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Match Report  |  Gresley Rovers vs Armitage

Note that this page is from our Gresley Rovers archive. It may not be related to the new Gresley Rovers (formerly Gresley FC until 2020).
1st January 1987

Gresley Rovers vs Armitage

Mayhem! – Mike StJohn – Burton Mail

Gresley Rovers celebrated the New Year in astonishing style with an incredible ten-goal mauling of Armitage at the Moat Ground.

Frank Northwood’s marvels completely destroyed the Banks’s Brewery League Premier Division’s bottom side with a breathtaking display of attacking football to reach the semi-finals of the League Cup with absolute ease.

Brian Beresford blasted five goals to set up a Gresley record in the Bank’s League and the remarkable scoreline was helped along with John Laws, Colin Taylor, Kevin Banton, Martin Devaney and a substitute Clive Arthur all getting in on the act.

The game was all of two minutes old when Rovers embarked on the biggest victory in recent history.

Beresford was up to his wily tricks when he took the ball to the left post before laying it on for Jon Laws, who happily obliged with a volley into the roof of the net.

Rob Philpott might have added the second two minutes later but goalkeeper Civil made a reflex save with his legs.

It wasn’t long before Beresford got on the mark to begin his five-goal spree, when he turned home Laws’ inviting centre in the 13th minute.

Taylor was denied by another fine save by Civil as Rovers completely dominated the game.

Beresford went one better in the 21st minute, Laws, who played brilliantly in the first half, again provided the Gresley marksman with the opportunity to sidestep the ball home.

Gresley completely tore the heart out of Armitage with a three goal blast in an incredible four minute blitz.

Banton added further humiliation when he smashed a low shot under the diving Civil to make it 4-0 and Taylor celebrated his first goal for the Moatmen two minutes later following a defence-splitting move between Banton and Beresford.

The excitement continued as Laws sped into the penalty area to release the ball for Beresford, who kept his feet in the tacky goal mouth to bang home goal number six – and his hat trick.

Only two minutes had passed in the second half when the irrepressible Beresford clipped home Banton’s well directed cross from the left for the seventh goal.

The Gresley goal machine appeared to have dried up at 7-0 as the game entered a relatively quite period.

Beresford missed a howling chance at the right post before he wormed past Civil and defending Bayliss to neatly stroke the ball into the back of the net.

Armitage, to there credit, kept battling on as Clarke fired a shot wide and then prompted Karl Austin into a rare save.

As Gresley took a breather the visitors hit a consolation goal. Substitute Ward flashed over a cross from the right, Austin failed to cut the centre out and the Armitage centre forward knocked the ball home.

But with a clean sheet destroyed Rovers turned on the style to plunder two more goals in the final eight minutes.

Devaney smashed an angled drive from the left via a defender in the 82nd minute and with seconds left, Arthur made it double figures when he lashed home a Banton centre.

Gresley Rovers (6) 10

Armitage (0) 1

Scorers: Laws 2, Beresford 13, 21, 35, 47, 72, Banton 31, Taylor 33, Devaney 82, Arthur 90 (Gresley Rovers); McKay 81 (Armitage).

Gresley Rovers: Austin, Earley, Bromley, Pearsall, Dolby, Devaney, Laws, Philpott (Arthur 72), Taylor, Beresford, Banton.

Armitage: Civil, Gogswell, Jones, Bayliss, Todd, Milner, Anderson, Ashmore, McKay, Clarke, Poole (Ward 29).

Gresley Man-of-the-match: Brian Beresford.

Referee: H J Underwood (Redditch).

Attendance: 346