Farsley AFC 2-3 Harrogate Railway
By James Grayson (Twitter: @jamesAgrayson)
Match Photos are HERE
Manager Billy Miller saluted his Harrogate Railway players after a deserved Evo Stik Division One North victory over Farsley AFC at Throstle Nest.
Goals from former Leeds United youth team players Nathan Cartman and Joe McCann and then a second half penalty from ex-Farsley Celtic midfielder Paddy McGuire sealed the success.
Farsley had drawn level at 1-1 through Adam Priestley, but fell behind again and skipper Robbie O’Brien’s 90th minute consolation goal was too little too late for Farsley. But any Farsley equaliser would have been harsh on Harrogate and Miller admitted his side were full value for the victory.
“From today we have to take heart from that we were playing a good Farsley side that are trying to be in the better part of the league,” he said.
“To come to Farsley and get a result at Throstle Nest is a great win for us. I thought we deserved to win it from the first minute to the 90th minute. We had a game-plan and we stuck to it. We had two holding midfielders in front of the back four.
“We then had the young lad Jesus (Martin-Farina) up top. A young Spanish lad who doesn’t speak any English, but has done really well and held the ball up well today. We had Cartman playing off him and I think from the minute Cartman put us 1-0 up, with one of the coolest finishes I have seen at this level for a long time, I think we always knew we were in with a chance.”
Harrogate had threatened to score before Cartman opened the scoring in the 15th minute. The nippy striker, who trialled with Farsley in the summer of 2009, broke through on goal and with goalkeeper Tom Morgan approaching he kept his composure to score – lifting the ball over the onrushing Morgan.
Farsley soon hit back with the best goal of the game. Steve Mallory’s corner was headed away to the edge of the ball where leading scorer Priestley was waiting. With power and accuracy the striker volleyed the ball through a crowded box and into the bottom corner past former Glasshoughton Welfare goalkeeper Sam Dobbs.
The scores were level for five minutes when Railway went ahead again on the half-hour mark. Cartman was involved again and he supplied McCann. Against Farsley’s York City loan player Mike Atkinson, McCann won the battle and netted with his left foot.
Apart from one Owen Davies free kick which flew over the crossbar, Farsley failed to mount a comeback. With the atmosphere as flat as a pancake – the crowd of only 100, mainly because of home games for Guiseley, Halifax Town and Leeds United – the game fizzled out and Railway got the decisive goal with 20 minutes left on the clock.
A trip by Rob Etherington on Cartman in the penalty area gave referee Mr Chapman, who has been involved in two controversial Farsley matches in the last 18 months, an easy decision. McGuire was the chosen one and he showed great coolness by sending Morgan the wrong way and give his side the two goal buffer.
Farsley did reply with a Simeon Bambrook’s thunderbolt which Dobbs deserves credit for tipping onto the crossbar late-on before O’Brien struck the consolation goal in the last minute.
Farsley AFC: Morgan, Atkinson, Bambrook, O’Brien, Dempsey (Davies HT), Etherington, Priestley, Walton, Mallory, Grant, Harrison (Tiani 73). Subs unused: James, Higginson, Robinson.
Harrogate Railway: Dobbs, Wood, Hopkins, Thirkell, Maloney, Parkes (Coupland 76), Hull, McGuire, Martin-Farina (Hunter 80), Cartman, McCann (Hallam 51). Sub unused: Ashforth.
Referee: G Chapman
Man of the match: Nathan Cartman