Norse manage James Owen had a few unavailables to deal with, with last week's hero Kalli away, and Pearson, Hagan and Lunghu injured. Zak came in to replace Kalli in goal after impressing in the lower sides, skipper Murray was back from his honeymoon and veteran Ayers was recalled.
Right from the first whistle the game was very open with both teams trying to get the ball down and play football. There were a couple of half chances but the first incident of note came after about 20 mins when a sickening collision between Darran and the Broomfield keeper left the away sides number one out cold. He came round but unfortunately had taken a really bad knock, resulting in what looked like a fractured cheekbone and concussion so could take no further part. Everyone at Norsemen wishes him all the best for a speedy recovery.
When the game restarted both teams were understandably a bit slow to get started, but within a few minutes Norsemen started to take a foothold in the game, and it wasn't long before they took the lead. Some nice interplay between Warburton and Hamilton left the latter breaking into the box, he dropped his shoulder, cut inside the last defender and then beat the Broomfield reserve keeper with a nice finish. The game was still fairly open, but it was the home side that created the better chances, and they missed the opportunity to double the lead when he shot tamely at the keeper after great work to bring the ball down under pressure. The home side were fairly untroubled at the back, with debutant Zak marshalling the defence well, who were led by the outstanding Mead.
Not for the first time this season, the blue giants were very slow to start the second half. Broomfield were very much on top and forced their way into a few decent positions, with the tricky number 7 looking dangerous. Norsemen were rattled and started conceding silly free-kicks, and from one of those free-kicks Broomfield equalised. A good ball whipped in found one of their players free and he directed a good header past Zak. However it was maybe what Norsemen needed to give them a kick start. Within 2 minutes of being pegged back Darran won the ball on the edge of the box and clipped a precise shot over the keeper and off the underside of the bar on it's way in. Over the next 5 minutes Norsemen should have finished the game off, but once again didn't take their chances. Ballers continued his surprising role as the creative force from left back and put in a few great crosses that refused to go in, and Lewis inexplicably hit the bar from 6 yards with the goal gaping after great work from Hamilton and Newby. The longer the game went on the more Broomfield were getting back into it, and Zak was called upon to make a great one on one save, and Norsemen were fortunate to see the away side's forwards finish wastefully when in good positions.
The game came to an end and Norsemen celebrated only a 2nd league win of the season, with a win that could have been a lot more comfortable, while at the same time could have been snatched away from them. Another warning that to be successful in this league, chances need to be taken.
MOM - Mead, who won nearly every header and kept a potentially dangerous opponent very quiet. Special mention to Zak who gave a composed debut, and Hamilton who scored a good goal and gave the full back a torrid time.
Walk tall you Blue Giants.