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DEVSQD: Town 4 Wigan 0

27 January 2015

Goals from Vernon, Akpa Akpro, Grandison and Jones give Town the win

Strike duo Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro and Scott Vernon pushed their claims for a re-call to Shrewsbury's starting XI as Town's reserves beat Wigan 4-0.

The two front men were both on the score sheet along with centre-back Jermaine Grandison and youngster Ethan Jones as a strong development side comfortably beat their Lancashire opponents.

Also included in the Town team were two unnamed trialists while there was also a first appearance in blue and amber for Keith Southern.

On a cold afternoon at Shrewsbury Sports Village, Salop took the lead on 10 minutes when Jordan Clark showed some neat trickery down the right flank before delivering a low cross.

With the Wigan defence at sixes and sevens, striker Scott Vernon tapped home at the second attempt after a good initial save from Lee Nicholls.

Shrewsbury had started the game brightly and almost doubled their advantage when a lovely spin from Akpa Akpro sent Vernon in on goal

Sadly for Ian Dawses’ side, the Wigan ‘keeper was alert to the danger and was out well to smoother at the forward’s feet.

The Latics hit back with a deep free-kick just evading the head of striker Sam Cosgrove.

But it was Town who were in control and their doubled their advantage on the half-hour mark.

Akpa-Akpro picked up the ball on the edge of the box and nipped past a defender before curling a lovely strike into the far corner.

And just before half-time Salop, under the watchful guise of boss Micky Mellon, made it three.

An Ashley Vincent corner fizzed across the box to Jermaine Grandison who empathically smashed the ball off post and bar and into the net.

Town picked up where they left off at the start off the second half with a delicious Vincent cross just too strong for the on-rushing Akpa Akpro.

Latics captain Joey Johnson stung the palms of Halstead from 25 yards but otherwise the Lancashire side were struggling to create clear cut chances.

But they almost pulled a goal back when the lively Johnson twisted and turned his way past Grandison in the box before seeing a low shot cleared off the line by Ben Burton.

Undeterred, Shrewsbury hit back with young striker Kayman Anderson firing just wide after being brought on for Akpa Akpro.

Wigan should have got on the score sheet with 10 minutes remaining when Matty Hamilton fired high and wide after being found by Jordan Flores.

And the Latics continued to press with Halstead pulling off a brilliant one handed save to tip a Cosgrove strike round the post.

Wigan had kept possession better in the second half but Jones made it four just before the final whistle when he calmly slotted past Nicholls.

First team stars Akpa Akpro, Vernon, Grandison and Clark were Town's most impressive performers while young full-back Callum Grogan also did well.

Town: Mark Halstead (c), Callum Grogan, Ben Burton, Keith Southern (Niall Flint), Jermaine Grandison, Jordan Clark, Trialist, Trialist, Scott Vernon (Ethan Jones), Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro (Kayman Anderson), Ashley Vincent

Subs: Ryan Hickman, Sean Rowley, Alex Fletcher, Jeff Watkins

Wigan Athletic: Lee Nicholls, Luke Burke, Reece McNally (Alex Cvetkovic), Fraser Fyvie (Adrian Purzycki), Thomas Rogne, Liam Langford, Matty Hamilton (c), Declan Poole, Sam Cosgrove, Joey Johnson, Jordan Flores

Subs: Connor Keane, Mayowa Balogun, Josh Gregory

Referee: Rob Lewis 
Assistant 1: Jonathan Maskrey
Assistant 2: Mark Murfitt

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