Lambs throw away three points and hold on for one.
03 November 2007
Tamworth boss Gary Mills took his squad to Southport, looking to record the Lambs first ever win at the home of the Sandgrounders. Although hsi side had lost to Burton Albion in the FA Cup last weekend they had previously gone 7 games undefeated, while Southport – 5th in the league – had not won in three.
Mills chose the same starting eleven that played against Burton, while on the bench new signing Jonathon Richter hoped to get his first appearance although there was no place for the returning Graeme Law this time around.
Kicking away from the gathered Lambs following in the first half, towards the Jack Carr Stand and on a pitch that didn’t lend itself to crisp passing moves, Tamworth made most of the early running, and won a corner in the fourth minute via Anthony Robinson.
Michael Briscoe’s header from Gareth Sheldon's dead ball was put behind for a corner, but Chris Nurse made no mistake from the second flag kick with a powerful header into the back of the net to give Tamworth the lead (1-0).
And Robinson doubled the difference on 6 minutes with a right footed shot on the volley from the left of the area which nestled into the far corner of the goal. (2-0)
A rare Southport attack came on 14 through a Neil Prince hopeful shot from 30 yards which failed to trouble virtual spectator Jose Veiga.
Veiga collected at the feet of Tony Gray on 22 as the home side tried to get back into the game and Adie Smith went into Mr Denton’s notebook on 25 when Gray ‘flew’ over his trailing leg and required treatment and substituting. From the resultant freekick Mark Duffy struck the wall, but Tamworth couldn’t clear and conceded another free kick. Duffy tried again from a more central position, but screwed his shot off the mark.
Southport sub Karl Noon was denied a close range prod at goal by Veiga on 34 and Neil Robinson found time and space to shoot on the turn only to see it come back of the Lambs defence before being cleared on 36 as Tamworth seemed to be resting on their laurels rather than going for the jugular.
Veiga stopped the first real shot on target by the home side on 38 with a low dive to his left – coming from a right footed drive from 15 yards by Prince before Tamworth won a freekick at the other end which Briscoe took and cleared the bar with.
The Lambs appeared to wake up as the first half drew to a close and they started to move the ball around again but Southport broke free on 45 with a long ball to Prince who fired over the bar under pressure from Briscoe.
A foul on Dave Bampton in stoppage time saw Des Lyttle fire a free kick into the danger area, but from it Southport broke and Liam Blakeman got a shot away which Veiga parried and Tamworth cleared as the home side broke through the back four once again but lacked the necessary finish to make it count.
There was little to choose between the two sides in the opening encounters of the second half. Southport won a corner that was cleared and Sheldon fired a freekick into the box which came back to Robinson but his shot was easily taken by Whiteside.
The Lambs won a corner on 55 after a surging run and shot from Bampton but the same player was adjudged to have fouled a home defender after Sheldon struck the corner.
The home side peppered Veiga’s goal with half a dozen shots in succession on 57 with Duffy going the closest – seeing his shot excellently parried one handed by Veiga when he really should have scored from five yards out.
Duffy had appeals for a penalty waved away on 60 as and although it is doubtful he was fouled before he tumbled he should never have been allowed the time to run past three defenders in the first place.
But Tamworth countered once again and Sheldon floated a corner into the box and Whiteside knocked the ball on for Williams to try a lob. The Lambs leading marksman got his shot perfect but didn’t bank on Neil Prince making a last ditch headed clearance between the corner of post and bar on 61 to deny him.
Nurse won a freekick 5 yards outside the area on 62 and although it probably worked well in training, the referee got in the way of the return ball to Sheldon and put him off making him screw his shot wide.
Southport then won a freekick of the own in a similar position at the other end which Sean Newton struck perfectly to get his side back into the game on 67, leaving Veiga flat footed as it went into the near corner.(2-1)
Lambs substitute Nick Wright made a run down the right on 73 and won another corner but Tamworth’s final ball after the flag kick was only half cleared was lacking and Southport survived despite Williams and Wright being well positioned.
Veiga denied Blakeman with a stop at his feet on 78 as Southport continued to look for an equaliser and they won a freekick on the right 20 yards out a minute or so later but Newton curled his chance off target this time.
An unfortunate (but deemed delibrerate) hand ball by Smith saw Southport have another free shot at goal on 80 but instead of shooting Noon made a dash to the right and won a corner when he received the ball and deflected it off langdon. Although Tamworth forced the ball wide Southport won another flag kick and this time Veiga collected.
Blakeman cushioned a half volley over the bar on 84 from around 15 yards then on 89 sub Adam Dugdale placed his header into the far corner from Lever’s centre via the post to level the tie. (2-2)
Veiga, Lyttle, Bains, Briscoe, Smith, Bampton (Leonard 64), Langdon, Nurse, Robinson (Wright 67), Williams (Richter 90), Sheldon
Subs: Sheridan, Tuohy
Whiteside, Lever, Newton, Hocking, Powell (Dugdale 85), Holland, Duffy (Houghton 77), Blakeman, Robinson, Gray (Noon 27), Prince
Subs: Prout, Smith
Yellow Cards: Smith 25, Powell 66, Duffy 76, Bains 77
Referee: Mr. M. Denton