HAVING beaten Litherland REMYCA by a club record score in November, 1874 Northwich had to rely on a solitary goal from an unlikely source for victory at Townfield on Saturday, writes Garry Clarke.

Top of the table hosting the bottom was always going to be a potential banana skin but 1874 dug deep to prevent any slip up.

The visitors arrived determined not to suffer another heavy defeat, working hard to frustrate and disrupt their hosts.

1874 started strongly with Lee Knight leading the charge with rampaging runs down the right flank.

From one such run in the eighth minute he flashed the ball across the face of Litherland’s goal finding Callum Gardner at the far post, however his first-time shot only found the side netting.

Litherland were content to sit back, soak up pressure and try to hit on the counter but for all their efforts they did not cause too many problems for 1874 goalkeeper Tony Aghayere, who comfortably saved their only shot on target – a James Law attempt midway through the first half.

The decisive moment of the game came in the 27th minute.

Good build-up play saw Sam Hare play a through ball into the path of Scott McGowan whose low cross along the six-yard line beat Litherland goalkeeper Ben Morrow and allowed the unmarked centre back Lee Jackson to slide the ball into an empty net from close range.

1874 dominated possession in the second half but found Litherland difficult to break down and offered little threat to their goal.

McGowan cleared the bar with a shot two minutes into the second half and James Ormrod drew a fine save from Morrow from a free kick five minutes later.

Gardner took the ball round Morrow but the ball ran dead and Knight found the side netting with a shot from distance.

Not the most fluent performance but the green and blacks ground out the win, earning themselves another three points as they remain nine points clear at the top of the NWCFL Premier Division.

1874: Aghayere, Hind, Russell, Jackson, Jones, Okome (Woolley), Gardner (Wellstead), Ormrod (Weir), McGowan, Hare, Knight. Subs not used: Tinning, Koral

Litherland: Morrow, Clements (McShane), Connor, Doherty, Ling, Crist, Foy (Walker), Monaghan, McDonald (Short), Hammill, Law. Subs not used: Duffy, Whewell

Attendance: 275