REPORT: FC BRNESC 0-4 Widnes
Strikers off the mark as Widnes beat BRNESC
Widnes continued their pre-season preparations with a comfortable 4-0 win at Liverpool County Premier League First Division side FC BRNESC on Tuesday night.
All four goals came in the second half with Jamie Rainford opening the scoring from the spot 10 minutes after the break with Ben Hodkinson, George Lomax and Bradley Williams netting further strikes.
Co-bosses Steve Akrigg and Kev Towey gave at least 60 minutes of action to all 14 outfield players involved in the victory, with striker Hodkinson handed his first appearance ahead of the new season.
After a tight and well-contested first half, Widnes began to up the intensity in the second period, with striker Rainford going close as he drove an effort into the gloves of the hosts’ goalkeeper.
Rainford would get off the mark for his new club minutes later, calmly converting a penalty after teammate Michael Grogan was pushed in the area from a Widnes corner.
BRNESC, who stepped in at late notice to host Widnes after the Whites’ scheduled fixture at Bootle was postponed, gave a very good account of themselves but began to show signs of fatigue as the half wore on.
Widnes increased their lead on the hour-mark as Dale Korie-Butler showed a terrific burst of pace on the right to deliver a cross towards the back-post, where Hodkinson was on-hand to direct an effort into the bottom corner.
It was 3-0 two minutes later, with Grogan cleverly engineering space on the edge of the box to filter a pass through to Lomax who finished well beyond the hosts’ shot-stopper.
Chances came and went as time petered away but there was to be a fourth for Widnes 15 minutes from time.
Hodkinson found himself in space on the left, firing a shot on goal that could only be parried by the goalkeeper, with winger Williams – who made 25 appearances for Widnes during the 2014/15 season – reacting quickest to bury the rebound.
Widnes’ preparations will step up a gear on Saturday afternoon, with a trip to Hallmark Security League Division One North side Ashton Town. Kick-off 3pm.
Widnes XI: Richie Mottram, Ben Jackson, Phil Doran, Kevin Pollard, Steve Akrigg, Michael Burke, Dale Korie-Butler, Danny Ventre, Ben Hodkinson, Jamie Rainford, Bradley Williams.
Subs: Lex Hancocks (GK), Elliott Jones, Dylan Sweeney, George Lomax, Michael Grogan.