Ten men Lambs come back for a point
29 January 2011
After the midweek success at Eastbourne, Del Lyttle kept the same starting eleven to face Rushden and Diamonds at Nene Park. The only change to the squad was the inclusion of new signing Jevaise Christie in place of Louis Connor on the bench.
Justin Edinburgh's Diamond side came into the game having won only one of their last nine league games, although they would be looking to build on victory in their last match over Newport County, while Lyttle's Lambs were looking to make it five unbeaten after two wins two draws in their last four.
Rushden got the game underway with Tamworth attacking towards the away end - empty today with the Lambs fans located in the corner of the adjoining South stand - , and although O'Connor got in behind the Lambs defence and scored after 16 seconds, the goal was disallowed for offside.
Tait was handed a freekick on the right on 3 and when Day miscued his punch Perry hit a toe poke at goal but Prossed headed it away.
As Rushden moved forward a late challenge by Daniel Bradley earned him a booking a minute later.
A handball by Tait on the left by the touchline handed Diamonds a freekick which Perry headed away.
The Lambs defence coped with the attacking play of O'Connor and Charles on 9 then countered through Sheridan on the left who fed Thomas in the area but his shot struck a defender and went out for a throw.
A good run straight at the area by Perry saw him feed Sheridan on 14 but his shot / cross was blocked and Thomas got the ball eventually before being fouled on the left wing. MacKenzie swung it in but Day caught at height.
One-time Lamb Gary Mills skied a shot over the bar and the Peter De Banke terrace on 16 with a wild right footed shot then another foul on the left, saw Osano talked to by the referee, on Dan Bradley earned a freekick and Day punched clear.
Barrow upended Charles on 19 on the right wing outside the area but he escaped a booking and the freekick was headed wide by Prosser at the far post.
Jamie Day hit a low hard shot for goal and Marshall put a boot in to send it high out of play for a corner on the left which was sent into the box and had to be headed behind by Perry. Day took it from the right and Atkins caught easily.
Tait put a hard tackle in on O'Connor by the left corner flag to pick up a yellow card on 24 and it was headed behind for another corner to the home side which Day took again but it flashed high and out of play on the opposite side.
A mix up in the back two for Rushden allowed Daniel Bradley to nip in a take a snap shot right footed from 25 yards but he couldn't keep it down and the ball cleared the goal.
O'Connor picked up the ball and skipped into the area on the half hour but hit the side netting from a tight angle on the left of the box.
With four to go in the first half Jason Bradley appeared to go straight through Prosser with raised studs and received a straight red card for his efforts. Prosser couldn't continue so Oshodi replaced him as the game entered added time.
A run into the area by Perry won a corner, but the Lambs striker was booked for protesting when no penalty was given and although The Lambs tried to push in the final throws of the half, nothing was forthcoming before the whistle blew.
The Lambs kicked off the second period, but Rushden gained possession quickly and pushed for goal.
O'Connor won a corner on 49 and it was whipped into the box and caused some problems before The Lambs cleared.
Marshall was quick to deny a move into the area on 52 and on 53 Power struck right footed just over the bar from 25 yards.
Sheridan won a corner on the right on 54 and Marshall headed just wide of the near post from the dead ball.
A similar shot from Mills on 55 to that of Power went over the bar from a similar range before Yussuf came on for Perry.
On 58 Atkins pulled off a point blank save to deny O'Connor after Charles and Porter combined to put the ball into the six yard box and the Lambs keeper was perfectly placed and made an instinctive stop to deny him.
A 62nd minute corner was flashed over the bar via the head of O'Connor as Rushden continued to push on.
Then, on 63, Gash headed straight at Atkins from a pin point cross from the right and on 67 a low Mills shot was cleared over the bar by Marshall for a Diamonds corner on the left which Corcoran nodded back towards goal from past the far post but it was allowed to go out for a goal kick unhindered.
The goal that Rushden had been threatening eventually came on 69 via a superbly hit strike from Power, who scored in the fixture at The Lamb earlier in the season, straight into the top left corner from 25 yards (0-1, 68 mins)
A through ball from Sheridan to Yussuf on 71 almost saw the latter go one on one with the keeper but it was just too strong, and Rushden raced to the other end and won a corner on the right which Atkins took.
Thomas was upended by Porter on the halfway line on 74 earning himself a booking.
From a long throw MacKenzie got his side back into the game firing home after Day had only been able to punch clear (1-1, 75 mins)
At the other end home sub Smith put his header from a right wing cross wide of the far post and Rushden won another corner but were unable to make it count.
Wylde denied O'Connor a shooting chance and Gash saw his shot blocked from 18 yards as the game entered the final 10 minutes.
Gash was at it again shortly after, hitting a diagonal shot across the face of goal which skimmed the outside of the far post with Atkins seemingly beaten on 84.
Rushden kept up their all out attack and the Lambs defence had to be on their mettle with some great defending as the clock ran down.
In a now rare attack with a couple of minutes to go, Daniel Bradley fired wide with a attempted shot from the left of the park and four minutes added time was shown.
Johnson launched a long throw in to the area on 92 which Atkins fumbled before being fouled. Dan Bradley went on the attack again feeding Kamara who looked for Yussuf with a cross but Oshodi headed it away and a corner was won as the whistle blew on a point a piece.
Atkins, Tait, Marshall, Wylde, MacKenzie, Perry (Yussuf 55), Thomas (Mitchell 84), Sheridan (Kamara 89), Bradley J, Bradley D, Barrow
Subs: Christie, Wilkinson
Yellow Cards: Bradley D, Tait, Perry
Red Cards: Bradley J
Rushden and Diamonds Team:
Joe Day, Porter (Johnson 81), Prosser (Oshodi 45), Osano, Mills, O'Connor, Jamie Day, Power, Corcoran, Charles (Smith 66), Gash
Subs: Evans, Farrell
Yellow Cards: Porter 74
Referee: J. Hopkins