Stamford AFC’s new signing Grant Ryan made an instant impact on his Daniels debut as he scored the only goal in their 1-0 FA Trophy victory over Basford United on Saturday.
Stamford manager Graham Drury signed striker Grant last week from Grantham Town. He previously came through the Mansfield Town Academy, before joining Evo-Stik league side Chasetown and came straight into the starting side.
Drury said: “I have got the player I wanted, it took some time to get over the line but I am over the moon.”
Drury write on Twitter: “Six games unbeaten now and ticking over nicely. Massive game on Saturday, let’s make it seven unbeaten lads.”
However the victory did not have the normal sweet taste because of a horrible injury to Basford skipper Jake Sheridan, who broke both the tibia and fibula bones in his lower leg after a late horror tackle from Chris Salt. The match was delayed for about an hour while the injured player received medical treatment.
Drury said: “All the best to the poor lad who broke his leg today. I hope he recovers quickly.”
Neither side caused much threat to the goal before Sheridan’s injury on the half hour mark but the game improved in quality after the long delay.
Ollie Brown-Hill, who won Stamford’s player of the month award for September after scoring several influential goals, almost set up Elliot Sandy as he headed the ball across the box but Sandy just failed to get on the end of it.
The hosts were beginning to apply more pressure at the Zeeco Stadium, with Basford keeper Jake Wood saving from Brown-Hill after he beat the offside trap.
However it was Wood who made the error which led to the only goal of the game three minutes before half time. He failed to hold onto a whipped-in corner and Grant slammed the ball home from close range.
But in the second half Basford threw everything at the Daniels to salvage something from the game and they would have as well if it hadn’t been for the heroics of goalkeeper Sam Donkin who had to get down low to keep out Kyle Dixon’s drive.
The pressure continued and when Courey Grantham went down in the box there were some worried looks around the Zeeco, but referee Paul Buck penalised the visiting striker for diving instead.
United continued to apply pressure but Stamford held out for another success in a cup competition and claim the £2,500 prize money on offer. Now all their attention turns to the FA Cup fourth qualifying round on Saturday at home to Wrexham AFC, in one of the biggest games in the club’s history.
Stamford AFC: Sam Donkin, Lee Beeson, Ollie Luto, Sam Hill, Chris Salt, Delroy Gordon, Ollie Brown-Hill (Jon Challinor), Jake Duffy, Grant Ryan, Elliott Sandy (John King), Ryan Robbins (Jevani Brown). Substitutes: Curtis Hartley.
Basford United: Jake Wood, Robbie McNicholas, Jamie Walker, Jake Sheridan (Jack Duffy), Lewis Carr, Dion Meikle, Callum Smith (Mason Rowley), Kyle Dixon, Courey Grantham, Jack Wood, Ashley Grayson (Martin Carruthers). Substitutes: Malcolm Podier.
Referee: Paul Buck