First half strikes see Lambs through to Semi Finals
13 January 2009Any thoughts that Gary Mills may experiment a mix of reserves and first team squad for The Lambs clash with Burton Albion in this BSC Quarter Final were immediately dispelled when the team was announced.
There were three changes to the side that had lost at Gateshead on Sunday, with Nick Wright out injured he and Graeme Law made way for Craig Reid in defence and Jake Sheridan. Chris Smith was initially named in the starting eleven but was replaced shortly before kick off by Craig McAughtrie.
The Brewers kicked off with Tamworth attacking the Castle End of the ground and won a corner inside the first minute. Seven seconds after the minute McAughtrie stole in at the far post and forced the ball over the line after Sheldon’s header fell to his feet. His shot went in off Saul Deeney but no one will be arguing with the big defender! (1-0, 2 mins)
Burton tried to respond and Jamie Yates flashed a shot wide of the mark on 7 while at the other end Alex Rodman forced Paul Lister to screw a tight angled shot out for a corner which both Bradley Pritchard and Jake Sheridan tried to hit goalwards. The ball though fell to McAughtrie again but he was unlucky this time and saw his attempted lob over Denney from 18 yards go high and wide.
Burton won a freekick 25 yards out on 14 which Jody Banim flashed wide and Tamworth were forced to defend as corner from which the visitors didn’t manage a shot but kept possession well until Scott McCubbin went down under a challenge from Sheridan and Alcock restarted play with a goal kick.
More attacking football from Burton brought them a corner on 17 which came to nothing although it was the offside flag that eventually halted proceedings.
A fine Lambs ball into the opposition half saw Danny Holmes deny Sheldon a run at goal and the Brewers broke through Darren Stride to the other end. McCubbin got the better of Ried on the right of the area and pulled the ball back for Lee Morris to slam home the equaliser (1-1, 19 mins)
A long range effort from the lively Sheridan on 25 brought a block from Deeney but Shaw was unable to get a shot in when the resulting corner came back out Shaw floated the ball onto the head of Sheridan who almost saw it sneak in at the far post but it bounced a whisker wide of the mark.
Deeney denied a thumping effort on the angle from Pritchard, who beat the offside trap to race at goal, on 26 with a fine stop then on 28 Bamin brought the best out of Alcock who tipped the ball over the bar with both hands with a shot from distance.
The pace continued to be unrelenting with both side putting on a good show for the fans as the cold started to bite.
And as if on queue Rodman brought the home faithful to it’s feet with a run from inside the Burton half into the box then around Deeney and finished to restore The Lambs lead (2-1, 36 mins)
Rodman squared across the face of goal but Pritchard was unable to put his deft flick into the net on 41.
One minute added time was shown at the end of the half and with it a freekick for Burton when Rodman brought down Yates on 20 yards out on the left of the area only for an infringement to stop any thoughts of an equaliser before the whistle went.
It was almost like panto season at the Lamb as the second half got under way with the fans booing and cheering every single pass for a long spell with ended with Burton winning a corner on 50 which came to nothing.
Holmes miscued a back pass to Deeney on 52 but the keeper managed to clear before Sheridan could steal the ball away from his toes and Foster blasted the loose ball high over the bar.
Brewers sub Jamie Knowles ran from the halfway line before floating a shot at Alcock on 57 which the home keeper took easily, but it was a bit of a wake up call for Tamworth who had been in possession most of the half so far.
And more Burton pressure allowed Yates to cross from the left on 58 which Alcock was equal to again.
Alcock was penalised for holding onto the ball to long before releasing it giving The Brewers an indirect freekick inside the box on the hour and although the ball was fired straight into the Lambs wall Morris sent a cross into the box and McAughtrie was forced to head behind for a corner. The Lambs defender cleared the flag kick and the danger with another header.
Pritchard fed Sheldon with a ball that beat the Brewers back four on 64 but his shot came off a quickly covering defender.
As the shed started to produce some friendly banter Burton made their second sub of the match replacing goalscorer Morris with another forward in Greg Pearson.
Shaw hit the deck in the middle of the opposition half on 72 and needed treatment but was OK to continue.
Stride fouled Sheldon on the left of the box on 77 and Shaw almost found Rodman with the dead ball and as Burton broke forward Reid put in a good challenge to halt their progress.
Rodman put a header goalward from a Sheldon won corner shortly after and although Shaw fired the ball into the net from distance from the clearance the flag was already up.
Pritchard sent Shaw through with a fine chipped pass but the final ball into the box was cleared on 83 shortly before Sheridan was replaced by Dean Lea to give the Lambs some fresh legs in the final throws of the game.
A curling effort from Sheldon was headed out for a corner by Stride on 87 and from it Sheldon tried again but his right footed drive which deserved a goal went just wide of the left hand upright.
Two minutes added time was shown at the end of the game and the offside flag denied Lea a free at goal and the final whistle blew to end The Brewers interest in the competition and saw The Lambs into the Semi Finals.
Alcock, Lyttle, Reid, McAughtrie, Wylde, Foster, Sheridan (Lea 84), Shaw, Sheldon, Rodman, Pritchard
Subs (4 only): Nurse, Law, Burgess
Burton Albion Team:
Deeney, Holmes, Armstrong, Keenan, Stride, Lister, McCubbin (Knowles HT), Newby, Morris (Pearson 70), Banim, Yates
Subs: Sale, Austin, Brandon
Man of the Match: Tom Shaw - chosen by the TFC VIP Club
Referee: Mr. M. Perry (Sutton Coldfield)