MATCH VERDICT AND VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS: Home comforts for Spalding United
An extra-special strike sealed Spalding United’s hat-trick of home wins.
Nathan Whitehead smashed in a 25-yard volley to double the Tulips’ advantage.
In a routine victory, there was nothing ordinary about the midfielder’s second goal of the season.
Overall, three excellent individual displays were the highlights.
Jenk Acar was described as ‘unplayable’ by manager Chris Rawlinson after being chosen as the sponsors’ man of the match on Saturday.
Equally impressive – in very different ways – were the defensive efforts of Neal Spafford and Ellis Humble.
They provided plenty of protection for keeper Michael Duggan who had little to do all afternoon.
The partnership between Spafford and Humble kept out Chasetown while Acar posed so many problems at the other end.
Acar’s trickery and pace is always likely to be a massive issue for defenders.
If he delivers consistency then Spalding will have a real threat in the final third.
Acar was tripped in the box for a penalty which Gary King converted – taking his tally to seven league goals this term since his return.
Jamie Jackson showed touches of class on his home debut, again developing the partnership with King.
On his full debut, teenager Jacob Fletcher lined up with Whitehead to gain control of the midfield.
Fletcher always looked for a forward pass to create an opening in an energetic and strong performance.
Treatment for a cut on his cheek wouldn’t stop him as Fletcher continued to make challenges and win back the ball.
He should have scored at the midway stage of the first half but Scholars number one Curtis Pond made a second point-blank save, having also denied Whitehead.
Chasetown came close as Ryan Wynter poked wide of the near post when it looked easier to hit the target.
However, King ended the Tulips’ run of missed spot-kicks and a third successive home win never looked in any doubt from that moment.
Whitehead’s wonderful goal with 11 minutes left made it more comfortable.
There was no way back for Chasetown this time – even though the Staffordshire side had fought from 3-0 down to beat Sheffield in midweek.
With four players banned, Spalding still looked too strong by moving into fourth place after 10 games.
The league table is starting to take shape and last term’s play-off finalists seem to be set for another promotion challenge.
4-4-2: Duggan 6; Lemon 7, Spafford 8, Humble 8, A Jackson 7; McGhee 7 (sub Fixter 77 mins), Whitehead 7, Fletcher 7, Acar 8 (sub Reittie 83 mins); J Jackson 7, King 7 (sub Millington 85 mins). Subs not used: Townrow, Walker.
4-4-2: Pond; Williams (sub Degville-Cross 77 mins), Sedgley, C Lovatt, O’Neill; Nduna, Flattley (sub Wellecomme 69 mins), Baker, Cater; Wynter, J Lovatt (sub Wheldon 59 mins). Subs not used: Mzungwana, Smith.
King pen (52 mins, 1-0); Whitehead (79 mins, 2-0).
Sedgley, King, O’Neill (fouls).
Jenk Acar – ‘unplayable’ at times.
Market Drayton Town (A) – Saturday.