Linnets humbled by Hatters' second-half show

Theo Richardson - Stockport v King's Lynn Town

King's Lynn Town keeper Theo Richardson experienced mixed fortunes at Stockport - Credit: Ian Burt

Goalkeeper Theo Richardson was hero and villain as King’s Lynn Town suffered another defeat on the road.

Richardson, having produced a superb first-half save, saved a John Rooney penalty on the hour mark to prevent the hosts doubling their slender lead.

But five minutes later a poor goal-kick gave Rooney the chance to make amends - and he took it.

It was tough on Lynn, who were excellent in the first half against a side defending an eight-game unbeaten run. Last month’s signing of Paddy Madden reinforced their play-off ambitions - he joined from League One Fleetwood Town on a three-year deal, on a reported £3,000 a week.

While the hosts had plenty of early possession, Lynn weren’t unduly troubled until Richardson did really well to tip a Madden effort onto his bar. But the resistance was broken on 13 minutes when Madden’s wayward shot was headed goalwards by the alert Alex Reid, beating the wrong-footed Richardson for his 18th goal of the season.

Lynn responded well: Ethan Coleman, who had a trial at Stockport last summer, Sonny Carey and Michael Clunan were pulling the strings in midfield.

For long spells Stockport couldn’t lay a glove on the visitors, whose only problem was carving out clear scoring opportunities. Carey almost did, weaving his way around three players before Alex Babos’s shot took a deflection and looped just over.

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But it was a different Stockport after the break. Harry Cardwell missed a gilt-edged headed chance from a corner before Richardson kept out Rooney’s spot kick with his legs.

Five minutes later the game slipped away from Lynn when Richardson’s poor goal kick found only Rooney, who fired it back from 25 yards into the top right corner. Madden then exposed Lynn’s Achilles heels, with a pair of headed goals on 71 and 84 minutes to wrap it up for the hosts.

Stockport: Hinchcliffe, Jennings, Hogan, Palmer, Rooney, Southam-Hales (Minihan 78), Croasdale, Reid, Walker, Cardwell (Collar 74), Madden. Subs not used: Fitzsimons, Williams, Newby.
Goals: Reid 13, Rooney 65, Madden 71, 84
King’s Lynn Town: Richardson, Howard, Callan-McFadden, Baggott, Denton, Clunan (Jackson 75), Coleman, Babos (Payne 62), Carey, Gyasi (Kiwomya 67), Gash. Subs not used: Fleming, Bastock.