All square at half time
01 November 2008League leaders, Tamworth welcomed Gainsborough Trinity to The Lamb with Gary Mills’ Lambs looking to bounce back quickly after their FA Cup exit last weekend.
Mills made no changes to the side that fell to Barrow looking for his side to perform as they did against the Conference Premier side, and indeed had been all season.
Tamworth kicked off the first half towards the Castle End and won a corner which Danny Anson headed behind for another flag kick. The second one was played short and out to Sheldon, his ball over the top of the visitors defence found Smith but he had strayed offside.
A deep cross from Rodman almost fell kindly for Sheldon on 8, and Wright retrieved the ball on the right wing, firging low back into the danger area, Rodman got a touch but the ball was prevented from crossing the line by Gareth Davies and hooked away.
Tamworth kept up the pressure with Lyttle’s right wing cross being attacked by Rodman but the ball was too high and skimmed off the top of his head.
A few niggly challenges and offsides by both sides were stemming the flow of football on occasion as both struggled to put any moves together to test either keeper.
Simon Bird robbed the ball off the head off Wylde on 23 but saw his right wing cross cut out and shortly after Barrow won a freekick in front of the Shed. Lewsi McMahon fired the dead ball into the box and Lukic got the header away but was off target with his effort.
After a couple of ‘tasty’ challenges on the half way a melee ensued as players from both sides rushed in to protect their own while Bradley Pritchard lay prostrate on the ground from the initial tackle. After all the kafuffle and after consultation with his linesman, all that was awarded by Mr Grundy was a freekick to The Lambs which ended quickly with another offside flag.
Smith brought Bird down on the left of the area on 29 giving the same player a chance of a shot from the freekick but he curled his effort wide of the left hand upright.
A good move and right wing cross by Gainsborough won them a corner on 32 and McMahon tried his luck from distance only to find Foster well positioned, but Ryan Mallon picked up the loose ball and shot from close range only to find the hoardings behind the goal with his effort.
Another freekick came Trinity’s way on 38 and Bird remained on the floor in the box for a long time after ball had left the area after a tame challenge at the far post, while the game continued without him, but he quickly returned to his forward position once his trainer came into view.
Another offside against The Lambs halted proceeding with 4 minutes to go in the first half but on 43 Rodman won a flag kick down by the clubhouse which Shaw planted onto the head of Rodman 6 yards out only for Sollitt to tip over the bar with a good save.
Smith picked up a booking for a challenge on Hall as 2 minutes added time was shown The Lambs won a corner which came to nothing, and Lukic needed treatment for a knock to the head.
Ex-Lamb Colin Marrison replaced Mallon at half time for Trinity, and he sent a header goal bound on 47 but it did not trouble Bevan.
Bird got a boot on a downward header shortly after flicking the effort on, but again Bevan was unperturbed by the effort.
A surging run and shot from the left brought a save from Bevan to win the visitors a corner as Tamworth made their first change – Pritchard being replaced by Birley.
Rodman blocked a clearance and thought he had won a corner for his efforts chasing the ball down under pressure, but hadn’t as both sides continued to struggle to create.
Birley did win a corner on 55 and Shaw beat the visitors defence with his long driven ball which Wylde connected well with but sent his volley over the bar from 8 yards.
At the other end, Adam Smith lashed wildly at a golden chance to give his side the advantage, but ended up shooting miles wide after a gap appeared 20 yards out.
As the game enter the final quarter there were still no obvious signs as to who would be able to take control.
On 68 Gainsborough won a corner which Spafford headed back onto the head of Lukic, but he put his effort well over the bar.
Trinity sub Newsham found an opening on 71 but put his tame volley straight into the hands of Bevan after a cool flick on by McMahon into the path of Newsham on the edge of the area.
Wright was beaten to a good finish by the off side flag following a foul on Shaw which sent the ball through to the Lambs striker on 75 before he was replaced by Dean Lea.
Frustration at lack of chances showed on 76 as Anson flashed a shot out of play from distance and Davies picked up the second yellow card of the match shortly after for a foul on Rodman.
Shaw then picked up a booking for a foul on Marrison on the half way line which left the Gainsborough striker limping for a short while as the game entered the final 10 minutes.
A shot from Hall took a slight deflection to win a corner for Trinity on 83 which Bevan punched clear but Adam Smith return cross found it’s way almost to the half way line summing up the game so far to some degree.
A great chance came with less than a minute to go, Lea chipped forward for Sheldon who returned the ball back to Lea and his header down fell to Birley but Sollitt was not to be beaten and Trinity cleared the danger in the area.
Three minutes added time was shown at the end of the game and a long ball into the box was missed by both Sheridan and Wylde but a corner was the result as The Lambs tried to snatch something at the death but it was not to be.
Bevan, Lyttle, Langdon, Smith, Wylde, Foster, Wright (Lea 75), Shaw, Sheldon (Sheridan 90), Rodman, Pritchard (Birley 51)
Subs: Burgess, Law
Gainsborough Trinity Team:
Sollitt, Davies, Drury, Spafford, Lukic, Anson, Hall, McMahon, Bird (Newsham 69), Mallon (Marrison HT), Smith
Subs: Ross, Austin, Davies
Man of the Match: Michael Wylde
Referee: Mr. C. Grundy (Sheffield)