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10.09.2005 at 15:00 Clarence Park Attendance : 405
St Albans City
5 - 0
Eastbourne Borough
Referee : M McPherson Conference South-match

Matt Hann (51)
Matt Hann (52)
Matt Hann (58)
Lee Clarke (62)
Lee Clarke (70)
Opening squads
Paul Bastock
Chris Seeby
Dean Cracknell
Scott Cousins
Tom Davis
Mark Graham
Lee Clarke
Simon Martin
Nick Roddis
Djoumin Sangare
Patrick Ada
Lee Hook
Darren Baker
Stuart Tuck
Matt Smart
Ollie Rowland
Matt Piper
Danny Simmonds
Anthony Storey
Scott Ramsey
Danny Marney
Matt Crabb
Adrian Browne
Matt Hann
Paul Hakim
Thomas Beech
Tommy Williams
Yemi Odubade
Loui Fazakerley
Peter Featerstone
Danny Williams
Dean Lightwood
Matt Hann -> Dean Cracknell (21)
Paul Hakim -> Simon Martin (78)
Tommy Williams -> Nick Roddis (79)
Loui Fazakerley -> Anthony Storey (27)
Yemi Odubade -> Matt Crabb (63)
Peter Featerstone -> Matt Piper (64)
Yellow cards
None. Loui Fazakerley (61)
Danny Marney (76)
Red cards
None. None
Match report

'I make that three' - Matt Hann after scoring his third goal.

Visit www.leighpage.co.uk for all the match pictures.
A devastating five-goal spree in 19 minutes – featuring a remarkable hat-trick by substitute Matt Hann and another brace for the indomitable Lee Clarke – carried St Albans City to their largest league victory for almost four years and sounded out a warning to fellow Conference South sides that the recent thrashing of title favourites Weymouth was no fluke.
In scoring with his left foot, right foot and then his head – all within in eight memorable minutes – Hann, who celebrated his 25th birthday four days earlier, becomes only the second St Albans City substitute to score a hat-trick and the first to do so in a league match. Clarke, meanwhile, simply extended his glut of goals to 16 in just 13 matches.
City, the second highest scorers in the Conference South, almost went ahead inside the opening minute when Dean Cracknell and Scott Cousins combined to send Mark Graham away down the left and from his cross a looping goalbound header from Simon Martin extracted a spectacular full stretch save from Lee Hook.
The tone for the afternoon was set as both sides set about playing entertaining attacking football. Eastbourne may have been routed during the second half but for much of the first half they looked a more than useful footballing side only to be well contained by another outstanding performance by a City defence which has conceded a just solitary goal in five outings.
An excellent interception by Cousins, currently playing his best football since joining the club, denied the clear Danny Simmonds as Eastbourne threatened to turn their early promise into goals. The main threat, however, was at the opposite end of the pith where Martin, who also went close with a header, forced Hook into another good save. Hook produced a fine save from the excellent Chris Seeby who also struck an upright from a Cousins corner.
Hann, on since the 21st minute for the injured Cracknell, went close twice prior to the interval while Graham and Cousins worked an opening for him on the right to clip a searching ball across the face of the goal which just eluded the incoming Clarke.
Fears rose that City would also fail to turn second half dominance into goals when Clarke, on 50 minutes, glanced wide another cross from club captain Cousins. But within sixty seconds those fears were allayed and the rout had begun.
Patrick Ada, like Djoumin Sangare, was supreme in the air and from his headed clearance Tom Davis sprayed the ball wide to Graham. After darting to the byline the Irishman crossed low into the penalty area where Hann swivelled expertly before firing low across Hook and into the foot of the York Road goal.
Eastbourne went backwards from the kick off and carelessly lost possession to the highly impressive Martin whose interception nudged the ball into the path of Hann, this time the midfielder beat Hook with a cracking right-footed grass cutting drive that fizzed past the keepers groping right hand.
Hann was celebrating again on 58 minutes when Martin and Clarke tried to bustle their way into the penalty area, Clarke finally opted to shoot and as his shot was deflected high into the air Hann was on hand to nod the dropping ball beyond Hook once more for his quick-fire hat trick.
As Eastbourne visibly crumbled Martin put a Graham cross into the side-netting while on 62 minutes Clarke, almost belatedly, joined in the goal spree as he maintained his record of scoring in all of St Albans’ matches this season.
Ada pumped forward a long ball to which Clarke showed no lack of courage as he won an aerial challenge between two defenders before latching onto the loose ball and from 15 yards sent a blistering shot to Hook’s left for the fourth goal.
The Conference South’s top marksman waited just a further eight minutes before claiming his ninth goal of the season with a well placed header following a Hann cross from the Saints right. During the remaining 20 minutes City, only marginally, eased up with Clarke squandering two good chances to complete his hat-trick while Martin also headed over and Sangare, with a powerful header from a Graham corner, forced Hook – who was faultless for any of the goals - into one last top quality save.

Match report by Dave Tavener. Kindly supplied by The St Albans Observer.
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