Match report Vs Nuneaton BoroughVenue: Liberty WayDate: 10-11-18Att: 549 (away fans: 150)

10-11-18 - Report - Nuneaton Borough 1 Kidderminster Harriers 1

Harriers stop the bottom club curse

Report: Phil Lench

The Harriers bought an end to the recent run of losing to the bottom club, at Nuneaton Borough today, with a 1-1 draw in a game that looked at times that it would be certainly ending up scoreless. We weren’t playing with the confidence of a club in with a chance of going top of the table with mistakes littering our play, a lack of combativeness and an urge to shoot on sight.

With Declan Weeks out with an illness James Baxendale came in for his second start of the season – the first coming against Atherstone Town in the FA Cup. On the bench was our ‘new’ signing Russ Penn who was alongside two of the players that were rumoured to be going to York City in exchange: Joe Ironside and Kennedy Digie. Ironside, along with Ashley Chambers and Billy Daniels were appearing against their former employers while for Nuneaton Ashley Carter and Dior Angus once wore the famous shirt of red.

The game kicked off in the wake of a heavy downpour that had cleared in time for the start. Chambers had an early chance to open the Harriers account when he should have seen the Boro keeper, Cameron Belford, way off his line but instead opted to try and dribble his way forward only to find himself pushed out wide. He passed the ball out to Dan Bradley who shot wide and the chance was gone. 

There was little after that worthy to write about.  Neither side seemed to have the inclination to want to score and any chances were half chances to be easily dealt with by keepers and defenders.

It took until almost the break before we saw another credible effort on goal from us when Joel Taylor fired straight at the keeper after being played in by Bradley.

HT: 0 – 0

The patient, and quiet, Harriers fans were hoping for better in the second half but it was going to be a long time coming. No changes also meant no change to the way we were playing and it was more of the same.

Ten minutes in came our first attempt on goal this half. Dan Bradley did well to chase an over hit ball to the line and with great skill lofted it into the area for Chambers to try his luck. The ball stood up well for him and his shot was heading for the back of the net until it took a deflection and went just wide.

Soon after we were awarded a free kick on the edge of the area. It took us a while to decide who was going to take it until it was given to Taylor to do the deed. First though the referee, Amy Fearn, decided to move the Nuneaton wall closer to the ball after thinking they might be at a disadvantage by being a yard further away that they needed to be. Taylor fluffed it!

At that stage it was time to ring the changes and on came Russ Penn for his comeback came after ten years away. James Baxendale, surprisingly because he had looked one of the very few actually doing anything worthy, was withdrawn for him. Penn is obviously rusty but he put his foot in where it was needed in the middle of the park even if his passing wasn’t up there with what we remember. It’ll come though. He’s still learning. 

Three minutes after the change we took the lead. Ed Williams – having yet another quiet game –  took a free kick out wide and in the melee to get on the end of it James O’Connor won the scramble after Belford dropped the ball and couldn’t retrieve it. The ball forced over the line gave us the goal that no one saw coming.

We had to hang on to the lead and that was going to be difficult. We began to take the game to the opposition more in an effort to increase the lead but that was going to leave holes at the back and that’s just what happened. A quick break saw Nuneaton surge forward unhindered as Harry Panayiotou fired towards goal. O’Connor made a last minute block to stop it going in but the rebound fell well for Panayiotou but he blasted it over.

A few minutes later and old faults came to haunt us. Poor defending allowed Boro to get too close to our goal and when the ball was half cleared by Lee Vaughan it fell right for substitute Rhys Davies to lash it back in a beyond the reach of Brandon Hall.

We then began to play as befits our position and started to test Belford more. Chances fell for Williams from a free kick and Joe Ironside, on for Chambers, with a header that the keeper touched over.

That was as good as it got though and another lack lustre showing from the Harriers didn’t turn out as we wanted. The spark just isn’t there at the moment and we have to get it back soon. Like next Saturday ‘soon’.

FT: 1 – 1

Goal for Nuneaton: Davies 77

Goal for Harriers: O’Connor 66

The Harriers Online MotM is: Brandon Hall

Talk about the game here

Latest table and stats here

Nuneaton Borough Goals Subs Time Cards
Calveley   46  
C Richards        
Davies 46  
Harriers Goals Subs Time Cards
Baxendale   63  
Chambers   86  
Bradley   77  
K Richards   77  
Ironside   86  
Penn   63  
Ms Amy Fearn