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Deeping Rangers draw with Anstey Nomads in the United Counties League Premier Division North



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Deeping Rangers manager Daniel French feels his side's performances over the past month have shown they can compete with the leading lights in the United Counties League Premier Division North this season.

The Clarets have claimed eight points from six tough tests during October while also making progress in the FA Vase.

They shared the spoils with third-placed Anstey Nomads on Saturday following an entertaining 2-2 draw at the Haydon Whitham Stadium.

Richard Stainsby saves Michael Reeve's penalty. Photo: Alan Walters (52777883)
Richard Stainsby saves Michael Reeve's penalty. Photo: Alan Walters (52777883)

Returning goalkeeper Richard Stainsby - who was replacing the sidelined Dan Swan - saved an early penalty before Will Bird fired the Clarets ahead.

Anstey equalised after the break before Rangers had restored their lead within a minute through Robbie Ellis.

They then had Matt Carter sent off before Anstey equalised late on as the Clarets' strong protests for offside were rejected by the officials.

Will Bird gives Deeping the lead against Anstey on Saturday. Photo: Alan Walters (52777878)
Will Bird gives Deeping the lead against Anstey on Saturday. Photo: Alan Walters (52777878)

French said: "It was really positive performance because Anstey are a very good side. Everything they did was at a tempo and they played the right way.

"We stood up to it though and got to grips with them and it was a really good game.

"They were fully competitive and caused us some problems. We did ride our luck at times but we defended well and Richard Stainsby was superb and had a massive impact on the game.

Goalscorers Will Bird and Robbie Ellis. Photo: Alan Walters (52777876)
Goalscorers Will Bird and Robbie Ellis. Photo: Alan Walters (52777876)

"He's obviously played a number of times for us before and knew most of our back four which helps but all credit to him for coming in just like that and doing so well.

"It was a really good performance overall because we had been away for five of the last six games so it was a good test at home for us.

"Anstey are top two or three side but it isn't a case of us now making up the numbers and seeing what happens.

Will Bird holds off an Anstey challenge. Photo: Alan Walters (52777884)
Will Bird holds off an Anstey challenge. Photo: Alan Walters (52777884)

"We have proved against the likes of Long Eaton, Newark and Anstey that we are good enough to be in that bracket.

"We can compete and be as good if not better than them. The last six or seven games have been superb and this was another positive performance which we can take loads from."

Rangers had gone into the match with Sam Wilson and Jones De Sousa both missing along with goalkeeper Swan while Dan Banister and Ta'i Williams were struggling with injury.

Charlie Coulson on the ball for Deeping Rangers against Anstey Nomads. Photo: Alan Walters (52777882)
Charlie Coulson on the ball for Deeping Rangers against Anstey Nomads. Photo: Alan Walters (52777882)

Anstey came quickly out of the traps and were rightly awarded an early penalty following a foul by Jake Showler.

However, Stainsby produced a superb save to keep out Michael Reeve's spot kick and then thwarted the visitors on several more occasions during the first period.

Will Bird and Charlie Coulson both went close for the Clarets who then took the lead on the half-hour mark when Bird intercepted a misplaced header and fired home past former Leicester City goalkeeper Conrad Logan.

Jake Walton holds off an Anstey challenge. Photo: Alan Walters (52777881)
Jake Walton holds off an Anstey challenge. Photo: Alan Walters (52777881)

Rangers held the lead until the hour mark when Jamie Chisholm equalised for Anstey but parity lasted just a minute before Deeping regained the lead.

Coulson faked a pass to the left before playing a sublime ball to tee up Ellis who rifled home a high finish into the Anstey net from a tight angle.

Rangers were then reduced to 10 men when Carter collected his second caution of the game to see red for the second successive match.

Will Bird heads for goal against Anstey. Photo: Alan Walters (52777880)
Will Bird heads for goal against Anstey. Photo: Alan Walters (52777880)

Anstey then poured forward in search of an equaliser but were unable to find a way past an inspired Stainsby until the final 10 minutes.

Deeping had cleared a corner which was then turned back into the box and, although Stainsby saved the initial header, an offside-looking Reeve was able to turn home the rebound and give Anstey a share of the spoils.

Rangers: Stainsby, Flack, Smith, Burton-Jones, Hunnings, Carter, Walton, Ellis, Bird, Coulson, Showler. Subs: Bloodworth, Banister, Brown, Williams, Tudosa.

Matt Carter fires in a shot at the Anstey goal. Photo: Alan Walters (52777879)
Matt Carter fires in a shot at the Anstey goal. Photo: Alan Walters (52777879)
Action from the 2-2 draw between Deeping Rangers and Anstey Nomads. Photo: Alan Walters (52777875)
Action from the 2-2 draw between Deeping Rangers and Anstey Nomads. Photo: Alan Walters (52777875)


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