History made as Hatfield United win first derby clash with Welham Albion
PUBLISHED: 09:45 27 November 2018 | UPDATED: 09:45 27 November 2018
Hatfield United earned the bragging rights after clinching a 3-1 derby win over Welham Albion in the clubs' first-ever meeting.
Neither side have had the best of the starts to their Herts Senior County League Division One season.
Prior to this contest at Birchwood, United had managed just one win and Welham were slightly better with two successes.
But goals from Daryl Hall, Simba Matapo and George Ansell were enough to give Hatfield the edge, Saul Steedon’s strike for Welham proving just a consolation.
United were much stronger than in recent weeks with Hall returning from missing five matches through injury and goalkeeper Ryan Moss back after a four-game absence following a broken finger.
Manager Nigel Upson was also able to call on Taylor Evanson again after a brief spell at Albion.
Welham started the game slightly the better of the two in the opening 20 minutes but without creating a clear opening and it was the hosts who bagged the first goal.
They had already gone close through a Charlie Lloyd header but it was from a Ryan Pearman through ball that Hall slipped the ball beyond Welham’s Kieron Exstence.
United also had a goal ruled out just before half-time, the offside flag denying James Upson, and from the way Albion started the second half, it looked like another goal was definitely needed.
So it was to great delight that Pearman’s free-kick was headed home by Matapo on 56 minutes.
Welham though were not beaten and with 12 minutes to go they found a way back into the game.
It came direct from a free-kick which Saul Steeden slammed low into the bottom corner of the net and it heralded a period of sustained pressure from the visitors.
But the resistance was repelled and with seven minutes from time another Pearman free-kick brought him a third assist and Hatfield a third goal, headed home by Ansell.
A flying save from Moss maintained Hatfield’s two-goal lead and shifts them up to 15th, two places above Welham.
Hall took Hatfield United’s man of the match award while the Warren Vehicle Sales-sponsored award at Welham went to Craig Whitchelow.