Crook Town 2-1 Guisborough Town
|Ebac Northern League Division 1
KO KO 8 34 43 51 65 76 FT
For the second time within five days Guisborough Town failed to capitalise on a promising start as they lost 2-1 at lowly Crook Town.
The Priorymen got off to a flyer at Crook when they took the lead after just eight minutes when a home defender made a hash of clearing a hosted Guisborough cross from out on the left. The ball fell kindly to Guisborough skipper JJ Bartliff who was left with the easy task of slotting home the loose ball from a couple of yards out for 1-0 to the Priorymen.
However, very similar to how the previous Saturday’s match at Seaham unfolded, Guisborough failed to press home their first half domination of the game and turn their superiority into more goals. After the early boost of that Bartliff goal, Guisborough launched several dangerous raids down both flanks with Ben Jackson on the right and Jack Blackford on the left producing some exciting runs.
But as has been happening in recent games, that final killer touch in front of goal was lacking, allowing the opposition off the hook and enabling them to get back into the match. And sure enough, with just two minutes remaining to half-time, Crook were back in the game with an equaliser from right winger Ewan Forster who swept the ball home after Guisborough ‘keeper Robert Dean did well to parry a scorching shot from Crook striker Adam Burnicle but sadly it fell nicely into the path of Forster.
So, the Priorymen went in at half-time kicking themselves for not fully exploiting their earlier promise.
After the interval worse was to follow for Guisborough when they fell behind 2-1 in the 51st minute as Crook swung over a high free kick into the box where Declan Brown headed home despite being surrounded by a posse of Guisborough defenders. The goal stung the Priorymen into action but whenever they attacked the Crook goal the home side got all 11 men behind the ball making it very difficult for Guisborough to make incisive inroads into the Crook defence and penalty area.
Blackford was prominent on several occasions both as an attacker himself and a provider for others and in the 67th minute he put Guisborough left back Liam O’Sullivan in a good position, but ‘Leebo’s’ shot landed just over the bar and on top of the Crook net.
In the 78th minute a brilliant trademark weaving run earned Guisborough a free kick in a dangerous area just outside the Crook penalty area, but the resultant kick hit the defensive wall and was cleared. O’Sullivan was then involved in supplying a good 80th minute cross for Jason Blackburn – a substitute for leading scorer Cole Kiernan who limped off with what looked like a hamstring injury – but Blackburn’s header went wide.
Guisborough’s last chance of salvaging something from the game fell in 91st minute to another substitute, Keelan Wright, who received the ball in a great position to the left of the Crook goal, but his low shot fizzed a foot wide of the far-right post. Guisborough Manager Steve Bell’s post-match comments:
We haven’t been too great for a few games now – honestly to a point where I have definitely even questioned myself over our performances. We are all feeling a little lacking in confidence at the moment and feeling somewhat sorry for ourselves. Tonight’s performance was very similar again to Saturday’s at Seaham where we have suffered when generally controlling the game well.
Look, I’m responsible to Guisborough Town FC and even though currently I’m just the same as the players and suffering at the minute – I’ll come out fighting to sort this out.
|The Sir Tom Cowie Millfield Ground
|West Road, Crook, Co. Durham, DL15 9PW