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Clements ’83 FC 1 Lichfield City FC 2

Dean Gilbert. Pic: Kevin Grice

Dean Gilbert. Pic: Kevin Grice

A turbulent week which saw assistant manager Frank McLeod depart Lichfield City ended in a positive fashion as Dean Gilbert’s men recorded a 2-1 victory over Clements ’83.

McLeod had been working alongside Gilbert following Andy McRobbie’s move to manage City’s second-string but handed in his notice via text – much to the manager’s surprise.

Gilbert explained:

“Frank’s departure came as a blow and a shock but to be honest I was more worried about the impact it would have on the team than his actual departure.

“Frank text me to tell me he thought he wasn’t making a difference and I accepted his decision. I only want people around me that want the best for Lichfield City. I will continue on my own for the rest of the season with Ray Kelly continuing as coach.

“Ray is vital to me at this time and there is no-one I would rather have getting the lads focused for a game.”

On the field, things were a little more stable as City produced a solid away performance to claim all three points on Saturday.

Youngsters Josh Leaver and Ashley Bennett were drafted in to Gilbert’s starting XI and played their part in what was a disciplined performance.

City stopper Dan Edwards made a number of saves early on as the home side came out of the block fastest.

After the breakthough, City found their rhythm and Dan Hodgkins opened the scoring as he latched on to a pinpoint Danny Worrall free-kick.

Clements levelled things up from the spot after City skipper Martyn Green committed a foul in the penalty box which was duly dispatched.

City continued to pour forward and got their just rewards when Hodgkins slotted home his tenth goal of the season, much to the delight of Gilbert.

The Lichfield boss added:

“That is 10 goals Dan’s got for us and he’s loving it here. The lads have taken to him since his arrival in the summer and he’s a great player. I’ve said before there’s so much more to him than scoring goals.

“Clements are a side I like because, like us, they are passionate about their club and work hard for each other. We went into the game again without key players but again showed that no matter who wears the Lichfield shirt they are prepared to put the work in to make sure they don’t let their team mates down.”

City are in Staffordshire Challenge Cup action this Saturday (November 6) as they entertain Redgate Clayton, from the Staffs Premier League, at Brownsfield Park (kick-off 2pm).

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