The Lambs made the journey to the North West coast expecting rain, but as kick off approached not a drop had fallen on Southport - so much for the Met Office forecast! And so after enjoying the morning by the sea Haig Avenue was the destination and Marcus Law made two changes to the side that had defeated Stockport the previous weekend with Sam Oji unavailable and Jean-Paul Marna injured.
Southport kick off towards the travelling Lambs and Breeden got an early touch from a long through ball which was going nowhere and then another from Courtney's back header. As the opening five minutes came to a close there was little to chose between the two sides although a foul on Cunnington on the left on 6 allowed Till to fire the ball in and a corner was won on the left. The corner came in and Marshall rose highest, but glanced his header wide of the right hand upright. On 10, Southport won a corner on the left and it was curled into the box by Chalmers but evaded the lunges of his teammates and went out past the far post for a goal kick. Play was stopped on 12 when Till picked up a head injury following an innocuous challenge by the touch line and needed attention in the changing rooms to the bleeding cut on the back of his head. So play continued for sometime with just 10 Lambs on the field and Southport tried to take advantage by pressing forwards without really threatening. A long ball in from the centre circle by Tait was just headed off the head of Wright on 21 for a corner on the right and Kerry almost found Courtney and then Barrow but both miss hit their shots under pressure, and Till returned to the pitch suitably bandaged. With Till back on the field The lambs regained their ability and confidence to push up field and from a deadball on 25 by Barrow, Marshall headed strongly across the face of goal but the ball went out just past the left hand upright. A Lambs corner was turned into a Southport attack on the half hour but it was dealt with adequately and when Collins was upended on the left wing on 33 Barrow and Till lined up the deadball but McMillan caught it at the second attempt. A penalty was then awarded on 35 as Grand upended Cunnington and he placed it to the bottom right of the goal with the keeper sent the wrong way, to give The Lambs the lead. (1-0, 36 mins) Till made a fine run down the right wing and crossed for Collins but his shot from the edge of the area was lacking and easy for McMillan to take. Cunnington was in the wars again on 41 when Grand put a strong challenge in, earning him a booking, but Southport came on the attack and Bakare's left wing cross was headed away for a corner on the right which went long and out at the far post. Collins went clean through on 43 and after a quick one two took what seemed to be an age to take a shot which rolled out past the left hand post from 18 yards out. Barrow was penalized for a foul against Almond on the right wing as the clock ticked down the first half but Breeden was more than equal to it. However, McMillan was unable to do anything about a low drive from the left of the box on 45 which squeezed past him and into the net (2-0, 45 mins)
HT: Southport 02 Tamworth
Tamworth restarted proceedings and went on the attack immediately with Till bursting down the right but McMillan caught his cross with Wright rushing in looking for the header. Kerry and Barrow combined to prevent Gray from getting a shot away after taking them both on in the right of the box and Marshall headed the resulting danger away. The Lambs then won a corner on the left and Till and the ball found it's way to Marshall who prodded it past the keeper and Wright finished it off from two yards out (3-0, 48 mins) sending the 100 or so fans behind the goal into ecstasy. Southport attacked from the restart and won a freekick which Barrow tried to clear but took a knock and then Breeden was forced to take the ball at full stretch from Barnes' attempted lob. On 55 Till was forced off the field and Llado replaced him shortly before Wright hit the deck with another head injury which meant the striker needed a new shirt and become ‘anonymous and numberless ' for the rest of the game. Despite being three down with half an hour to go Southport did not give up and Gray hit a volley past the right hand post on 64. Gudger did well to take the ball off the feet of Gray on 65 and there was another stop in play when Akrigg needed treatment but was unable to continue. Loud boos rang around the ground when Marshall headed the ball off the head of Gray and no penalty was awarded, and the visitors won a corner when the ball came back in which Barnes swung the corner in and The Lambs survived some close calls as shots rained in on Breeden's goal. Gray glanced a header from a right sided cross at goal and Breeden had to be quick to smother the first ‘on target' effort by the home side on 71. The home side's most potent outlet was replaced on 74 as the home side continued to press, but play switched quickly and a corner from the right was swung in by Barrow but was headed away. Wright received a round of applause when leaving the field for Ivey-Ward with 8 to go. Cunnington hit a low shot on target from the left of the box forcing McMillan to push the ball away from his goal on 85 but there was no one available to mop up the loose ball. Tait received a booking for kicking the ball away after it had already gone out for a corner and Southport's Ledsham fired high and wide off target from the right of the box. Six minutes added time was shown at the end of the game and Bottomer replaced Cunnington as the clock ran down. A slip by the Lambs defence in added time presented a golden opportunity to Bakare but his one on one with Breeden ended in disappointment for the home striker who saw his angled shot strike the bar.
Breeden, Tait, Marshall, Cunnington (Bottomer 90+), Wright (Ivey-Ward 82), Kerry, Courtney, Gudger, Till (Llado 55), Barrow, Collins Subs: Wren, Law