Hyde take the points in opening game
New Season and a new league for Hyde United, and Basford who both secured promotion at the end of the 2017-2018 season. Basford were run away winners of the EvoStik Div 1 South, so this was not a fixture anyone in the EvoStik Premier wanted as their opening game of the new season, especially following a summer where the Basford Chairman had backed the club with a further investment in players.
That said, Darren Kelly and his backroom staff have not been slow in making changes to the squad at Hyde, and several new names were on the team sheet for the kick off in todays game.
Kyle Harrison has been given the Captains armband, which is well deserved, and he led out the squad on a sunny afternoon in Hyde.
The opening 45 minutes were cagey with neither side wanting to overcommit as they sparred with each other. The first 15 minutes was a game of tennis with the ball played forward quickly to test the defence and look at shape and organisation. Hyde edged the period slightly, with more of the attacking play, but Basford did create a few overloads, with their fullbacks pushing on, and could have scored at least once.
The half time break allowed the management team of Hyde to update the players on the Basford formation, and to give some pointers on how they should play to gain control, and you could see the results within a couple of minutes of the restart.
Hyde were much more in control of midfield, with Janni Lipka purring on the ball, supported by the hard working and dependable Ross Daley. This allowed the forwards more freedom, with Gavin Rothery & the outstanding Tom Pratt playing well off the hold up play of Chib Chilka.
It was this combination which led to the opening goal. A driving run up the right by Kyle Harrison, feeding the ball to Tom Pratt and then carrying on his run to create space for Rotary to play a one two with Pratt, who shifted the ball cleverly to create a yard of space, before turning the bradford back line clipping a perfect cross onto the penalty spot for Chib Chilaka to head home. 1-0 Hyde.
This allowed The Tigers to exert a degree of control on the game, and a period of dominance. In truth Hyde had opportunity to score a couple more goals as Basford tired, but with the clock running down, only an outstanding tracking run and tackle in the box from Tom Pratt stopped Basford from steeling a point.
FT 1-0 HYDE UNITED FC
This was a magic day for the supporters of Hyde United after a difficult period over the past four seasons. A better than expected opening day crowd of 417 created a good atmosphere, and Darren and the boys delivered an opening day win which is exactly what they had prepared to do.
Witton away on Tuesday evening, and then on to the first pre qualifying round of the FA Cup at home to Sheffield FC on Saturday. The games come thick and fast in August, but it is clear from yesterdays performance that we have an outstanding and extremely talented squad.
MOM : Tom Pratt