Nine men Lambs fall to Hatters
17 December 2011
It was back to the bread and butter of league action for Marcus Law's Lambs after last weekend's disappointment of an early exit out of the FA Trophy to lower league opposition.
Prior to kick off, a tribute was paid to Club President Len Gendle who passed away in early December.
Law made five changes to the side that started at Worksop and the side lined up to face Luton, six points ahead of Tamworth in the table and pushing for a play off spot in this, the penultimate run out before Christmas.
Luton kicked off the game towards the Castle End and the visitors kept the ball in the Lambs half for much of the opening exchanges without really threatening Hedge or his goal.
Around the ten minute mark Tamworth pushed forward for the first t8me and won a corner on the left which Barrow planted onto the head of Francis, but the big defender was unable to direct it goalward.
On 13 Crow followed up a loose ball in the area but saw his goal bound shot blocked by Francis before being cleared.
Then on 17 Green was shown the red card after a tackle on Gleeson in which he appeared to have taken the ball well before any contact with the player, but the referee saw otherwise and the Luton player hobbled off the field after lengthy treatment before jogging back on.
A dodgy back pass forced Pilkington to sweep the ball behind for a corner on the right and Kanyuka headed strongly at the back post but couldn't keep the effort down and it went over the crossbar and into the fairly full away end.
Dance saw a deflected shot from the right of the area headed away from goal by Francis on the half hour and on 32 Watkins chipped the ball to the far post from the b y-line and Barrow was forced to scoop it away and concede the corner. Luton kept possession and Dance rifled a right footed shot at Hedge which the keeper pushed over the bar for another flag kick.
Crow was then booked for bringing Thomas down in front of the Shed but The Lambs couldn't work the ball into the box and Luton went on the attack with a prolonged spell of possession ending with Howells low drive from 25 yards which Hedge pushed around his left hand post 37.
However, from the corner, Crow stole in at the far post to bundle the ball home despite attention from Barrow (0-1, 38 mins)
The fourth official indicated two minutes added time at the end of the first half which ended only with boos from the home faithful, although not directed towards their own players.
Reynolds replaced Thomas at the break as the rain lashed down on the Lambs, changing the texture of playing surface and making The Lambs come back job just that little more difficult.
Patterson put a searching low ball into the box from the left on 50 but it was cleared by the Luton defence, then with Luton on the attack, Crow doubled his tally with a relatively easy finish from the edge of the area after The Lambs defence cracked and was unable to stop him firing low into the bottom left hand corner past a helpless Hedge. (0-2, 53 mins).
Patterson forced Pilkington to tip a cross over his bar in the move from the kick off but on 56 Dance sprinted onto a through ball from Watkins and put his side into a healthy lead with a shot from the edge of the area (0-3, 56 mins)
Luton won a corner on 58 and Tamworth broke down the Shed side of the ground, but the move was halted when Gleeson put in a dangerous tackle on Patterson and received a booking for his efforts.
The Lambs pressed from Barrow's freekick but Luton cleared their lines.
Hedge parried a low cross from the right from Taylor away from danger on 63 and Barrow, who had been having a good run down the left wing was axed to the floor outside the Luton box but there were no cards shown while he received treatment on the field.
Law made a double change with around 20 minute remaining but things went form bad to worse when Francis and Keane went into the box chasing the same ball and the Luton playerwent down winning a penalty in the process. Francis was sent off and trudged towards the changing rooms as Hedge saved Crow's attempted hat-trick strike from the spot to keep the score at 0-3.
Mills reduced the arrears with a deflected close range effort off the visiting captain just inside the final quarter of an hour (1-3, 76 mins).
Hedge stopped well from Taylor's left sided shot as Tamworth continued to work two men short.
hedge did well to deny another hefty strike from the visitors on 80 but there was no road back for Tamworth as they fell to their third consecutive defeat.
Hedge, Tait, Habergham, Courtney, Francis, St. Aimie (Mills 68), Thomas (Reynolds HT), Patterson (Christie 69), Green (sent off 17), Barrow, Kanyuka
Subs: McDonald, Shariff
Red Cards: Green 17, Francis 74
Luton Town Team:
Pilkington K, Gleeson, Taylor, Keane, Pilkington G, Lawless, Crow (Fleetwood 83), Howells, Dance (Wright 90), Watkins (Kissock 76), Kovacs
Subs: Tyler, Wilmott
Yellow Cards: Crow 33, Dance 56, Gleeson 58
Man of the Match: Sponsors EJOT chose Jon Hedge
Referee: Mr. R. Joyce