Match report Vs Curzon AshtonVenue: Tameside StadiumDate: 05-02-18Att: 200 (away fans: 50)

05-02-18 - Report - Curzon Ashton 1 Harriers 2

Harriers get a long overdue away win at Curzon

Report: Phil Lench

The Harriers finally won on the road this evening when a 2-1 win at struggling Curzon Ashton gave the Reds a long overdue win away from Aggborough. Our last away win came at Stockport County back in October last year and the win also carries on our unbeaten away run with our last defeat coming at Tamworth in September.

Sadly, for a team hoping to gain promotion, tonights victory was only our fourth away win of the season. Something that needs to be improved on if we hope to stay in the fourth place that we now find ourselves in.

The starting line-up was the same that beat Southport 3-0 a couple of weekends ago with the only change coming on the bench where Dan Bradley returned from injury. Andre Wright made way for him on an, otherwise, unchanged bench.

It was the Harriers that had the better of the first half although it was the hosts that came the closest to scoring after just two minutes with Matt Regan heading Sam Walkers free kick against the bar heading. Jonathon Hunt headed the rebound back but it went over the bar.

Our first chance on goal came from an unlikely source when James O’Connor broke forward but his strike was blocked before it reached the Curzon keeper, Cameron Mason. The keeper saved our second chance again a few minutes later when a free kick from James McQuilkin was bent around the wall but Mason did well to stop it going in.

Straight away we had three more chances to score with McQuilkin striking the foot of the post with the keeper beaten then Joe Ironside seeing his header from close range saved by Mason. His best save was saved for Elton N’Gwatala though when the Harriers creative midfielder got past a defender to find himself one on one with Mason. Somehow he got down to Eltons shot to keep his side in the game against the odds.

Our best chance though came from Fraser Horsfall when he met Declan Weeks cross into the area but again that man was there to keep his side in the game with yet another fine save.

Curzon then got only their second chance of the half when Ben McKenna tried to score from distance but his shot went well over the bar. Just before the break Ryan Croasdale also had a shot go over the bar following good work from N’Gwatala in setting him up with the chance while Brandon Hall finally had a save to make when he tipped James Baillies free kick over the bar.

HT: 0 – 0

The second half started as the first half ended with the Harriers on top with Emmanuel Sonupè having an early chance to open the scoring when his shot went wide from an Ironside ball into him. He was to make amends just two minutes later though when this time he turned provider after breaking down the left to slide a ball in just right for Ryan Croasdale to smash the ball into the net with Mason, this time, helpless to stop it going in.

We upped the pressure once more to go in search of that all important second goal but it didn’t come straight away as we were again denied by Mason. A Lee Vaughan cross found Ironside lurking but his header wasn’t enough to beat the keeper as it got tipped over the bar once more.

Then suddenly, against the run of play, Curzon drew level. Substitute Aaron Dwyer had just come on for Oliver Thornley and his cross was met by the head of Jonathon Hunt who sent the ball beyond the reach of Hall and into the back of the net. That goal gave the hosts fresh hope so we sent on Dan Bradley in place of Sonupè in an attempt to improve our midfield a little. 

Elton went close with a header that went just wide of the target while Dwyer again found space to chip a ball over our defenders and also, thankfully, just over the bar. A minute later and we had taken the lead once again.

George Waring had only been on the pitch a few minutes and had already came close to converting a cross into the box. A minute later Bradley sent a cross in and this time Waring made no mistake to score his second goal since joining us a few weeks ago. He collected the ball in off Bradley and then took it around the keeper to place it into the back of the net and put us back on course for all three points once more.

We could have increased the lead further through N’Gwatala when another good ball in from Bradley set him off towards goal only to find Matt Regan in his way to tackle him cleanly and rob him of the chance. With time running out Waring had another chance to score when McQuilkin played him in but his low shot through a ruck of defenders was saved by Mason once again.

After four minutes of injury time the whistle finally went on a hard earned away win for the Harriers and a long overdue one at that. The win takes us above Spennymoor Town in the table but they have two games in hand over us. Ironically we play them in Durham this coming Saturday and it’s a game that has six points worth written all over it.

FT: 1 – 2

Goal for Curzon: Hunt 71

Goals for Harriers: Croasdale 50, Waring 80 

Talk about the game here and phone the Harriers Hotline on 01905 577 777 after the game too

Latest table and stats here

Curzon Ashton Goals Subs Time Cards
Thornley   68  
Baillie   83  
Baker   75  
Wharton   83
Dwyer   68  
Dunwoody   75  
Harriers Goals Subs Time Cards
Ironside   73  
N’Gwatala   85  
Sonupè   67  
A Brown        
Pearson   85  
Waring 73  
Bradley   67  
Mr Ricky Wootton