Magpies show their Steel

Lancashire Telegraph: Garry Flitcroft's Chorley drew Garry Flitcroft's Chorley drew

Stocksbridge Park Steels 2 Chorley 2 

A stuttering first-half display against lowly Stocksbridge cost Chorley ground in the NPL Premier Division title-race and it could have been worse if the home side had not missed a penalty when already two up.

In the end, however, the Magpies almost grabbed all three points after totally dominating the last half-hour in which they pulled two goals back and were denied only by a string of fine saves by keeper Jack Ward.

With a stiff wind behind them, Steels caused an unusually uncertain Chorley defence all sorts of problems in the first half.

New signing Brad Grayson capitalised on the Magpies’ failure to clear a right-wing centre to prod Steels into the lead on 11 minutes and Danny South doubled the lead on the half-hour, bundling another cross from the right past Sam Ashton as defenders hesitated once again. Chorley were offering little at the other end and Nathan Joynes was close to a third for Steels with a firm header which flew just over the bar.

The crucial penalty-miss came on 56 minutes, South blazing well wide after Andy Teague was penalised for handball, and the Magpies celebrated the let-off by taking control of the game.

Paul Jarvis reduced the arrears on the hour with a deflected drive and Ward made a brilliant full-length save from a Dale Whitham scorcher before Keil O’Brien popped up with the equaliser in the 67th minute from an Adam Mather corner.

As Chorley turned up the heat, Teague headed a Mather free-kick over the advancing Ward but also just over the bar and then the visitors were denied what looked a clear penalty when James Dean was barged over as he burst into the box. Ward later again distinguished himself with a save from a Mather free-kick.

The introduction of the strong-running Darren Stephenson gave Chorley an extra edge and should have produced a stoppage-time winner.

Stephenson raced to the byline and pulled the ball back for Josh Hine to apply the finishing touch but the striker, to his obvious dismay, saw his first-time shot clear the bar.


Comments are closed on this article.


Get Adobe Flash player
About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree