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Harriers 3 Luton Town 3

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Date: 02-04-11gif Venue: Aggboroughgif att: 2756gif away fans: 612
Phew!! Harriers and Luton battle out an exciting game

gif Report by Harry Taylor
Many people have written us off this season, our chances of financial survival along with our playoff chances.  Myself included in the latter and increasingly those who have written us off seem to be being proved wrong as each week goes by with today being a great example.

The Harriers were dead and buried on eighty minutes but, with two superb comebacks in twelve minutes, we are still in contention battling for a playoff spot following a thriller at Aggborough.  The terror of Kenilworth Road in the reverse fixture, Matthew Barnes-Homer, was subdued and replaced at half time with the Harriers a goal to the good.

However the half-time score wasn't a true reflection of the game so far because our goal in the 25th minute from a penalty was our only meaningful shot in a half dominated by 'The Hatters'.  Matty Blair picked up the ball on the left hand side and sprinted towards the goal but he was sent tumbling by George Pilkington.  The referee gave a penalty which was dispatched by Chris McPhee into the bottom left corner.

The rest of the half was dominated by Luton as they went in search of an equaliser, Danny Crow having a chance from twenty yards out which went over Danny Lewis' crossbar with both defenders backing off.  This backing-off could have arguably cost the Harriers a win as this happened for two of Lutons goals later in the game but even that would be quite harsh.

The last chance of the half fell to Sean Canham who, following a Callum Gittings corner, headed just wide of the far post, which was probably the best the game went for the loanee who had a poor game.
  HT: 1 - 0
The second half however contained five goals as the floodgates burst open compared to the first half – the Luton equaliser came in the 57th minute courtesy of Robbie Wilmott who, from around thirty yards out, curled a free kick into the top left corner beating Lewis all ends up.

Nothing against the goalkeeper because there was little he could have done about the strike – truly one of the best goals of the season.  The Harriers were struggling to find any gear at all in their play and waves of Luton attacks kept on piling forward – Steve Burr responding by introducing Jack Byrne for Nick Wright to bring about some control in the middle of the park.  Soon after McPhee could've had his second of the day when, following a corner, he hit a diving header straight at Mark Tyler in the Luton goal.

Lee Morris was then introduced for Gittings but even then the away side kept on dominating the play.  Partly due to the unfortunately ineffective display by Canham leading the line he was having no luck against Luton centre back Zdenek Kroca in the air, or on the floor for that matter.

Subsequently, to all but break the Harriers hearts, Claud Gnapka scored to make the game 2-1 when he picked the ball up on the left flank, cut inside and, with Michael Briscoe still coming back and then backing off, he hit a curling shot into the far corner.  You could have been forgiven for writing off the Harriers but minutes later anyone who did was again proved wrong.

A deep cross from the right from Lee Vaughan was headed back across goal by captain Keith Briggs into the path of Morris who buried the header into the back of the net.  Glorious celebrations followed and many fans were glad to have got a point.

Minutes later and it looked like we were about to walk away with none.

Gnapka again caused havoc as he ran across the face of goal outside the area with the defenders again backing off until finally Briscoe put in a great challenge to rob him of the ball.  Unluckily it bobbled loose to Jason Walker who hit a curling drive into the bottom right corner for what the Luton fans thought would be the winning goal this time.  Lewis was unlucky and can't have seen the ball until the last minute as his view was blocked by Mark Albrighton.

Again many people probably wrote us off but this game and this season was proof that you shouldn't do so with this side.  Morris came into the area on the left, knocked the ball to Jamille Matt (he had come on for Sean Canham) who laid it off to Mike Williams who rifled the ball into the net past Tyler to send the Harriers supporters into elated ecstatic epic celebrations.

An amazing game capped off by that.  Need I say any more?
  FT: 3 - 3

 Goals for Harriers: McPhee 25 (pen), Morris 86, Williams 90
 Goals for Luton: Willmott 57, Gnakpa 80, Walker 90


The Harriers Online MotM is:

gif Chris McPhee
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Latest table and stats here  

Harriers  subs   cards      Luton Town  subs   cards 
Lewis     Tyler  
Vaughan   Gleeson  
Williams     Murray gif  
Briscoe     Keane  
McPhee     Kroca  
Albrighton   G Pilkilgton  
Blair     Howells  
Briggs     Lawless  
Canham gif     Barnes-Homer gif  
Wright gif     Crow gif  
Gittings gif     Willmott  
SUBS:       SUBS:    
Stevens     K Pilkington  
Morris gif     Gnapka gif  
Matt gif     Graham  
Byrne gif     Newton gif  
Hankin     Walker gif  

REFEREE:
Mr A Madley
West Yorkshire





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