Today was a lot of firsts for the Harriers with it being the first time that we have come back from being a goal down, and then go on to win, since sometime in 2006. It was the first home game on a Saturday since we played Oxford Utd on November 24th and it was the first time we've beaten a team in the relegation places since beating Droylsden last September.
Today we beat a Farsley side also struggling at the bottom of the table but at times we tried to make it as hard for ourselves as possible. It didn't help that the visitors weren't going to roll over for us and then go and score from a major tactical error just over fifteen minutes into the game. Thankfully a second half rally clawed us back into the game and a late, late winner from Russ Penn earned us all three points.
We started the game with another return to the side for Jeff Kenna and Dean Bennett making way for Simon Russell. On the bench for Farsley is the former Harriers defender Mark Jackson. He left us for Rochdale a couple of years ago but broke a leg in his first game for them and he joined up with his new club when they achieved promotion to the Blue Square Premier at the end of last season.
The opening stages of the game were very poor and both sides were struggling to get any kind of momentum going The increasingly dismal weather wasn't helping much for either the team or their very quiet fans as we hardly heard a peep from the North Stand throughout the game.
The first chance of the game fell for the Harriers Simon Russell when his shot on the run hits Mark Hotte and got deflected straight into the arms of Curtis Aspden - making his debut after signing on loan from Hull City. The next chance fell for Russ Penn when he just missed connecting with a flick on from James Constable.
The next spell of pressure from the Harriers took some time coming but when it did in the 16th minute it lead inadvertently to the Celtic goal.
Michael McGrath made a break from deep and took the ball forward to Russell then onto Andy Ferrell who took a shot that Aspden did well to push out for a corner. Unusually Jeff Kenna left his defensive duties to take the corner and, with just Michael Blackwood back covering, the ball was cleared up field for Farsley's Damian Reeves to run onto. Blackie slipped when trying to clear the danger and it was a simple matter for Reeves to take the ball on and wait for his chance to lift the ball over the advancing Scott Bevan.
The Harriers went to pieces following the goal and our play went all over the place with mis-directed passes and shots going way off target. With both Constable and Christie having poor games we were going to need a miracle to get back on level terms.
The closest we came to scoring in this half fell to Mark Creighton after his header was cleared off the line following a corner and a shot from Russell that also got blocked on the line.