The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE TWO - By Ge­orge Thorpe

GLENN ROEDER seemed to make a divine in­ter­ven­tion on Good Fri­day as rel­e­ga­tion threat­ened Steve­nage bagged a point at pro­mo­tion chas­ing Ox­ford United.

The for­mer West Ham boss took up a man­age­rial ad­vi­sor role on Thurs­day and just mo­ments af­ter pop­ping down to speak with care­taker man­ager Darren Sarll dur­ing this game, By­ron Har­ri­son lev­elled.

United, who are still sec­ond in League Two, had John Lund­stram sent off for a two-footed tackle on Michael Tonge in the 16th minute, mean­ing he will miss the Johnstone’s Paint Tro­phy fi­nal at Wem­b­ley if Ox­ford are un­suc­cess­ful with an ap­peal.

Liam Ser­combe missed a penalty on the verge of half-time be­fore putting the hosts ahead, but Har­ri­son’s equaliser ended a run of five straight de­feats for Boro.

When asked about Roeder’s in­put, Sarll said:“Glenn came down and pro­voked some thought, just say­ing ‘think about this, think about that but you make the de­ci­sion’, and then I turned around and we scored, so it all went out of the win­dow.

“He proved what type of man he is and it will only help me de­velop and help my de­liv­ery to the play­ers. Only good things will come from that in the end.

“It wasn’t the best per­for­mance I’ve seen, but I was pleased with the re­silience and men­tal­ity shown by the play­ers and it has fin­ished our week off pos­i­tively.”

De­spite be­ing a man down, United still looked the bet­ter side go­ing for- ward while Chey Dunk­ley cleared any balls which came near their area.

Boro goal­keeper Jamie Jones bun­dled over Danny Hyl­ton on the stroke of half-time, but then made amends by sav­ing Ser­combe’s penalty.

United’s luck was not up though and in the 58th minute Ke­mar Roofe cut in from the left and found Ser­combe in the box, who chested the ball down and made no mis­take this time round.

Apart from a cou­ple of Greg Luer shots, both off tar­get, Boro had barely threat­ened and with 22 min­utes left, Roeder ap­peared on the touch­line.

About 60 sec­onds later, the equaliser came as Tom Pett, Luer and Har­ri­son com­bined in a neat move with the lat­ter fin­ish­ing it off.

United boss Michael Ap­ple­ton was un­happy with the red card de­ci­sion, which his coun­ter­part ad­mit­ted was harsh as well.

“It was not a dan­ger­ous tackle, he was al­ways in con­trol of him­self, it was one-footed and he won the ball,” Ap­ple­ton said.“We will ap­peal it.

“I still think it is dif­fi­cult to re­gard this point any other way than good. But we won’t truly see how good a point it is un­til Mon­day.

“We made the op­po­si­tion have just one shot on tar­get and a lapse of con­cen­tra­tion from us, per­haps be­cause we had been down to ten men for so long, is what cost us and that’s dis­ap­point­ing. Once the lads dust them­selves down, I’m sure they’ll see how good a point it was af­ter all.”

PIC­TURES: Ac­tion Images

WELL DONE, SER! Ox­ford’s Liam Ser­combe fires his side in front

TOP STOP: Boro’s Jamie Jones af­ter sav­ing a penalty


EY Ox­ford

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