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Harriers 1 Forest Green Rovers 3

Date: 17-09-05 Venue: Aggborough att: 1818 away fans: 94
Disappointing, dreadful & dire
That must have been one of the worst ever games that I have witnessed from any Harriers side for a long, long time.    Believe me I've had plenty of punishment but that performance today was inept and embarrassing.

It didn't start too badly and things looked promising at first when Wayne Hatswell stretched his foot out to hammer a shot against the crossbar.    Then we came close on a couple more occasions with some half chances going the way of Christie, Graves and Tai but we were never expecting the sucker punch from a very ordinary Forest Green side after a little under twenty minutes.

Wayne Evans was beaten for pace, not for the first time, and Paul Wanless put a cross out to the edge of the area where Alex Meechan was bought down.    Wanless and Abdou Sall stood around the ball vying to take the kick and, with the Harriers crowd expecting Sall to blast one in, he moved to one side for Wanless to shoot against the wall from where it took a deflection to deceive Danby and trickle into the net just inside the post.

You'd expect us to try and get back into the game after that, but, although we tried we just didn't look good enough.    High balls were continually being pumped up for our front men to run onto but these were being mopped up with ease by the FGR defenders.    When we had got the ball at our feet we just didn't seem to want to apply any pressure on them and we all know what an Abdou Sall under pressure can do.    Make mistakes!

Half an hour in and they go and get a second and this time it was all down to a mistake from a 'keeper in a crisis'.    Meechan, again let in by Evans, sent in a fine cross that Danby came out for but then, for the second game in a row, dropped the damn thing.    It didn't take a lot of thought from Zema Abbey to knock the ball into an empty net.

There had to be some changes made for the second half because we were looking absolutely dreadful.
HT: 0 - 2
Yes there were some changes but without a noticeable difference made.    Michael Blackwood and Simon Heslop came on for Sheldon and Wilson respectively and we changed formation slightly without looking remotely threatening.

We came close to grabbing a goal back when Hats again hit the woodwork, this time the upright, after surging into the box to connect with a Terry Fleming free kick and sidestep the ex-Harrier keeper Ryan Clarke to slam it against the wood.

The game then got bogged down in midfield after that with FGR prepared to sit on their lead and us unable to break them down.

We eventually did so though and it produced Christies fourth goal in as many games.    Substitute Simon Heslop put a great throughball into his path to set him off on a typical Issey type run into the box and then plant his shot past Clarkes despairing dive at his feet.

We were still celebrating the goal when Forest Green provided their second sucker punch of the day.    Darryl Burgess was caught in possession on the edge of the area by Abbey and he only had to lob his shot over Danby and into the far corner of the net.

We managed to get a few more chances of reducing the deficit but the urgency had gone out of our play, if it had ever been there in the first place.    Lee Thompson sent over a peach of a cross for Christie but the normally alert striker was too slow to react and the ball went behind him with an open goal at his mercy.

The final chance for us fell for the quiet Atieno when he somehow managed to send his shot wide of the FGR goal when it would have been easier to score.

At least we haven't got too long to wait for the next game and get this one out of our system.    It's Halifax on Tuesday and another chance to be as mediocre as the opposition.
FT: 1 - 3

 Goal for Harriers: Christie 73
 Goals for Forest Green: Wanless 19, Abbey 34, 74

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Wayne Hatswell
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Harriers  subs   cards      Forest Green  subs   cards 
Danby     Clarke  
Evans     Garner  
Hatswell     Richardson  
Graves     Beswetherick  
Jackson gif   Sall  
Burgess     Howell  
Fleming     Wanless  
Wilson     Meechan  
Christie     Abbey  
Atieno     Gosling  
Sheldon     Rendell  
SUBS:       SUBS:    
Burton     Harrison  
Russell     Rogers  
Thompson     Davies  
Heslop     Graham  
Blackwood     Haldane  

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