Ferriby 2-1 Woking: Start whistling the Great Escape theme

After winning their 4th away game in the last 6 at Guiseley last week the gap between Ferriby and safety was 4 points. That looked manageable going into the next three teams against lower ranked teams. Then midweek happened. All Ferriby’s rivals played and all of them won except York who drew. This left Ferriby 7 points adrift of yesterday’s opponents Woking who occupied the holy grail of 20th place. After the positive result at Guiseley this was a kick in the teeth and it looked like mission impossible again for Steve Housham’s side. One thing was certain Ferriby simply had to win yesterday.

As they have done a few times this season Ferriby flew out of the blocks. They took the lead after just 7 minutes when Jake Skelton glanced a header into the far corner from a Taron Hare cross. The second goal in as many games for the centre back who is enjoying a great spell of form at a vital part of the season.

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Jake Skelton celebrates the opening goal

Ferriby continued to dominate the first half and thought they had scored again soon after when Curtis Bateson turned the ball into the net but he looked behind him to see the offside flag being raised by the linesman. Reece Thompson then won a free kick on the left hand side of the box but Danny Emerton couldn’t get the dip required on the ball to get his shot on target.

Woking controversially equalised midway through the first half. It was quite confusing from our vantage point at the time but Steve Housham explained afterwards that he felt very aggrieved that the goal had been given. A Ferriby player was down with a head injury after an alleged elbow and the referee eventually stopped play. Several Ferriby players were checking on their teammate but the referee blew his whistle and Woking played on giving Ghigozie Ugwu a chance to equalise which he duly took much to the frustration of the Ferriby players and management. Their great first half performance had been undone by a contentious decision.

HT North Ferriby United 1-1 Woking

To their credit Ferriby didn’t seem disheartened by what had happened late in the first half and they continued to play well throughout the second half. The game was more even but Ferriby continued to have the best of the chances. The first major chance fell to Ferriby and they took it in style. Reece Thompson played an intricate one-two with Robbie Tinkler and as Thompson got the ball back from Tinkler in the box he curled a shot across the goalkeeper and into the bottom right hand corner of the net. It was a brilliant finish which epitomised Thompson’s performance yesterday.

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Reece Thompson celebrates his goal yesterday

The Villagers almost had a third soon after when Robbie Tinkler hit a volley sweet as a nut from 20 yards but it was met by a brilliant save from the Woking goalkeeper. Woking tried to find a second equaliser but they never looked overly threatening. There were a couple of scary moments in the last ten minutes when the ball was bouncing around in the Ferriby area but Ferriby never looked like losing and could have even increased the lead late on. Sam Cosgrove was through on goal but he decided to pass to Ryan Kendall rather than shooting himself but Kendall was offside. Ferriby held on for back to back wins when they really needed them.

FT North Ferriby United 2-1 Woking

After 2 vital wins Ferriby have got the gap back down to 4 points again and some fans are already making jokes about the Great Escape theme tune. It’s no joke to the players and especially Steve Housham who has got his team fired up and battling in every game believing that they can achieve the impossible and stay up. They travel to Bromley next week looking for another important 3 points.

Following Ferriby Man of the Match: Reece Thompson

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Match Preview: Woking (H)

A vital three points gained on our travels last weekend against Guiseley. That brought us up to the thirty point mark. An unbelievable achievement after a lot of us were thinking it was going to be far far worse then that.

It was a huge six pointer at Nethermoor and with ex manager Billy Heath in the stands, we came away 2-1 victors. The first half was pretty difficult to watch if i am honest. We didn’t really look like posing any threat on goal, we then went 1-0 down and it really could of been more. But the second half was a massive turn around. We started to create chances and we got our reward. Reece Thompson with a sensational finish from the right hand side. I thought he had skied it initially before i eventually saw it dip into the goal.

Guiseley vs North Ferriby United Highlights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9YFoAb9Wkhs

When Guiseley went down to 10 men about 15 minutes later, it looked like for a moment they were going to snatch back the lead. It was a little wobble which was shaken off and Jake Skelton scored a cracker 5 minutes from time to give us the win. We was all thinking he would blaze that sort of chance over. Even his dad thought the same thing! We now go into another six pointer against 19th place Woking.

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Ferriby team huddle after 2-1 win against Guiseley

TEAM NEWS: Simon Russell, Ryan Fallowfield and Stephen Brogan all remain out. The rest of the squad should be fit.

This Weekends Opposition

Woking, as i said, lie 19th in the National League. There run of form as of late hasn’t been very consistent. They find themselves stringing 1 or 2 results together before losing again. Which obviously will be a contributing factor to them being near the bottom end of the league. They did however win at home to Dover on Tuesday night, which will be a very good boost for them after loosing narrowly 4-3 to Forest Green a couple of days before. A boost for us however, is that they have the worst record for conceding goals so far this season. So let’s add a few more to that.. and three points to boot.

Chigoze Ugwe and Fabio Sariava are there goal threats scoring 22 goals between them this season.

Woking are without captain Keiran Murtagh through suspension.

Our previous meeting was live on BT Sport 1 back in November, where the game ended 1 a piece. Ferriby took the lead through a sublime free kick from Stephen Brogan on the stroke of half time. The Villagers were defending extremely hard through out the second half to keep that 1-0 lead. But it all came undone in added time where Chike Kandi levelled for the home side. I thought i would never see the day when North Ferriby United would play a league game on TV. I was enjoying it up until the 92nd minute!

Player Focus: Reece Thompson

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Reece was outstanding last Saturday. He had one of those games where no one could touch him. Very agile on the ball, making good runs which caused the defence serious problems and he wasn’t getting caught offside like he normally does! If we see the same performance this weekend then i am hopeful of goals!

PITCH INSPECTION SCHEDULED FOR 9AM: Stay tuned to @northferribyutd on Twitter as a pitch inspection will be carried out due to intense rain across Friday afternoon.

Fixtures you may be interested in…

  • Maidstone (20th) vs Southport (22nd)
  • Torquay (21st) vs Guiseley
  • York City (24th) vs Eastleigh
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28/02/17 – Relegation fight over?

Winning against Guiseley on Saturday put us in with a chance of getting ourselves out of the relegation zone. It was a huge win. Especially with it being against a side just above the drop.

The table told the story. Only four points from safety with Woking to play on Saturday. It was still looking promising.

Then Tuesday night happened…

Guiseley won at home to Barrow 1-0. A result which i didn’t see coming, but i am not totally surprised. Sure we hampered them in there great run of late, but they’re a team on the move.  It was an early goal from Kevan Hurst which secured the 3 points for the Lions

York moved to within a point of us after getting a point at table toppers Lincoln. York had two games in hand on us going into this game and i was expecting them to get battered if i’m honest… even though Lincoln do have one eye on there FA Cup tie with Arsenal. The Minstermen took the lead through Jon Parkin in the first half and it wasn’t till 15 minutes from time when Alan Power rescued a point for Lincoln.

Woking took all 3 points against current play off sitters Dover Athletic. Woking had only won one game in there last 5 before this fixture so it was a shock to the Gulls who are searching to secure there play off place. The only goal of the game came when Max Kretzschamer scored midway through the second half.

Maidstone earned a fantastic 2-0 away win at Dagenham & Redbridge. Another play off side being beaten by someone down at the bottom!! Maidstone had started to pick up there results recently after going on a very poor run just before New Year and this is a result which will certainly please there supporters.. and not us.

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These results now leave us 7 points away from safety. With Torquay, Southport and York all having games in hand, it now leaves us with a mountain to climb. We just have to stay positive and believe that the team can grind out more results before the season is up.

3 big games are on the horizon against Woking, Bromley and Solihull. These games are our chance to pick up points. The final few games of the season we play some very good sides. Fingers crossed for a strong next couple of weeks!

 

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Following Ferriby Throwback: Ferriby reach Wembley after dramatic shoot out

It’s strange to think that it’s almost 2 years since Ferriby made history by winning the FA Trophy at Wembley. Even as a non-league game the 2015 FA Trophy final is remembered as one of the best matches to be played at the New Wembley and the semi-final win that earned Ferriby a place in the final was just as dramatic. It’s 2 years to the day since Ferriby welcomed Bath City to the Eon Visual Media Stadium for the second leg of their FA Trophy Semi-Final. Ferriby had thrown away a two goal lead in the first leg so it was all to play for going into the home leg. Our tiny ground was packed to the rafters and a buzz of nervous energy and excitement could be felt around the ground.

The Wembley dream looked like it could have died for Ferriby as early as the second minute when Nick McCootie opened the scoring for Bath. A large contingent of their supporters had travelled north for the game and they were overjoyed with the early goal while a sense of nervousness and disbelief gripped the Ferriby supporters. There was a long way to go but Bath had now turned around the 2-0 deficit completely and held all the aces in the tie. Ferriby couldn’t find an equaliser in the first half and as the second half started the tension grew around the ground. It was beginning to look like the dream was over but they were gifted a golden chance in the 64th minute. Tom Denton was dragged down in the box and Ferriby were awarded a penalty. Liam King took responsibility as he had done in the previous round against Ebsfleet and he buried the spot kick to send the Green and White army into raptures. The Wembley arch was back in sight now they had to find a way to get there.

Neither team found a winner in normal time so an agonising 30 minutes of extra time ensued. In the dying minutes of the second period of extra time Bath should have broken Ferriby’s hearts. They had a glorious chance to win it when David Pratt was through on goal. He put his shot across Adam Nicklin and the net should have bulged but somehow he dragged it inches wide of the post. A huge sigh of relief could be heard around the ground but we couldn’t dwell on that for long because the ultimate test was yet to come. The penalty shoot out.

Ferriby had a pretty good record that season in terms of converting penalties and they had some confident penalty takers in their side so we had reason to be confident. Liam King never looked like missing a penalty that season but you can’t take anything for granted in shoot out situations because the pressure can do strange things to players. It’s happened to great players down the years, especially Englishmen, so none of us were counting our chickens.

Bath were first up in the shoot-out and having just missed a great chance to win the game for them it was perhaps not surprising that Pratt’s penalty was a poor one that Nicklin saved easily. Liam King went first for Ferriby and pulled out his trademark shot into the top left hand corner that we would of course see again at Wembley. We couldn’t believe our luck when Nicklin saved Ross Stearn’s penalty and when Nathan Jarman made it 2-0 to Ferriby we were almost ready to book our Wembley tickets. Adam Bolder scored his penalty in between two Bath successes from the spot so it was Jason St Juste who stepped up to win it for The Villagers. He sent the goalkeeper the wrong way and sparked a mass pitch invasion. Ferriby had done it! They had reached their second Wembley final after a gut wrenching yet exhilarating semi-final that will stay with Ferriby fans forever. The scenes on the pitch at the end were truly special and that day will go down as one of my favourite memories in football in years to come.

This all stemmed from Adam Nicklin’s penalty save against Boston and every player had played their part. This was a fantastic Ferriby team and they deserved their place in the final. Little did we know the final would be even more memorable and historic. 2 years on and much has changed at the Eon Visual Media Stadium but the 28th February 2015 is a day fans of my generation will tell their grand kids about in years to come.

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Guiseley 1-2 Ferriby, Battling Villagers earn a MASSIVE 3 points

After another 2 home defeats in quick succession the situation at the bottom was beginning to look bleak for Steve Housham and his side. They were 7 points from safety with games running out and yesterday they faced arguably the toughest away trip in the National League to face Guiseley. Guiseley had been down at the bottom scrapping with Ferriby all season but they had recently picked up some form and were unbeaten in 12 home league games so even though this was a relegation 6 pointer all the money would have been going on Guiseley before the match.

As you may expect the start of the game was pretty cagey with both teams trying to work each other out. Ferriby had the first half chance when Robbie Tinkler kept the ball in at the by line and crossed it into the danger area but somehow it was cleared. Then Guiseley broke and Rory Watson watched a shot sail over his crossbar. Guiseley took the lead with their first real chance after 13 minutes. A corner was partially cleared but it fell to Will Hatfield who cut inside and curled a shot through a sea of bodies in the box and past Rory Watson into the corner. An exquisite finish from Hatfield and a big early blow to Ferriby.

Despite going behind Ferriby slowly started to work their way back into the game. Mark Gray couldn’t quite jump high enough for a free header at a corner and Matty Dixon failed to connect with the ball after Gray had missed it. Dixon then had another half chance just before half time when he hit a low drive from almost 30 yards out that went just wide of the post. Rory Watson had to be on hand at the other end in first half stoppage time to keep Ferriby in the game. He dived to his right to tip a shot over the bar. A 2-0 Guiseley lead would have been a mountain to climb for Ferriby.

HT Guiseley 1-0 North Ferriby United

Steve Housham must have given one hell of a half time team talk because Ferriby flew out of the blocks in the second half. They played with pace and energy and soon began creating chances. Reece Thompson was very unlucky not to score when he beat the left back for pace before putting a cross/shot in that deflected off a Guiseley defender and onto the inside of the post. Somehow It rebounded away and Ferriby were denied an equaliser.

This chance was the first of many as Ferriby began to dominate. Thompson saw another cross which was deflected and could have gone anywhere before Curtis Bateson had a shot which was brilliantly tipped over the bar by the Guiseley goalkeeper. When Ferriby have had periods of pressure like this before this season they have sometimes failed to score but not this time. Reece Thompson equalised midway through the second half with a mixture of skill and luck. He picked up the ball on halfway and drove towards the box. The ball just bobbled up in front of him as he took his shot and that along with the strong wind resulted in the ball looping over the goalkeeper’s head and into the empty net. This was no less than Ferriby deserved after a brilliant start to the second half.

Things got even better for Ferriby when Guiseley Captain Danny Lowe was sent off. He was battling for the ball with Reece Thompson. Thompson went down under his challenge and a free kick was given. Lowe then appeared to grab the back of Thompson’s neck while he was on the floor and pushed on it. The referee had a word with his linesman before brandishing the Red Card. This was now a massive opportunity for Ferriby to get the win.

As often happens in football when a team goes down to ten men they look harder to beat and in the next 15 minutes of the game Guiseley were the better side and created several chances. Rory Watson had to make a one on one save from a narrow angle before a cross that only needed a touch past Watson was met by the Guiseley striker who could only tap it straight into Watson’s arms.

Just as it looked like the game would be heading for a slightly frustrating draw Ferriby found a winner. They won a free kick close to halfway in the 87th minute. Sam Topliss launched the ball into the area, Taron Hare headed it down and it fell to the feet of Jake Skelton. Skelton swivelled and smashed a shot into the bottom corner to spark jubilant celebrations amongst the players and the travelling Ferriby supporters. It was a finish any striker would have been proud of from the big centre back and as Steve Housham pointed out after the game it was the least Skelton deserves after being magnificent in recent weeks.

Skelton’s goal was not the end of the story as the home side missed a huge chance to equalise in the 94th minute. The ball was cannoning around in the Ferriby box and somehow they couldn’t clear it. It looked like the ball had been eventually scrambled home but the offside flag was up and Ferriby held on for a massive three points!

FT Guiseley 1-2 North Ferriby United

Following Ferriby Man of the Match: Reece Thompson

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Match Preview: Guiseley (H)

Another defeat, but the team must re group and take the positives from the 1-0 loss against Lincoln City on Tuesday night. We travel the short distance to Guiseley, hoping to repeat our victory against them earlier on in the season. Most definitely a relegation six pointer.

A massive crowd of 2389 was in attendance on Tuesday, but i was expecting more of an atmosphere if i’m honest. You’d think the place would be bouncing with Lincoln getting themselves into the Quarter Final’s of the FA Cup.. The match wasn’t the best either. Ferriby just had no answer to the pace of Lincoln’s play. Again, a defensive error was to blame for the Lincoln goal. Scorer Luke Waterfall was unmarked in the area and free to give the visitors the lead. This came from a Nathan Arnold corner which was earned from Sam Cosgrove letting the ball go out of play when it actually touched him last!

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Matty Dixon in action vs Lincoln City

However, Ferriby did very well to stop Lincoln from scoring anymore. Helped immensely by some of the fantastic saves that Rory Watson was making. Never fails to surprise me that boy. We have to give ourselves some credit for being able to shut them out for the rest of the match. Something we can take into this weekends game which is a must win.

TEAM NEWS: Simon Russell, Steve Brogan and Ryan Fallowfield are still out. Danny Emerton missed out on the Lincoln game so hopefully he is fit to face Guiseley.

Ferriby squad: Rory Watson, Sam Topliss, Taron Hare, Mark Gray, Jake Skelton, Ben Middleton, Connor Oliver, Matty Dixon, Rob Tinkler, Matty Templeton, Danny Emerton, Ryan Kendall, Reece Thompson, Darryn Stamp, Sam Cosgrove, Ross Armstrong, Curtis Bateson, Jordan Cooke

This Weekend’s Opposition

Guiseley currently lie in 19th place in the league. They have been on an amazing run of form and have dragged themselves out of what appeared to be destined relegation. 3 wins in there last 5 league games has propelled them up and out of the bottom four. The danger men for Guiseley are strikers Micheal Rankine and Jake Cassidy. Both of which will be a hand full for our centre back pairing to attempt to stop.

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Players walk out ahead of the home tie vs Guiseley

Our previous meeting saw us take our first victory of the season. The Villagers played extremely well and went 2-0 up inside the first 25 minutes of the game. Through Ryan Kendall and Danny Emerton. Guiseley then came back to make it 2-2 with only only seven minutes to go. But the stage was set for Simon Russell who scored the winner two minutes from time. It wasn’t a particularly pretty finish but who cares! It was a momentous occasion for the club and the fans. Now we hope to see the same thrill from the reverse game.

Player to Watch: Ryan Kendall

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Kendall vs Dover Athletic (Picture by Liam Foster)

He hasn’t played as much as he had hoped to this season. But i feel a spell in the team is now on the horizon as players like Sam Cosgrove and Matty Templeton have had slow starts to there loan spells at the club. Ryan brings experience to the team and can score goals. He is also someone who genuinely loves the club. I would like to think he will get his chance to start against Guiseley so let’s hope i am right!

Fixtures you might be interested in..

  • Braintree vs Maidstone (21st)
  • Forest Green vs Woking (20th)

 

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Match Preview: Lincoln City (H)

A defeat which was hard to take for the Villagers on Saturday. An exquisite free kick gave us the lead but it wasn’t enough and Dover ran out winners 2-1. We remain bottom of the National League and now we have to make a quick turn around for the game against league leaders and FA Cup Quarter Finalist’s Lincoln City.

Dover were on a pretty average run of form before they got to the Eon Visual Media Stadium. They also very much looked like a beatable in the early minutes. Ferriby gave away an early penalty following a Ben Middleton challenge. Ricky Miller stepped up and missed. Cracking save from Rory Watson to keep us in the game. It was the ex Boston player though who was pulling the strings up top, long balls into the strikers the favourable tactic for the Gulls. Ferriby took the lead via a Curtis Bateson free kick. Which I think half the ground recording on there phones! The lead lasted only seven minutes before Dover equalised. It was then the away side who grabbed the winner twenty or so minutes before full time. Basic defensive errors were the cause, something which I am sure Steve Housham will be addressing before tonight’s game.

TEAM NEWS: Simon Russell, Steve Brogan, Ryan Fallowfield and Connor Oliver are all out. Danny Emerton took a knock in the last game and will be assessed. He may not be available.

Ferriby squad vs Lincoln: Rory Watson, Sam Topliss, Ben Middleton, Mark Gray, Jake Skelton, Matt Templeton, Taron Hare, Ryan Kendall, Danny Emerton, Matty Dixon, Rob Tinkler, Ross Armstrong, Curtis Bateson, Reece Thompson, Darryn Stamp, Jordan Cooke, Sam Cosgrove.

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Ryan Kendall vs Dover Athletic (Picture by Liam Foster)

On a side note, Steve Housham was particularly angry with the referee following the defeat against Dover. After an off the ball incident which involved a Ferriby player being elbowed. Ross Armstrong went to question the referee about it. The Ref replied saying “The league table doesn’t lie”. This is something which we can neither confirm or deny. But think of it as you will. Here is the full interview by FanaticHull with Steve Housham: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMrWEQe1X-M

The Opposition

Lincoln City are currently sitting pretty at the top of the National League three points clear of Dagenham & Redbridge in second and ten points ahead of the final play off spot. The Imps have won four of there last five league games. The one defeat coming heavily away to Barrow in January. They are having an exceptional season under the Cowley Brothers who came in from Braintree at the start of this season. Matt Rhead and Nathan Arnold are the danger men, scoring 13 and 10 goals respectively.

Our previous meeting is a bit of a sore one. Lincoln came out 6-1 winners, with Ferriby down to 10 men for the most of the game after Ben Middleton’s red card. We were just completely outclassed and never looked like making Lincoln’s players break a sweat. So maybe after the very extra ordinary weekend they have just had, we might be able to get something out of this game.. might.

Yes, we can’t mention Lincoln City without mentioning there heroic cup run. Beating Ipswich, Brighton and Burnley on there way to making it to the FA Cup Quarter Finals, where they will face Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium. We would like to wish them all the best in that fixture. They have already done non league football proud.

 

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Lincoln City Celebrations after 1-0 win at Turf Moor

 

Player Focus: Curtis Bateson

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Curtis Bateson celebrating goal vs Dover Athletic (Picture by Liam Foster)

He was the only player who managed to get on the score sheet in the last game, and was the man to get our first National League goal…against Lincoln. Exploiting his pace on the wing  will be key to creating the chances we need to take the fight to the teams above us. Expect him to have a massive impact for us in this game and the remaining games after his early season injury setback.

Also Steve, make sure he keeps free kick duty!

Fixtures you might be interested in..

Gateshead vs York City (23rd)

 

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