Gate edged out in hot thriller

TOM BARTLETT, Gate's 'headmaster' leaps to head goalward from corner kick, but is inches above crossbar
TOM BARTLETT, Gate's 'headmaster' leaps to head goalward from corner kick, but is inches above crossbar
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Squires Gate 0 Glossop NE 1

SUMMER football came to School Road for the visit of high-flying Glossop.

In fact, the weather was reminiscent of the first game of the North West Counties premier season last August, when these sides met at North End, and Glossop again won.

Glossop’s Ben Proctor was the first keeper called into action, denying a great effort from Gate full-back Alex McKendrick, after some clever interplay with player-manager Russ McKenna.

This was quickly followed by a long-range shot from Joe Shelmerdine, which sent Proctor diving to his left to save.

Jordon Dixon was next to be denied by Proctor, who dived bravely at his feet.

The first half was end-to-end, though both sides struggled to create clear-cut chances.

The visitors’ big three defenders kept Gate at bay, except when a free- kick by Nigel Taylor flew inches wide from 30 yards.

Glossop scored the winner on 75 minutes, when Alex Elliott’s shot was deflected past the home defence.

Gate switched Tom Bartlett from midfield into an attacking role for the final 15 minutes, and the move almost paid off when he rose highest only to see his header just clear the crossbar.

Substitute Zac Thomas had a dangerous cross scrambled clear, but Gate could not deny Glossop a league double, which lifts them to third.

Gate boss McKenna felt the game could have gone either way.

He said: “There were not loads of chances for either side, and we battled with belief that it might fall our way. In the end, the only chance fell to them, and they took the points.”

The defeat ended Gate’s four-match unbeaten run in March, and they hope to return to winning ways tonight at Maine Road (7.45pm).

McKenna added: “Maine Road beat Bootle in the League Challenge Cup quarter-final replay on penalties on Saturday. It went to extra-time, and we hope we can surprise them.”

Gate: Beesley, McKendrick, Horn, Benfield, Taylor, Bartlett, McKenna, Fishwich, Shelmerdine, Dixon, Harries, Subs used. Thomas, Cragg, and Farrow.

n AFC Blackpool were without a premier division match over the weekend. They welcome Silsden to Common Edge tomorrow (7.45pm).