Harrogate Town

Harrogate Town 1 – 2 Ebbsfleet United

17 February 2019

A goal three minutes from time, sent Town down to ninth position in the National League, after a physical encounter with Ebbsfleet United.

Simon Weaver made one change from last Saturday’s visit to Dover, recalling Callum Howe in place of Jack Senior.

It took only eight minutes for Fleet to take the lead when Michael Cheek rose highest from a Jack Payne corner to head the ball past James Belshaw.

After an enforced five minute break, while Referee Pollard had to be replaced by the fourth official, Anthony Tankard, because of injury, Ebbsfleet continued to dominate, with Payne shooting just wide from twentyfive yards.

Town were finding it hard to get into the game and were pegged back by the visitors aerial assaults and a series of long throws into the area.

Town survived a tremendous goalmouth scramble which saw the ball hit the inside of the post and bounce clear before Ryan Fallowfield booted the ball upfield to reduce the pressure.

However, Town rode out the storm and the half hour either side of the break was their best period of the match.

Jack Muldoon played in Jack Emmett who forced Fleet keeper, Nathan Ashmore, to make a brilliant save and from  George Thomson’s resulting corner, Warren Burrell headed narrowly over the bar.

Emmett’s speed was a constant threat to the Fleet’s defence and he won a corner from which Thomson found the head of Liam Kitching, but visiting skipper Andy Drury, managed to hook the ball off the line, with Ashmore beaten.

As the break approached, Corey Whitely, almost doubled Fleet’s lead, when he hit a superb shot from just outside the box, but Belshaw made an excellent save to turn the ball over from just inside the angle of post and bar.

The second half was only five minutes old when Town scored a deserved equaliser.

A smart counter attack saw Josh Falkingham find Fallowfield on the right and his slide rule pass into the area enabled Muldoon to shoot low past Ashmore.

A powerful strike by Emmett brought out a fine diving save from Ashmore, but at the other end it took a brilliant last ditch tackle from Burrell to rob Jack King when he looked poised to score.

Town had a late chance when they were awarded a free kick on the edge of the area, but Lloyd Kerry’s effort was kept out by Ashmore.

A Falkingham run into the area was ended when he went down under a strong challenge but the referee waved away Town claims for a penalty.

It looked as though the Wetherby Roaders would have to be content with a draw, but with three minutes left, a free kick to the back post was headed back across goal and Drury sidefooted past Belshaw from close range.

A late Lloyd Kerry header just cleared the crossbar, but the final whistle went with Town still 2-1 in arrears, so it’s on to Chesterfield next Saturday where we hope to resume winning ways.


Belshaw, Fallowfield, Falkingham, Howe, Burrell, Thomson(Mottley-Henry 68), Emmett, Beck, Kerry, Muldoon(Williams 77), Kitching.

Unused subs, Senior, Cracknell, Woods.                 Booked Kitching.

Scorer, Muldoon 50.               Man of the Match   Emmett ,                     Att.1488

Ebbsfleet United,

Ashmore, King, Magri, Adams, Drury, Weston, Cheek(Kedwell 89), Payne, Whitley(McDonald 85), Bush, Wilson.

Unused subs, Miles, Moncur, Omar                     Booked Ashmore

Scorers, Cheek 8, Drury 87.

Referee Christopher Pollard, (replaced by Anthony Tankard due to injury on 15 minutes).

By John Harrison


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