Violence mars impressive Nailers display
By David Laughlin
A violent and abrupt end to this final pre season game at Ossett Albion’s Queen’s Terrace ground didn’t mask an otherwise impressive Nailers display.
Only Albion ‘keeper Luke Herriott stood between the hosts and a more severe beating as the Nailers could have racked up another four or five goals, especially in a second half display full of penetrating attacking football.
But an otherwise good natured contest exploded in the last five minutes commencing with dismissal of Ossett striker Shane Kelsey who aimed a punch at Aaron Pride, only two minutes after the Belper defender came on as a substitute.
The incident caused a flood of players rushing to the corner flag where the incident had taken place but subsided almost as quickly as it had started, and play resumed.
Yet two minutes later Darren Barrick’s clash with Simon Mirfin sparked off another pitched battle and when the referee insisted that he should be substituted, Barrick completely lost control and in an off the field incident allegedly punched Belper manager Andy Carney and the referee’s assistant.
The referee wisely abandoned the game with three minutes to go to allow both teams the opportunity to cool off in their respective changing rooms.
The game started quietly with neither side looking particularly dangerous, but in the 8th minute Asa Ingall fired a good effort just wide which was enough to spark things off.
Ossett’s Tom Copping went on a good run before hitting a low shot straight at Barcherini seconds later, and Luke Herriott made the first of a series of excellent saves when he stopped Russell Peel’s 15 yard angled drive in the 12th minute.
A wicked deflection gave Ossett the opening goal on 15 minutes when Tom Parker’s hopeful 25 yarder took a significant deflection off Dale Kelly and completely wrong-footed Barcherini.
Albion looked at their most dangerous at this stage and the Nailers looked uncertain in defence as the home team made good use of the space afforded to them.
But the Nailers looked potent on the break and in the 17th minute Andy Rushbury looked to have beaten Herriott at the far post, but somehow he got a hand to the ball, claiming it at the same time.
Rushbury did well to create another opportunity five minutes later but this time put his shot over the bar, but in between these Belper efforts Ossett kept the Nailers’ defenders busy.
The game balanced out toward the end of the half and Belper should have gone in at the break on level terms after they cut through the Ossett defence with the hard working Jon Froggatt sliding the ball through to Peel, and once again Herriott got a foot to the goal bound effort.
Belper started the second half well with a number of good moves just lacking accuracy in the final pass.
Lee Thompson did well to get the ball over in the 49th minute and Andy Rushbury made the most of a difficult opportunity but scooped the ball over the bar from 15 yards.
Ossett’s Michael Senior wasted their best opportunity on 58 minutes by blasting over when well placed, then after the introduction of Luke Fedorenko and Leigh Warriner as 55th minute substitutes, the game opened up for the Nailers.
A 62nd minute free kick led to Belper’s equaliser and stemmed from a Fedorenko free kick that was finally prodded over the line by Russell Peel.
Within a minute the Nailers had forged ahead when Peel struck from a much greater distance, this time with a magnificent drive from outside the area that flew in at the far post.
Leigh Warriner almost capped an impressive substitute appearance with a strong run and rasping shot that was brilliantly saved by Herriott, on 79 minutes, and then Ossett’s saviour pushed away an excellent effort from Luke Fedorenko moments later.
Late arrival Lee Clay closed in on goal with a powerful run in the 84th minute and despatched a rasping effort just past the post, leaving a bemused and bewildered Albion defence shouting and swearing at each other.
The Nailers could well have scored that elusive third goal if the game had run its course, but the actions of Shane Kelsey, ironically one of the most talented players on the field, and team mate Darren Barrick forced a premature end to an eventful game.
Ossett Albion: Herriott, Copping, Patterson, Utley (Bedford 51), Ryan, White, James (Piper 69), Senior, Kelly (Barrick 56), Kelsey, Parker (Hamlet 74). Subs not used: Hobbs, Poole, Popplewell.
Belper Town: Barcherini, Booker (Pride 83), Thompson, Ingall (Mirfin 45), Adams, Plant, Benger (Warriner 55), Rushbury, Froggatt, Jenkins (Fedorenko 55), Peel (Clay 77).
Referee: Ian Knee (Wakefield)
Attendance: 75 (Est.)