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Harriers 3 Salisbury City 2

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Date: 06-12-08gif Venue: Aggboroughgif att: 1325gif away fans: 57
Another below par performance
The Harriers rode their luck today in gaining a 3-2 win over struggling Salisbury City yet only scored one goal in doing so.  Two own goals from Salisbury sandwiched a Matt Barnes-Homer goal but in truth we could have scored a hat full ourselves if we had been a bit more lethal in front of goal.  Justin Richards, back after injury, missed at least three with one of them an absolute sitter a few minutes before half time.

With Andy Ferrell missing through a one game suspension Dean Bennett took his place while on the bench was loan signing Chris Beardsley awaiting his comeback.

With the game kicking off in glorious, but cold, sunshine it took just a minute for us to see our first piece of action.  A poor pass back by a City defender let in Matt Barnes-Homer but just in the nick of time the keeper, James Bittner, rushed out to kick the ball away to safety.  Another few minutes further on and MBH was given another chance but sent his shot just wide of the post.

The Harriers were all over the visitors and it didn't take too long to open the scoring.  The problem was we didn't score it because just as it avoided Justin Richards diving header Jon Bass tried to clear it but only succeeded in putting it beyond his own keeper.

Salisbury were looking a very poor side and were a mere shadow of the side they were last season with their defence continually at sixes and sevens and seeming to have no confidence in the keeper.  With just the one striker up front, the overweight Charlie Griffin, they seemed to have no ideas.

We also seemed lacking in ideas too because in the twenty fifth minute Dean Bennett broke away and as Richards ran unmarked into the box he supplied him with a pin point ball.  All Justin had to do was poke it home but he dithered too long over it and Bittner managed to get a hand to it and push it away.

City had by now started to gather themselves together and a fine volley from Griffin whistled just past the post only seconds before Barnes-Homer put us two goals up.  A long kick forward from Adam Bartlett dropped just right for MBH who then took it on but saw his shot hit the post and come back to him.  He didn't spurn the second chance and put the ball into the net for his ninth goal of the season.

We should then have gone on to increase the scoreline with further efforts going to waste and in an attempt to tighten up the defence the City manager took off Matthew Robinson in exchange for Scott Bartlett.  It must have had some effect because they seemed to improve following that but were still capable of being caught out.

Just a minute before half time Justin Richards threw away the chance to send us into the break three goals to the good when he ran onto a great cross from Keith Lowe but, with MBH in a better shooting position, decided to go for it himself and shot straight at the keeper.  We were to rue that mistake just seconds before the whistle went for the break when the Harriers defenders were caught napping and allowed the unmarked Griffin to drive the ball home from Rob Sinclair's cross.
HT: 2 - 1
Salisbury came out after the break looking to build on the late goal fifteen minutes earlier.  They were now full of running, the defence had tightened up and they were in search of the equalising goal but against the run of play 'we' pulled a third goal out of nothing.

Brian Smikle sent over a cross intended for either Barnes-Homer or Richards but before it reached them it was deflected over their heads but only to Scott Bartlett who somehow managed to sidefoot the ball past his own keeper.

It didn't seem to worry City because they were straight back on the attack again and twice could have scored.  First, from a corner, Djoumin Sangare saw his goal bound header hit Martin Riley and then a stunning header from Brian Dutton was almost certainly destined for the net but somehow Adam Bartlett got down to it and managed to push it around the post.

The goal had to come soon and in the sixty fifth minute a mistake by Mark Creighton let in Danny Webb to cross the ball for Dutton to make up for his earlier miss and convert into their second goal of the day.

Bartlett was soon back in action to try and stop City from adding to the scoreline.  First he managed to get down to a shot from Sinclair and then he managed to get a hand to a shot from Sean Clohessy and push it away for a corner.

We made our first substitution of the day soon after with Martin Brittain making way for David McDermott and then soon after Chris Beardsley arrived on the pitch in place of Richards.

The game was now starting to ebb and City didn't seem too intent on trying to rescue the game.  They even dithered over a throw in instead of getting on with the game.  Strange to see a team that's losing going for time wasting tactics.

Two minutes before the intended final whistle Barnes-Homer hit the post and then with only seconds of the game remaining Mark Creighton picked up his fifth booking of the season and he'll now miss the FA Trophy game at home to Burscough next Saturday.

Before that we have another home game on Tuesday night against another struggling side, Mansfield Town.  They beat us 4-2 in the third game of the season and it was following that defeat that we finally got our act together.

Look forward to another three points then.
FT: 3 - 2

 Goals for Harriers: Richards 10, Barnes-Homer 30, S Bartlett 54 (og)
 Goals for Salisbury: Griffin 45, Dutton 65

  Since this report was written it has been decided that Justin Richards scored our first goal and not a     Salisbury player as first announced.



The Harriers Online MotM is:

gif Brian Smikle
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Harriers  subs   cards      Salisbury City  subs   cards 
A Bartlett     Bittner  
Lowe     Bass  
Baker     Robinson gif  
Bennett     Clohessy  
Creighton   Sangare  
Riley     Sinclair
Brittain gif     Herring gif  
Smikle gif     Dutton  
Barnes-Homer     Ademeno gif  
Penn     Webb
Richards gif     Griffin  
SUBS:       SUBS:    
Jones gif     Bond gif  
Knights     S Bartlett gif  
McDermott gif     Clarke  
Moore     Ruddick gif  
Beardsley gif     Hill  

REFEREE:
Mr S Ross
Lincolnshire





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