MATCH REPORT | Boston United 1-2 Southport

MATCH REPORT | Boston United 1-2 Southport

Ryan Astles scored with seconds remaining to secure a victory for Southport against Boston United in the most dramatic way possible.

Just when it seemed that the Sandgrounders would have to settle for a draw despite leading for a significant part of this game, the visitors showed a tremendous strength of character to extend their winning run to five consecutive games.

In front thanks to an early goal from Jack Sampson, Southport were responsible for some delightful football during a first half they dominated, only pegged back in the closing stages after a change in the momentum as the second half went on.

As manager Liam Watson reflected, the Sandgrounders would probably have taken a point at that stage, but with one thrilling late twist, the points were secured in the fifth minute of stoppage time.

As Reagan Ogle played a ball in from the left, substitute Astles stooped at the far post to head home the winning goal, sending the visiting fans into raptures.

Those Southport supporters have clocked up the miles this week but they have been rewarded in memorable fashion. After a dominant win at Hereford on Tuesday, this turned out to be a rollercoaster ride of an afternoon against Boston United but the finish was one to savour.

Until a fortnight ago, the Sandgrounders would often find themselves on the wrong side of these narrow margins but how their season is starting to turn.

There was much to admire about the quality of Southport’s football during the first half, attacking with fluency and frequency, and their lead at half-time should have been greater.

Their excellent play was encapsulated in a wonderful opening goal, Brad Bauress advancing down the left before cutting the ball inside to David Morgan, whose touch allowed Sampson to execute a fine strike into the top left-hand corner.

It was a clear indication of the confidence flowing through the Southport team and they continued to press forward at will.

Jordan Archer, partnering Sampson in attack on his first start in a Southport shirt, saw an early shot deflected wide after the two had linked superbly, while chances followed for Dion Charles and David Morgan.

A curling free-kick from Jordan Richards was heading for the top right-hand corner until the finger-tips of goalkeeper George Willis intervened and the Sangrounders were in full control.

They needed goalkeeper Dan Hanford to show his reflexes with an excellent save from Gavin Allott’s downward header and that set the tone for how the game would start to change in the second half.

The Southport cause was not helped by the withdrawals of Liam Edwards and Bauress shortly after the re-start, and by the time Allott equalised with ten minutes to play, heading in a right-wing cross from Max Wright, the home team were applying heavy pressure.

Morgan Homson-Smith had a shot scraped off the goal-line by Boston defender James Jones, while Allott sent another header against a Southport post as the game reached a dramatic finish, and it was Astles who sealed the points.


Boston United (4-4-2): Willis, Davies, Qualter, Jones, Jackson, Hine (Wright 61), Thanoj, Norris, Slew (Johnson 61), Allott, Rowe.
Subs not used: Middleton, Parkhouse, Harris.
Goal: Allott 80

Southport (4-4-2): Hanford, Richards, Edwards (Astles 48), Winnard, Ogle, Charles, Morgan, Wood, Bauress (Homson-Smith 53), Sampson, Archer (Green 75).
Subs not used: Davies, Mueller.
Goals: Sampson 16, Astles 90+5

Attendance: 1,146

Referee: Barry Lamb

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