The Harriers lost their first away game of the season tonight when they went down 1-0 at defense minded Telford Utd despite having probably up to 70% of the possession but with very little to show for it. A lack of firepower in front of goal and an unwillingness to take the chance when presented meant that we only had one clear cut sight of goal all evening. We scored with that one chance but it was ruled out for offside even though the ball came back to Liam Truslove off the keeper. Our second best chance of the night was given to Andre Brown who, when given the opportunity with a free kick on the very edge of the area, decided to see if the ball would be back in Kidderminster before he was as it flew miles over the bar.
With one enforced change due to James McQuilkins one match suspension the Harriers re-called Ashley Carter to the starting eleven following the expiration of his sentence while Ryan Croasdale moved into the space vacated by McQuilkin. Apart from that it was an almost unchanged eleven and bench from the previous games.
Bayed on by almost four hundred Harriers fans it was the Purples that took the initiative right from the start while Telford, whispered on by a handful of their own fans at the far end of the ground, set their stall out by snuffing out as much as they could in any means they could including some dubious challenges on our nimble footed athletes. No matter how nimble you are it's all gone to waste if you can't do anything with it and time again we ran into dead ends and wasted forays forward.
The main culprit was Tyrell Waite who had the beating of the defender all night long down the length of the pitch but, once in sight of goal and a chance to get a ball across, his legs turned to jelly and Mani Dieseruvwe was left there wondering where the ball had got to. When he did get the ball across to him Mani was being guarded by two strapping lads and had no chance of achieving anything with it.
When we did manage to get a half chance to test the keeper then James Montgomery was easily able to cope with the powder puff approach. Sadly some sections of the crowd singled out the keeper for stupid abuse but he was only doing what he was put there for and if he was our - experienced and mature - keeper then they would have thought him brilliant.
Weirdly, with the Harriers having all the possession, it was Telford that somehow contrived to score the only goal of the game. Another Harriers attack had broken down and Telford surged forward chasing after a long goal kick upfield, more in hope than conviction, and were given a sight of goal by hesitant defending that allowed Micah Evans in to fire a weakish shot from the edge of the area but it took a deflection off Tyrone Williams on the way and left Sam Hornby slightly off guard as the ball rolled underneath his body and into the net.
We responded in the only way we should and once more attacked their end at pace but with the same results of stout defending and a lack of nous in how to beat the Telford blockade. A free kick, given for another desperate challenge was taken by Arthur Gnahoua but wasted as it flew over the bar while in the dying seconds before the break Gnahoua again had a volley blocked on the line while Waite hit the side netting from a few yards out.