Match report Vs SouthportVenue: Haig AvenueDate: 22-04-19Att: 956 (away fans: 138)

22-04-19 - Report - Southport 2 Kidderminster Harriers 2

Milan Butterfield scores his first goal for the Harriers

Report: Phil Lench

A dire end of season affair saw the Harriers somehow grab a draw a point and also saw Milan Butterfield score his first ever goal at a professional level. We could have actually won the game at the death when the Southport keeper, Dan Hanford, blocked a shot from substitute Jaiden White on the line when it looked in all the world as if it was going in.

In typically windy conditions for the coast the Reds lined up with Tom Palmer starting in goal again even though Brandon Hall was on the bench giving the impression that Hall may be leaving the club very soon and it was time to blood Palmer some more in readiness for next season. Harry Higginson was also getting another start, his first since his debut at AFC Telford Utd in January, replacing the injured Ryan Johnson. Russ Penn replaced the wimp Harry Flowers.

For the first forty five minutes of the game there was very little to excite the senses with two poor teams hoofing the ball from one end to the other and then back again on the hard, dusty pitch. It was obvious that finances at Haig Avenue don’t stretch to a hose pipe.

Half chances fell to both sides but no one seemed to be capable of actually converting one until a minute into injury time when Dion Charles pounced on a long ball to drill a shot beyond the reach of Palmer.

HT: 1 – 0

The second period was more of the same with the Harriers now kicking into the increasing breeze. Southport came close to doubling the lead when Jack Sampson screwed a ball wide after a defensive error let him through and then soon after Joel Taylor went down injured and had to be stretchered off to applause from both sets of fans. We took the opportunity to make a double substitution and on came Josh Heaton in place of Taylor and Kane Richards in place of Higginson.

The change seemed to work as we began to look more adventurous and the pace of Richards stated to give Southport problems trying to deal with him. A couple of minutes after the change we drew level through the Harriers Online sponsored Milan Butterfield.

The ball was bobbling around in the area without anyone able to clear it properly but then it fell to Milan who tried his luck from eighteen yards out to fire the ball back in through a ruck of players and into the net. The celebrations didn’t last long though because within a few minutes the Port had gone back in front when Palmer fumbled a shot from Matthew Platt back to the waiting Charles who rounded the stranded keeper and slipped the ball gratefully into the net.

 Harriers confidence took a bit of a knock and we just about contained Southport for a while until for reasons only known to himself their keeper, Hanford, decided that it would be good idea to drag Kane Richards to the floor with the ball rolling away from them. It all started with a corner taken by Ed Williams that was floated towards the far post where Fraser Horsfall was waiting to lob a shot against the cross bar. The ball bounced away and as Richards chased it to hopefully return it back in again the keeper swung him to the ground.

Following a minute of arguing with the referee Hanford wasn’t booked for his discretion and returned to his line before diving the wrong way for Joe Ironsides penalty. His seventh converted penalty of the season and his sixth consecutive game in which he has scored.

With the game beginning to run down, and Southport sending a couple of chances over the stand, we made our final change with Ashley Chambers going off to be replaced by Jaiden White. Three minutes into the four minutes of injury time and White had a chance of glory when he got himself onto the end of a cut back from Richards and fired goalwards only for Hanford to see the ball late and then somehow get his body in front of it before it was cleared to safety.

Once the final whistle went it capped our final away game of the season but not one of our best. We struggled at the start, along with the home team, but an improvement in the second half made for much better viewing for the Harriers followers. Hopefully we can sign this poor season, by our standards, off at home to a now safe Guiseley and possibly rise to the heady heights on ninth place. 

FT: 2 – 2

Goals for Southport: Charles 46, 65

Goals for Harriers: Butterfield 61, Ironside 74 (pen)

The Harriers Online MotM is: Milan Butterfield

Talk about the game here

Latest table and stats here

Southport Goals Subs Time Cards
J Richards        
Wood   81  
Green   81  
Harriers Goals Subs Time Cards
Taylor   58  
Higginson   59  
Chambers   86  
K Richards   59  
Heaton   58  
White   86  
Mr Adam Williamson