Saturday 5th November 2016
Northern Premier League First Division North
Farsley Celtic: McKibbin, Hardy, Clayton, Turner, Savory, Miller, Nightingale, Daly, Hazel, Howarth, Walker. Subs: Deacey, P Davidson, A Davidson, Lofthouse
Hyde United: Russell Saunders, James Burke, Kyle Brownhill, Matthew Dempsey, David McGurk, Harry Coates, Brice Wassi (James Cadman), Sam Fitton, Andy Bishop, Ayrton Bevins (Pete Boyle), Phattaraphol 'Big' Khamsuk. Subs not used: Dylan Forth, Jamal Branker, Sam Leadbetter. Sent off: James Burke.
For any fan who has watched Hyde home and away this year, then it is clear that the squad are searching for stability, balance and a formula that works. This has not been helped with a steady flow of injury's and suspensions at the back, and certainly no one would have chosen four consecutive away games after putting together back to back wins at home against Mossley in the Manchester Cup and Burscough in the league, but beggars often cant be choosers. A draw earned with some resilience at Ossett was followed by a performance at Radcliffe where several enforced changes coupled with late arrivals at the ground resulted in a poor result which highlighted problems in the squad, and it was with this as a backdrop that Darren prepared his team for Farsley away.
Farsley are riding high in the league, and a win would see them climb to the top. Hyde were once again forced to change their lineup due to the suspension of Adam Jones, meaning McGurk returned at the back with Coates and Dempsey who was made captain. Hyde set up in a 5-3-2 with a midfield three of Sam Fitton (19) Brice Wassi (19) and Big Khamsuk (20).
The opening period was very even, with both sides enjoying periods of possession and looking to play football through midfield. Farsley, like Hyde, are not a typical EvoStik side preferring to develop play rather than force the ball forward to a frontman and this allowed both sides to settle and play. It was clear Hyde were content to play on the break, and to look to be solid in defence, having conceded two early goals away on Tuesday, and this meant that the opening 45 minutes were notable only for the lack of chances for either side and the booking of Burke for dissent on 30 minutes. A booking which would cost him and his teammates in the second half.
Hyde made it to half time without conceding, which was a major positive.
The second half started with Hyde creating the first clear cut chance of the game when the ever improving Kyle Brownhill delivered an excellent cross onto Andy Bishops head, but he was unable to keep his header on target. 6 minutes later and Farsley took the lead. A lost ball in midfield allowed Farsley to create an overload on the left and the whipped cross was met with an unopposed header at the back post. This has been a problem for Hyde all season and with three centre halfs on the pitch you would hope this would have been defended better.
Hyde stepped up and started to get some joy in midfield with the hard working Sam Fitton who looked industrious in midfield following four weeks away at Abbey Hey. The game was in the balance but a rash challenge by Burke on 70 minutes had the overly officiouse referee reaching for his pocket and the second yellow was out. A difficult task was left to the ten men who remained on the pitch, and Farsley capitalised with their second goal, working the ball down the right, where Burke should have been, before delivered low into the box for a side foot home. 2-0
On 75 minutes Darren made a change. Bevins had picked up an injury in the first half and was replaced by Boyle which sparked Hyde into life with some attacking intent. An early ball forward to Bishop firing just wide, and a snap shot from Fitton from distance, and falsely dropped off. Hyde then pulled one back with a well worked goal finished off by Big Khamsuk and the final 10 minutes were all Hyde, as Farsley looked to see out the game. Four minutes of Injury time had the Tigers pressing, and their first corner of the second half came with the seconds running out, Russ Saunders was waved forward, but the resulting corner was cleared and the referee blew for full time.
A positive reaction was needed and Hyde showed this, coming close to securing a much needed point, but ultimately they fell short.
There will be a number of changes in the coming week. Players coming in and moving out, and a focus on fitness and team shape. Hopefully the boys can secure a win away at Colne on Tuesday and we can return to Ewen Fields on Saturday 12th to face Ossett Town with some positive momentum. With the belief and dedication of Kelly, McGurk and Prendergast along side the quality we have in the playing squad we know it is only a matter of time before we start picking up points.