Chorley 1, Tamworth 1

Darren Stephenson
Darren Stephenson
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The Magpies deserved more than they actually got from a gruelling shift on a heavy pitch against Tamworth

They dominated one of the league’s high-fliers for long periods and finally scored the goal they had long been threatening, only for the all-too-familiar scenario to take shape in the concession of a late equaliser.

Matt Jansen’s men really must learn to defend both posts at corner kicks and it was an unattended back-stick which proved costly.

Chorley pressurised Tamworth repeatedly in the opening period, the Lambs barely registering a shot on goal.

Darren Stephenson, whose 10th goal of the season ultimately put the home side ahead, might easily have had a hat-trick or more on another day. Sent clear midway through the first half, he elected to shoot rather than dribble round exposed keeper James Belshaw and the Tamworth stopper pulled off a fine reflex save

Moments later Stephenson tested Belshaw with a low 25-yard drive and within a minute he only half-hit his shot as he again ran clear on goal.

Tamworth created an early second-half chance when Dan Newton broke through but Sam Ashton dived to gather the shot. Yet it was Chorley who still called the tune. On the hour Stephenson was guilty of an incredible miss, passing up the chance of a tap-in when failing to make contact with a low centre a yard from goal.

As Newton broke again, Andy Teague snuffed out the danger with a perfectly-timed tackle on the edge of the box. Chorley continued to press and on 79 minutes Stephenson finally delivered – at the second attempt. Left clear on goal once more, he saw his powerful shot parried by Belshaw but the keeper was helpless to prevent Stephenson from chipping the rebound into the empty net. The goal stoked up Tamworth and the danger sign was there for Chorley when Shane Clarke hit the underside of the bar in a goalmouth scramble. Moments later in the 87th minute Tamworth won a corner from which late substitute Leon Mettam deftly headed past Ashton via the inside of the far post.

“The team did fantastically well today,” observed Matt Jansen after the match. “We’ve absolutely battered a good side and deserved to take all three points.”

CHORLEY : Ashton, Ross, Beesley, Teague, Roscoe, Cottrell, Jarvis (Field,76), Lynch, Connerton, Bond, Stephenson. Unused subs. Charnock, Goulding, Correia, Bailey.

Att: 918.