Lincoln Moorlands 2 Stamford 2
DANIELS boss Simon Clark didn’t risk Miles Chamberlain or Chris Gray in yesterday’s friendly at Lincoln Moorlands which Stamford drew courtesy of a leveller from Lee Beeson late in the second half.
Dean Oliver was also missing through illness but new signing Jack Davies started at centre back for Stamford.
Stamford started brightly but the first chance went to Moorlands after only three minutes and they were close to taking the lead. Moorlands delivered a deep free kick which was headed on over Mario Zaccardi but the ball came back off the bar. The follow up shot was blocked on the line by Dan Barratt who was captain on the night.
A minute later, Jack Davies played the perfect ball through the Moorlands defence for Sam Mullarkey to run onto and he slotted the ball under the advancing keeper to put Stamford ahead.
Moorlands got the ball forward very quickly and often stretched the Stamford defence. Fortunately for Stamford the final ball often let Moorlands down when they were well placed to at least get a shot on target but the tactics eventually paid off after 35 minutes with yet another long ball. Zaccardi blocked the first shot but had no chance with the second from ex Daniel Nathan Adams.
It was 1-1 at half time but Moorlands had more of the ball and really should have been ahead.
Just a couple of minutes into the second half and Stamford could have restored their lead. First Jake Gibson did well to win the ball and then deliver a perfect cross for Beeson at the far post. It seemed easier to hit the target but he side footed the ball way over the bar.
A minute later, Moorlands should have taken the lead with the chance set up by another long ball. With just Lee Windrum, who had replaced Zaccardi at the break, to beat he got a hand to the ball and turned the shot away for a corner. From the corner the ball was headed over the bar.
A minute later Moorlands wasted an even better chance when a long free kick was allowed right through the Stamford defence to Windrum. He spilled the ball but, from only two yards out, Moorlands put it over the bar.
The game reached the hour mark before Stamford created another chance with Mullarkey holding the ball up well before setting up Dan Cotton unusually playing at 9. He had just the keeper to beat but shot much too soon giving the keeper time to get down and deflect the ball away.
Minutes later Stamford had another great chance when Gibson played another long cross for Beeson but the keeper did well to block his shot. Mullarkey came even closer to giving Stamford the lead but his shot crashed back off the post.
The goal which had been threatening came on 75 minutes and it was Moorlands who took the lead. It came from the usual long ball played quickly for a forward to chase and this time the shot was more calmly slid under Windrum.
Moorlands kept the lead for only two minutes and it was the hard working Mullarkey who set up the goal with a perfectly weighted cross to Beeson. This time he steered the ball past the keeper and into the far corner.
Stamford finished the stronger but over 90 minutes a winner would have been undeserved.
It had been a good workout against a team who will do well only a level below Stamford. Moorlands had a very clear tactic which unsettled the Stamford defence but it was yet another different back four learning to play together. Up front, Gibson and Mullarkey both had good games.
Stamford: Mario Zaccardi (Lee Windrum 46), Matt Cook, Dan Barratt, Danny Brooks, Jack Davies, Michael Jacklin, Lee Beeson (Seth Burkett 80), Andy Toyne, Dan Cotton (Gary King 68), Sam Mullarkey, Jake Gibson. Subs not used: Stuart King