o.g. or not o.g.? Deflection decides result
20 September 2011
The Lambs welcomed Forest Green Rovers to The Lamb for the first time since the last game of last season where both sides needed to win to stay up but eventually both survived with Tamworth winning the match and the visitors surviving due to the fortunes of others.
Marcus Law made one change to the side that defeated Kettering on Saturday, with Nabil Shariff being replaced by Ashley Cain.
Tamworth got the match underway, kicking towards the Castle End with Forest Green looking to dazzle everyone if not with their football, then definitely their fluorescent yellow shirts!
Norwood, gave the visitors the lead with 1 minute 17 on the clock when Hedge was beaten by a deflection off Green which looped over the keeper's head and into the back of the net. (0-1, 2 mins)
A corner in the 10th minute was the next real piece of notable action as Tamworth found space in the final third limited as opposed to their hosts who were enjoying more of the possession.
A duo of freekicks came the Lambs way on 13 and from the second Smith hit a good shot a goal but Bittner pushed it way with comparative ease.
The keeper was booked in the 15th minute though, for time wasting a freekick inside his own half.
Bradley was brave to try and nick the ball past Bittner from a Tait ball through the Forest Green back four on 18 and on 22 St. Aimie struck for goal from 25 yards but it was straight at the keeper who collected on his knees.
Styche was given a stiff talking to by the referee for throwing the ball away and then on 26 Forbes put a tackle through Smith on the halfway line as the players to get together and discuss the matter between them (!) as the Shed called for a red card but both players were booked after consultation with the assistant referees.
Rovers put at good move together down the left wing but both times Tait was on hand to deny them forward progress, although he had to concede a corner on the left which Hedge punched clear.
A foul on Cain on the right wing set up Thomas to float the ball in and although Bittner missed the initial ball in, be punched it clear with a hefty fist when the second one came in.
Thomas robbed the ball off the visitors on the right of the box on 37 and drove for goal, but Bittner was equal to his effort and the ball was subsequently cleared from danger.
Then Mills made space and hit a low right footed shot into the box but try as they might none of his team mates could get a shot on target and a goalkick was the outcome.
Hedge saved the day with a fine close range stop on 38 to deny Kluwkowski's shot inside the area from Norwood's knock on.
At the other end a run by Mills into the box on 40 was denied by a last ditch sliding tackle to concede a corner, but Styche needed treatment in the centre circle so play was stopped and he had to be substituted.
Four minutes added time were shown at the end of the first half which ended without further incident.
The visitors got the second half underway and immediately went on the offensive with the closest chance coming on 53 when Kluwkowski slid in to try and convert a Norwood ball in to the box but missed by a whisker.
The Lambs then pushed on but Mills' ball into the danger area from Tait's threaded pass was easy for Bittner to take at his near post.
McDonald's tackle on St. Aimie earned him a booking on 55 and from the freekick there was a shout for a penalty. And when play carried on the same Lambs player struck the cross bar with a cross come shot from the right wing.
As the time hit the hour mark, The Lambs were looking more lively than before, but couldn't forge a clear opening.
One did come on 67 as it looked like Shariff had been brought down in the box, but the referee was closest to the action and awarded a freekick outside the box. Smith struck the dead ball over the bar.
Francis found himself in the box on 70 and hit a right footed shot wide of the mark.
Two freekicks were forthcoming for niggly fouls against Smithy and then Thomas as Tamworth tried to push on, and Bradley caused Bittner to fumble but he recovered before Christie could nip in.
There were further chances, or at least half chances forthcoming, and on 79 Thomas met the ball at the far post behind St. Aimie, but he couldn't turn the opportunity home and the ball was cleared.
Habergham crossed from the left for Bradley to head at goal but his header flashed wide of the far post.
Stokes was booked for time wasting on 85 and The Lambs nearly equalised on 87 when Tait hit a right footed volley just over the bar from the right of the area.
Valentim made his league debut with a couple of minutes remaining and Smith won a freekick 25 yards from goal which he took himself and just cleared the target.
A lengthy stoppage for an injury to Bangura added to the four minutes injury time at the end of the game and Curtis McDonald tried his luck from distance but failed to trouble Hedge with a left footed shot on the turn from 20 yards.
But despite a late surge, there was nothing forthcoming and Rovers took all three points.
Hedge, Tait, Habergham, Francis (Valentim 88), Smith, Cain (Shariff 64), Mills (Christie 63), St. Aimie, Thomas, Green, Bradley
Subs: McDonald, Collister
Yellow Cards: Smith 28
Forest Green Rovers Team:
Bittner, Hodgkiss, Stokes, Turley, Norwood (Griffin 53), Kluwkowski, Styche (McDonald 42), Forbes, Graham, Rowe (Turk 84), Bangura
Subs: Imudia, Allen
Yellow Cards: Bittner 15, Forbes 28, McDonald 55, Stokes 85
Man of the Match: Flawless Fusions chose HEDGE
Referee: Mr. N. Kinseley