Chorley v Harrogate Town match report

A late penalty sent Town down to their second league defeat of the season, at Victory Park,Chorley.

Chib Chilaka replaced the injured, Jon Paul Pittman,otherwise Town were unchanged from the side which defeated F C United in Tuesday’s replay.

Peter Crook was called into early action when he had to turn Jason Walker’s header over the bar from a Mark Challoner centre, while for Town Andy Gascoigne shot across goal, after being played in by Chilaka.

The dangerous, Dale Whitham,forced Crook into a diving save and then Walker headed a Sefton Gonzales cross onto the bar with Crook stranded out of goal.

In an evenly balanced game the pendulum swung back towards Town as the half progressed.

Joe Leesley made his presence felt with a run and shot over the bar, before soon afterwards, creating room for Chilaka,but keeper Sam Ashton cut out the Town striker’s searching cross.

At half time, Chilaka made way for Luke Shiels and Town made a bright start to the second period.

Jack Emmett had a shot blocked after the Magpies only half cleared a Leesley cross, and five minutes later he almost diverted another Leesley cross past Ashton.

Warren Burrell’s through ball released Joe Colbeck on a penetrating run, which ended with him shooting over the bar.

At the other end, the Town defence had a charmed life as they survived two tremendous goalmouth scrambles in as many minutes,as Chorley cranked up the pressure.

The game appeared to be heading for a stalemate,but with fourteen minutes left, Jason Walker picked up a Gonzales pass, and broke into the Town area,where he was brought down by Shiels.

The Town defender was duly sent off by Referee Kevin Mulraine,and Adam Blakeman lashed the ensuing penalty into the corner of Crook’s net.

Town hit back strongly, with captain,Danny Ellis pushing forward to head a Leesley corner just over the top, while Ashton kept out a Leesley cross shot with his legs.

As the game entered four minutes added time, Tom Platt headed an Andi Thanoj centre wide of the post and an opportunist shot on the turn from Colbeck flashed the wrong side of the upright as Town looked for a leveller.

Unfortunately, it was not to be and Town returned home to lick their wounds and prepare for next Saturday’s cup tie against F C Halifax Town.

Town,
1 Crook, 2 Colbeck 3 Turner, 4 Thanoj,5 Ainge, 6 Ellis (c), 7 Emmett (Purkiss 83), 8 Burrell, 9 Chilaka (Shiels 45),
10 Gascoigne (Platt 57), 11 Leesley.
Unused subs,15 Thirlwell,18 Stewart. Bookings Turner,Platt. Sending off Shiels, Att.1214

Report by John Harrison.

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