Stafford Rangers 1 - 0 Workington Reds

IT was a third consecutive defeat for Danny Grainger’s Workington side in their first of two games in 48 hours over the Easter weekend as they fell to a controversial defeat after having a first half goal ruled out. 

The controversial moment came in just the 8th when the goal was not given by either the referee or linesman when Carlisle loanee Sam Hetherington long range cross looked to be initially too deep but with the sun in the eyes of Stafford keeper Cameron Belford it bounced and seemingly ended up in the net with Belford collecting the ball after it bounced off the side netting. 

However despite the protests of players, coaching staff and fans behind the goal the goal was not given and that was about as good as it got for the visiting Reds. 

Grainger’s side had the best of the opening 20 minutes with the majority of the action being in their attacking third without any clear cut opportunities. 

Then came the games only goal just before the half hour mark with the scrappy finish underlining the encounter as a whole with manager Danny Grainger speaking post match saying “ It’s not a game of football I will have wanted to watch… it lacked any sort of quality.”

The ball was crossed into the box by Tyreece Onyeka with the ball ricocheting around the box following attempted clearance by the visitors which then fell kindly to Sean Cooke who mishit the strike but outfoxed Jim Atkinson to slowly cross the line. 

The goal seemed to give the home side and their supporters confidence in their battle for survival as they played the better football from the remainder of the half but as in the opening of the game for Reds, Stafford had no clear chance on goal. 

The second half was a poor quality of football as both sides will be involved in all season with neither side seemingly able to string a number of passes together. There were no opportunities that either side could exploit and carve out a half shot on goal.

The majority of the play came in the middle third of the game with at times what could only be described as head tennis as both sides looked to play direct football - long passes that always seemed to be overhit. 

Grainger’s side returned to their usual form of playing football along the floor in the final 10 minutes and looked like their usual selves in one of the top scorers in the division but it was too little too late and fell to a third successive defeat ahead of the short turnaround as Atherton Colleries are the visitors on Monday afternoon to Borough Park. 



1 Cameron Belford 
2 Andrew Burns 
3 George Burroughs 
4 Joseph Willis 
5 Ethan Stewart (C)
6 Isaac Lee 
7 A-Jay Leitch-Smith
8 Owen German
9 Kaiman Anderson
10 Sean Cooke
11 Tyreece Onyeka


12 Connor Heath
14 Kain Taylor
15 James O’Neil
16 Jack Stafford
17 Lewis Porter

Goal - Cooke (28)


1 Jim Atkinson
2 Greg McCaragher 
3 Fin Wallbank
4 Jordan Little
5 Sam Smith (C)
6 Cerian Casson
7 Kitt Nelson
8 Sam Hetherington 
9 Lewis Reilly
10 Stephen Rigg
11 Conor Tinnion


12 Jake Allan
14 Aidan Roxburgh 
15 Sam Christian 
16 Scott Allison
21 Danny Eccles