It's the Same Old Story
Rainworth’s season has reached rock bottom and can be best summed up with gifted goals and red cards.
Against a Newark Flowserve side that sat second in the table, unbeaten at home, this would be the last side to continue that trend against. Unfortunately, that is just what they did, with an own goal and a red card taking any gloss off a mixed performance. The red card was even more galling as it was their fifth in only their ninth league game, a lesson that they seem incapable of learning from.
The opening minute saw just how lethal Newark were on the counter-attack, when an excellent Rainworth move saw Liam Jepson’s through ball find Blessing Adeleye. When his cross was well cut-out, the ball quickly found its way upfield and Sam Agar scored with a sublime chip into the top corner that gave Warren Squires no chance.
Five minutes later they had doubled their lead courtesy of a Rainworth own-goal when Joe Sockett could only divert the ball into his own net when trying to defuse a Newark cross. The Rainworth faithful feared the worst but the goal-fest didn’t materialise.
Rainworth’s first effort on goal came from Bryan Dakouri but his flicked header from Roberto Labbate’s free-kick lacked direction. Three minutes later and only an excellent instinctive save by Squires prevented Rainworth doubling their own-goal tally.
With no recognised central defenders available Rainworth struggled with Newark’s accurate crosses and they had Squires to thank when he made an excellent save to deny Agar.
Rainworth did pull a goal back in the 31st minute when Antonio Wedderburn and Jack Hutchinson combined and when Wedderburn’s cross found the head of Dakouri he made no mistake finding the bottom corner.
With seconds remaining in the half Newark created one final opportunity, but Squires made a point blank save to deny Tom Potts and shortly afterwards the referee blew to end the half.
Newark continued to probe at the start of the second half and in the 53rd minute Squires saved from Agar at the expense of a corner and shortly afterwards Callum Smith hit his effort over the bar with the goal at his mercy.
Rainworth still carried a threat and when they broke in the 61st minute it was the same old story, instead of shooting a pass was attempted and the chance was lost.
Squires did well to save Elliott King’s effort but during the play Labbate was injured and had to be replaced by Connor Wright, who himself was returning from a long-term injury.
Agar was a constant threat and he was firstly thwarted by Squires and then his header was inches over the bar.
It wasn’t all one-way traffic and Yinka Adebowale did well to tip Dakouri’s goal-bound effort over for a corner. Rainworth made their second substitution bringing on Tom Sharpe for Liam Jepson.
Newark had a close call when Adebowale dropped Wedderburn’s cross, but it was cleared before Rainworth were able to capitalise.
Rainworth made their third and final substitution, bringing on Kyle Lee for Anton Foster.
The final goal of the game came in the 85th minute when the ever-dangerous Agar was allowed to run across the penalty area and his effort found the bottom corner.
Rainworth still pushed forward and Jacob Webster was unlucky to see his header go the wrong side of the upright.
With seconds remaining Lee was shown a straight-red for an off the ball incident in what had been a very physical encounter.
Rainworth must quickly eradicate their obvious faults if they are to get out of the relegation battle they find themselves in.
RAINWORTH: Squires; R. Labbate (Wright); Sockett; Foster (Lee); Barnes; Webster; Wedderburn; Hutchinson; Dakouri; Adeleye; Jepson (Sharpe).
Subs (not used): Denyer; Wesley.
Referee: Mr Simon Mason