Tamworth  v  AFC Rushden & Diamonds

Sat 1 Apr - 15:00 Southern League Premier Central




AFC Rushden & Diamonds

AFC Rushden & Diamonds

Match Report

With six games remaining for The Lambs and the race for the title hotting up Andy Peaks welcomed his former club to the CR MOT Community Centre stadium.

Rushden’s relegation had been confirmed the previous weekend while Tamworth were defeating in-form Royston Town on their own turf but the visitors would not be a push over having recorded two draws and then a win in midweek in their last three outings, including their first consecutive clean sheets for some time as the pressure came off, and had not picked up points on the road since the end of September.

Tamworth on the other hand had to keep up the momentum and hope Coalville slipped up in their remaining fixtures. Leiston, in third were welcoming fourth placed Rushall and the Pics would have a hand in things in midweek to, travelling to Coalville for the Ravens game in hand over The Lambs as Peaks made no changes to the side that ran out at Garden Walk.

Diamonds got the game underway and advanced on the Lambs area with Anker trying a speculative effort and there was a brief stoppage while Mussa received treatment.
After the initial flurry by the visitors, Tamworth started to take control and keep the ball in the final third. Curley’s throw was dangerous and put behind for a corner on the right on 7 and it came out to Jellis but his shot from outside the area was blocked.
A very strong run following a quick burst of speed from McKeown saw him bare down on Snedker on 10 but the keeper was able to smother his low shot and prevent the opening goal of the afternoon.
McKeown took the ball all the way to the touchline again on 13, and forced a corner on the left.
Cockerill-Mollett forced Snedker to parry his left footed strike over the bar on 15 and although former Diamond Dolman got his head to the corner it he couldn’t direct it on target.
Collard, who had scored against his former club in both the away fixtures this season, then got his head onto a Mussa ball into the box on 18, but Snedker was equal to it again.
But the visitors took the lead in the 23rd minute through a superb strike from Pinto-Leite who picked his spot from 25 yards and fired it past Singh in off the right hand post to the delight of the travelling faithful. (0-1, 23 mins)
Tamworth nearly responded from the kick off but a long throw found Creaney and his header dropped on the onto the top of the net as the whistle blew for a foul in the build up.
A Mussa made a foray forwards, Milnes was unable to continue and had to get treatment on the field on the half hour and Deacon replaced him.
The substitute picked a spot from 20 yard on 37 but could only find the grateful arms of the Rushden keeper and then Fairlamb jinked and feigned a shot in the box to force another flag kick. Jellis loaded the corner and it came out to Creaney but his strike screwed high and wide of the mark, as Coalville took the lead in their game.
Tamworth pushed as the half time whistle came into view, but Cockerill-Mollett and Creaney found their way blocked, and then Mussa, on the edge of the area, saw his shot charged down and cleared as the half time whistle blew.

HT 0-1

Tamworth restarted proceedings and immediately forced a corner on the right through Cockerill-Molletts’ deep cross which was put behind and Collard headed wide of the far post from the back of the area.
McKeown was then released into the box and there looked like a shade of a possible handball but the number 7 continued and lobbed Snedker only to see it drop agonizingly past the far post.
Cockerill-Mollett made the visiting defence concede another flagkick in the next play and it came out to Mussa and Jellis who found McKeown on the right, but his half volley rose high over the target.
Diamonds were kept on the ropes as Jellis tried to find Deacon but his touch in the box took it away from him and Creaney. Cockerill-Mollett’s 54th minute whipped in cross found the head of Deacon but his cushion back went into an otherwise empty danger area and Rushden cleared easily.
A rare strike from the visitors saw White drag his shot from the edge of the box wide but only by virtue of a deflection and Jellis was able to clear the danger but only as far as Anker who shot wide of the left hand post from 20 yards.
The Lambs thought they had taken the lead on 58 when Fairlamb beat his marker and crossed to the near post perfectly, but the offside flag denied Creaney’s header and his 37th of the season.
Cockerill-Mollett’s attempt from the left channel took a touch off a Diamonds defender on 61 and Jellis’ corner was taken at height by Snedker ahead of a well-positioned Creaney.
Jellis threaded the ball to Deacon on 62 and another corner resulted but it was too high for Collard at the far post as it seemed that the visitors, who were being continually penned back and defending in numbers, were able to get in the way of everything The Lambs were throwing at them.
McKeown got his head onto Cockerill-Mollett’s cross but his effort ballooned up and failed to trouble Snedker.
Cockerill-Mollett then picked up a card for a foul on Anker on the right and Singh missed the deep freekick but was saved by a cheeky backheel from Dolman, and as the keeper launched the ball away Cooper was also booked for blocking him.
A frustrated Lambs bench was penalised with a booking for Champelovier and from the ensuing play Snedker smothered Creaney’s goalbound header on the line.
Finn replaced Fairlamb on 74 and nearly got onto the end of a McKeown knock back but it was put over the bar for a corner which was cleared, and at the other end White curled a shot from the left channel a yard wide of the right hand post.
Collard tried, unsuccessfully, to get the ball away from Anker as he advanced down the left on 78 and it too ka well timed tackle from Curley to put the ball behind for a corner as he bore down on Singh.
Finn forced Snedker into a stop at his near post with a low shot from the edge of the area on 80 but spilled it and somehow recovered to push it around the post for yet another flagkick, but a foul halted play as The Lambs loaded the box.

On 82 Deacon headed down for Creaney but his shot on the turn was blocked but from the ensuing play Finn chipped into the area and Creaney fed Deacon to take it down and take it past his marker before firing past Snedker to lift the roof off The Lamb with the sides 100th goal of the campaign (1-1, 82 mins)
Another corner was forced on 85 as an expectant Lamb ground looked on but when pressing high up the field Anker was able to advance over the halfway line and take it all the way to the box before firing past the exposed Singh to restore the lead for the bottom of the league club (1-2, 85 mins)
A deep ball into the area by Creaney on the left on 90 saw Curley and Deacon go up with Snedker and the keeper needed treatment on the field before play could continue as the game went into stoppage time.
And then with the time running down, Deacon stole into the box and prodded it home to make it all square once again (2-2, 92 mins)
Rushden pushed forward in the dying moments with Marian forcing Mussa to defend strongly and conceded a corner on the left which came to nothing and Tamworth made one final push themselves but the whistle prevented last minute win and Coalville’s victory saw The Lambs surrender the top spot for the first time since September.

Singh, Curley, Cockerill-Mollett, Mussa, Collard, Dolman, McKeown, Milnes (Deacon 32), Creaney, Jellis (Jones 79), Fairlamb (Finn 74)
Subs: Willett, Meikle
YC: Jellis 64, Cockerill-Mollett 69

AFC Rushden and Diamonds
Snedker, Agemoh-Davies (Corden 60), De Matos, Harriman, Hughes, Waller, Pinto-Leite, Glennon, Cooper, Anker (Marian 89), White
Subs: Dean, Black, Massignham
YC: Cooper 70

Referee: Mr. Matthew Jackson
Assistants: Mr. Broadhurst & Mr. Nestor

Att: 1027

MOM: Chosen by sponsors GST Home Serve, Mountain Rescue England and Wales: Mussa and Fairlamb

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