|March 19, 2022||3:00 pm||MFL Premier||2021-22|
Midland Football League
Saturday 19th March 2022
Tividale 2-2 Highgate United
Tivi hit the High’s after the Low’s
For the second consecutive Saturday, Tividale found themselves 2 goals down at one point but unlike the game at Stourport a week ago they were able to salvage a point out of this week’s situation
Manager Dave King made a couple of personnel changes and a couple of positional changes. But stayed with the 4,3,3 formation from the week before. In came Louis Connor between the stick’s and Lucas Muckley for his first start at left back. This enabled Darragh Bustin to play in a more forward role. The players that missed out from last week being Peter Hawk and Ethan Muckley.
In a half dominated by the high wind. It was Highgate who were the better side in the opening skirmishes and Kyle Carey had the first decent effort shooting wide after just 5 minutes. On 9 minutes Highgate were back at Tividale when again with the ball swirling in the wind Charlie Stanton got the better of Tividale Defender Dan Bryson. His initial shot was blocked by Connor who gathered the ball at the second attempt
Tividale’s first effort of note came in the 16th minute when Bustin fired one high and wide. That was a rare foray in the Highgate penalty area and the visitors had another great chance in the 26th minute when from a Joe Blowers corner. Nathan Pulisciano arrived at the back post unmarked but was only able to hit his shot into the side netting. On 32 minutes Jay Clements tried an effort from range for the visitors but his shot took a deflection and it turned into an easy save for Connor.
With the visitors still on top Tividale were having to do more defending than they would have liked and goalkeeper Connor escaped what could have been a serious injury when he bravely dived at the feet of Faulkner. Faulkner did catch him in his follow through and received a yellow card, but both players agreed there was no intent, got up shook hands and got on with the game. The last decent attack of the half again fell to Highgate, with Clements shooting wide after good work from Blowers.
Tividale did end the half with a little pressure on the visitors back line but it was definitely Highgate’s half
Half time: Tividale 0-0 Highgate United
The game burst into life after 55 minutes when Highgate opened the scoring. A through ball from Clement down the left between full back and centre back found Carey and despite the appeals from the Tividale back line he coolly slotted the ball past Connor and into the back of the net.
Highgate were still carrying the game to Tividale and again it was Carey the goal threat in the 62nd minute when he shot wide again. Then on 70 minutes Connor did well to deny Stanton when the striker was through one on one. The visitors doubled their lead after 78 minutes when Connor could not hold onto a Carey cross and the ball fell to Stranton for an easy tap in.
From the restart the home side had their second shy at goal. A long ball from Lucas Muckley found his brother Ethan who’s neat little flick found Bustin but he shot wide. With 8 minutes to go Tividale won a free kick outside and to the left of the Highgate penalty area. Bustin placed the ball and then hit one of his specials. The ball flying into the top right-hand corner with Highgate keeper Reece Francis beaten all ends up.
Tividale now had their tails up and from looking dead and buried after 82 minutes were back in the game and in the 87th minute it was all square. Through either a great training ground goal or a great piece of fortune.
We will go with the former. The home side won a corner. Elliott Hartley went up and looked as though he was going to swing it into the box from the right. Instead, it was put into the front post, where Luke Carter hooked it beyond everyone and into the back of the net. Tividale could have gone on and won it in the closing stages as Highgate defended frantically and deep. First of all, a Bustin long throw found its way to Curtis Cocking and his shot was parried away by Francis. The rebound came out to Bustin and his effort was bundled out for a corner and Highgate survived and the points were shared.
Full time: Tividale 2-2 Highgate United
Tividale: – 1. Louis Connor, 2. Tom Hurdman 3. Lucas Muckley, 4. Luke Carter, 5. Dan Bryson, 6. Matt Hunt, 7. Lewis McPike (14. Jason Woods 60), 8. Curtis Cocking, 9. Dan Smith (12. Ethan Muckley 74), 10. Darragh Bustin, 11. Elliott Hartley (16. Owen Waterfield 89)
Unused Subs: – 15. Joe Burroughs.