Clitheroe 1 - 1 Trafford
Points shared in dull tie
By Chris Musson
A slightly subdued game saw the return of former manager Simon Garner to Shawbridge and a share of the points for each side.
The first 20 minutes were a cagey affair with little of note, before on 23 minutes a Trafford attack down the left caught the Clitheroe defence square and the visitors took the lead. Absolute silence.
This was what the game needed to spark into life and three minutes later, Dimitri Tuanzebe found himself one on one with the keeper, who swept both ball and striker into the air. Tuanzebe and his strike partner Alex Newby were then caught between appealing for a penalty and trying to put the loose ball in the net. In the end, neither was achieved.
The action clearly served to show the way to goal, and one minute later a Clitheroe surge suddenly found three strikers bearing down on goal, with only one defender providing cover. Brad Carroll was leading the charge and delivered a sublime finish.
Simon Garner then limped off after a 50-50 challenge with Carroll and left to warm applause. On 32 minutes, a wicked James Walker free kick into the box saw Danny Brady fire the ball narrowly over the bar.
As the half eased to a close, it suddenly produced an astonishing passage of play, with Chris Thompson in the thick of the action. A Trafford break saw a snap show arcing for the goal, only for Thompson to claw the ball out of the top right hand corner before leaping instantly to his left to land on the ball before the finishing touch could be applied. As the half time whistle went, there were those who were convinced we went in 1-2 down!
In the second half, the visitors turned up the pressure. A succession of whipped in right wing crosses tested Brady and Ian Rowlands, but they were up to the task. Half chances came and went Trafford’s way and apart from one flowing movement between Newby, Carroll and Tuanzebe which only just ran away from a finish, this was very much the visitor’s half.
At the end, it felt like one point gained against a handy side. Carroll got the MoM nod from the sponsor, but Rowlands cannot have been far behind.
Line up: Chris Thompson, Robbie Bromley, James Walker (Ryan Cattermole), Gareth Roberts, Danny Brady (c), Ian Rowlands, Joe Mitchell, Brad Carroll, Harry Pratt (Tom Williams), Alex Newby, Dimitri Tuanzebe (Kisimba Kisimba).
Subs - Tom Williams, Ryan Cattermole, Kisimba Kisimba. Not used - Dylan Smith, Christian Paulat-Brigg.