Date Time Competition Season Day Att
09/09/2023 3:00 pm NPL Premier Division 2023/2024 Sat 644


Stafford Rangers unconvincing start to the season continued with a home defeat against Marine.

Rangers welcomed Joel Torrance for his debut. Goalkeeper Torrance, on loan from Salford City, came in for the suspended Cam Belford as the only change from last week’s FA Cup  win against Atherstone.

It was visitors Marine who started the better of the two teams with their first chance coming in the 4th minute when Nathan Woodthorpe had a shot which Joe Dunne blocked, the ball diverting out for a corner.

Rangers had their first effort in the 11th minute. Nathan Blissett got his head to a long kick from Torrance and, with the Marine defence failing to clear, the ball fell back into the path of the Stafford striker but he sent his shot wide of the target.

Play became scrappy gaqme with both teams struggling with the heat but Rangers had their second chance of the afternoon through Joe Willis whose shot also went wide.

Midway through the first half, Marine began to step up their approach play. Fin Sinclair-Smith missed an opportunity when he couldn’t get a clear shot in and Jake Moult cleared.

Rangers responded through Niah Payne with a shot from 30 yards out which was straight at Marine keeper Felix Goddard.

Marine opened the scoring in the 29th minute when Sinclair-Smith got to the byline. His cross was kept out by Torrance’s feet, but the rebound fell to Darius Osei who was left with a simple task.

In a search for an equaliser, Willis sent in a left foot volley from 25 yards out which Goddard saved while Simon Njaria had a shot that just skimmed past the post. Rangers then had the golden opportunity to pull a goal back just before the interval when Ethan Stewart headed a Sam Bird cross but it went back across the goal before being cleared by the Marine defence.

As with the first half, the visitors began the second as the better of the two sides and Torrance was needed to keep out a shot from Sol Solomon struck from the edge of the area.

But Rangers were still in the contest and missed out through both Stewart and Kaiman Anderson who failed to convert good chances that came their way while a curling shot from Aaron Braithwaite had a curling shot also went the wrong side of the post.

Shortly before Braithwaite’s effort, Torrance had prevented Marine from doubling the lead with good saves from Will Russ and Solomon.

Russ saw another chance go begging for Marine Torrance denied him in a one-on-one contest but when Solomon found himself in a similar situation, the Stafford keeper could only bring him down in the area. Solomon stepped up to drive home the 78th minute penalty.

Tyreece Onyeka missed out on a chance to get a late consolation goal for Rangers when he could only find the side netting.


Stafford: 1 Joel Torrance, 2 Sam Bird, 3 Joe Dunne (15 Ben Woods 89m), 4 Simon Njaria (17 Ethan Morgan 89m), 5 Ethan Stewart, 6 Jake Moult, 7 Kaiman Anderson, 8 Aaron Braithwaite, 9 Nathan Blissett (16 Tyreece Onyeka 56m), 10 Joe Willis, 11 Niah Payne. Unused Subs: 12 Andy Burns, 14 Alex-Ray Harvey

Marine: 1 Felix Goddard, 2 Kyle Hayde, 3 Nathan Woodthorpe, 4 Willem Tomlinson (16 Charley Doyle 46m), 5 Chris Doyle, 6 Josh Wardle, 7 Finlay Sinclair-Smith, 8 Louis White, 9 Darius Osei (15 Jonathon Spittle 74m), 10 Sol Solomon, 11 Manasse Mampala (14 Will Russ 60m). Unused subs: 12 Jake Burton, 17 Joseph Ferguson

Referee: Lewis Smith

Cautions Torrance (Stafford), Tomlinson (Marine)

Att: 644

Report by Mark Bennett



Marston Road
Marston Road, Stafford, Staffordshire, ST16 3BX

Stafford Rangers

1Joel Torrance 77'
2Sam Bird
3Joe Dunne 14
4Simon Njaria 17
5Ethan Stewart
6Jake Moult
7Kaiman Anderson
8Aaron Braithwaite
9Nathan Blissett 16
10Joe Willis
11Niah Payne
12Andrew Burns
14Ben Woods 3
15Alex-Ray Harvey
16Tyreece Onyeka 9
17Ethan Morgan 4

Marine AFC

1Felix Goddard
2Kyle Hayde
3Nathan Woodthorpe
4Willem Tomlinson 16 39'
5Chris Doyle
6Josh Wardle
7Finlay Sinclair-Smith
8Louis White
9Darius Osei 15 29'
10Sol Solomon 78'
11Manasse Mampala 14
12Jake Burton
14Will Russ 11
15Jonathan Spittle 9
16Charley Doyle 4
17Joseph Ferguson
Total Shots
Shots on Target
Yellow Cards
Red Cards

Stafford Rangers KO Marine KO 29 39 45 56 60 74 77 78 89 89 FT

Past Meetings

Marine AFCStafford Rangers
Stafford RangersMarine AFC