Match report Vs SouthportVenue: AggboroughDate: 03-11-18Att: 1513 (away fans: 63)

03-11-18 - Report - Kidderminster Harriers 1 Southport 4

Hapless Harriers Horror Show

Report: Harriershane

When one looked at the fixture list only a month ago the run of games against FC Utd of Manchester, Leamington, Southport and Nuneaton Borough looked like a perfect opportunity to get twelve points and pile the pressure onto Chorley. The pressure is on them but not from us, it seems, thanks to a loss that one fan told me was the worst performance he had seen in thirty years.

Prematch confidence abounded as those who went to Leamington on Tuesday regaled those less fortunate of the tales of total football and great goals.

Neil MacFarlane named an unchanged team on the day Harriers could go top and that’s where the good stuff ends. Liam Watsons’ Southport are a team who are struggling, not that you would know it, because when Jack Sampson took aim from twenty five yards out and found the back of the net, via the post it was gutcheck time. Oh how they failed that test!

Whilst Harriers shrunk, Southport grew and allowed their predatory instincts to run wild over their meek and mild mannered prey and you knew Southport were going to double their lead. It was a question of when, not if. Twenty three minutes on the clock and it was 2-0. Jordan Richards was allowed time and space for a cross which found striker Jason Gilchrist who guided a lovely glancing header into the far corner past Brandon Hall.

Now it really was gutcheck time. Oh how they failed that as well!

Southport continued on their march and Sampson almost got his second before David Morgan tried to join the Southport scorers from thirty five yards after the ball was given away once again by the Harriers. 3-0 came after thirty three and what a farce that was too. A Reagan Ogle throw in with no real quality on it somehow snuck in at the near post through a body of players. The visitors celebrated with Sampson who falsely claimed his second of the game, whilst others claimed Joel Taylor or Ryan Johnson got the final touch.

If this was a boxing bout, the referee would be waving it off after Harriers shakily got off the canvas. He didn’t. To continue with the boxing metaphor, Southport came out of the neutral corner, claimed centre ring and dropped Harriers again immediately after; Dion Charles making it 4-0. Even the most ardent and optimistic of fans couldn’t dream about “doing a Newport County or a reverse Salford City”.

HT: 0 – 4

The first Harriers shot came via former Southport man Declan Weeks. He fired well over from distance.

On the pitch were Sam Austin (for Lee Vaughan), Kane Richards (for Dan Bradley) and Joe Ironside (for Ryan Johnson) as the manager looked to salvage some respectability and changed the system. Harriers were allowed to play a bit more in the second half but Southport always looked value to add to their four goal haul.

Harriers at least grabbed a consolation goal through captain Jimmy O’Connor who diverted an Ed Williams low drive into the back of the net with twenty minutes to play. An act of defiance it was not as the visitors managed the second half with timewasting, although at 4-0 and 4-1 that seemed a bit desperate.

I suppose even the players didn’t know what was going on! Jordan Richards, Charles and Gilchrist all had chances to add to the Port’s goal tally but mercifully, it stayed 4-1. The referee managed to find eight minutes of injury time and in a merciful mood he was not; playing the full duration to torture the remaining Harriers fans some more.

As he blew to end the game he was drowned out by a chorus of boo’s that had earlier been laughter when the man of the match had been announced. An embarrassing day all round and something that cannot be repeated again: it took bottle, effort, courage and desire to remain until the end of that game. Those who did contributed more and put in more effort than those wearing the shirt.

Results like this are part of the reason we have been unable to win big games in the last eighteen years. We blamed fate when Wrexham AFC defeated us in that great season; we blamed John Eustace for the defeats in the play offs to Chorley and Bradford Park Avenue. Perhaps we are just systematic bottlers at heart?

Weak minded, flat track bullies who are more than susceptible to a bloodied nose every so often. Whatever it is, it needs sorting and fast, lest the club’s promotion of the Chorley game be in vain.

FT: 1 – 4

Goal for Harriers: O’Connor 68

Goals for Southport: Sampson 3, Own goal 32, Gilchrist 22, Charles 34

The Harriers Online MotM is: Still thinking about it but definitely not the sponsors choice

Talk about the game here

Latest table and stats here

Harriers Goals Subs Time Cards
Vaughan   46  
Johnson   46
Bradley   46  
K Richards   46  
Ironside   46  
Austin   46  
Southport Goals Subs Time Cards
J Richards      
Gilchrist 82  
Homson-Smith   82  
Mr Lewis Smith