The Red Devils secured a second home victory in a row this afternoon following a 1-0 victory over Rochdale A.F.C. Ashley Nadesan scored the only goal of the game in the 18th minute from close range. Glenn Morris put in a Man of the Match performance to secure all three points at The People’s Pension Stadium.
Crawley started the brighter of the two sides and created a decent chance within the opening five minutes. Will Ferry skipped past his man on the left and floated an inviting ball into the penalty area for a Reds player to attack. Tom Nichols rose highest but failed to keep his effort under the bar.
The Reds’ persistence soon paid off as Ashley Nadesan opened the scoring in the 19th minute. James Tilley crossed another brilliant ball into the penalty area, which Nadesan attacked. The striker saw his first effort saved by Jay Lynch but got a second bite of the cherry and tapped into an empty net.
Rochdale began to slowly grow into the game as they looked to equalise before half-time. Alex Newby forced Glenn Morris into an acrobatic save with a strike from the edge of the box. The Cat was alert to spring to his left and tip the powerful effort around the post.
Morris was having a great game for Crawley as the veteran goalkeeper was called into action again just moments later. Luke Charman drifted in from the wing and fired a powerful, drilled effort at goal. Glenn was once again alert to tip over the bar.
The half-time whistle came soon enough and probably at the right time for Crawley as Rochdale started to put serious pressure on the Reds.
It was a slow start to the second half as both sides introduced some fresh legs on the hour mark to try and energise the game. Crawley replaced Will Ferry and Ashley Nadesan with Archie Davies and Isaac Hutchinson.
It was a really slow second half, and as the game ticked over to 80 minutes, neither side had created as much as a half-chance in the second period of play. The Reds looked content with just the one goal, and the Dale was struggling to get past a very solid Crawley defence.
Glenn Morris was given the Man of the Match award by match sponsors Innovation Fire & Security and showed why just moments after the announcement. Crawley born Danny Cashman fired a low dipping effort towards goal, which Glenn expertly tipped around the post.
The Reds survived a late onslaught from the Dale in the four added minutes to hold onto all three points and claim a second successive home victory.
REDS XI: Morris, Ferry (Davies 60’), Francilette, Tunnicliffe, Francomb, Tilley, Payne, Hessenthaler, Nichols, Nadesan (Hutchinson 60’), Appiah
Attendance: 2164 (191 away)