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Harriers 1gifSalford City 0

Date: 10-09-16 gif Venue: Aggborough gif att: 2072 gif away fans: 87
The 'Class of Harriers' beat Salford by a single goal

gif Report: Phil Lench
It took a wonderfully struck free kick from James McQuilkin to decide this eagerly awaited game between to sides pencilled in for honours at the end of the season.  It was the first ever meeting between the Harriers and the darlings of the BBC - Salford City.  Just think if the BBC hadn't upped sticks and gone to Manchester but to Birmingham instead it could have been Tamworth as the TV darlings instead.  No, we'll stick with Salford.

With McQuilkin back in the starting eleven following his one match ban Ashley Carter dropped to the bench at the expense of Robert Stambolziev.  Actually I would have let Stam keep his place because he has more to offer the team.

We started the game cautiously and allowed the Mancunians to dictate the early passages of play.  They had come with the intention of not letting us have the ball from the off and hoping to get an early goal but that all came to an end in the ninth minute when we were handed a free kick on the edge of their area.  As usual we decided to allow four player to line up around the ball and leave the minimal amount waiting for the ball to come in.  Elton N'Gwatala stepped up to take it as another player - I think it was Waite - jumped over it as it rolled to McQuilkin and he lashed it home on the end of the pin-point from twenty five yards out.

They responded with a shot from Craig King that went over the bar but that goal had changed the format of the game as we began to put our passes together and rip Salford to shreds.  They weren't having any of that so resorted to the strong arm tactics that they have become known for this season.  As usual the timid referee was lenient enough to let some of the tackles pass him by.

We should have gone on to at least double our lead just before the half hour when a melee in front of the Salford goal saw the ball go up and over the bar as Tyrone Williams tried a back heel that went slightly wrong.  We then had another open goal chance spurned when, just before the break, Mani Dieseruvwe headed way over the bar from all of two yards out following a fine cross in from Tyrell Waite.
  HT: 1 - 0
The second half started off with drama when Simon Grand, formerly of Barrow but now at Salford, took Dieseruvwe out on the touchline with a two footed challenge that left Mani in a crumpled heap on the ground.  This time the referee had left his mittens in his changing room and immediately took his card of red out and sent him back down the tunnel.

Now with Salford down to ten men we should have took the bull by the scruff of his horns (what is the scruff of a horn?) and flood towards the Salford goal in wave upon wave of attacking football.  Well we tried but as is our wont we made hard work of it by losing the ball when in sight of goal.  N'Gwatala and Dieseruvwe we doing most of the probing but it was that final ball all the time that was to be our downfall while the scorer of the goal, McQuilkin, had faded from the game for a while.

Our best chance of the half fell for Arthur Gnahoua when he collected the ball on the edge of the box and in a flash swivelled on his heel to fire the ball goalwards but just the wrong side of the post.

Dieseruvwe had another chance to get his name on the scoresheet with a shot that was well saved by Jay Lynch in the Salford goal but with time running out is was looking likely that ten man Salford would snatch a late goal to crush two thousand hopes of the Harriers claiming all three points.  It was thanks to Sam Hornby in our goal with the one and only save he had to make in the whole ninety minutes that the disaster never happened when he somehow launched himself down on a header from Jordan Hulme that was about to creep over the line.

The three points earned takes us back into fourth place and within biting distance of the leaders.  With high scoring Tamworth (did I hear that right?) the visitors here on Tuesday evening we really do need to up our scoring rate.  We have only scored five times at Aggborough and even bottom placed Altrincham and Bradford have scored more with eight goals.

That fact should be giving John Eustace and Matt Gardiner sleepless nights.
  FT: 1 - 0

 Goal for Harriers: McQuilkin 9

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Harriers  goals   subs   cards      Salford City  goals   subs   cards 
Hornby     Lynch  
Williams     Nottingham  
Francis-Angol   O'Halloran  
Croasdale     Burton gif  
Lowe     Grand
Tunnicliffe     Priestley
Waite     King gif  
McQuilkin gif     Walker  
Dieseruvwe gif   Phenix gif  
N'Gwatala gif     Wellens  
Gnahoua gif     Hulme  
SUBS:         SUBS:      
Austin gif - 78     Worley  
Truslove     Warburton gif - 66  
Carter gif - 86     Johnston  
A Brown gif - 87     Allen gif - 57  
Thomas     Poole gif - 57  

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