polished and cameras dusted off as Barton Town Reserves returned to league action following yet another four month lay off, with Reckitts AFC the visitors.
Barton had a full and healthy squad to choose from which included the likes of a returning Stephen Cooper in midfield, Jack Crofton up top alongside Charlie Dixon in goal and Josh Batty who came in from the first team.
In a quite different build up sides had to change, socially distanced, outside as the use of changing facilities are still restricted. Luckily the weather was on our side!
Finally at 2PM match referee Dom Hawkins blew his whistle to get the restart of eight games in 25 days underway… a whistle that never stopped!!
Barton started arguably the better of the two sides who were 5th and 6th respectively on 13 points each.
Jack Finnis was up to his usual tricks as he had the beating of his man on numerous occasions early doors. But when the ball got into the Reckitts box, the Reckitts defence were clearing well.
16 year old Charlie Wright then had an attempt from long range in the 20th minute but failed to trouble the ‘keeper.
A number of Barton corners created opportunity to put pressure into Reckitts only Kershaw’s weak header on target falling into the hands off the Reckitts goalkeeper.
Reckitts were growing into the game, and were having some success on the right hand side as their winger made some dazzling, weaving runs. One of which brought a free kick around the half hour mark, this curling effort from 25yards out looked to be going in but cracked the bar and was headed away for a Reckitts corner by Wright.
Both Wright and Bryant combined to make good challenges after Reckitts found themselves in a good goal scoring area in the 38th minute.
Bryant the Reserves captain then gave away a free kick in the 40th minute, on the wide edge of the 18 yard box. Reckitts used a well rehearsed training ground move (or so it looked) to take the lead as former Swan Rich Medcalf ran unmarked to score from close range right footed.
With the break welcomed by both sides, again Barton started the second half the better of the two, and not long after the restart Barton squandered a glorious opportunity as Crofton found himself clear and in front of goal. He tried to square the ball to Batty, but instead placed the ball into a relieved Reckitts goalkeeper’s hands.
Barton were back on level terms when they found an equaliser in the 54th minute from a corner, as leading goalscorer Jack Finnis rose highest at the back post to head home from a Patchett corner.
Reckitts regrouped and the game slowed, Reckitts had a well struck effort saved well by Dixon in the Barton goal on the hour.
Barton then had the ball on the net again via Crofton in the 65th minute, but the referee had blew his whistle in the build up for a foul on the Reckitts defender.
A flurry of substitutions were made , as Salter, Lacey, Forman and Goluch entered the fray. Salter was quickly into action when delivering a good cross for Batty to latch onto and brought another good save from the Reckitts ‘keeper.
There were a number of attacks made by the home side in pressing for a winner, but Reckitts defended well in the last 15 minutes to limit the chances on their goal.
So the first game back ended in a 1-1 draw, and on the whole a fair result.
Barton remain in 5th place, and play host to Chalk Lane on Wednesday evening again unfortunately a game having to be played behind closed doors.
You can catch all the action via commentary on Barton FM from 1930 or keep an eye out on our social media platforms for extended highlights so you can keep up to date with what’s going on.