Badgers bite back after shock opener

Retford United 1- 1 Armthorpe Welfare'22 October 2013'Toolstation NCEL Premier Division 'Graeme Severn clears the ball.''Football images from Retford United v Armthorpe Welfare, Toolstation NCEL Premier Division, Jones & Co Stadium, Leverton Road, Retford, England, UK, GBR. 22 October 2013. Image copyright Jon Knight Freelance Photography. No images may be reproduced without prior permission.

Retford United 1- 1 Armthorpe Welfare'22 October 2013'Toolstation NCEL Premier Division 'Graeme Severn clears the ball.''Football images from Retford United v Armthorpe Welfare, Toolstation NCEL Premier Division, Jones & Co Stadium, Leverton Road, Retford, England, UK, GBR. 22 October 2013. Image copyright Jon Knight Freelance Photography. No images may be reproduced without prior permission.

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Retford United fought back from the worst possible start to share the points with Armthorpe Welfare on Tuesday night.

The visitors were in front inside 30 seconds, but the Badgers got a first half leveller, and with no further scoring the game ended 1-1.

It was a terrible start for the home side, as Gary Mundy managed to get into the box to slot the ball low into the bottom corner past Jody Barford, leaving the home support stunned at such an early goal.

An immediate response was required as Graeme Severn sent the ball forward but the bounce took it away from Liam Wilkin who was making his way into be box.

A free0kick for Retford after Jake Stannard was felled by Mundy saw Bobby Johnson’s ball in cleared, Rob Sanderson only putting the follow up wide of the post.

Craig Fisher then tried to push forward for Retford, his ball through for Reece Thompson was stopped for a tight offside against the United Striker.

Barford was called into action again having to frantically clear as Darren Mansaram bore down on goal with Armthorpe’s direct style of play almost catching out the United defence, again shown when Mansaram picked up the ball from a long ball, Andy Walkden having to concede a corner kick.

Sanderson did well to get up after another free-kick, his header going wide of the upright, then some good football for Retford led to a cross in from Severn for Wilkin challenging the keeper, but the keeper got a touch and the ball was cleared.

Eventually on 26 minutes, Retford levelled, Gav Cooper controlled well on the corner of the box before hitting the ball with the outside of his foot and it looped over the keeper and into the top corner for a worthy equaliser.

Thompson had a hot go wide, whilst Jonothan Mirfin flashed his effort wide of Barford’s post, both sides were looking for something from the game.

Severn played the ball forward to Wilkin who struck a volley that looked as if it was destined for the top corner, but hit the top of the bar, then Barford did well to block from Mundy to keep the scores level.

The second half started with a free-kick by Johnson that found Sanderson who headed wide.

Stannard sent a ball through for the run of Wilkin but the keeper was down to save then Johnson’s cross in was saved in a positive start for the Badgers.

Armthorpe were calling for a penalty as a player lost his footing in the box, but the referee waved away the appeals, then another shout for a spot-kick left Armthorpe incensed when the referee waved for play to continue after another player went to ground in front of goal.

Wilkin made a run to the edge of the box, but skewed his chance and the ball went over, and Retford defended well as Mansaram and Mundy both went close for the visitors.

Thompson went close with a chip over the bar as the keeper was forced to the edge of his box, Retford unlucky with the final ball and not being able to find the target.

Armthorpe had chances for David Buck and Daniel Taylor but these were easily dealt with by the Retford back line.

Retford’s free kick-count increased, another ball for Johnson to strike was over the wall, but cleared for a corner, the ball sent in to Fisher whose header was smothered on the line.

With the game destined to finish a draw, Severn had an opportunity that had the keeper back tracking but was agonisingly over the bar and it would end with a point each as the referee blew full time and the heavy rain came down on a difficult evening for Retford.

The next action sees a trip to Winterton Rangers on Saturday as Richard Sennett returns to his former club.