NFU 0 Curzon Ashton 0 (NLN)

Vanarama National League North
20 February  2016

North Ferriby United  0        Curzon Ashton  0       

Attendance: 353

Despite dropping two points, Ferriby remain in third place in the Vanarama National league NorthHowever, the major surprise by the end of this game was that it had ended goalless after Curzon had to play with just 10 men for over an hour. But in the end Curzon deserved their point for some solid, if at times, desperate defending.

The game started at a furious pace and Curzon should have taken the lead in the second minute. Matthew Crothers attempted to go round Ferriby keeper Adam Nicklin but drew contact from the keeper as the ball headed towards the touchline. The referee pointed to the spot. Joe Guest’s penalty was pushed on to the bar by Nicklin and the ball was cleared. The decision seemed hash and perhaps justice was done with the save

Within a minute, Nicklin produced a diving save  to save Ryan Brooke’s powerful header. This was Curzon’s last major threat on goal as Ferriby then started to take hold of the game.

Ferriby’s  top scorer, Liam King, hit a shot at keeper Hakan Burton before  Curtis Bateson had a number of attempts that went close.

The sending-off of Curzon’s  Matthew Crothers after 34 minutes for dangerous play disrupted Curzon’s tactics. Up to this point they had looked threatening going forward with Guest and Crothers linking well with Niall Cummins and Daniel Cockerline. They  now had to change their game plan and sit behind the ball and depend on quick breaks and free-kicks to offer a threat.

From this point on, Ferriby dominated the game in terms of territory and possession but they ran into two solid walls of four in Curzon’s midfield and defence.  And behind them was Burton who made tremendous close-range reaction saves from Danny Clarke, Curtis Bateson and Wayne Brooksby  in the second-half. Burton also saved a number of other efforts both before and after half-time and was confident in dealing with crosses.
 Before half-time, Bateson, twice, and Danny Clarke went close.

With Guest continuing tp prod and probe and Niall Cummins working hard up-front, Curzon did make some quick breaks in the second-half but did not create any clear chances.
Ferriby’ onslaught on the Curzon goal was almost relentless. At times there were twenty players in the Curzon half.
In all, The Villagers had 22 attempts on goal, 12 of them on-target.

Ferriby manager Billy Heath was disappointed after the game.

“This would have been a big three points today and we had more than enough chances to have got a goal or two.  Credit to their keeper for some really good saves but we should have put our foot through the ball and left him with little chance make the saves.

“It’s often difficult against 10 men but we have no excuse for not winning.  There were times when the ball didn’t drop for us and defenders were able to clear. On another day, the ball may have dropped for us and we’d have nicked a goal.

“We need to pick ourselves up and keep going. I’ve told the players that it would be more disappointing and worrying if we were not making chances. But we are and the goals will come. It just needs a little more confidence.

NFU:   (4-2-4) Adam Nicklin, Ben Middleton, Josh Wilde, Liam King, Ash Palmer, Danny Hone, Danny Clarke, Russell Fry (Adam Bolder 54),  Tom Denton, Danny Emerton (Wayne Brooksby 56), Curtis Bateson,  Subs not used: Sam Topliss, Nathan Hotte, Mark Gray 

Curzon Ashton: (4-2-4) Hakan Burton,  Simon Woodford , Connor Hampson, Jonathan Hunt,  Matthew Flynn, Chris Rowney,  Joe Guest Matthew Crothers,  Niall Cummins (Matthew Warburton 73), Daniel Cockerline (Michael Norton 87),  Ryan Brooke. Subs not used:) Daniel Shaw,  Ben Atkinson, Cameron Mason 



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