Injury time equaliser denies the Marketmen victory!!
By Paul Munn
Adam Mills scores another but it’s a disappointing end to a valiant Marketmen performance
Over eight hundred people turned up, on a sunny Easter Monday to watch Kings Lynn’s final home game of the regular season, with them looking to cement home advantage for the Play-offs. The Marketmen themselves were hoping to carry on with their recent good form and maintain a top ten position.
There was two changes to the Marketmen’s starting XI with Decarrey Sheriff coming in for the injured Jamie Griffiths and skipper Gareth Heath was unavailable so Jake Dye took his place. There was also a change in formation with Richard Wilkins choosing to go with 5-4-1 to try and thwart the Kings Lynn attacking options.
The game started brightly, some good work by Decarrey Sheriff earned the Marketmen an early corner and for Kings Lynn Michael Clunan linked up with Ross Barrows to get the home a corner of their own. The corner itself was cleared after Michael Gash had nodded it on into the danger zone.
The hard playing surface made life difficult for both sides, Kings Lynn found it difficult to get their usual passing game going but still managed to create a couple of decent chances. Adam Marriott had a shot blocked as did Michael Gash soon afterwards, however this time it fell to Ryan Jarvis whose fierce shot forced Jake Jessup to palm it behind.
The Marketmen stood firm frustrating the home side with their dogged work rate and strong defending. They had limited opportunities to come forward and create anything meaningful, Joseph Marsden did have an effort on goal but it was easily gathered by the keeper.
Moments later Kings Lynn nearly capitalised on a defence error when Adam Marriott seized the ball and taking it goal wards, he cut inside to strike a low shot, luckily for the Marketmen Keiran Morphew had got back to scramble it clear.
Keiran Morphew was involved at the other end minutes later when he headed a Callum Sturgess corner wide.
The Marketmen’s determination paid of ten minutes before the break, when Joseph Marsden won the ball from a Kings Lynn mistake in midfield. He broke forward down the left on reaching the area he beat a defender and then proceeded to feed Adam Mills, who had made a great run to support him, and allowed him the space to smash the ball home inside the near post from a few yards out. 1-0 – 35 mins.
Kings Lynn tried to respond as sections of the crowd were getting frustrated with their team’s performance. Ross Barrows had a dangerous cross cleared and a Michael Gash header was easily gathered by Jake Jessup. However it was the brave battling Marketmen who went in at the break ahead.
Half Time: Kings Lynn 0 vs Needham Market 1
Kings Lynn were the first to create a chance after the break. It came in the form of an Adam Marriott free-kick which he planted over the woodwork. The same player shortly after tried his luck again but his shot was saved by Jake Jessup.
The Marketmen also had a free kick early in the half. Joseph Marsden tried to sneak it under the wall but unfortunately they were wise to his intention.
The home side followed up with a couple of more efforts as they tried to get back on terms. A Ryan Jarvis cross was headed wide by Michael Gash. Then moments later a blocked Frazer Blake-Tracy shot came back to Ross Barrows who could only fire it over the top.
After which the game got a bit scrappy with neither side able to maintain possession long enough to trouble the score line. The home crowd were starting to get restless urging their team to find a way through the defiant Marketmen. They felt it was time for a change of personnel and replaced Ryan Jarvis with Ryan Hawkins.
However it was the Marketmen who then enjoyed a little spell where they did create some half chances. An Adam Mills corner was half cleared which came back to him, he cut inside to fire in a low shot from twenty yards but the keeper got fully behind it to gather. This was closely followed by some good play from Decarrey Sheriff to find Adam Mills to try another shot, this time a defender got in the way of it to turn it behind.
Shortly after Rory McAuley had headed over a Michael Clunan corner and with time running out Kings Lynn began to look for alternate ways to get something from the game. They first opted to make another change. They brought on midfielder Will Mellors-Blair in place of defender Ross Barrows to boost their attacking options.
They kept trying Rory McAuley played a long ball up to Michael Gash on the right side of the area, he found space to fire in a good effort but Jake Jessup produced a fine save to turn it behind. He also moments later twisted and turned to put in a cross that was cleared but only as far as a Kings Lynn player, whose through ball just eluded the attackers and was gathered gratefully by Jake Jessup.
The Marketmen played the ball up into the Kings Lynn corners to see the game out and with just over a minute of injury time to go it seemed like they would do so.
Kings Lynn surged forward with Frazer Blake-Tracy taking the ball down the left wing, he directed his cross toward the danger zone but it was cut out and put behind for the corner. The Kings Lynn keeper Alex Street came up for the corner but it was cleared out harm’s way for a thrown in. The aforementioned Frazer Blake-Tracy picked up the ball from the throw and delivered an inviting cross to the back post. Both Alex Street and Rory McAuley went up to try and get a head onto it. The latter won that duel, getting enough power and direction to guide it into the far corner to the delight of their players and supporters. It was disappointing end for the valiant Marketmen.1-0 - 90+3 mins.
There was no doubt it was a fantastic performance from the Marketmen, they battled all afternoon, showing great spirit and character. It probably felt like a defeat to a lot of people, but a draw away from home to a team flying high is not bad at all and I’m sure if you said to all the Marketmen if they settle for a draw before the game, most or maybe all would have taken it.
Full Time: Kings Lynn 1 vs Needham Market 1
King's Lynn Town: Street, Barrows (Mellors-Blair 80), Blake-Tracy, Jarvis (Hawkins 63), Fryatt, McAuley, Clunan, Richards, Gash, Marriott, Henderson
Needham Market: Jessup, Morphew (D), Sturgess, Short, Morphew K, Baker, Marsden, Dye, Sheriff, Squire, Mills