REPORT I Barwell 0 Needham Market 2
By Simon Mathieson
Unbeaten run comes to an end
Barwell's unbeaten run came to an end as the visitors from Suffolk took all 3 points with a very solid performance. Barwell had to make a couple of changes to the starting line up due to illness and injury but still featured many of the players who had done so well in the last 6 games. Needham Market started well and then didn't allow the home side back in to it all with their central defensive pairing of Russell Short and Kieron Morphew clearing everything that came their way.
Needham Market had the ball in the net within 1 minute of the kick off but the referee disallowed the goal due to a foul on Liam Castle but it was an early warning shot to the Canaries that the Marketmen were setting their stall out to attack. That warning was not heeded when, on 6 minutes, Castle was forced to collect the ball from a shot after the attacker was played in with a ball over the top. Shortly after this the away side had a goal bound header deflected wide for a corner.
On 12 minutes Needham Market got their rewards for the early pressure when Gareth Heath scored straight from a corner. It did not look like it got a touch on the way on but Adam Mills seemed to be celebrating on the basis that it came off his head. Barwell had not really got started and were 1 goal down.
Barwell fought to get back in the game and it looked like their might be a real chance to equalise on 15 minutes when Sam Hollis picked up a loose ball in the middle of the park and drove forward. After a few yards he threaded a pass to Alex Tomkinson out on the left hand side who looked to make a surge along the line. However, a defender forced Tomkinson further wide and the opportunity vanished.
On 28 minutes Needham Market doubled their lead with a simple goal. The ball was crossed in from the right hand side and was not dealt with. Jamie Griffiths collected the ball in space and with time. His initial effort was saved by Liam Castle but he could only direct the ball back to Griffiths who had a simple tap in to make it 0-2. The lively discussion amongst the home players after the goal suggested that they knew it was a long way back.
Brady Hickey had a half chance on 35 minutes when he volleyed a Dom Brown-Hill corner straight at the keeper but, in truth, Needham Market saw that half out comfortably.
Half Time: Barwell 0 Needham Market 2
Needham Market started the 2nd half as well as they had started the 1st and had an early chance with a header but it was easy for Liam Castle to collect.
Needham Market hit each post within 2 minutes of each other as they continued to create chances. In both cases the ball looked to be going in to the net but hit the inside of the post and bounced clear. The impressive Adam Mills had the first of these and he caused Barwell problems all afternoon.
Barwell brought on Danny Durkin and, for his debut, Justice Campbell but it was not enough to change things for the home side. In the 90th minute there was a small shout for a Barwell penalty but the referee was having none of it.
Needham Market had put in a thoroughly professional performance to see out the half and take all 3 points back down the A14.
Full Time: Barwell 0 Needham Market 2
Referee: Greg Rollason