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Sheldon hat-trick nets win for ten men Lambs

FT: Burscough 2    3 Tamworth

01 April 2008

Gary Mills’ Lambs made midweek the trip to Victora Park, to face Liam Watson’s Burscough side, on the back of two games without defeat and were looking to continue the form with a win over their eighth placed hosts.
Mills made one change to the side that drew with Vauxhall on Saturday – Martin Foster out with a muscle tweak – giving Colin Marrison a return in the starting eleven.

The home side kicked off with the aid of a fantastically strong wind whipping down the ground from goal to goal but neither side could get a an early handle on the ball until the 4th minute when The Lambs won a corner on the left.
Nick Wright whipped the ball in and Chris Nurse tried to get a header in but missed by inches and Burscough broke but wasted the chance.
Playing a 4-4-2 formation with Gareth Sheldon and Marrison up front and Sheridan and Wright on opposing wings Tamworth looked to build with occasional Des Lyttle crosses from the right wing.
The home side’s Craig Noone was looking tricky and potentially dangerous when he received the ball and ran at The Lambs defence but failed to really threaten despite some neat touches.
A long range shot from Adam Flynn came on 12 and cleared the goal with ease while at the other end Wright was denied by a very good block from Zak Hibbert on 13 after being fed an inviting through ball from Sheldon out of midfield. And Wright tried a wind assisted curler a minute later which cleared the cross bar from 20 yards out.
In the midst of a midfield battle, Sheldon was felled and set Wright up with a 35 yard freekick on 18 which he drilled against the wall and ultimately nothing came of the chance.
Sean Clancy unleashed a 45 yard drive, wind assisted, on 21 which flew over the bar by just a few feet and on 23 a Wright cross fell to Michael Briscoe who tried a shot but it struck the feet of a Burscough defender before going out for a corner which came to nothing.
The Lambs defence then found themselves caught out on 25 when Noone crossed into the path of Robbie Booth who sidefooted home from close range (0-1) and Wright almost got a quick reply but Hibbert was equal to his low drive.
But at the other end a freekick by Brian Moogan shortly after whistled over the bar and brought gasps from the home faithful who expected it to nestle in the back of the net.
A searching ball out of midfield almost found Matt Parry in the area on the half hour mark and at the other end on 33 Wright’s surging run and chip into the area could have been converted, but Briscoe could only place his header off target.
Noone tried a tame but well placed shot at Cisak on 35 from the edge of the area which the Lambs custodian dropped to collect and on 37 Moogan’s diagonal right footed shot took a slight deflection to win a corner and the same player struck the bar from the flag kick without anyone getting a touch on it before the ball was cleared away.
Although Burscough were using the wind to their advantage and looked good going forward because of it, Wright tried his luck from distance on 41 with a swerving right footed shot which dipped as Hibbert gathered.
One minute added time was shown at the end of the first period and Tamworth would be looking to use the wind advantage to their favour in the second.

HT: 0-1

The offside flag denied Sheridan’s equaliser on 49 after Marrison’s cross squeezed through the home back four but it was left to Sheldon to fire home a well taken solo strike from just outside the area on 52 to make it 1-1 – his third goal in three games – giving Hibbert no chance.
Sheldon hit the back of the net again on 56 with a well placed header from a pin point Sheridan left wing cross to deservedly give Tamworth the lead for the first time in the game (2-1).
McAughtrie was forced to concede a corner on the hour after Kiheeney fed Booth in the area. Booth's subsequent shot when he received the ball from the flag kick was deflected and looped over the bar.
The Lambs defence now had something to work even harder for and McAughtrie again put his body in the way of a goal bound effort on 62 as Tamworth countered winning a corner.
Earl Davis headed Sheldon’s return ball from the corner against his own bar as gaps started to appear all over the pitch and the play became stretched.
Sheldon and Marrison combined to put pressure on Hibbert on 64 but Sheldon could not get his shot on target to complete his hat-trick when the home keeper miskicked his clearance.
On 68 a straight red card was shown to McAughtrie for handball on the line when the ball travelled toward the goal and despite the best efforts of the tall Lambs defender to reason with the officials when it looked like he had got his head to the ball rather than his hand at floor level, a penalty resulted which Kiheeney stepped up to take and although Cisak saved the initial kick Kilheeney put in the rebound. (2-2)
Despite the man disadvantage Tamworth pushed forward and Wright forced Hibbert to clear with his feet.
The Lambs reorganised themselves with Wright switching places with Sheldon and Briscoe dropping into the back four.
And it was 3-2 to Tamworth on 72 when Sheldon completed his hat-trick after Lyttle’s initial shot was stopped allowing Sheldon to power home from 18 yards into the corner to the delight of the travelling faithful.
And so with 15 minutes to go the first sounds of the evening came from the Victoria Park terraces as the travelling TFC supporters made themselves heard in a bid to act as the now missing eleventh man.
Into the final ten minutes and Burscough went all out to get something from the game with all but Marrison staying forward at times. But such was the nature of the tie Tamworth did some foraying of their own and won a cheeky corner on 85 and tried, unsuccessfully, to keep the ball by the flag.
Burscough won one of their own a minute or so later which Wright headed out for another flag kick and Tomlinson headed it goalward only for Sheldon to hook it clear off the line.
There was continued pressure and pushing and shoving in the Lambs area resulted in a harsh booking for Lyttle and then one for Cisak for time wasting from a goal kick in the final minute.
Cisak dealt with a swirling ball from a dangerous header from Kilbane as the clock ticked down the two minutes of added time.
And a freekick from Moogan was booted clear by Marrison before a teasing ball into the area was also dealt with with similar aplomb before a substitution wasted a few seconds for The Lambs.
And although Davis managed a far post header right at the death it was well wide of the mark and with it Tamworth took home a hard and well earned three points.

Hibbert, Flynn, Clancy (Tomlinson 70), Davis, Kilbane, Moogan, Parry (Smart 60), McGinn, Booth, Kilheeney, Noone (Price 70)
Subs: Tomlinson, Price, McCulloch, Fitzhenry

Cisak, Lyttle, Langdon, Smith, McAughtrie, Briscoe, Wright, Nurse, Marrison (Richter 90), Sheldon, Sheridan
Subs: Ebdon, Law, Jackson, Waldrum

Yellow Cards: Moogan 76, Flynn 77, Lyttle 88, Cisak 89
Red Cards: McAughtrie 68

Att: 279

Referee: Mr P Davies

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