REDDITCH United returned to winning ways at the first attempt with a gritty 2-0 victory over a strong Nuneaton Borough side in horrid conditions at the Trico Stadium on Saturday.
Tom Hillman’s deflected 42nd-minute strike and a goal in the dying moments of the match from Tiago Nassunculo secured maximum points for Matt Clarke’s side and lifted them into fourth place in Southern Premier Central ahead of tomorrow’s (Tuesday) tough-looking fixture at Stratford Town.
Clarke said on Twitter: “Delighted my Redditch United boys managed to get the three points. We got away with that as Nuneaton are a top side with some outstanding individuals.
“A harsh red card changed the game and I thought we really struggled against ten men. #stayinourlane #keepworkinghard.”
The hosts made a good start to the game and forced experienced Boro keeper and skipper Tony Breeden into a number of good saves in the first 15 minutes.
The visitors survived though and were beginning to get a foothold in the game when former Aston Villa, Nottingham Forest, Middlesbrough and Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Isaiah Osbourne was shown a straight red card for a high foot – a decision Reds boss Clarke thought was harsh.
Indeed, Boro went close to opening the scoring two minutes later when another big name – former Middlesbrough, Bristol City and Birmingham City striker Leroy Lita – had a shot deflected just wide.
Ethan Stewart headed against the Redditch bar five minutes before the break but United struck two minutes later when Hillman’s shot took a cruel deflection off Stewart and flew past Breeden.
The second period was once again hard-fought as the rain lashed down and Jordan Goddard twice went close for Boro whilst the Reds had an effort cleared off the line.
The outcome was only put beyond doubt in the 91st minute when Nassunculo coolly slotted beyond Breeden to clinch a third win of the campaign for the Reds in front of another bumper crowd of 580.