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Lambs make another good point

FT: Tamworth 1    1 Harrogate Town

17 March 2018

Mike Fowler made one enforced change to the starting elevn that ran out o face league leaders Harrogate Town, after a training night incident ruled out Dan Jezeph with a hamstring pull. On the bench Michael Donohue, a new loan signing from Fleetwood Town, took a spot.

For the visitors, former Lamb Simon Weaver’s side featured former Lambs custodian James Belshaw between the sticks in what would undoubtedly be a hard fought challenge for the home side.
It was made all the more tricky for both sides by the blustery snowy weather which descended on The Lamb before kick off and continued past the first whistle.
Tamworth got the game underway, attacking the Meadow Street end in the first half. After a spell of ball on the deck Harrogate looked for a breakthrough with some long range efforts that flew off target.
The Lambs took a while to settle and did forge an opening on 10 but the return ball into the box for Knight to chase down was cut out as quickly as it had exposed a gap and Harrogate were happy to clear their lines.
Burrell found space in the Lambs left back position to drive a low but ultimately curling wide shot on 12 which didn’t trouble Stevens.
Taylor floated a teasing cross from the right over the target on 17 and Asante managed to get a shot at Belshaw on 17. Taylor received the ball to his feet on the edge of the area on 20 but had already been flagged offside.
Tamworth kept up with the pressure and it nearly paid off on 23 when Kettle received the ball in the box and hit it diagonally low from the right only for Belshaw to tip it around the post and out for a corner which was headed over the target by Jones.
An defensive header resulted in an enforced corner on the left for Harrogate on 26 and Thomson curled it straight into the net with Stevens unable to deal with it. (0-1, 26 mins)
Tamworth responded well and carried on playing the ball on the ground in an attempt to beat the Town back line but the visitors were quick to break and go two on two on 32 with Sharpe clearing the danger in the box.
On 34 it was all square when Sharpe’s ball from the left was met perfectly by the head of Taylor and it skimmed off the six yard line and into the far right corner past the despairing dive of Belshaw (1-1, 34 mins)
Swain was forced to retire from the game on 40 forcing Weaver to make an early change and he nearly had an instant impact striking the top of Steven’s bar with a right wing cross on 41.
He then tried his luck from 30 yards and made Stevens drop and smother the loose ball. A foul on the Harrogate right wing made Tamworth set up a three man wall and from the dead ball Stevens and Burns both took a clattering with the keeper needing attention. Three minutes added time were shown at the end of the half and when Asante threaded the ball through to Knights it looked like he was going to curl it into the top right corner from the left channel but he over hit the effort and didn’t trouble Belshaw

HT: Tamworth 1    1 Harrogate Town

Harrogate got the game back underway and the snow started to settle on the pitch as the minutes ticked over with ball tracks and foot prints being left on the 3G surface.
This meant that play was difficult, especially in the more powerful flurries that whipped down the ground from the Meadow Street end to the Castle End Harrogate made their second change on 57 and on 64 Kitching got his head onto a left sided corner and forced Stevens to make a smart save on his line. Kettle then denied Emmett’s low strike past Steven’s with a clearance off the line on 69.
At the other end on 72 Burn’s cross from the right was nearly met cleanly by the head of Taylor and although he directed it goalward it was straightforward for Belshaw to take at height.
A quick break by the visitors released Thomson into the right of the area on 74 and his shot forced a corner with was dealt with admirably by Stevens and the Lambs defence in front of him.
Verma smashed an effort goalward on 77 whih Belshaw had to drop and push away for a corner which came to nothing before Donohue came on for his debut, replacing Knights. A combined low block at the near post from Stevens and Burns kept Harrogate’s Leesley at bay on 80 and the first booking came shortly after when Falkingham took out increasing frustrations on Sharpe, on the half way line.
Kitching rose high to head over the bar from a left sided corner on 85 and as the snow began to get heavier Sharpe made way for Morley.
Harrogate went close from a couple of set pieces as the minutes ticked down and Tamworth made one final change with Asante making way for Gray and with Flower urging the Lambs on to the end from the sidelines, the final whistle eventually blew on a well deserved point.

Tamworth Team:

Stevens, Burns, Sharpe (Morley 86), Kettle, Jones (c.), Lane, Taylor, Shaw T, Asante (Gray 90), Verma, Knights (Donohue 78)
Subs: Powell, Davies

YC: Burns 88

Harrogate Town Team:

Belshaw, Burrell, Swain (Fallowfield 40), Falkingham, Kitching, McCombe, Thomson, Emmett, Beck (Thewliss 75), Knowles (Wright 57), Leesley
Subs: Cracknell, Agnew

YC :Falkingham 83

Attendance: 662

Man of the Match: GST Gas Services Tamworth chose Rhys Sharpe

Referee: Mr. T. Kirk

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