Harrowby United battle their way back to winning ways
United Counties League
St Andrews 0 Harrowby United 2
After last week's disappointing draw, Harrowby travelled to Leicester for a tough looking fixture at St Andrews who themselves have aspirations of promotion.
With the squad stretched with skipper Billy Stubbs, and midfield duo Kwesi and Harper missing and player-manager Jamie McGhee under the weather, he knew it would be a tough afternoon.
Arriving at the ground, the pitch was in terrible condition. Warman took the captain's arm band and was partnered by a new signing, 18-year-old Mo. Showler, Panda, Chanju and Kolapo were the other changes from the Huntingdon game.
Harrowby started well and had St Andrews on the back foot for the first 20 minutes, especially Sylla and Showler down the flanks. With Panda Hayles now dominating the middle of the park, Harrowby looked comfortable without creating too many clear cut chances.
St Andrews started to get a foothold on the game and Yinka and Warman had to be alert to clear the danger on a couple of occasions.
With a couple of minutes of the first half left, a St Andrews full back tried to dribble out of his position but good pressure from Mathius released Showler and, running across the box, he fired into the top left hand corner to give Harrowby a justly deserved 1-0 half time lead.
The second half kicked off with a quiet opening 10 minutes, until a corner was swung in and, with the ball looking like it was going out, skipper Warman somehow hooked it into the the net, to the anger of the St Andrews players and all of their management team. The goal was given and Harrowby now had something to defend.
Any thinking that St Andrews would now give up quickly changed as they put Harrowby under constant pressure for the next 20 minutes, but with frantic defending and inspired goalkeeping from Yinka, the Arrows held firm until Sylla fouled an on-rushing forward in the box and a penalty was awarded to give the home side a lifeline. Up stepped Howe but Yinka made a fantastic save to his right.
St Andrews were still not giving up and continued to put pressure on Harrowby but the visitors held on for a great three points.
Arrows manager McGhee commented how pleased he was to see a different side to Harrowby as they really dug in to grind out a win on a terrible pitch. And the lads who came in have given McGhee a nice headache to have for when everybody is available on Saturday when they are away to Holwell Sports.
More by this authorJohn Burgess