MATCH REPORT | Salford City 2 – 1 Southport
Aug 28, 2017 1264 Views

MATCH REPORT | Salford City 2 – 1 Southport

They arrived at Moor Lane looking to banish the memory of their last visit, but Southport fans left this ground with a sense of anguish again.

The Sandgrounders’ FA Cup exit at the hands of Salford City almost two years ago is still remembered for all the wrong reasons, but while the outcome this time was the same, the nature of the defeat could not have been more different.

Southport’s unbeaten start to the Vanarama National League North season may be over, but Alan Lewer’s team could consider themselves hard done by.

This time, the sense of dejection came from the knowledge that the Sandgrounders were so close to getting a result, as substitute Jacques Kpohomouh put through his own goal with four minutes remaining to complete a Salford comeback.

Southport had been in control for almost an hour, taking a first-half lead through Steven Jennings and frustrating the home team with a resolute showing.

But in Salford and York City, the Sandgrounders have played the two favourites for automatic promotion in the space of three days and that, together with a lengthening injury list, meant Lewer’s team ran out of legs.

Having drawn against York and matched Salford for the most part, Southport’s performances over the Bank Holiday weekend should offer real encouragement that a newly-built squad can hold their own against the stronger teams in the division.

That said, a relatively small group of players is already being pushed to its limits. With Liam Martin and John Paul Kissock sidelined, Gary Roberts was unable to feature after sustaining a hamstring injury against York, while debutant Chris Sang and goalkeeper Iain Turner were both substituted here before the start of the second half.

A busy schedule clearly took its toll on the Southport players during the latter stages and, as Salford looked for reinforcements from the bench, the visitors were unable to hold out.

Jennings had given Southport the lead on 18 minutes in some style. A left-wing cross from Andy White missed the head of Jack Sampson before reaching Sang at the far post. His ball into the box was only cleared as far as Jennings, who drilled a superb first-time strike into the bottom left-hand corner.

Keeping a good shape and offering Salford little room, the Sandgrounders dealt with everything asked of them in the first half without conceding many chances.

Richie Allen crashed a shot onto the Southport crossbar but the visitors defended well.

Jack Sampson missed a golden chance to have extended Southport’s lead at the start of the second half, meeting a Steven Schumacher free-kick with his shoulder, rather than his head, when in front of goal.

Mani Dieseruvwe drew Salford level in the 63rd minute with a low angled finish after receiving a cross-field pass, and the tide then began to turn.

Kpohomouh was introduced to give the Southport defence more protection and he saw a header from Schumacher’s corner blocked on the goal-line by Michael Nottingham.

But with Salford pressing forward and Southport tiring, substitute goalkeeper Mark Halstead produced an acrobatic stop following a goal-mouth scramble before Kpohomouh sliced Allen’s right-wing cross into his own goal as the Sandgrounders left Moor Lane on the end of a defeat.

 

Salford City (3-5-2): Crocombe, Nottingham, Hogan, Piergianni, Beesley (Phenix 53), Maynard, Allen, Burton, Touray (Askew 53), Redshaw, Dieseruvwe (Shelton 88).
Subs not used: Aghayere, McHale.

Southport (3-5-2): Turner (Halstead 46), Dugdale, C Jones, Smith, Jackson, Schumacher, Jennings, Fletcher, White, Sampson, Sang (E Jones 39, Kpohomouh 68).
Subs not used: Zama, Roache.

Attendance: 1,757

Referee: Aaron Jackson

Report by Alan Jones

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