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First Team - Match centre

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Metropolitan Police
Harrow Borough
Tue 8 Jan 19:45 - The Evo-Stik South - Premier Division South Full time

MET POLICE 1 HARROW BORO 0

A late assault on the Police goal, including a disallowed goal, could not disguise the fact that, for most of this match, Harrow were second-best to a slick Met outfit who extracted revenge three days after their defeat at The Rogers Family Stadium.

A late assault on the Police goal, including a disallowed goal, could not disguise the fact that, for most of this match, Harrow were second-best to a slick Met outfit who extracted revenge three days after their defeat at The Rogers Family Stadium.

Shaun Preddie came in at right-back for the hamstrung Josh Andrew in Harrow’s only change from Saturday’s line-up, while the Met made two changes including loanee Fulham keeper Schotterl between the sticks. Preddie was to have a troubled night in an unfamiliar role, and early on Fisher found far too much space on the left side and set up Gilbert, whose low drive clipped the outside of the post. Harrow seemed a little more prepared for the long throw-ins of Robinson, but when one was headed clear, it took Hafed Al-Droubi two attempts to save Arthur’s shot. Saturday’s hero Dylan Kearney ran on to Ryan Moss’s flick-on to send a shot across goal, but that was a rare foray upfield for Borough in the opening half-hour. When Ryan Haugh conceded possession, a deep cross from the right found Knight at the far post, but he sent his header wide. Al-Droubi had to make another save when Robertson shot through a crowd of players following a corner, and Nathaniel Oseni hacked the ball clear to end another scramble in the visiting box.

met police v harrow 1819
32 photos

Late in the half, Harrow forced Schotterl into action when Moss’s header from Haugh’s cross was blocked, but Kearney came onto the ball and forced the keeper to save on the line with his feet. But that did not signal a change in emphasis, as the half ended with Mitchal Gough making a fine tackle to stop Gilbert, and Al-Droubi tipping over a header from one of his own defenders.

The half featured a fox on the pitch at one point. Bill Tumbridge refused to comment when it was put to him that he had captured it at Earlsmead and taken it for release at Imber Court!

Gough was at fault early in the second half when a casual clearance rebounded off Robertson into Blackmore’s path, and he sent a shot wide when he really should have scored. Gilbert then found Mazzone who, stretching, volleyed over, and Al-Droubi saved Robinson’s back-post header from a corner. When Borough finally won their first corner of the night, referee Greaves warned Kearney about jostling Schotterl before it was taken and, when it was, immediately blew for a foul. Traffic continued to be generally one-way, with Gilbert driving over and Knight firing a free-kick into the side-netting, the rippling effect causing some in the stand to celebrate, thinking that the Met had gone in front.

They did not have to wait long to celebrate properly. After Kearney had curled an ambitious effort wide of the mark, and Jordan Ireland had headed over Moss’s cross, Harrow lost the ball in midfield in the 70th minute, and the Met attacked up the left. In a near-carbon-copy of their third goal on Saturday, Knight drew an exposed Al-Droubi towards him, before slipping the ball right to Blackmore who couldn’t miss.

Preddie then lost the ball, allowing Mazzone in on goal, with Al-Droubi saving well. Anthony O’Connor and Max Holland came on to try to give the Harrow attack more life, and to good effect. For the first time in the evening, the closing fifteen minutes saw Harrow in the ascendant. Gough’s ball into the box was won by Moss, the ball bouncing for Ireland to have a header saved by Schotterl. Holland’s corner was then met by a powerful goalbound header from Gough, only for the ball to hit Kearney on the goal-line, very unlucky. George Fenton rose above the defence to power a header over from Gough’s free-kick. Police attacks were now sporadic, but Blackmore had a free header from a corner saved by Al-Droubi. Schotterl made a fine claim of a dangerous Gough cross, and Kearney and Haugh set up Gough for a shot that went narrowly over before, with the game in its 92nd minute, Moss arrived at the far post to convert Gough’s cross from the right but the assistant’s raised flag cut short the Harrow celebrations. It was a tight call, but so it had been when Harrow got their winner on Saturday: some you win, some you lose.

The defeat leaves Harrow clinging on to fourth place in the table on goal difference from the Met, who have two games in hand. More significant is the five-point gap to the chasing pack, and Harrow will be looking to maintain that gap when they travel to Beaconsfield Town, another side who will consider themselves unlucky to have lost on their visit to Harrow, this Saturday.

METROPOLITAN POLICE: Bertie Schotterl, Josh Webb, Alex Fisher, Oliver Robinson, Jeremy Arthur, Louis Birch, Oliver Knight, Luke Robertson (sub Jonathan Hippolyte, 66 mins), Jack Mazzone (sub Mekhail McLaughlin, 88 mins), Max Blackmore, John Gilbert. Unused subs: Nesta Guinness-Walker, Michael Atkinson, Ross Murdoch.

HARROW BOROUGH: Hafed Al-Droubi, Shaun Preddie, Ryan Haugh, George Fenton, Nathaniel Oseni (sub Anthony O’Connor, 76 mins), Mitchal Gough (booked, 38 mins), Dylan Kearney, Jordan Ireland, Ryan Moss (booked, 31 mins), Michael Bryan (sub Mark McLeod, 63 mins), Lewis Cole (sub Max Holland, 76 mins). Unused subs: Lee Pearce, Josh Andrew.

Referee: Mr T Greaves

Att. 130

By Simon Grigor

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met police v harrow 1819
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met police v harrow 1819

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