The new look Harriers entertained FC Utd of Manchester today in their third friendly game in just six days. This one ended with honours shared as the highly rated Rory Patterson scored first for them but Brian Smikle regained the equality a few minutes later with an easy tap in just before the end of the first half.
The game started well enough for us with the team once again looking for the quick pass coupled with some intelligent positioning. Mark Creighton was back for his first game since going off at Rushall in our first friendly three weeks ago. John Munday started again and it looks as if he will be offered terms later this week.
The goal scorer from Friday nights game at Telford, Rob Pacey was not included in the squad as was Shane Paul but there was a new name on the teamsheet. Matthew Williams is thought to be a winger that has played in reserve games for us.
FC Utd looked to be a very good side. Young and with a lot of pace they were a far better than the side that Cheltenham sent us last Tuesday. Apart from the afore mentioned Patterson they also have Rhodri Giggs, brother of Ryan?, and an eye catching midfielder in Nicky Platt that also looked useful.
The Harriers probably edged the first twenty five minutes of the game but allowed FC to come back into it with the goal. John Munday hesitated in defending a through ball and allowed Patterson to get in behind him. The FC man easily picked his spot to put the ball past Bevan.
Two minutes later and it was all square again when Justin Richards took his chance to fire straight at the FC keeper, Ashton, only to see it bounce back off him to land at the feet of Brian Smikle. With an open goal at his mercy Smikle rolled the ball into the empty net.
The second half was disastrous, from our point of view, with Creighton not coming back on and Michael McGrath playing in his place. We lost all shape in midfield and a better side than FC should have crucified us.
Patterson was warned by the referee about his over enthusiastic behaviour and the ref also had a word with the FC touchline crew but he remained on the pitch. Later Munday went into Hargreaves rather more clumsily than maliciously and he was told to leave the pitch by Yates.
A flurry of subs took place after that then subs were subbed again. Interest in the game was over and it was left to the alternative Giggsy to make the Harriers fans hearts skip a heartbeat when he faced up to Bevan in a one on one that saw Bev make a stupendous save at Giggs' feet to end the game at 1-1.
Bevan, Harkness (Kenna), Hurren (Howarth), Creighton (McGrath), Constable (Boukhalfa), Richards (Barnes-Homer), Blackwood (Munday), Smikle, Munday (Penn), Ferrell, Bignot (Williams).
Att: 676 (172 away fans)