Match preview Vs Boston Utd Venue: Aggborough Date: 22-02-22 Kick off: 15:00hrs

21-02-22 - Preview - Kidderminster Harriers Vs Boston Utd

Preview: Phil Lench

Saturday was a day that will live in the memories of all Harriers fans for a long time. Sadly it’ll be remembered for all the wrong reasons.

It started off as a day with good prospects, if a little windy, and a chance to gain ground on the two clubs above us – Brackley Town and Gateshead. We already knew early on that the game between Curzon Ashton and Brackley had fallen foul of the conditions so a win for us would have put us just one point behind them with the same number of games played. The problem was we were playing Alfreton Town.

Now we’ve always done pretty well against them even if they are a bit agricultural in their style of play but we didn’t expect what we saw out there once the game kicked off. From the very first whistle it was blatant shirt pulling and going in a little bit too hard in the tackle. The referee, Sam Mulhall, didn’t seemed too concerned with that and let two bad challenges on Mark Carrington and Luke Simpson pass and the game was only five minutes old.

Matt Preston
Matt Preston
This win is for Matt

Just over double that time later came the shocking injury to loan signing Matt Preston when their defender, Dominic Smith rushed over to the touchline where Matt was and went sliding in to take the ball off him. He got that but he also got Matts ankle at the same time and Matt went down screaming in agony. Some fans nearer the incident say that his ankle was at a right angle to his leg while others mentioned that it seemed to be hanging loose as if it had been completely broken off.

Whatever the injury the referee didn’t seem too concerned as our players nearest shouted for first aid as quickly as possible. The game was halted for the medics to do their job while the ref came over for a cursory glance and then went to talk to the Alfreton players and his assistants about it. Smith wasn’t booked and the crowd just waited for a decision. We waited almost thirty minutes and meanwhile Matt was still being attended to.

Finally came the expected announcement and the game was called off just as the ambulance arrived outside the stadium entrance with the fans making their way home. 

We now know that Matt has a badly broken ankle and will need a series of operations to set it back to how it should be. His loan with us will now be over and if he’s lucky he could be back playing again next season. Whether that’s with his club, Solihull Moors, or with us is an unknown right now. We should be grateful that he pulled a Harriers shirt on for us and gave us some great memories with his super display against West Ham Utd in the recent FA Cup game. Be back soon Matt. 

So we now continue the season against Boston Utd tomorrow without an important team member for us and one that has helped immensely in keeping a clean sheet in every league game he has played for us. Six games in all.

This will be our third meeting with Boston this season after we played them over consecutive weekends, both away from home, before Christmas. The first game was in the league and that ended up as a 2-1 win for us with the goals coming from their former defender, Alex Penny, and Ashley Hemmings. A week later and we were back in Lincolnshire for the FA Trophy but, with a weaker side put out, we lost 4-1 and exited the trophy.

Now we play them at Aggborough and since those two games they’ve seen a change of manager after Craig Elliott was sacked, for reasons known only to his employers, and Paul Cox has come in after walking out on Kettering Town the same day that he was appointed as the new man in charge. Results since then have been poor with just two wins since Cox arrived and United dropping out of the play-off places.

They will need to check on the fitness of striker James Hanson ahead of kick-off but Jake Wright Snr, Andi Thanoj, Paul Green, Jake Wright Jnr and Jordan Burrow will all remain side-lined through injury.

We should be at more or less full strength, except for Preston of course, with Ethan Freemantle now back in the side following his hamstring injury while Cliff Moyo is now back in full training. Geraldo Bajrami was out on Saturday for a minor knock but he may be drafted back in again now to replace the missing Preston. Keziah Martin is the only one really missing but he can’t be too far away from a return.

There’s sure to be another good crowd at Aggborough tomorrow and there’s rumoured to be some kind of recognition of Matts time with us and to wish him well. It’s a bit sketchy at the moment and could include various one minutes applause at different times. We’ll see what happens. Harriers Online are also in the process of arranging something but more on that once things begin to fall into place.

That good crowd should see, on paper, another three points for the Men in Red. Let’s do this for Matt?

Photo © KHFC


Harriers from:

Simpson, Emery, Richards, Cameron, Foulkes, Moyo, Penny, Bajrami, Lowe, Austin, Redmond, Lissimore, Montrose, Carrington, Martin, Freemantle, Bastable, Tolley, Hemmings, Morgan-Smith, White, Sterling-James.

Boston Utd from:

Crook, Dewhurst, Duxberry, Ferguson, Garner, Shiels, Tootle, Bunga, Armond, Byrne, Dimaio, Leesley, Platt, McBeam, Rollins, Sault, Elliott, Hanson, F Preston, J Preston, Sheriff.

Referee: Mr Jonathon Maskrey. Staffordshire

Shanes Opposition Stats Pack:

Away from home in the league: (P11, W3, D2, L6). Fylde 1-0, BPA 1-2, Leamington 2-0, Gateshead 3-1, Chester 4-0, Southport 4-1, Kettering 2-3, Gloucester 0-0, Spennymoor 1-1, Hereford 2-1.

Goals (all competitions): Elliott – 19, F Preston -10, Wright Jnr – 9,  Hanson – 5,  4 while at Farsley, Leesley – 4,  Burrow – 4,  Shiels – 3, Byrne – 3,  J Preston – 2, Green – 2, Garner – 2, Duxberry – 1, Own goal – 1.

The streaks (league only):

Games since last win: 2

Games since last away win: 3

Games since last draw: 0

Games since last away draw: 1

Games since last defeat: 1

Games since last away defeat: 0

Games since last clean sheet: 2

Games since last away clean sheet: 2

The Squad (appearances are starts + sub, includes both league and cups):

Goalkeepers: Peter Crook (P8, conceded 13, saved one out of two penalties), Marcus Dewhurst (P15, conceded 22, saved one out of two penalties. On loan from Sheffield Utd).

Defence: Scott Duxbury (P21, 1 goal), Keenan Ferguson (P28), Scott Garner (P19, 2 goals), Kyron Gordon (P5, on loan from Sheff Utd), Luke Shiels (P30, 3 goals), Matt Tootle (P24), Jake Wright Senior (P5).

Midfield: Finlay Armond (P1), Shane Byrne (P30, 3 goals, two of which were penalties), Connor Dimaio (P14), Paul Green (P19, 2 goals), Tom Platt (P30), Fraser Preston (P27, 10 goals), Ben Sault (P1), Andi Thanoj (P1).

Attack: Jordan Burrow (P23, 4 goals), Danny Elliott (P31, 19 goals, eight out of nine penalties), James Hanson (P2, on loan from Farsley Celtic),  Joe Leesley (P23, 4 goals, on loan from Harrogate Town), Jay Rollins (P1) Jake Wright Junior (P19, 1 goal, one penalty), Jordan Preston (P20, 2 goals).

It’s been all change since Harriers last met the Pilgrims. Craig Elliott got the boot in early January to be replaced by the then Kettering manager Paul Cox three weeks later, after Paul Green took interim charge.

Jake Wright Sr was injured back in November and is still to return, with Paul Green missing the last couple of games with a shoulder injury. Andi Thanoj is expected to have a little bit of time left on his 5 month ban from football which was announced in October for gambling breaches. Also injured is forward Jordan Burrow who picked his knock up the last time the two sides met just before Christmas in the FA Trophy tie.

Sticking with FAT injuries, Jake Wright Jr picked his up against Morpeth in January.

Form under Paul Cox: DWWLD + a loss to Step 3 Gainsborough Trinity in the Lincolnshire Senior Cup on 15/2; their most recent encounter after the Chorley game at the weekend was called off waterlogged.

Talk about the game here

Links to Boston Utd websites here

Find Pubs around Kidderminster here

Previous games against Boston Utd
Played: 47Won: 17Drew: 9Lost: 21
Date H/A Comp: Score Goals Att: (away)
18-12-2021 A FA Trophy 3rd rd 4 – 1 White 975 (48)
11-12-2021 A Vanarama North 1 – 2 Penny, Hemmings 1345 (76)
25-01-2020 A Vanarama North 2 – 0   1278 (79)
07-12-2019 H Vanarama North 1 – 3 Moyo 1102 (86)
11-01-2019 H Vanarama North 1 – 2 Ironside 1249 (54)
01-09-2018 A Vanarama North 0 – 2 Williams, Chambers 1129 (72)
30-03-2018 A Vanarama North 3 – 2 Bradley, Waring 1158 (101)
28-11-2017 H FA Trophy 3rd qual rd replay 2 – 0 N’Gwatala, Ironside 604 (14)
25-11-2017 A FA Trophy 3rd qual rd 2 – 2 Brown, Ironside 732 (58)
02-09-2017 H Vanarama North 1 – 1 Sonupè 1463 (59)
14-04-2017 H Vanarama North 1 – 0 N’Gwatala 2056 (107)
27-08-2016 A Vanarama North 1 – 1 OG 1047 (97)
23-11-2005 A LDV Trophy 2nd rd 0 – 3 Christie 2, Blackwood 1131 (49)
23-04-2005 A Coca Cola League 2 3 – 0   2053 (170)
06-11-2004 H Coca Cola League 2 0 – 4   2208 (124)
08-05-2004 H Nationwide Division 3 2 – 0 OG, Williams 3047 
29-11-2003 A Nationwide Division 3 2 – 2 Hinton, White 2147 (97)
22-02-2003 A Nationwide Division 3 3 – 0   2485 
07-09-2002 H Nationwide Division 3 0 – 0   2222 
16-01-1993 H Vauxhall Conference 0 – 2   954
29-08-1992 A Vauxhall Conference 0 – 3 Davies, Grainger, Forsyth 1228
30-03-1992 H Vauxhall Conference 1 – 3 Davies 1009
31-08-1991 A Vauxhall Conference 1 – 2 Whitehouse 1319
30-03-1991 A Vauxhall Conference 3 – 1 Wilcox 1276
22-09-1990 H Vauxhall Conference 3 – 3 Davies, Howell, Forsyth 1033
03-03-1990 H Vauxhall Conference 1 – 3 Forsyth 1119
07-10-1989 A Vauxhall Conference 2 – 3 Howell, Whitehouse, Forsyth 1409
22-04-1989 H Vauxhall Conference 0 – 2   1163
12-11-1988 A Vauxhall Conference 0 – 2 OG, Davies 1658
02-02-1988 H Vauxhall Conference 1 – 0 Jones 1029
22-08-1987 A Vauxhall Conference 1 – 0   1560
22-04-1987 H Vauxhall Conference 1 – 2 Jones 728
06-09-1986 A Vauxhall Conference 2 – 1 Casey 1009
19-04-1986 A Alliance Premier 2 – 1 Casey 1316
21-12-1985 H FA Trophy 1st rd 5 – 2 Casey 2, Davies, Tuohy, OG 647
30-11-1985 H Alliance Premier 3 – 2 Tuohy, OG, Casey 562
26-01-1985 A Alliance Premier 2 – 3 Powell, McGowan, Hollis 1383
01-09-1984 H Alliance Premier 2 – 0 Powell, Davies 459
10-12-1983  A Alliance Premier 2 – 3 Davies, Roberts, Powell 744
03-09-1983 H Alliance Premier 1 – 1 Jones 443
02-03-1968 A West Midlands League 0 – 1 Marshall  
18-11-1967 H West Midlands League 1 – 1 Henderson  
25-01-1967 A West Midlands League Cup 1 – 2 P Wassall, Gilbert  
19-09-1966 H West Midlands League 0 – 1   2425
22-08-1966 A West Midlands League 4 – 2 P Wassall, Gilbert  
13-04-1959 A Southern League NW 4 – 1 Burns 3580
28-02-1959 H Southern League NW 1 – 1 Staples