Lambs shine in the sun
26 July 2008
Tamworth welcomed FC United to The Lamb for the penultimate home friendly of the pre-season. After good displays in the previous run outs, Gary Mills was looking for more of the same passing and intelligent football against the Unibond side.
United started proceedings kicking ‘uphill’ towards their vociferous supporters and plethora of flags and despite the heat both sides looked bright and sharp.
The Lambs were caught offside a couple of times pushing forward too quickly before Carlos Roca fed Adam Carden and he won a corner with a deflected shot off Dominic Langdon. Chris Smith headed the chance clear and eventually Tamworth broke to the other end with some fine deft passing.
This lead to Lee Hildreth trying a shot which Sam Ashton spilled and Bradley Pritchard was quickest to the loose ball turning it home after losing his marker Michael Burns in the area. (1-0, 5 mins)
Alex Rodman made a surging run down the left and chipped over Ashton looking for Jake Sheridan at the far post but the cross was too weighty and United cleared up field.
Sheridan tried to find Rodman with a low near post cross which forced the visiting side to concede a corner but it came to nothing despite Foster’s return ball into the area.
Kyle Wilson got a half power shot at Will Puddy on 12 when the defence failed to clear sufficiently but it did little to trouble the home keeper, and on 17 a cross from Wilson missed the head of Nick Robinson at the far post and sailed out of play.
A Lambs corner came on 19 and Pritchard was unlucky not to make it two after the short ball was pulled back into his path by Sheridan.
Hildreth doubled the lead following a superb run from Rodman to the by-line. He chipped the ball back looking for the head for Sheridan, but he was unable to get past the defender and the ball fell kindly for the ex-Coventry City player who rifled home from 10 yards. (2-0, 21 mins)
Wright and Rodman were then denied by Ashton in the space of the same move on 23. Wright saw his low rolling effort deflected by the keepers fingers and Rodman was robbed by Ashton as the Lambs attacker tried to latch onto the loose ball.
There was a brief pause in play on the half hour mark to allow the players to quench their thirst in the heat before Rodman squandered a chance to make it three, rolling his shot from the edge of the area past the post, beating defender Dave Chadwick and Ashton in the process.
A move involving Langdon, Wright, Rodman and Hildreth culminated in a ball over the far defender to Sheridan but Ashton did well to stop his half volley and conceded a corner which came to nothing.
Wright made some space for himself with a run around the left of the area on 45 and shot for goal only to find Ashton well placed to collect.
Tamworth won a freekick on the right wing early into the second period but failed to make it count and Wright struck a right footed effort over the bar shortly after as the Lambs continued to push forward albeit a little slower and in a more measured fashion initially.
Roca was denied a penalty after going down in the box under a challenge on 50 after Wilson found acres of space in the Lambs left back position to run at goal and square it for the diminutive United front man.
Hildreth forced two corners in sucession on 53, the second of which Rodman headed straight into Ashton’s arms.
Chris Smith denied a good run by Roca with a telling tackle from behind on 55 and on 57 Gary Mills made his first change, Dean Lea coming on for Nick Wright.
And Lea was denied a goal with his first touch by the linesman’s flag after a freekick was only half cleared and fell to Lea off the head of Hildreth.
Nick Robinson made a run into the box but was met by the safe hands of Will Puddy and Carden skipped past McAughtrie but saw his run cut out by Wylde.
A number of subs from both sides threatened to disrupt things and it took a while for the flow to return to The Lambs game but Dale Warburton, Dean Lea and Stuart Hendrie all quickly got involved although another necessary drink break halted proceedings on 73.
Lea fired in a good effort at Ashton on 76 before the final Lambs sub came on 77 with Des Lyttle taking the captains armband off Martin Foster.
Cameron Jones hit a swerving shot at Ashton on 85 and the same player tried his luck from the edge of the box in the next move, from a pass from Luke Edwards who almost got on the scoresheet but was denied in the dying minutes by a block from the United defence.
Puddy, Smith (Woolaston 75), Langdon (Burgess 75), McAughtrie (Law 75), Wylde, Foster (Lyttle 77), Wright (Lea 57), Hildreth (Warburton 62), Sheridan (Edwards 72), Rodman (Jones 67), Pritchard (Hendrie 62)
Subs: (none remaining)
Ashton, Harrop (Brackenridge 67), Baguley, Neville (Howard HT), Chadwick, Burns (Howarth HT), Carden, Wilson (Roberts 75), Robinson (Dykes 75), Baguley, Roca (Allen 60)
Subs: (none remaining)
On Tuesday night, Tamworth travel to Quorn, before welcoming Scottish giants Glasgow Rangers to The Lamb on August 02.