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Match Report


Posted Thu 08 Apr 10 at 21:39 PM

FULL TIME: Barrow 1-0 Harriers

Report by Matt Wall - stats provided and generated for by the Press Association.

A goal after just four minutes was enough to send Harriers back home empty handed from a long, long trip to Barrow in the Blue Square Premier on Thursday night.

As far as bad starts go, Harriers couldn't have got underway in a worse way in this one - within four minutes they were behind. A free-kick on the 'D' had been half-cleared but, just inside the area, defender Phil Bolland later struck a hopeful boot at the ball; in itself the effort was nowhere close to troubling Jasbir Singh but on its way to the goal it took a wicked deflection off the body of a defender in attendance, leaving the scrambling Singh beaten as it rolled passed him at the far post.

The visitors were slow in responding and had to wait until the 13th minute for their first half sight of goal - a good ball into the box was headed across the face by Martin Riley towards Marc Goodfellow, though the Aggborough loanee lost out in a battle of bravery with goalkeeper Tim Deasy who came off his line to gather before he could get anything on it.

In the 25th minute Harriers began to make their mark on the game and found more room in the final third - advancing on goal at pace, Darryl Knights got free of his man and with Matthews in support, chose to go for the direct effort and forced Deasy into a decent low save. Immediately afterward they should perhaps have drawn level, a fine ball at the by-line pulled back to Lloyd Kerry in the area who, unmarked, pulled an effort narrowly wide with the goalkeeper rooted to the spot.

Nine before the break, just before Dean Bennett sensationally struck the bar with a rasping drive, the visiting side were still pressing and within quick succession they had two further fine opportunities - first, with time and space on the edge of the area, Kerry strode forth and struck a powerful drive that needed a brave block from the body of Deasy; quickly re-worked, the stopper was in action again as he had to dive full stretch to stop Matthews' header from reaching Knights who was eyeing the tap-in.

Harriers began the second period in lively fashion but as Barrow defended their lead stubbornly, it wasn't long until Steve Burr made his first change of the game as James Lawrie saw action in place of Darryl Knights.

A second change was soon to follow around the hour mark as David McDermott replaced Dean Bennett, just before Barrow's Simon Wiles had seen the first real effort of the second half well saved by Jasbir Singh, a decent driven effort from close range that the stopper did superbly not to parry to the feet of the lurking Jason Walker.

Eight after the hour, Harriers once again went within inches of a leveller as Goodfellow found time and space on the angle outside the area - taking one touch, he set himself before curling a neat effort towards the top corner of the net that flew just wide of the target.

Ten minutes further on, Goodfellow was again involved against his former club- holding the ball up excellently whilst surrounded by Barrow players, he did well to supply the on-rushing Jack Byrne out wide who wrapped his foot around the ball and hit an angled shot towards goal that Deasy got down well to.

As the game entered a lenient six minutes of injury time, the football seemed a sideshow in comparison to a serious injury sustained by sub McDermott whose night was cut woefully short by a needless, thuggish challenge from Paul Edwards that left the Aggborough winger on a stretcher and back in the dressing room.

A bad night got even worse for Harriers in the fifth of those six minutes - James Lawrie bundled the ball over the line and into the net after Matthews' knock down in the area, only for the referee to blow up for a foul, a decision that looked to have mystified both sets of players.

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