Lambs take a point home
06 August 2016
Tamworth kicked off the 2016-17 Vanarama National League season at the same place that they had closed the previous one, St. James’ Park home of Brackley Town.
There were a number of new faces in the Lambs squad after an encouraging pre-season warm up Andy Morrell’s team, although the majority of the line up was familiar to the travelling faithful who eventually made it to the ground after traffic problems en-route.
In a mix of the red home and yellow away kits, Tamworth kicked off towards the larger of the two stands behind the goals.
On 4 Taylor threaded the ball down the right for Newton but his touch was flicked away from and back off him for a goal kick and on 7, Clarke tried a right footed half volley from 20 yards but he was falling away from the chance and it curled wide of the right hand upright.
Clarke got into a good position but he volley was blocked for a right sided corner on 8 which captain Deeney struck into the area only for it to be cleared to the halfway line.
Green’s long ball looking for Newton on 10 forced keeper Farrell to head the danger away,
Green showed his strength to force the ball down to Taylor on 14 and the resulting cross was headed high under pressure by Newton. There was a rare opening at other end for the home side on 16 when Myles found himself in space on the left of the box but whipped his shot well wide of far post.
A double save from Belshaw denied Ndlovu at the far post on 21 when it look sure that Brackley would open scoring in their first real attack.
At the other end a corner from Mills on the left was punched away by Farrell and Brackely eventually cleared their lines.
Belshaw punched away strongly off the head of Armson on 25 and Taylor escaped a booking as the ball came out, clattering through the Brackley midfield before the referee blew his whistle.
The dead ball was struck by Adam Walker but it only went backwards to Farrell.
A foul on Mills on the left wing on 28 set the same player up with a freekick which he floated into the box and Tomassen got his head to it but the keeper was also equal.
Armson weaved his way into a shooting position and drilled a low shot well wide of the left hand on 31 despite the attention of the Lambs defence, and Belshaw was far from happy!
Glenn Walker was blocked down the right wing by Burns on 35 and Armson stepped up to take the freekick with only Taylor in the ‘wall’.
It was flicked behind for a Brackley corner on the right and the home side tried to keep the pressure up until Jeacock’s hopeful shot went back to Belshaw and play switched halves.
Brackley got their foot back on the ball though and Deeney was forced to concede a corner on 40 which Taylor eventually cleared.
Mills spotted an opening on 42 but skied his shot from 18 yards high and wide of the target and 1 minute added time was shown at the end of the first half and there was just time for a home corner before the referee blew half time.
Brackley restarted proceedings as the now more numbersome Lambs fans congregated behind the goal in the glorious sunshine.
There was some great build up play from Tamworth around the 52nd minute, out of midfield by half a dozen passes and to Beslin on the left but the Brackley defence got in the way of the cross and Newton and blocked his attempt to turn on the ball.
Tamworth continued to hold the upper hand in terms of possession as the game carried on but a quick break on 57 saw Brackley strike the woodwork when Armson fed the ball through to Ndlovu and his shot comes back off the left hand upright.
Armson struck from 20 yards on 62 and forced Belshaw into a low save round his left hand post. From the corner Ndlovu kneed the ball goalward and Belshaw tipped it over the bar, then from the next corner Ndlovu headed home but a foul in the build up ruled it out.
Briscoe replaced Green on 68 and Deeney was handed a couple of corners in quick succession, the second of which was struck goalward by Lane and booted off the line by the home defence.
A foul on Ndlovu set up Armson with a freekick on 70 that went through to, but didn’t trouble, Belshaw and from the next passage in play Briscoe forced Farrell into a low stop before the teams had a drinks break.
Newton was denied a shot from the edge of the box on 80 by a great defensive tackle as he shaped to pull the trigger.
There were loud shouts from the Lambs fans for a handball as Mills and Newton tried to dig the ball out of a melee and force it home but nothing was spotted by the officials and the ball was cleared.
A cross from Myles on 88 was aimed for Bowen at the far post but Burns got their first and headed it away for a corner which Belshaw punched clear.
Mills raced forward and was pulled back by Adam Walker, so Deeney sent the deadball from the centre circle forward but got it back only to lose it and Brackley’s Myles cross for Lowe but he could only head over the bar from 8 yards out.
Four minutes added time was shown at the end of the game and there were calls for a penalty against Tomassen that were waved away before Morrell came on for Mills.
Belshaw, Burns, Breslin, Deeney, Tomassen, Lane 67, Mills (Morrell 90), Clarke, Newton, Green (Briscoe 68), Taylor (Dyer 86)
Subs: Ezewele, Davies
Brackley Town Team:
Farrell, Myles, Gudger, Byrne, Graham, Dean, G. Walker, Armson, Ndlovu (Bowen 81), Jeacock (Lowe 73), A. Walker
Subs: Diaz, Rankin, Richards
Referee: Mr. D. Strain (Runcorn)