Late equaliser keeps Bedford Town’s slim play-off hopes alive

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Bedford Town (Dan Walker) v Peterborough 27 July
Dan Walker

Bedford Town FC has one of the best draining pitches at this level and after all the rain before the weekend, this came in handy as it was one of the few matches that passed the referee’s early inspection.

With matches called off elsewhere, many neutral fans chose the Bright Management Eyrie for their afternoon football fix, including the Chairman of the Southern League.

On the pitch, the Eagles left it very late to ensure they got something from the match.

Things didn’t start well for Bedford as they conceded in the eighth minute. New signing from Eynesbury Rovers Jamie Greygoose was making his debut between the sticks and would have been disappointed at the goal as Blaize Punter scored a tap in after confusion in the defence.

There were strong suggestions by the Eagles players that Greygoose was obstructed, but the referee was having none of it.

With nearly half an hour gone, Bedford had a great chance to get back into the game after a Connor Tomlinson pass to the right was struck solidly by Dan Walker, but Daniel Crane the Bedworth keeper was able to push the ball around the post and a Joe Steele header from the resulting corner went over.

The visitors were determined to hold on to their lead and employed some unsavory tactics early on to keep their advantage, time wasting and going down easily being two of them.

Just before the half time whistle Tomlinson had a chance, but his shot, set up by Tom Hitchcock and Callum Donnelly was saved by Crane.

Bedworth had the first meaningful chance of the second period that Greygoose swiped at to get rid off, the ball being half cleared before an eventual shot went out of play.

Walker who was having a good game set up Hitchcock on two occasions, but both shots were dealt with by Crane.

With twenty minutes remaining the Eagles had a great chance as Tomlinson virtually back-heeled the ball past Crane, only for it to be cleared from the line by Elliot Parrott, the resulting corner also being defended.

Bedford were now exerting pressure and getting most of the chances. Carl Mensah crossed for Walker, but he didn’t connect properly, with the home fans suggesting he was pulled back.

With eight minutes remaining, Bedford tried their last throw of the dice with Jake Newman replacing Hitchcock. He was soon involved as Tomlinson was set up and got a shot off while being tackled, but once again Crane was up for it and tipped the ball over.

With Town now committing players forward in an all out attack they were left vulnerable at the back, Greygoose forced to come out of the area to put off Luke Keen who fired the resulting shot wide.

Into added time and Bedford were still pushing for the equaliser, a Sinclair and Walker combination saw the ball in the area, but there was no one there to latch onto it.

Then, in the games 95 minute, it happened. Walker fired a last ditch pile-driver of a shot from out wide, it was powerful and on target giving the keeper little chance, and sending the home fans wild as it hit the back of the net.

It was to be the last action and the Eagles will be pleased about getting a draw against a team that were trying for the play-offs.

Now undefeated in three matches the team are starting to look like they have turned the corner as new signings gel into the team.

Next the action on Saturday moves to Daventry, who are in a more mid table position, but who the rejuvenated Eagles will be hoping to get something from. Back in November Bedford emerged as 2-1 winners at the Bright Management Eyrie.

Then on Tuesday top of the table Halesowen come to town, discount tickets to this and other March home games are now available at https://bedfordtownfc.ktckts.com

Bedford Town:

1 Jamie Greygoose
2 Scott Sinclair
3 Louis Hall
4 Carl Mensah
5 Joe Steele (Matt Harriot 60’)
6 Ross Watson
7 Dan Walker
8 Callum Donnelly ©
9 Tom Hitchcock (Jake Newman 82’)
10 Connor Tomlinson
11 Danny Draper (Connor Calcutt 68’)

Words: Michael Jarman-Webb


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