Millers v Shakers Draw
Don Valley Stadium
24th March 2009 7.45pm
A penalty and a last minute equaliser was the order of the day as both teams got a point, at a cold, windy and wet Don Valley Stadium this evening.
The visitors threatened first when Mike Jones' distance shot went over the bar but Reuben Reid then had a shot deflected by Ben Futcher at the other end while Mark Hudson fired wide of Wayne Brown's goal. Andy Warrington made two superb saves in the first half to deny Bury. Firstly when a cross from Glynn Hurst found Andy Bishop his header brought a reaction save from the Millers 'keeper and then after a spell of Bury pressure in the final minutes of the half, Michael Jones forced Warrington into an excellent save. Before that, Bury 'keeper, Wayne Brown, was lucky to still be on the pitch as he blatantly handled the ball outside the area but all referee, Jon Moss did was give the Millers a free-kick. In the last minute of the first half, Brown made his first save of the game, when Reid spun in the area and brought off a good save from the 'keeper.
Shortly after the start of the second half, Elliot Bennet got free and picked out Mike Jones with a superb cross, only for Jones to hit the ball straight into the arms of Warrington. Loan signing, Phil Jevons came on for Hurst and his first action of the game was to earn himself a yellow card for hacking down Dale Tonge. With twenty minutes to go, the four hundred and forty travelling fans were up and celebrating as a through ball from Bennett found Bishop who attempted to lob Warrington but the Millers goalie grabbed at the ball and before he went backwards into the net he dropped the ball to save a goal. Ryan Taylor, who had come on for Jamie Clarke caused a few problems and he should have had the ball in the net when an Ian Sharps cross was flicked onto him by Broughton, but the young striker skied the ball way over the bar and then at the other end it was Sharps who had to hack the ball off the line after a Bennett cross left the home defence at sixes and sevens. When it looked like the game was going to be a stalemate, the Millers got a free-kick which Mark Hudson floated in. The referee blew his whistle, booked Steve Haslam for a foul on Drewe Broughton and pointed to the spot for a Millers penalty. Up stepped Reid and scored his sixteenth goal of the season. The home side started to try and play for time but as the announcement of three minutes added time went out, Brian Barry-Murphy took a corner which found Efe Sodje unmarked and he put an unstoppable header into the net to get the visitors a point.
I didn't think either team played great football tonight but I suspect the wind, rain and slippy pitch had something to do with that. I think Alan Knill will be the happier of the two managers this evening.