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Salford City football Club

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Team Sheet

Salford City FC
Kyle Letheren
Scott Wiseman
Ibou Touray
Liam Hogan (c)
Yellow card for Liam Hogan (c)
Adam Rooney

Thomas-Asante 66'

Tom Elliott
Cameron Burgess
Jack Baldwin
Bruno Andrade
Michael O'Connor

Towell 79'

Ash Hunter
Yellow card for Ash Hunter

Conway 66'

Crawley Town
Glenn Morris
Reece Grego-Cox

German 84'

Ollie Palmer
Yellow card for Ollie Palmer
Ashley Nadesan
George Francomb

Allarakhia 72'

David Sesay
Yellow card for David Sesay
Jordan Tunnicliffe
Jamie Sendles-White
Dannie Bulman (c)
Josh Dacres-Cogley
Manny Adebowale

Powell 77'

Chris Neal (GK)
Oscar Threlkeld
Richie Towell
Brandon Thomas-Asante
Craig Conway
James Wilson
Tom McGill (GK)
Ricardo German
Mason Bloomfield
Tarryn Allarakhia
Panutche Camara
Jack Powell
Manager - Graham Alexander
Head Coach - John Yems
Match Officals
Referee - Leigh Doughty
Assistant Referee - Helen Edwards
Assistant Referee - Matthew Parry
Fourth Official - James Bell

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This might not be the first frustrating afternoon at the Peninsula Stadium this season, but it is perhaps one of the more keenly felt. The Ammies were on top for at least 80 of the 90 minutes against a dogged Crawley Town side, yet couldn’t produce the goal that would have earned 3 richly deserved points. The unbeaten run has been stretched to 6 games and a clean sheet is always welcome, but this is a game that really should have been won.

There was a single change to the side that started last week’s draw at Vale Park, with Tom Elliott replacing Brandon Asante up front. Recent signing James Wilson was included among the substitutes.

Crawley looked lively during the opening minutes of the game, but the balance soon tilted in favour of the home side. The first chance came along in the 3rd minute when Bruno Andrade let fly from outside the box. It was a powerful effort that stayed low, but Town keeper Glenn Morris got across to his right to push the ball away. Seconds later Scott Wiseman nudged a pass out to the right for Michael O’Connor who lined up a cross into the middle. Fleetwood Town loanee Ash Hunter got up only to glance his header wide of the far post from 12 yards out.

Early opportunities for Salford and they would keep up the pressure, to some extent, for most of the time that remained. With 7 minutes played Ibou Touray swung in a corner from the left, with the ball spinning off a defender and rolling into space towards the edge of the penalty area. Andrade had a real sight of goal, yet from 16-yards out could only blast a shot high and wide of the target.

Elliott was next to have a go but his left-of-centre chipped effort from the edge of the penalty area dropped over the crossbar. The big striker came close to opening the scoring in the 13th minute as he rose high to meet a Touray delivery from a deep position wide on the left. From 15 yards the header rose before dipping on a course that would take it underneath the crossbar, until Morris pulled off a good save as he tipped the ball over for a corner.

Crawley found themselves pinned back, particularly during the opening half-hour and the Ammies went close again just past the quarter-hour. Andrade passed to Wiseman on the right flank and his cross dropped for Hunter towards the far post. There was considerable defensive pressure to contend with and from 6 yards out Hunter’s header flashed wide of the upright. Soon after that former Lincoln man Andrade tried his luck from 20 yards and right-of-centre, but once again Morris managed to push the ball away to safety.

The Ammies were playing some good football and could easily have been ahead by the time Crawley fashioned their first opening of the game. Ashley Nadesan’s lofted ball forward gave striker Ollie Palmer the chance to break clear and he made a beeline for the penalty area. This looked dangerous but by the time he wanted to pull the trigger home skipper Hogan had got back to put in a decisive challenge. Palmer needed treatment in the aftermath of that challenge and seemed to think he’d been fouled – quite correctly, the referee begged to differ.

A sniff of a chance for the visitors but they would soon have to revert to defensive duties. Hunter whipped in a cross from the left, with Elliott powering in a header from just inside the box that Morris stooped to collect at his right-hand post.

Eleven minutes before the interval Hunter delivered a free-kick, right-footed from a deep position wide on the left. It was probably a little over-hit, yet Morris had to be on his toes to make a catch as the ball threatened to drop inside the far post. The left flank had been productive for the Ammies and just a couple of minutes later Touray zipped in a cross that Morris took at his near post as Adam Rooney closed in.

Half time was approaching when Touray made it to the line and his cross dropped beyond the far post for Andrade. He nodded back inside but yet again there was a black-shirted defender on hand to clear the danger.

The final opportunity of the half came during its final minute as Andrade passed inside from the right for Hunter to crash in a 25-yarder. It was nicely struck but a decent height for the keeper, allowing Morris to make a parrying save.

That was it for a first half that had seen some good football from the Ammies, a number of chances created but critically, none taken.


The second half started in similar fashion, with Crawley looking busy for a few minutes, now attacking the end of the ground where the visiting supporters were accommodated. Josh Dacres-Cogsley slipped inside a Hunter challenge on the right only for his cross to spin off the first defender and behind for a corner that came to nothing.

After that the Ammies would pick up the attacking baton again, although it would take some time for the half to warm up. In the 56th minute midfielder Jack Baldwin picked up a clearance but snatched at his chance, lifting an 18-yarder high over the crossbar.

The opening 15 minutes of the second half hadn’t produced too much of note but following a heavy Hunter challenge on Dacres-Cogley a spot of pushing and shoving ensued. The referee consulted his assistants and the fourth official prior to booking Hunter for the foul, then Hogan and Palmer for their part in the truculence that followed.

In the 63rd minute Crawley had a chance after David Sesay crossed from the left, with giant defender Manny Adebowale getting up on the edge of the 6-yard box. He almost marked his debut with a goal but didn’t get good contact on a header that dropped outside the far post.

At the other end Hunter did well to control the ball on his chest before spinning to hit a volley that dropped over the crossbar.

Salford manager Graham Alexander made a double change midway through the 2nd half, bringing on Craig Conway & Brandon Asante for Hunter & Rooney. There was an immediate impact too, as Asante played a ball inside from the left, with Andrade moving it on to the far side where Conway was waiting. This was a clear chance but from an angle on the right the Scotsman could only drive a low effort outside Morris’ right-hand post.

A good chance gone begging and a couple of minutes later Wiseman’s cross from the right dropped just over Elliott’s head in the middle. Conway delivered a left-footed cross from the right next, with Morris scooping up the ball just before Asante could get there at the near post.

Richie Towell replaced Michael O’Connor with 11 minutes left and Salford searched for the goal that would win them the game. Seven minutes from time Conway’s forward pass sent Wiseman galloping away into Crawley’s half, and after reaching the box he unselfishly squared inside for Conway to pick up possession again. The trigger was duly pulled but the Ammies were having little luck in front of goal as the ball spun of Dannie Bulman and out for a corner.

Asante jinked his way to the line on the left with 4 minutes to play and having almost run out space did well to get a rising effort on target. Morris wasn’t going to be beaten like that, and had stationed himself at the near post to take a routine catch.

The Ammies piled forward and in the last minute of the 90 Andrade advanced through the middle before finding Asante on the left. A quick dart made a yard of space but again Morris was equal to the challenge, pushing the firmly struck shot away to his left.

The referee indicated 5 minutes of time to be added on but having battled hard for so long, Crawley continued to get men behind the ball. There would be no ‘last, big chance’ and the final whistle left Crawley boss John Yems the happier of the two managers.


A disappointing result on the back of a performance that had everything except a cutting edge. The Ammies had 60% of the possession this afternoon, according to the BBC’s statistics, but it seemed like more.

At times this was like a game of “attack and defence” and if Salford had managed to breach a determined and well-drilled rearguard once, it’s quite possible they would have gone on to record a comfortable victory. They certainly deserved all 3 points against a side who harboured only the most modest of attacking ambitions and posed less of a threat than any side to visit the Peninsula Stadium previously this season.

It’s not the first time we’ve been left to reflect on 2 lost points that should have been in the bag, and the Ammies’ play-off push is being hampered by home form that has seen just 4 league wins recorded all season. To put that into perspective, that’s the same number of home victories the EFL Trophy campaign has yielded.

There were plenty of positives, of course. Some of the football today was very good, deserving of more reward. The defence looked tight on the rare occasions it was called into action and - had the elusive goal been found - this would have been an impressive performance.

All to the good, but you have to put chances away when you’re on top. There’s another chance on Tuesday evening when promotion hunting Plymouth Argyle travel north – a solid home win would be exactly what the doctor ordered.

Attendance: 2,385 (290 Crawley Town)