First Team vs. Romulus (2 : 2)
Evo-Stik League First Division South
Mark Shaw started his second spell at the helm of the World’s First Football Club by ending a five-game losing run, writes Stuart James, as Sheffield FC drew 2-2 against Romulus at the notorious Coles Lane ground.
Club had looked for all the world a more composed and confident side than the one that had lost 3-0 at Leek in midweek, and were cruising after an early Ben Algar strike, until an Andrew Gascoigne red card swung things in favour of the home team. Two goals in quick succession from Romario Martin and Louis Harris put Roms in front, before a red card for the home keeper changed the complexion of the game, with Jack Brownell levelling matters 20 minutes from time.
Sheffield started well on the front foot with Romulus having difficulty clearing their own lines, with Ben Algar proving a pain down the left, supplying Jack Brownell with a cross that the youngster headed just over.
On 11 minutes Algar swung a corner in, it was only cleared back to the full-back who curled an effort that rattled the post, struck the keeper Matt Sargeant – the post again – before rolling into the net. ALGAR of course deservedly claiming the goal.
Sargeant made amends for his comedic keeping error by denying Joel Purkiss with a fingertip save, then denying Brownell, not once – but twice.
Romulus eventually found their way into the game, but for all their pressure the attack was toothless, that was until the 38th minute when the game’s axis was moved dramatically in a freak accident that saw Andrew Gascoigne and Roms’ skipper Malaki Farquharson collide after an awkward bounce of the ball.
Both players had gone in with eyes on the ball; Gascoigne led with his foot, Farquharson with his head, and despite no malicious intention on the part of either player, referee Tallis produced a red card for the Sheffield player based on the injuries of home captain.
With one man short, Sheffield took time to adjust their shape, and Romulus took immediate advantage by levelling from a Wallen cross that MARTIN finished from close range.
The hosts were well on top and nearly took the lead straight away, as Louis Harris saw his shot deflected wide. From the corner Matthew Martin swung the ball in, HARRIS making the most of slack defending to head home.
Club came out battling in the early moments of the second half, and within five minutes matters were level – only in the sense of playing numbers – as Matt Sargeant inexplicably swung a haymaker at a strewn Richard Adams in the box, the referee deciding with the help of his assistant Mr McKittrick that a red card was the just reward.
Substitute keeper Billy Spink was thrown into action, and was soon the hero, stopping fine efforts from Gregory and Purkiss.
There was nothing he could do on 70 minutes though, as BROWNELL picked the ball up on the right flank, cut in and smashed it into the far top corner to make it 2-2.
Whilst that was it for the scoring, Sheffield could and should have grabbed all three points, after some great work set up Purkiss in on goal and with the ball on his favoured right foot – sadly the striker took too long on the ball and sent a tame left-footed effort straight at the keeper.
Romulus: Sargeant, Evans, Walford, Farquharson, Jackson, Hill, Francis, Fitzharris, Martin. Subs: Branch, Deakin, Wallen, Baigent, Spink.
Sheffield FC: Parkin, Turner, Algar, Robson, Colbear, Adams, Roney, Gascoigne, Purkiss, Gregory, Brownell. Subs: Smith, Dawes, Goodwin, Price, Sykes.
|Richard Adams ©||more|