BAR­NETT THE MAIN MAN IN DE­BUT TO RE­MEME­BER

Striker plays role of su­per sub

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Chris Phillips

TY­RONE Bar­nett paid back the first in­stall­ment of his big money move to Shrews­bury Town by bag­ging a bril­liant late equaliser against Southend United – much to new manager Micky Mel­lon’s de­light.

Bar­nett joined the Shrews on trans­fer dead­line day from Peter­bor­ough United in a deal be­lieved to be worth six fig­ures.

And he made an im­me­di­ate im­pres­sion on his de­but, cap­i­tal­is­ing on a rare mis­take from Southend goal­keeper Daniel Bent­ley to fire home from an acute an­gle, leav­ing Mel­lon grin­ning from ear to ear.

“It was great for Ty­rone to come on and get the goal and that’s ex­actly why we brought him in,” said Mel­lon.

“As soon as Southend scored we went to a back four and changed things at the other end too.

“I think that changed the course of the game and it cer­tainly made us more of a threat.

“We wanted to be more phys­i­cal in the fi­nal third and I think we were.

“We know we weren’t at our best and when that hap­pens you have to show dif­fer­ent qual­i­ties.

“You have to battle and we did that here.

“We dug it out and we’re pleased with a point against a team who are up there with us on merit.”

The share of the spoils main­tained Shrews­bury’s un­beaten home record

but it also saw them slip off the top of the League Two ta­ble and down to third in the stand­ings.

The Shrews threat­ened early on with Bobby Grant drag­ging a low shot wide of the left post, but for the rest of the first half Southend were on top.

On-loan Charl­ton Ath­letic man Joe Pig­ott saw a close-range header well saved by Shrews­bury goal­keeper Jayson Leutwiler be­fore the keeper also smoth­ered Adam Thomp­son’s well-struck vol­ley from Ben Coker’s left-wing cor­ner.

Af­ter the break Shrews­bury were back on top with Ryan Woods hav­ing a well struck shot from 20 yards smartly smoth­ered by Bent­ley.

But, with 54 min­utes on the clock, Southend went in front with top-scorer Jack Payne bag­ging his sev­enth goal of the sea­son.

The at­tack­ing mid­fielder was picked out well by Michael Tim­lin be­fore ri­fling a ris­ing right-footed shot in to the top right-hand cor­ner of the net.

Southend al­most dou­bled their lead when Pig­ott curled an 18-yard shot inches wide of the right post but Shrews­bury then be­gan to get back into the game.

Con­nor Goldson saw a close-range header palmed away by Bent­ley be­fore the keeper was at fault for the Shrews’ equaliser five min­utes from time.

The young shot-stop­per spilt the ball when at­tempt­ing to stop a cor­ner be­ing con­ceded and that en­abled sub­sti­tute Bar­nett to fire an im­pres­sive ef­fort into the back of the net from an in­cred­i­bly acute an­gle, via the in­side of the right post.

And Shrimpers boss Phil Brown was full of praise for Bar­nett who ad­mit­ted he was also in­ter­ested in sign­ing the for­ward.

“We looked into sign­ing Ty­rone but were quoted a fig­ure of £300,000 which we couldn’t af­ford,” said Brown.

“I think you saw what he’s all about here be­cause although you can say it was a mis­take from the keeper it was still a fan­tas­tic fin­ish.

“He made a dif­fer­ence when he came on and it was dis­ap­point­ing we weren’t able to hang on for the win and a put a real marker down against a top side.

“I would’ve taken a point be­fore the game but I cer­tainly wouldn’t have taken it at half-time be­cause I felt we were the bet­ter team.

“But I think drawing here has shown we’re real ti­tle con­tenders and we need to take that in to the two home games we have com­ing up next week now and keep do­ing what we are do­ing.”

CON­TEST: Shrews­bury's Cameron Gayle left, chal­lenges Southend’s Joe Pig­gott for the ball

PIC­TURES: Me­dia Im­age Ltd

HOOK: Ty­rone Bar­nett gets the bet­ter of Southend keeper Dan Bent­ley to find room to shoot and score

STAR MAN MICHA

EL TIM­LIN Southe

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