Chorley up to sixth place after victory at Blyth Spartans
Chorley stretched their unbeaten league run to five and climbed into sixth spot in the National League North table after an excellent 2-0 win against a Spartans side previously undefeated in four games at Croft Park,
The visitors were comfortably in the ascendancy in the first half with Connor Hall and Jon Ustabasi prominent in attack.
Hall’s controlled run and lay-off teed up Billy Whitehouse whose shot was well saved by Alex Mitchell and Will Tomlinson and Ustabasi were inches wide from further attempts.
It was Hall who gave Chorley a deserved lead just before the break. Sent clear by an astute Tomlinson pass, the striker coolly planted the ball beyond the exposed Mitchell.
Blyth raised their game immediately after the interval but the pressure was not sustained and after Mitchell had pulled off a fine save from a Hall header the Magpies went two up on 56 minutes.
Again, the influential Tomlinson was the provider, slipping a great ball to Millenic Alli who unhesitatingly hammered it past Mitchell. Matt Urwin made his first serious save on the hour but then there was a let-off for Chorley when Dan Maguire headed against the bar and Lewis Baines did extremely well to clear the follow-up off the line.
Alli was very sportingly applauded by the home fans as he left the field to be replaced by Adam Blakeman.
Blyth spiritedly kept plugging away and were denied only by the post when Rhys Evans got a terrific shot away from a partially-cleared free-kick.
However, the impressive Ustabasi was inches away from extending Chorley’s lead with a smart header from a brilliant Whitehouse centre.
Late on, Urwin produced a fine stop to preserve the Magpies’ clean-sheet and the visitors almost had the last word when Mitchell saved from substitute Ollie Shenton.
Post-match, Jamie Vermiglio hailed a very professional performance by Chorley.
He said: “The boys played really well today. It’s a difficult journey to Blyth and the Spartans’ team did well in patches, causing us some problems. But our form has been excellent in the last five games and Connor Hall’s finish for the opening goal was fantastic.”
CHORLEY: Urwin, Henley, Smith, Leather, Baines, Whitehouse, Calveley, Tomlinson, Ustabasi (Shenton 79), Alli (Blakeman 68), Hall (Scarborough 85). Subs (not used): Goodridge, Birchall.