Harrowby United lose by odd goal in five in local derby

Captains receive their pre-match instructions, Jack Whyley (left) for Harrowby and Jack Pemberton for Sleaford.
Captains receive their pre-match instructions, Jack Whyley (left) for Harrowby and Jack Pemberton for Sleaford.

United Counties League

Premier Division

Sleaford Town 3

Harrowby United 2

Local bragging rights were claimed by the home side at Eslaforde Park on a cool Tuesday evening in Sleaford.

Harrowby were blown away in the first half as Sleaford controlled the game from the off and created the first shooting chance after only six minutes when wide man George Asplin shot straight at keeper Joe Christopher when he perhaps should have done better.

The first goal wasn’t long coming though as only three minutes later as Harrowby contributed to their own downfall, failing to clear their defensive lines on two occasions before the ball was driven across the six yard box, failing to Tom Siddons who controlled and poked the ball past a helpless Christopher.

The home side continued to press and after 15 minutes Christopher did well to stop a low shot from Sleaford marksman Ryan Oliver.

Harrowby opened up the Sleaford defence for the first time after 20 minutes when a good run from midfielder Ben Brown ended with him playing the ball up to striker Sam Robinson who moved it on for Liam Harper who, in space, blazed over the crossbar.

Two minutes later Sleaford doubled their lead as Harrowby gave the ball away cheaply on the right, allowing a crossing opportunity. The ball was headed out by Arrows skipper Jack Whyley but picked up by Siddons whose sharp low shot saw Christopher get his right hand to the ball but not enough to stop it entering the net off the right hand upright.

After 34 minutes, Sleaford made it three when again possession was conceded cheaply in midfield and the ball found its way to former Arrow Ngoni Dongo, whose deflected shot from the edge of the box found the net.

After stern words from the Harrowby management team at half time, the visitors gave a much better account of themselves in the second period and can be disappointed they didn’t salvage at least a point.

Sleaford sat back and allowed Harrowby to take the game to them. The Arrows had a penalty appeal waved away by referee Mr McVey, but the decision seamed to inspire Harrowby and they pulled a goal back on 65 minutes when some opportunist play from Liam Harper saw him capitalise on indecision in the Sleaford defence, rob the ball and finish smartly under pressure past keeper Carl Stubbs.

Sleaford’s lead was reduced to a single goal seven minutes later when a ball into a crowded penalty area wasn’t cleared and fell to Liam Jaques whose cheeky back heel from just inside the six yard box fooled Stubbs and found its way into the net.

Harrowby now in the ascendancy piled on the pressure but just came up short in their pursuit of an equaliser.

Sleaford saw out the remaining minutes to just claim the points in a game that seemed over after the first half.

Harrowby United: Christopher, Weatherstone, Webb (Sharpe 71), Currall, Whyley (c), Harper, Jaques, Bolland, Brown (Peberdy 70), Lee, Robinson. Subs not used: Hanratty, Bennett.