TOWN’S CENTRE-BACK UNION HEAP HOME WOE ON DEV
DELIGHTED assistant boss Paul Thirlwell saluted a job well done after Harrogate Town ended a run of three successive away defeats with an impressive win over Maidenhead at York Road.
Centre-backs Callum Howe and Kelvin Langmead sealed victory for Town – sandwiching an effort from Maidenhead’s Adrian Clifton – while the visitotrs also struck the woodwork twice in a dominant display.
For Thirlwell, it was reward carrying out a gameplan centred on getting quality ball in from the flanks.
“It’s an excellent result on a tough day in tough conditions,” he said. “The lads had to dig in, but we were tremendous.
“The message was to get the ball into wide area where we have good players who can deliver quality into the box, where we have got forwards who can score goals, hence how many we have got this season.”
An early run and shot from the excellent Ryan Fallowfield set the tone for the visitors who led on 11 minutes.
Ayo Obileye made a hash of trying to clear George Thomfor son’s ins-winging corner and when goalkeeper Pentney could only tip the ball onto the bar, Howe followed in to head home.
Jack Muldoon came within inches of doubling the advantage with a shot against the post and Joe Leesley was only denied by a combination of Pentney and some last ditch defending, his eventual effort scrambled off the line.
It was a surprise when Maidenhead levelled in controversial circumstances on 24 minutes.
Goalkeeper Belshaw conceded an indirect free-kick when
referee Lloyd Wood ruled Langmead’s touch a back-pass.
More controversy followed when Clifton deflected the resulting set-piece home from almost on the goalline. Wood and his assistant conferred in the wake of Harrogate protests, but the goal stood.
Even then, Harrogate would have gone to the break in front had Jack Emmett not lashed wastefully over after Leesley’s shot had been parried. The second-half was tame by comparison aside from Leesley’s shot deflected against the post. But with 14 minutes left Langmead atoned for his earlier error, hooking the ball home after Maidenhead were caught napping from yet another corner. The Magpies are still without a home win sibce September and boss Alan Devonshire said: “When you are at the bottom and you lose, you can’t pull positives out of it. We need to get results.
“You can’t be conceding from two set-pieces. People have got people to mark. That’s just basic stuff, you can’t have that as an excuse.”