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  August 2014 News
Saturday 2nd
Southam United 0 - 3 Hinckley AFC
Atletico got the Midland League One season off to a great start with a 0-3 victory over Southam United, with Luke Richards, JJ Melligan and Mark Bellingham scoring the goals.

With all the players making their competitive debuts for AFC, there were also a few new faces who joined the club on the eve of the season, Sam Arnold started in goal with defender John Clapp, midfielder Ray Facey and striker Mark Bellingham all starting from the subs bench.

Hinckley opened with plenty of pressure and could've been ahead in the first 5 minutes, however Richards header dropped just the wrong side of the post. Then Justin Nisbett beat the keeper with a chip, but the covering Southam defender got back to clear for a corner. Southam matched Hinckley in the midfield winning a lot of possession, but couldn't create anything threatening in the final third. On the stroke of half time with Nisbett running through, Southam keeper came a clear few feet outside his area to claim the ball and, even though not a clear goal scoring opportunity, after consulting with his linesman the ref showed Matt Oliver a straight red card for the professional foul. With no sub keeper, striker Louis Bridges took over between the sticks. Half time came with the score 0-0.

If Hinckley had not converted their chances first half, it took just a couple of minutes to put that right second half. Luke Richards ran through with the ball, used his strength to hold off his marker and placed a diagonal shot underneath Bridges to score Hinckley AFC's first competitive goal. This settled Hinckley who had looked a little nervous, and began to make the most of their man advantage. Bridges then saved well from Matt Bailey, as he was free to shoot from 10 yards, the Southam keeper deflecting the ball wide for a corner. Though the stand in keeper could do nothing to stop the second just after the hour, when Nisbett did well on the left of the area, and crossed into the goal area for JJ Melligan 6 yards out to side foot into the Southam goal. Sam Arnold was called into the game to make a good save on 70 mins when Oli Manoochehri was played through one on one, and the young stopper stood up well pushing the ball away from the Southam forward's shot. Mark Bellingham was introduced to the game with 15 minutes left, but still had time to leave his signature on it adding Hinckley's third with 10 minutes remaining, directing a header into the far corner from a left wing cross. Final score Southam 0 - 3 Atletico.

As a small moral victory for the supporters, even though it means nothing at this point, it was great to see Hinckley AFC sitting top of the league table, after matchweek 1.

click here for: Southam United match details

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