Match report Vs Blyth Spartans Venue: Croft Park Date: 23-04-22 Att: 671 (away fans: 50)

23-04-22 - Report - Blyth Spartans 1 Kidderminster Harriers 1

Simpson red card as Harriers fail to win again

Report: Phil Lench

The Harriers keeper, Luke Simpson, was sent off near to the end of this disappointing draw at Blyth Spartans today when he was deemed to have handled the ball outside his area. If it was because he stopped a goalscoring opportunity or not is open to conjecture because if that was the case then a red card is correct but if it wasn’t then it should only have been a yellow card. We await the video evidence and possibly a chance to appeal.

As it was it was to make no difference to the result, even after Mark Carrington replaced him in goal, because we didn’t look likely to score again following Amari Morgan-Smiths early goal for us. Following that tenth minute opener for us we didn’t have another shot on target for the remainder of the game.

The third draw in a row now leaves AFC Fylde – who came from a goal down at Boston Utd to win 3-1 – needing just one more win to finish in third place. If our results in the final three games don’t improve then we could find ourselves down to fifth place if they go the way of Chorley FC instead.

We started the game with two changes following last Saturdays home draw against Kettering Town. Morgan-Smith returned following his precautionary resting while Nathan Cameron started in place of Joe Foulkes who went to the bench. New signing Corey Panter was an un-used substitute on the bench.

As mentioned we opened the scoring in the tenth minute through AMS when he scrambled the ball home from a corner and after that we piled on the pressure in search for a second with Omari Sterling-James and Ashley Hemmings both coming close but not close enough.

The home side, struggling to escape the relegation zone, came close through Nicky Deverdics when he sent a corner into the box and JJ O’Donnell got on the end of it but his strike went over the bar. A minute later Corey McKeown cut inside and went for a shot intended for the far corner but it went wide of the post. A few minutes later and they had drawn level when, from another corner, Toby Lees climbed above our defenders to nod the ball down into the net.

The half continued with Spartans claiming the lions share of the action and chances while the Reds moved into backs to the wall mode to see the half out.

HT: 1 – 1

The second half wasn’t much different to the first for us but Blyth had the first chance of the half, Lees coming close again. Our first foray forward came soon after Ethan Freemantle came on for Morgan-Smith, on the hour, with a header that looped over the bar.

We began to get more of the ball but did very little with it. All of our attempts on goal coming from long range from Alex Penny and Hemmings and easily dealt with by the Blyth keeper, Alex Mitchell.

In the eightieth minute it all went wrong for us. First Penny got booked and then a minute later came the Luke Simpson episode. Carrington went in goal and the attacking manual was ripped up to be replaced with the ‘Eleven Bodies Backs To The Wall’ manual. We weathered the storm as best we could with only Michael Liddle managing to get a shot in.

The game ended soon after and we now know that the odds are stacked against us in getting third place and if we aren’t careful it’ll be the same for fourth place. We have just three games to look something like play off contenders. 

FT: 1 – 1

Goal for Blyth Spartans: Lees 30

Goal for Harriers: Morgan-Smith 11

Talk about the game here

Latest table and stats here

Blyth Spartans Goals Subs Time Cards
Maguire   43  
Cappello   68  
Reid   68  
Djalo   43  
Harriers Goals Subs Time Cards
Penny   81
Morgan-Smith 59  
Sterling-James   59  
Montrose   59  
Foulkes   81  
Freemantle   59  
Mr John Mulligan