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Salford City football Club

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Team Sheet

Salford City FC
1
Tom King
4
Jason Lowe
Yellow card for Jason Lowe
5
Ash Eastham (c)
1 goals for Ash Eastham (c)
6
Corrie Ndaba
8
Matthew Lund
1 goals for Matthew Lund

N'Mai 87'

9
Tom Elliott
10
Ash Hunter
Yellow card for Ash Hunter
11
Josh Morris

Wright 76'

16
Jordan Turnbull
32
Liam Shephard
37
Brandon Thomas-Asante

Oteh 76'

Northampton Town
1
Liam Roberts
3
Aaron McGowan
4
Jack Sowerby
5
Jon Guthrie
6
Fraser Horsfall (c)
7
Sam Hoskins
8
Paul Lewis
1 goals for Paul Lewis
10
Dylan Connolly

Kabamba 59'

14
Ali Koiki
17
Shaun McWilliams

Pinnock 59'

32
Danny Rose
Yellow card for Danny Rose

Etete 87'

Substitutes
12
Zach Jeacock
2
Donald Love
7
Tyreik Wright
14
Matty Willock
20
Aramide Oteh
24
Andy Smith
30
Kelly N'Mai
Substitutes
26
Jonny Maxted
2
Michael Harriman
9
Nicke Kabamba
11
Mitch Pinnock
1 goals for Mitch Pinnock
12
Scott Pollock
16
Jordan Flores
19
Kion Etete
Managers
Manager - Gary Bowyer
Managers
Manager - Jon Brady
Match Officals
Referee - Anthony Backhouse
Assistant Referee - Lewis Raper
Assistant Referee - Steven Rushton
Fourth Official - David Richardson

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Match
Report

Skipper Ash Eastham snatched a point for Salford City with an injury time equaliser against visitors Northampton Town. The Ammies had to come back from behind twice to earn a share of the spoils, and that was the least they deserved to take from this entertaining match. Not the win that we wanted, but a good performance against a top 4 team that could easily have yielded all 3 points.

There were changes from the side that started last Saturday’s disappointing defeat at Tranmere. With left-back Ibou Touray beginning a 3-game suspension thanks to a red card picked up at Prenton Park, Corrie Ndaba switched from the centre to the left of a four-man defence. That opened up an opportunity for Jordan Turnbull to return to the starting XI, partnering Eastham in central defence against his former club.

Further upfield Ash Hunter & Tom Elliott were drafted in, with Matty Willock & Tyreik Wright among today’s substitutes. Also on the bench was former Queens Park Ranger Remi Oteh, who signed for the club on Friday.

The game got off to a lively start and Salford could well have gone ahead within the two minutes. A Hunter corner from the left dropped to the far post where Turnbull rose to head back inside. The ball fell temptingly for Brandon Thomas-Asante who tried an acrobatic hooked effort from 7 yards that was instinctively parried by Cobblers’ keeper Liam Roberts.

Almost a dream start for the Ammies but they soon had some serious defending to do. Jack Sowerby’s pass picked out Ali Koiki on the left. A decent ball inside found Danny Rose whose shot was saved by Tom King before the offside flag relieved the pressure. In the 10th minute home defender Corrie Ndaba’s attempt to usher the ball back to King almost came to grief when Sam Hoskins nipped in to prod a low effort towards goal. The Salford keeper had advanced almost to the edge of his area and managed to deflect the shot to safety off his left foot.

The Cobblers were enjoying a very decent spell and took the lead with 16 minutes played. A long Hoskins throw from the right was headed on at the near post by Rose. The home defence stood still as PAUL LEWIS popped up at the far stick to place a 6-yard header back across King and into the net.

Northampton continued to look dangerous and could have doubled their lead on 20 minutes. A Hoskins through-ball sent Danny Rose on a run that took him past the stretching Turnbull and into the area. The Cobblers’ forward almost got a yard on Eastham but when the shot came in Salford’s captain was on hand to get in a vital block.

Looking good for the visitors, but they would be pegged back in the 24th minute. Elliott met a Josh Morris cross from the right on the far side of the area, outmuscling Aaron McGowan to cushion a header back and to the edge of the box. MATTY LUND opened his Salford account to snatch a dramatic winner against Bradford a fortnight ago, and here he hit a first-time rising half-volley that beat Roberts’ dive to the right.

A great strike from the former Rochdale man and the home side began to see much more of the ball. Chances weren’t easy to come by however, and we had to wait until 5 minutes before half-time for the next opportunity. Ndaba picked up possession on the left before laying a pass back to Hunter on the edge of the area. He’s more than capable of converting chances like this but on this occasion couldn’t keep his 18-yarder down.

In the 43rd minute Hunter nudged a pass to Elliott who beat his man before sliding the ball through to Thomas-Asante. A silky build-up from the Ammies but Thomas-Asante’s shot was saved by Roberts.

There were 3 minutes of time to be added on but although Salford spent them on the front foot, there would be no more opportunities to threaten Roberts’ goal.

HALF-TIME: SALFORD CITY 1 NORTHAMPTON TOWN 1

Salford were attacking the School End during the second half and they started well. Just a couple of minutes after the restart a Josh Morris corner was met by Turnbull whose header seemed to crash into defensive partner Eastham. Soon afterwards a long thrown from Thomas-Asante was flicked on by Turnbull, with Morris inches away from providing a finishing touch.

Another long throw caused confusion in the Northampton defence and a spot of pinball ensued with the ball eventually being hacked off the line.

Salford just about denied, and despite that spell of intense pressure the game was still all-square.

Proceedings gradually became more even with goalmouth action at a premium for a while. In the 69th minute Northampton substitute Mitch Pinnock delivered a corner from the left, with the ball dropping just over former Salford loanee Fraser Horsfall’s head at the far post.

Modest attacking fare, although the Ammies were still seeing more attacking possession than their opponents.
With 15 minutes left Thomas-Asante & Morris made way for Wright and Oteh as Gary Bowyer looked to freshen up his side’s attacking options.

There would be a goal right after those changes, but it would go – somewhat against the run of play – to Northampton Town. Once again the defending wasn’t everything it could have been as McGowan launched a cross from the right towards the far post. PINNOCK was on the end of it and made the most of the space he had been afforded by getting in a 5-yard header that King got a hand to without being able to claw it away.

The Ammies were up against it and despite stretching the Northampton defence they were struggling to create clear-cut openings. Time was ticking away and with 5 minutes left Hunter’s cross from the left evaded everyone in the area before clipping off the base of the far post and away to safety.

Would it be another of “those days” for Salford? It certainly seemed as if it might be, although hopes were raised as the referee indicated an additional 7 minutes due to a stoppage that led to Northampton’s Rose having his head bandaged.

The Cobblers were pressed back as those additional minutes were played, but in the 4th of them they conceded an equaliser. Hunter again found space on the left and his deep delivery to the far post was a belter. Koiki and EASTHAM were both in the running to meet it but there was only ever likely to be one winner as Salford’s skipper slid home a dramatic leveller from just a couple of yards out.

No more than Salford deserved, and they kept the pressure on for the time that remained in the hope of securing a winner. It wasn’t to be, but a point is better than nothing and the home fans showed their appreciation at the final whistle.

FULL-TIME: SALFORD CITY 2 NORTHAMPTON TOWN

A point against the team that started the afternoon in 4th position might seem an acceptable outcome, but Gary Bowyer will feel – with some justification – that his side might have had all three.

Salford dominated possession for large portions of the game and perhaps the only criticism might be that Northampton keeper Roberts wasn’t tested enough. Question marks will hang over the defending for the Cobblers’ two goals, with both Lewis and Pinnock given too much time and space to tuck away their free headers. Those sort of mistakes need to be cut out if wins are to replace draws and defeats.

This draw leaves the Ammies in 19th place in League Two, just a couple of points ahead of basement side Oldham Athletic. On the other hand, they’re only 5 points outside the play-off places in what promises to be a tight league. Performances have been uneven at times, but that is a false position for a team that haven’t always reaped the rewards they’ve deserved so far.

Next up is a long trip to Colchester next Saturday – a first away win of the season might just usher in a change of fortune and a winning run that could transform the campaign’s complexion…

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