Lambs hit Boro for four beside the sea
25 January 2011
Des Lyttle brought his squad to the South Coast for the return league fixture against struggling Eastbourne Borough, themselves without a win in 13 games, hoping for a repeat of the opening day victory, and Lyttle was without Alex Rodman who looked set to sign for a league club on Wednesday morning. Also, Seb Lake-Gaskin appeared to be on the move too and did not travel with the squad to Priory Lane. So, Jake Sheridan took Rodman's place in an otherwise unchanged starting eleven.
With Tamworth decked out in the blue away kit, and just a handful of travelling fans understandably able to make long journey to the game, Boro started the game kicking towards the ‘main stand' behind the road side goal.
Home keeper Banks got a touch inside the first 15 seconds via a long defensive header from Marshall and play switched to the other end almost as quickly but The Lambs were strong in defence again.
A foul on Jason Bradley on the right of the area set up Thomas on 3 with a left footed freekick but a clash of heads saw Hutchinson go down and play was restarted with a sportsman's drop ball back to Banks.
Atkins had to be quick to deny the run of Walker as he turned Marshall in the box on 5 and on 7 Taylor tried an audacious lob from the right wing but it was off target and Atkins collected easily.
Eastbourne won the first corner of the game on 8 and it came out to Walker who made space on the edge of the box, but shot wide of the near post.
A double strike by Walker on 10 almost brought the opening goal of the game but his first shot was well blocked by Atkins and he followed up but cleared the bar from 12 yards on the right of the box.
Barrow launched a freekick into the area and it was deflected behind for a Lambs corner on 12 and when it came out to Tait he tried his luck from 40 yards and cleared the low stand behind the goals where the dozen or so Lambs fans stood.
Perry took the ball into the left corner on 14 and backheeled to Thomas but his cross was headed away.
In the next move Perry saw his shot blocked by Elphick as Tamworth tried to break through a quick and resolute back four and a long ball over the top allowed Jason Bradley to touch it on but Banks was quickest of the two to the loose ball, then on 18 Thomas hit a shot from 25 yards high off target.
Injury to Crabb halted play for a minute or two and then a foul by Marshall on Taylor on the left wing gave Boro a freekick. Pllay switched sides and tait had to head a cross away before a ball over the top ran back to Atkins with Taylor rushing in.
Thomas was then adjudged to have fouled Hutchinson but the kick was cleared and The Lambs triedk to break. The first move went back to Banks, but the second move was better and had Sheridan's cross not curved out of play before hitting the bar it could have seen Perry finish the chance which had beaten Banks at his near post.
Foul by Elphick on Perry set up MacKenzie 25 yards out with a right footed freekick on 27 but a goal kick was all that came of it.
Marhsall prevented a quick Boro attack by conceding a corner on the left on the half hour but The Lambs broke and the move ended with Perry heading Thomas's far post nod back into the arms of Banks.
For all their possession in the build up The Lambs deservedly took the lead on 36 through a superb left footed strike from distance which flew into the left hand top corner of the net (1-0, 36 mins)
Daniel Bradley tried to quickly double the lead on 39 but was off target with his shot from distance in the left channel.
Atkins dropped to smother a hopeful low effort on 42 while on 44 Thomas was clattered to the floor and MacKenzie's ball was hooked away as two minutes added time was shown.
Atkins dropped a high cross under pressure but Marshall cleared and the whistle blew on a good first half for The Lambs.
Tamworth got the second period underway attacking the large flag behind the goal, which could easily envelope the travelling faithful (!), and an early spinning deflected cross went back to Atkins rather than into the path of Taylor.
Nelson was booked for a late challenge on Thomas on 47 and MacKenzie saw his deadball collected by Banks at the second attempt.
Walker then put a low cross in which Barrow put behind for a corner on 48 and it was eventually cleared forcing Boro back to their own half.
On 51 The Lambs won another corner and it went short to Bradley who turned but shot over the bar from the right of the box.
Goof interplay between Perry and MacKenzie on 56 saw the latter lift a shot over the bar via a deflection and when the corner was cleared Daniel Bradley was booked for a challenge on Taylor on the half way line.
Another foul by Daniel Bradley on Taylor went unpunished (i.e. no card) on 58 as Lyttle continued to urge his players on from the dugout.
Tamworth countered pressure from Boro with a quick move forward through Sheridan down the right and when Thomas received the ball he tried a similar strike to the successful one v Crewe in the FA Cup but this time he was a few feet wide of the far post.
Then on 62, Jason Bradley bagged his first for the club with a follow up shot after the keeper spilled a close range shot from Perry (2-0, 62 mins)
Eastbourne made a double change shortly after and Thomas was bundled over by Johnson after Sheridan hit the bar and Perry took the penalty, sending Banks the wrong way for 3-0 on 68 mins.
But Eastbourne got one back on 69 when Taylor nipped in to lift the ball off the toes of an indecisive Marshall and over Atkins (3-1, 69 mins)
Boro forced The Lambs onto the back foot, obviously lifted by their goal and Tait was booked for a trailing leg foul on 76 giving the home side a freekick in the left channel. Atkins blocked at his near post and a corner was conceded but it came to nothing.
With nine men behind the ball Walker somehow found space to fire straight into the arms of Atkins on 78 from 18 yards and a fine pass from Perry set Sheridan on a run before his pass to Jason Bradley was put behind for a corner on the left on 79 and MacKenzie almost found Wylde for the header but it was cleared.
At the other end, sub Weatherstone shot low and wide of the right hand post as Perry came off for Yussuf for the final ten minutes and Kamara came on for Jason Bradley with three to go.
There had been plenty of huff and puff from both sides in the intervening period, but little in the way of chances as the clock ran down.
Some great skill and quick play from Yussuf put the icing on a Lambs display on 89 as the striker won the ball back off a defender then cut across the box and pushed it into the far corner past a stranded Banks for Tamworth's fourth of the evening (4-1, 89 mins).
Four additional minutes were shown at the end of the game as Tait clashed heads in the box defending a deep cross and both he and the Boro man needed treatment. Tait couldn't carry on and so was replaced by Mitchell.
Eastbourne won a freekick on the left in the fifth minute of added time and Norwood struck the bar with the effort in the final action of the game.
Atkins, Tait (Mitchell 90+), Marshall, Wylde, MacKenzie, Perry (Yussuf 81), Thomas, Sheridan, Bradley J (Kamara 87), Bradley D, Barrow
Subs: Wilkinson, Connor
Yellow Cards: Bradley D 56, Tait 76
Eastbourne Borough Team:
Banks, Austin, Baker, Crabb M (Weatherstone 65), Hutchinson, Elphick (Norwood 65), Johnson (Crabb N 68), Masterton, Nelson, Taylor, Walker
Subs: Strevett, Brinkhurst
Yellow Cards: Nelson 47
Referee: A. Davies