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Date: 26-09-15 gif Venue: Furness Building Society Stadium gif att: 1323 gif away fans: 40 (est)
Alex Palms away two penalties

gif Report: Phil Lench
Alex Palmer rescued a point for the Harriers at Barrow today, not one but twice, with two spectacular penalty saves that earned the Reds a hard won point.  The point doesn't get us off the bottom of the table but at the moment we're happy for any small morsels thrown our way.

It was almost small morsels thrown away after we had played the home side off the park in the first half with some neat passing and closing down to force the Bluebirds into countless mistakes and go into an early lead through Reece Styche.  In the second half we never reached the same heights and a superb goal from Barrows Andy Cook drew the home side level.

They could, and should, have cruised to an easy win by the end of the game when they were awarded two penalties, one harsh and one stupid, but the on loan West Brom keeper somehow kept them both out with the first one a double save.  At the death Barrow had another goal ruled out because of pushing so maybe the 1-1 draw was a blessing considering it could have been a possible 4-1 defeat.

Without the Harriers leading goalscorer Gurjit Singh available through injury Aman Verma returned to the team and Jordan Jones earned himself another start following his two goals at Bromley in midweek.  On the bench for the first time was Academy player Nathan Millichamp.

The Harriers started on fire with a continuation of the fine skills seen at Bromley.  It took us just five minutes to score our goal when Jared Hodgkiss played a ball through the static Barrow defence for Styche to run onto.  He drew the keeper out enough to slot the ball under him and put the Harriers in the driving seat.  Sadly throughout the remainder of the first half we failed to build on that goal and eventually paid the price.

Barrow tried to get back into the game with a free kick sent wastefully over the bar and then a chance that was fired wide by Jason Walker before Luke Maxwell tested the keeper Joel Dixon with a shot from distance that he only just managed to hold on to.  Jordan Jones then had a shot that was blocked on the line just before the break.
  HT: 0 - 1
After the break, which was late re-starting due to the non appearance of the officials until they sheepishly emerged from the tunnel to jeers and catcalls from both sets of fans, the Harriers started well but soon the game began to slip away as they abandoned the flowing, passing game for 'clear the decks' football.

It took just six minutes in for Barrow to draw level.  Slack defending in the centre of the park allowed the ball to run free.  It was played over the top to the far corner of the area where their leading scorer Andy Cook was waiting to lash a volley into the net leaving Palmer with no hope of saving.

The Bluebirds began to turn the screw and could have had a penalty when Jason Walker went down, a little too easily. in the area following a challenge from Kevin Toner but the referee waved it away.  He didn't wave the next one away though.

This time Cook went down in the area and again he seemed to go down too easily but this time the referee gave in and awarded them the spot kick.  Cook took the gift but didn't strike it well and Palmer saved it well but it ran loose to Cook who tried to fire it back in but again Palmer was there to save the day.

Feeling inspired we tried to strike back but our chance fell to Maxwell as he ran onto a pass but his shot was typical of a defender and went softly wide.  Play was stopped for two minutes while Palmer was treated for an head injury after coming off worse when he went up for a ball with a Barrow striker but it didn't seem to dull his reactions when Jordan Tunnicliffe gave away a second penalty.

For no apparent reason Tunnicliffe shove Anthony Wilson in the back just inside the area.  This time the penalty was taken by substitute Ashley Grimes but it was straight at Palmer and he pushed it away easily to leave the Barrow fans groaning.

We had a moment of comedy when the referee, Mr Johnson, slumped to the ground and then rolled over in pain.  Physios and stretcher bearers ran over and the crowd once more jeered and made comments while he was treated for cramp.

The Harriers had ridden their luck in this half and you began to feel the point was going to be ours but it still took a last minute effort from Barrow to be ruled out.  This time they were awarded a corner in the last few minutes and as it was played over Danny Livesey got his head to the ball but the referee spotted him pushing and denied them their winner.

We now have a week off before we face Welling at Aggborough and if we can start to build on our first half work then surely, surely we can get three points at last.
  FT: 1 - 1

 Goal for Barrow: Cook 51
 Goal for Harriers: Styche 5

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Barrow AFC  goals   subs   cards      Harriers  goals   subs   cards 
Dixon     Palmer  
Cowperthwaite     Hodgkiss
Ashton     Toner  
Lacey gif     Maxwell  
Livesey   Langmead  
Grand   Clarke  
Haworth     Campbell  
Symington     Verma gif  
Walker gif     Styche gif gif  
Cook gif     Tunnicliffe
van den Broek gif     Jones gif  
SUBS:         SUBS:      
Taylor     Snedker  
Harvey gif - 56     Dinsley gif - 77  
Wilson gif - 57     Green gif - 66  
Williams     Wright gif - 56  
Grimes gif - 74     Millichamp  

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