The North West Counties Football League - Premier Division
Colne left it late to grab a share of the points with a spectacular Kieran Demaine equaliser in injury time against AFC Blackpool at the XLCR Stadium on Tuesday night.
The Reds had found it hard going against a tough physical Blackpool side who looked to be on course for a win after taking a first half lead.
Colne made a confident start and did most of the early attacking with Mark Coyne seeing his shot blocked in the penalty area and Ashley Carter flashing a header across the face of the visitors’ goal. But the Reds were caught out after 17 minutes when Marc Beattie outpaced the home defence with a strong run on the left wing and his speculative high cross cum shot dropped inside the far post leaving keeper Chris Thompson helpless and giving Blackpool the lead.
The goal lifted the visitors and five minutes later Thompson did well to push an overhead kick by Beattie over his crossbar. Within minutes Joe Garvin needed to help his keeper out when he cleared Adam Freeland’s header off the Colne goal-line.
As play swung to the other end, Danny Boyle set up Coyne and his angled shot came back off the crossbar of the visitors’ goal. A series of corners by Colne were fisted away from under the crossbar by Blackpool keeper Kieran O’Boyle as the Reds enjoyed a period of pressure. And Garvin’s diagonal free kick flew just wide of the far post when it only needed a touch in a crowded penalty area.
Colne increased the pressure in the second half and when Andy Tinker was brought down inches outside the penalty area, Boyle’s free kick flew just wide of the near post. More good attacking moves led to more chances and Luke McVarish blasted a 20 yard shot just wide from a half clearance. After 75 minutes, the pressure told when Dominic Craig burst into the penalty area and chasing defender Paul Carroll brought him down to give the Reds a penalty. But Boyle stepped up to blast the spot kick over the bar to the relief of the visiting team.
The Reds continued to attack in search of an equaliser with Craig again finding room in the opposition penalty area and his low cross was hacked away by Grant Dell at the far post with Coyne poised to score. Garvin’s corners still provided chances and Mark Threlfall headed just wide of the near post in a crowded Blackpool goalmouth.
It seemed that time would run out for Colne but three minutes into injury time as they kept up the pressure, Carter laid on the pass for Demaine to detonate a pile driver from 25 yards that flew into the top corner of the visitors’ net for a deserved equaliser for the Reds.