Marsden 1 Glasshoughton 3
Welfare's season started on the lower slopes of the Pennines at Marsden's picturesque Fall Road Ground . We were given a friendly welcome but the playing surface was less hospitable and the evening will long be remembered by all present not for the football but more for the swarms of midges that tormented us . The discomfort had to be experienced to be believed .
John Ward gave the Blues a perfect start . Matt Cresseys pass sent Ward wide on the left and his shot come cross looped over the keeper and found the net . A second minute lead. Marsden competed very well and forged three clear chances , one bad miss and two good stops by keeper Karl Codd. Ward was unlucky in the 35th minute when his header found the net but the referee ruled that Paul Brown had made a push in the build up . Then on the stroke of half time the local referee awarded Marsden a penalty after a low cross struck the arm of Nick Baker who was lying on the ground and facing away from the ball .A well struck spot kick gave Codd no chance and it was 1-1 at the break.
The intensity of the midge attack was severe and worsened . All who could donned hooded jackets and some home fans started a fire with the piles of grass cuttings to let the smoke drive away the little biters .
The impressive Carl Fox should have wonWelfare a penalty in the 46th minute when he was felled from behind after twisting his way into the box , but the ref was only interested in spot kicks at the other end !!! On 60 minutes Ward made a great run into the box and was just about to net when he was kicked from behind , it was an even more obvious spot kick than the first but play was again waved on !! As time was running out Fred Cliffe reintroduced Jason Bradley and Lee Parker . They combined on 81 minutes for Parker to skip round the keeper and net . Then on 88 minutes a good low cross let him stab home a third .
Shame about the insects but what a nice club Marsden are . Great hosts , nice people . A great start to a new season for the Blues .
WELFARE : 1, CODD 2 Trialist 3 CRESSEY 4 BAKER 5 Trialist 11 ARKLE 7 FOX 14 BROWN 8 WARD 9 PARKER 10 BRADLEY . 12 EDWARDS ,