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FC United secure draw at promotion chasing Blyth Spartans

FC United picked up a hard fought and vital point at play-off chasing Blyth Spartans with a 1-1 draw courtesy of player/manager Tom Greaves’ goal 21 minutes from time.

Greaves shuffled his defensive pack, with Danny Wisdom being restored after his injury lay off. The game started at a brisk pace, the home side seeing the majority of possession but it was FC who looked to make the initial breakthrough when uncertainty in the home defence almost allowed Greaves a run on goal but the lines were cleared.

On seven minutes the home side had a penalty shout when Greg Rutherford fell under a challenge from Matthew Hughes, the referee correctly waving away the appeals. Jarrett Rivers was looking the danger man for the home side and his mazy run almost brought a goal, Lloyd Allinson doing well to smother the ball at the vital moment.

The closest chance to a goal fell to Craig Lindfield on 17 minutes. Joel Senior did well to cut in and play a ball forward that was played towards his own goal by a Spartans defender. For some reason, the assistant raised his flag but the referee correctly waved play on. Greaves crossed to Lindfield who it seemed only had to tap into an empty goal but he fluffed his lines and inexplicably tapped the ball wide.

Two minutes later, Steve Irwin did well on the right hand side and saw his shot beaten away by Peter Jameson. The rest of the half saw the home side with the majority of the ball but neither keeper was tested for the duration.

Blyth came out for the second period like a team possessed and should have taken the lead within two minutes of the restart when a corner from the right found Sean Reid free, but he put his header wide of the goal.

Shortly before the hour the home side did break the deadlock when a ball from deep found Reid through on goal and he made no mistake placing the ball under Allinson and into the goal. Three minutes later, a free-kick into the box was dropped by Jameson but Lindfield saw his shot blocked.

On 69 minutes, the scores were levelled. Kieran Glynn played the ball into the box where it found Lindfield. His powerful shot beat Jameson but crashed against the post and bounced away from goal where it dropped to Greaves who rifled the ball into the roof of the net to the delight of the travelling fans behind the goal.

From that point of the game, Blyth did most of the pressing, Rivers jinking into the box but firing wide. On 90 minutes, a free-kick was awarded to the home side which produced a melee due to Jordan Fagbola holding onto the ball for too long. Once order was restored, the ball found Reid who saw his dipping header drop just wide of the far post.

This was a great battling performance from FC United against a very good side in Blyth and a partizan home crowd. The point should give great confidence going into another tough away game at Kidderminster on Tuesday.

Website Man of the Match - Joel Senior. Up against a tough opposition in Robbie Dale, Senior handled hime very well and offered much in the FC United attack.

Report by Steven Wood

Post Match interview with Tom Greaves

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First Posted ~ 17:08 Sun 21 Jan 2018
News ID ~ 7756
Last Updated ~ 16:47 Sat 27 Jan 2018