Tuesday, 27 September 2011

AFC Barrow v Lincoln City, 27th September 2011

Venue: Holker Street, Barrow 
Attendance: 1,181
Final score: 1-0

The mighty AFC Barrow (who for some reason have a plesiosaur in their crest) have this evening become the latest club to be able to claim bragging rights over Lincoln City, as the Imps slipped to another away defeat.

Lincoln made one change to the starting lineup, with Smith coming in to replace Perry, who has apparently injured himself since Saturday.  I can’t think for a second that he strained anything in that Forest Green game…

Barrow were suffering from an injury crisis of their own, and only named 4 substitutes.  On the face of it, this was a great chance for City to claim some more vital points and continue their fledgling unbeaten run.

The game almost started as brightly as the Forest Green had started poorly as Smith hit the post with a header after only a minute.  The Imps continued to start in an up-tempo mood, keen to get stuck in to their opponents.

Barrow were playing the ball long at every opportunity, and City enjoyed the better possession, but were proving incapable, yet again, of turning possession and midfield play into chances.

On the stroke of halftime, after a scramble in the box had seen the ball cleared off the line, Barrow were handed their breakthrough when the referee gave them a penalty for pushing.  There were no appeals from Barrow players, but equally little protest from City, and Baker duly slotted home the gift.

As the halftime whistle blew, City had yet again been the better team but found themselves trailing.  Basically, no matter how much you tippy-tappy the ball around, if you don’t score, you get punished.  Perhaps Tilson should talk to Alan Buckley about this?  The Barrow keeper never really had anything to do despite City’s possession, and that situation will never win games.

The news that at halftime City had slipped back down to second to bottom shows how precarious the league position still is, and that the 4 points picked up recently haven’t really moved City anywhere in the table – merely kept us afloat.

Barrow started the second half brightly – buoyed by their unexpected halftime lead.  City struggled to regain the possession they had had in the first half, and the game passed by comfortably for Barrow.

In an attempt to shake things up, Tilson brought Barrclough on to play up-front with Smith in yet another combination of strikers for the season.

With 10 mins to go City were handed something of a lifeline when Barrow striker Cook was sent off for a late challenge on Gowling.

In an attempt to push forward, City brought on a defender (Nelson) and a midfielder (O’Keefe).  Apart from Nelson putting a free header wide from corner with his first touch, City failed to exert any pressure on the Barrow goal, and to be honest I had no confidence whatsoever that City would equalise.  As it was they didn’t even come close, and Barrow claimed the win without breaking a sweat in the second half.

The final statistics show that City didn’t have a single shot on target despite their possession in first half (hitting the woodwork doesn’t count for me) – which is absolutely pathetic for professional footballers, and the team really need to look long and hard in the mirror and work out what is wrong, and quickly.

Thankfully, other results ended more favourably and the defeat merely dumps City back into the bottom four.  The match against rock-bottom Bath City next Saturday now becomes vitally important, but to be honest, I dread the reaction of fans (myself included) if City fail to comfortably gain all three points.

1 Danny Hurst
15 Paul Smith
19 Kevin Lomax
4 Andy Nicholas
17 Adam Quinn
16 Jack MacKreth
6 Robin Hulbert
8 Richie Baker
9 Andy Cook
11 Adam Boyes
18 Louis Almond
12 James Owen for Hulbert 14
22 Ryan Brooke for Almond 86
20 Cliff Moyo for MacKreth 90
19 Andy Ferrell

1 Joe Anyon
13 Tony Sinclair
6 Danny Hone
5 Josh Gowling
3 John Nutter
8 Alan Power
10 Ali Fuseini
27 Jean-Francois Christophe
15 Simon Russell
14 Sam Smith
30 Gavin McCallum
19 Bradley Barraclough for Fuseini 72
23 Josh O’Keefe for Christophe 87
16 Mitchell Nelson for Sinclair 90
4 Adam Watts
17 Nicky Nicolau

No comments:

Post a Comment