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Salford City football Club

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Team Sheet

Salford City FC
1
Chris Neal
2
Scott Wiseman
Yellow card for Scott Wiseman

Hogan '70

3
Ibou Touray
4
Gus Mafuta
6
Carl Piergianni
9
Adam Rooney (c)
1 goals for Adam Rooney (c)
10
Danny Lloyd
1 goals for Danny Lloyd Yellow card for Danny Lloyd
11
Tom Walker

Maynard '82

18
Danny Whitehead
Yellow card for Danny Whitehead
23
Nathan Pond
1 goals for Nathan Pond
30
Rory Gaffney

Rodney '90+3

Barrow
13
Andy Firth
2
Connor Brown
3
Dan Jones
Yellow card for Dan Jones
4
Jason Taylor
1 goals for Jason Taylor
5
Josh Granite (c)
7
Jack Hindle

Barthram '66

8
John Rooney
10
Josh Kay

Burgess '78

11
Nathan Waterston
19
Tyler Smith
24
Lee Molyneux
Yellow card for Lee Molyneux
Substitutes
5
Liam Hogan
7
Nick Haughton
8
Lois Maynard
12
Max Crocombe
21
Devante Rodney
Substitutes
14
Luke Burgess
20
Raul Correia
21
Jack Barthram
23
Kyle Jameson
25
Steven Jennings
Managers
Manager - Graham Alexander
Managers
Manager - Ian Evatt
Match Officals
Referee - Rebecca Welch
Assistant Referee - Terry Fletcher
Assistant Referee - Jonathan Maskrey

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Match
Report

Away form may need a bit more work but The Peninsula Stadium is certainly becoming something of a fortress as the new season develops. After an opening day draw versus Leyton Orient the Ammies have beaten pacesetters FC Halifax Town, fancied Chesterfield and now Barrow. This was a good game of football and Salford had to work hard in order to overcome a Bluebirds side who have enjoyed a good start under the revitalising guidance of manager Ian Evatt.

There were two changes from the side that started at Havant & Waterlooville on Saturday, with Tom Walker and Gus Mafuta in for Liam Hogan and Lois Maynard. The Ammies adopted a 4-4-2 formation for this game and started very positively indeed.

Within the first few minutes Barrow keeper Andy Firth had to react quickly to smother a dangerous loose ball inside his 6 yard box as Adam Rooney closed in. An enterprising start for the home side and they looked lively without managing to force Firth into any more early action.

The first solid opportunity of a typically grey Bank Holiday afternoon went the way of Barrow and came after 12 minutes. The Bluebirds were showing signs of settling having had to concentrate on the defensive side of their game for a while. Lee Molyneux attacked on the left after collecting a great cross-field ball from John Rooney. Salford full-back Scott Wiseman slipped as he attempted to keep pace and Molyneux cut a low ball back into the path of Josh Kay. A square pass to the right set up Jason Taylor for a strike on goal but although his 20-yarder was nicely struck it was straight at Chris Neal in the home goal.

The 500 plus Bluebirds gathered behind Firth’s goal required little encouragement to make themselves heard and they were roaring their approval again a couple of minutes later. Another crisp build-up from the visitors moved possession forward and John Rooney slipped a great little forward pass into the right-hand side of the box. Kay was onto it in a flash and his rising, angled effort took a deflection off the covering Ibou Touray, with the ball going out for a corner.

There was more defending for Salford to do and Nathan Pond got in a great challenge on Kay as the Barrow man looked set to get clear. In terms of attacking the Ammies had been quiet for a while but almost created something seconds later as Adam Rooney lifted a pass forward from wide on the left, with Walker setting off in pursuit. Frith had already shown himself willing to sweep up when the occasion demanded it and he was out very swiftly here to punt clear.

Walker was involved again within another minute of play, delivering a free-kick from deep on the left. Adam Rooney got there first but he was under pressure from a defender and the ball spun off his head and high over the bar from 15 yards out.

The Bluebirds had done well after absorbing that early Salford pressure and took the lead in the 20th minute. Former Oldham full-back Connor Brown pushed forward with intent on the right and his ball inside tempted TAYLOR to have another go. The decision paid off in fine style as a thumping low shot from the edge of the box squeezed just inside the base of Neal’s left-hand post on its way into the bottom corner.

A fine strike from the former Fylde man and the Bluebirds were decent value for their lead. They had a chance to add to it midway through the first half after Wiseman and Pond got into a muddle and the latter had his pocket picked by a determined combination of Jack Hindle and Tyler Smith. It was Hindle who emerged with the ball at his feet and a diagonal run took him from wide on the left, just inside Salford’s half, into the penalty area. It looked as if the worst Barrow would get out of this was a shot on goal but, not for the first time this season, Carl Piergianni had read the impending danger. The big defender got across to intercept Hindle’s run then put in a beautifully timed ball-winning challenge.

The Bluebirds were on top but in the 29th minute Salford scored a goal of real quality to get themselves back on level terms. Danny Whitehead advanced through the inside left channel before stroking a long square pass for Adam Rooney on the right. From the edge of the area and just inside the angle the Irishman unleashed a low Exocet of a shot that gave no Firth no chance as it arrowed inside his right-hand upright.

A 6th goal of the season for Adam Rooney whose ability to finish is already looking to be a key weapon in the Ammie armoury.

Ten minutes from the interval good work from Rory Gaffney on the right pressured Dan Jones into a mistake. Barrow keeper Frith failed to get in a clearance but this time Adam Rooney couldn’t take advantage, with a low effort that was wide of the keeper’s right-hand post. The pendulum had swung in Salford’s favour since their equaliser and in the 37th minute Danny Lloyd found space to hit an 18 yard left-footer from right-of-centre that Firth was able to save comfortably.

Walker was the next to threaten as he drifted into the area from the left before trying a lofted effort that seemed to take a deflection on its way beyond the far post. No corner was given and the half’s last chance of note came during its final minute. Hindle had been lively during the opening 45 minutes but could only shoot high and wide from the edge of the area after a bustling run on the left.

Whitehead was booked for a foul on Taylor during time added on and the game would get a little bit tetchier at times after the interval.

HALF TIME: SALFORD CITY 1 BARROW 1

All square as the players emerged for the second half and that was probably a fair reflection on the game so far. Salford started this half as they had the first – pressing forward and looking for a chink in Barrow’s defensive armour. Three minutes after the restart Lloyd floated in a good cross but Adam Rooney couldn’t quite meet it and the ball dropped out for a goal kick.

Bluebirds manager Ian Evatt was yellow carded – apparently for kicking a water bottle – in the 51st minute. Evatt’s frustration stemmed from a soft free-kick given to Salford but there was less doubt about Jones’ foul on Lloyd that saw the Barrow man follow his gaffer into the book soon afterwards.

Hindle was still giving Salford’s defence some problems and after being played through on the left by John Rooney he could only steer a rising effort high and wide of the far post. Within a minute Neal’s miskick presented the former Radcliffe man with an unexpected and good chance yet he planted a shot straight back at the keeper.

Salford living a little dangerously there but they would establish a two goal cushion within the next few minutes . Adam Rooney closed down Frith whose attempt at a clearance was deflected up in the air before being nudged behind for a corner. Lloyd took the set-piece from the right and it was POND who rose highest at the far post, nodding a header downwards from 6 yards and inside Frith’s right-hand post.

A blow for Barrow but there was more bad news for the travelling Bluebirds less than 2 minutes later. Touray’s cross from the left dropped towards the far side of the penalty area where Hindle used his right arm to control the ball before getting in a clearance. How much Barrow’s number 7 knew about his transgression is open to debate but the assistant on the far side had little doubt, indicating that a penalty should be awarded. The referee concurred and LLOYD slammed a rising spot-kick to the keeper’s left. Frith went the right way and seemed to get both hands to the ball but the shot was too powerful and Salford were 3-1 up.

Hindle was replaced by Jack Barthram a few minutes later as Barrow looked to find a way back into this match. The enthusiasm of the supporters who had travelled down from Cumbria seemed undiminished as they urged their side on and this game certainly wasn’t over yet. A couple of corners were won and from the second John Rooney hit a left-of-centre 22-yarder wide of Neal’s left-hand upright.

There was a touch of controversy in the 69th minute as Wiseman was directed to the touchline after a nasty cut opened up on his cheekbone. A swinging Tyler Smith elbow seemed to be the source of that unpleasant injury yet the Barrow man escaped censure while Wiseman was booked for making his feelings clear to the fourth official.

Wiseman would need stitches in that wound and was replaced by Liam Hogan who slotted straight into the vacated right-back position.

The Bluebirds were doing their best to grab a 2nd goal that would give them some hope of sharing the spoils. Rooney burst into space on the right, outside the area, getting almost to the line before dropping a cross towards the far post. Nathan Waterston was the target but Hogan got there to nod the ball out for a corner. The set-piece was worked out to Kay who, from 30 yards out and a central position got in a shot that dipped a foot over the crossbar.

Salford were getting forward too, aware that another goal for them would effectively wrap up the points. Mafuta did well to win a corner and Lloyd’s cross from the right dropped towards Piergianni at the far post and 6 yards out. Despite the considerable presence of Taylor, Piergianni got in to head towards goal but the effort was blocked and Barrow were able to clear.

The Ammies looked increasingly comfortable as the full-time whistle approached and it seemed that Barrow, who had played at pace all afternoon, were finally running out of steam. With 9 minutes to play however substitute Luke Burgess teed up John Rooney but he couldn’t keep the subsequent shot down. There was still life in the Bluebirds yet…

Lois Maynard came on for Walker after that as Graham Alexander looked to protect that two goal advantage. Barrow were still going for it though and 2 minutes from time Smith was awarded a free-kick just outside the penalty area. Lee Molyneux lined it up, 20 yards out and just to the right of the ‘D’. He hit it sweetly too and Neal had to get down smartly to his right to make a good save as Smith closed in at speed.

Waterston played Molyneux into space on the left during the 1st minute of time added on and the cross that followed was a good one, dropping into the 6-yard box. There were Barrow shirts on hand but so was Piergianni who got in a top drawer defensive header, flicking the ball beyond the far post for nothing more than a corner. Great work from the former Boston man who has a priceless knack of being in the right place when balls are pumped into his side’s penalty area.

A spirited response from Barrow and they were awarded another free-kick about 60 seconds later. Rooney took this one, curling in a low delivery from right-of-centre but although Smith stooped to make contact with his head, the ball evaded him by inches on its way just wide of the far post.

That was that and Salford had taken 3 points from an entertaining hard-fought game, contested by two sides who tried to play football.

FULL TIME: SALFORD CITY 3 BARROW 1

A very solid win for the Ammies against one of the better sides they have faced this season. Ian Evatt’s Barrow team were attack-minded and well organised and on another day might have returned home with a point. The Bluebirds narrowly avoided relegation last season but performances like this will further raise hopes of involvement at the other end of the table come the business end of the campaign.

As for Salford – this win takes them into the top half of the table, just 4 points behind leaders FC Halifax Town. Form at The Peninsula Stadium has been good, with 10 points out of 12 in the bag – now we must see an improvement on the road.

On Saturday the Ammies make another long journey south, this time to play Dagenham & Redbridge. Peter Taylor’s side have taken just 1 point from their 7 games so far and although nothing can be taken for granted, this does present Salford with a realistic chance of posting their first away win of the season.

It won’t be easy of course, but if some of the attacking, creative play we saw today can be repeated against the Daggers, it might just be a happy journey home.

Attendance: 3,012 (512 from Barrow)

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