Whitby Town manager Nathan Haslam hails Hyde win with 10 men as best display of the season

The in-form Junior Mondal scored the winner for Whitby Town at Hyde United. (Photo: Brian Murfield)
The in-form Junior Mondal scored the winner for Whitby Town at Hyde United. (Photo: Brian Murfield)

The Seasiders, who bounced back from Saturday's 7-2 FA Cup defeat at Bristol Rovers, opened the scoring just 13 minutes in when Bradley Fewster capitalised on an error from Sam Waller to open the scoring, writes Paul Connolly.

Shortly after the restart, Adam Gell received a second yellow card for a heavy challenge on a Hyde man, before Lewis Alessandra levelled matters five minutes after the hour.

Junior Mondal was on hand with his tenth goal of the season to put Whitby back ahead just moments later however, with Whitby defending valiantly to hold on to a vital three points on their return to league action.

The Blues boss was impressed with the character that his side showed despite the adversity of Adam Gell's red card.

"It was an outstanding performance," Haslam said post-match.

"I'd go as far as to say it was the best performance of the season, not in the attacking sense as I think we've had a lot of decisions go against us.

"With Gelly getting sent off early in the second half against a good team like Hyde, we've had to really dig in.

"We've shown all the qualities tonight that we've been asking for. We've been very attacking this season but defensively we've been a little leaky but I don't think we can grumble tonight.”

"To a man they've all dug in. The subs have come on and done an excellent job. All in all it was a great three points for us."

The Seasiders looked bright in the early stages of the game, pressing high and committing men forward in a bid to show there was no hangover from Saturday's FA Cup clash, although it was the hosts who had the first real chance of the game.

The Tigers' new signing Shakeel Jones-Griffiths - straight into the team after signing earlier in the day - found space down the right-hand side and crossed low looking for Antoine Makoli. However, Connor Smith was on hand to slide in and turn the ball away for a corner.

Whitby's attacking intent looked clear, and they were almost ahead on 13 minutes.

Hyde failed to deal with Harrison Beeden's long throw, with the ball dropping to Bradley Fewster 20 yards out.

The Blues forward took the ball well on his chest, but could only fire wide on the half-volley.

It would only be a matter of seconds later before Whitby led, however. Sam Waller's pass out from the back fell kindly for Fewster on the edge of the area, who showed composure to finish neatly from close range.

Five minutes later it could've been two as Whitby continued to press, Jacob Gratton firing wide of the mark.

Fewster - starting for the first time since the FA Cup win over Morpeth Town at the end of September - looked hungry and could have had his second, though he couldn't quite get the control he wanted on Alfie Doherty's ball through, allowing Waller to collect the ball.

As the half wore on, the hosts looked to try and turn the screw, but could only muster half chances, looking most dangerous when Dan Rowe was forced to quickly get ahead of Alessandra and poke the ball out for a corner with the striker looming.

The Seasiders started the second period brightly, Alfie Doherty forcing Waller into a save, though it wasn't long before things took a turn for the worse for Haslam's side.

Gell - who picked up a caution shortly before half time for handball - jumped in for a tackle on a Hyde man and was shown his second yellow just four minutes into the half.

From there, Hyde looked to get themselves on top in search of a leveller, though struggled to find a massive amount of substance in their attacking play.

Five minutes after the hour mark though, the equaliser came for the Tigers. Harry Ditchfield's cross was headed away only as far as Harry Bunn. He laid the ball off to Alessandra who shot on the turn, finding the bottom corner.

Thankfully for Whitby, the level scoreline was to be short-lived. Three minutes after Alessandra's strike, they found themselves back ahead.

Junior Mondal played Doherty through on the right-hand side, before carrying his run on into the penalty area, ready to meet the low ball in from the young Whitby midfielder to net his 10th goal in all competitions with a close-range effort off the underside of the bar.

From there, the nature of the game and the fact they were down to ten men saw Whitby forced to sit deeper, adopting more of a 4-4-1 formation, that at times was more a 4-5-0, as Hyde looked to level matters again.

Ten minutes after the equaliser, Josh Doherty curled a free-kick just over the crossbar for the Tigers, after Dan Rowe went into the book for being adjudged to have fouled his man close to edge of his own penalty area.

From there the hosts huffed and puffed in search of a second leveller, though created little to threaten the Seasiders.

Hyde United: Waller, Ditchfield (Mellor '90+2), Amado, Spooner, J. Doherty, Roscoe (C), Fearnley (Bunn '60), Jones-Griffiths (Bell '76), Alessandra, Redshaw, Makoli. Subs not used: Turner, Harper.

Yellow Cards: Amado '61; Alessandra '82

Whitby Town: Bland, Smith, Shepherd, Gell, Rowe (C), Beeden, A. Doherty, Gratton, Greaves (Haswell '60), Fewster (Hawkins '51), Mondal (Fergus '86). Subs not used: Griffiths, Cranston (GK).

Yellow Cards: Gell '37, '49; Rowe '77; Mondal '71

Red Cards: Gell '49​