Woking outclassed by Stockport County under new manager Simon Rusk

Simon Rusk celebrated his first game in charge of Stockport with a comfortable victory against Woking at the Laithwaite Community Stadium on Saturday.

Rusk, who took over from Jim Gannon earlier this week, saw his troops hit Woking for three goals in the opening forty-five minutes. Despite Moussa Diaraa pulling a goal back, the visitors ran in a fourth to move them up to third in the table.

After surviving two pitch inspections before the game was given the green light it was Stockport who opened the scoring after just three minutes following a low cross into the area and there was an unmarked Connor Jennings at the back post for a simple tap in.

Jennings almost added a second with a curling shot that Woking custodian Craig Ross parried away.  County continued to dominate and should have had a second when an unmarked Alex Reid nodded down a header into the hands of Ross, when he really should have got his header on target.

In the 37th minute the Hatters made it 2-0 when a cross found John Rooney outside the area to slot home his ninth goal of the season.

Deep into added time the visitors grabbed their third goal of the afternoon when a cross from Mark Kitching saw Reid mishit his effort, however the ball fell to Macauley Southam-Hales who connected perfectly to send the ball past Ross into the net.

Woking manager Alan Dowson bought on Matt Jarvis at the start of the second half and the former Wolves man made an instant impact. From a Jarvis corner, central defender Diarra rose highest to plant a firm header past Ben Hinchliffe.

The home sides hopes of getting back into the game were quickly dented when County scored their fourth of the afternoon. A quickly taken free kick caught the home side napping. Av weak header from Diarra fell to Jennings who set up Reid to make amends for his earlier miss by slotting the ball under the legs of Ross to make the game safe.

Woking had one other chance late in the game to get another consolation goal, but Jack Cook sent his header wide of the mark to sum up the Cards day.

Despite Woking continuing to keep going and not let their heads go down, this was a comfortable win for a very good Stockport side, who will surely be challenging for not just the play-offs but automatic promotion come the end of the  season.

Woking 1 Stockport County 4

Vanarama National League Saturday 30th January 2021

By Peter Moore