TASTE OF THE TERRACE: Draw good result against tough opponents

Crawley Town fan and columnist Geoff Thornton SUS-150216-151358002
Crawley Town fan and columnist Geoff Thornton SUS-150216-151358002

I seemed to be in a minority of one when I said I considered Crawley Town’s goalless draw against Accrington Stanley had been an entertaining match. Many fans thought that Reds’ failure to convert their chances and take all three points represented a very poor show all-round.

That viewpoint suggested they had not taken into account the fact that Accrington were a very competent and obdurate side.

They brought a game plan to Broadfield that showed their primary objective was not to lose.

To this end they kept their back line compact and played the offside trap very well. Reds mostly appeared unaware of the trap let alone being clever enough to outwit the visitors.

Secondly Stanley were hard, as the foul count showed. They seemed to be doing their best to justify the insulting choruses from the Crawley fans that rang out directed toward their northern opponents and, to his credit, referee Brendan Malone spotted most offences although he was too lenient overall to please an ex-referee like me.

There was one blank in the opposition’s armoury as they couldn’t hit the proverbial barn door from the inside.

They squandered a number of decent chances and found Reds fiercely determined to keep a clean sheet.

A couple of times crazy bouts of pinball ensued in the home goal mouth and Crawley’s escapes drew gasps of disbelief.

If the entertainment potential was obvious what was it that pleased this particular supporter?

I was most impressed by what was going on in the lads’ heads. They held visions of the beautiful game especially when it meant an unexpected, sometimes outrageous, long pass.

The problem was that they knew what they should do but simply couldn’t deliver the passes which were invariably over-hit.

As I suggested a little while back someday they will get it right and dole out some real punishment.

The match could have been settled in the opening five minutes when a scintillating move involving Billy Clifford, Enzio Boldewijn and James Collins was foiled only by a superb reflex save by Stanley’s keeper Elliot Parish.

If the accuracy of Crawley’s shooting had improved a tad it was not backed up by greater precision with the final ball especially in the later stages when the fast pace of the game took its toll on energy levels.

Dermot Drummy’s task will not have been helped by the enforced substitutions of Mark Connolly and Bobson Bawling and once again he was unable to name seven substitutes.

Whilst we wait for several players to regain full fitness and for Dean Cox to become available in January I wonder if there will be any follow up to the news that Sanchez Watt and Conor Henderson have been training with the Reds.

Neither player has a club at the moment and so should be allowed to sign on. Over to you Mr Drummy.

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