Braces from midfielder Matt Crooks and striker Godwin Abadaki gave Steve Eyre’s Under-21 side a thumping victory over visitors Nottingham Forest in the latest Professional Development League 2 match at Canalside Sports Complex on Tuesday afternoon.
A young Town side – featuring just one overage player in midfielder Scott Kay – made the most of a fantastic first half and saw the game out comfortably in the second period, with Forest’s goal nothing more than a consolation with two minutes left.
Abadaki got things going for Town, in slightly scrappy fashion, when he battled with Forest’s ‘keeper to prod home after Matt Crooks had brilliantly played in right-back Tom Smith to cross.
The provider, Crooks, then turned finisher on 23 minutes, when he coolly slotted home from inside the area after a period of good Town possession in the middle of the park.
The Terriers put the icing on what had been their best first-half display of the season when Crooks raced clear to once again slot home, two minutes before the referee’s whistle. Godwin Abadaki played a key role in the move, dispossessing Forest in the middle of the park before Max Leonard played in the midfielder, who made no mistake from 12 yards to notch his fifth of the season.
Town continued in a similar vein at the start of the second half and had made it four within five minutes when Abadaki once again made a nuisance of himself in the six yard box to prod home after Forest had failed to clear Jordan Sinnott’s corner.
Both of Town’s goal scorers went close to completing their hat tricks as the game passed the hour mark. Firstly, Crooks got the ball caught under his feet before Abadaki was denied by Forest’s ‘keeper.
To Forest’s credit they didn’t give in and enjoyed plenty of possession in the second 45. Their endeavour was rewarded late on when their centre-back scored the goal of the game, firing home from 30 yards out.
Town’s team (4-4-2):
Lloyd Allinson; Robbie McIntyre, Murray Wallace, James Burke, Tom Smith (Tom Briggs 85); Scott Kay, Dale Hopson, Jordan Sinnott (c), Matt Crooks; Godwin Abadaki (Paul Mullin 85), Max Leonard (Duane Holmes 75)