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Match Report

Town 0 Wrexham 0

A Joe Leesley header against the bar and an impressive point blank save from a Jordan Thewlis effort were the highlights as Harrogate drew 0-0 with Wrexham in the Emirates FA Cup.

As both teams got their Cup campaigns underway, it turned out to be a very cagey affair in the opening stages.

Town struggled to threaten The Dragons and although Wrexham themselves had a no clear-cut chances in the opening stages, Mike Fondop looked like he could potentially be a nuisance for the Town defence.

The first real chance of the game came in the ninth minute and fell to Harrogate, after good work from Leesley, the winger managed to pick out George Thomson who’s shot was blocked and ricoched to Aaron Williams whose effort was deflected behind for a corner.

From the resulting corner came a reverse of the previous exchange as Thomson’s in swinging corner picked out Leesley in the middle, who rose highest, but he could only guide his header onto the bar.  

Leesley looked to be in inspired form in the opening 20 minutes, after another good run he cut inside and whipped in a looping cross which found Williams at the back post, but he couldn’t guide his header towards goal.

Town were really knocking on the door and looked especially dangerous from corners, The Wrexham defence struggled to deal with Leesley's corners and on one occasion he picked out Thewlis at the back post but the man starting his first game of the season was denied by a superb save from opposition keeper Rob Lainton.

Despite Harrogate’s attacking display, it would be Wrexham who had the ball in the back of the net first.

Luke Young managed to evade the Town defence and find the goal, but referee James Oldham stopped play after a foul was spotted in the build-up only for the goal to be ruled out.

As the half went on clear cut chances were limited for both sides, both Harrogate and Wrexham had stages of efficient linkup play but both sides struggled to pick out the decisive pass to break the deadlock.

Wrexham started the second half looking like they wanted to take the game with Fondop managing to wriggle through the Town defence after he picked a loose ball from Thomson.

The Dragons striker found himself one on one with Belshaw and managed to chip the tall keeper, but the linesmen responded late and called for offside.

Despite the close call, Simon Weaver's men responded well, a free kick after a foul on Jack Emmett taken by the lively Leesley was whipped dangerously into the box and was inches away from Liam Kitching’s head.  

Going into the 65th minute headed efforts for both sides nearly broke the deadlock, Kithcing again had an effort on goal which was defended well by Shaun Pearson, Pearson then went to the other end of the field and had a headed effort of his own saved by Belshaw.

Going in to the final 20 minutes of the game it felt like it was destined for a replay, Leesley and Mark Beck linked up well in the closing stages, but the winger struggled to deliver a cross into the mixer and test the Wrexham defence.

Going into added time the game nearly completely changed, a magnificent run and cross from Leesley found Beck in the middle who rose above the Wrexham defence but couldn’t keep his effort under the bar.

Both sides have now gone 180 minutes without conceding against each other and will now face off again on Tuesday night as they’ll need another 90 minutes at least to decide who will advance in the Emirates FA cup.

Report by Isaac Martin

Harrogate Town: Belshaw, Fallowfield, Falkingham, Burrell, Thomson (Agnew 76), Emmett, Leesley, Thewlis (Muldoon 66), Langmead, Williams (Beck 66), Kitching

Subs not used: Howe, Cracknell, Kerry

Booked: Burrell

Wrexham: Lainton, Roberts, Pearson, Summerfield (Pyke 45), Young, Fondop (Beavon 69), Carrington, Rutherford, Walker, Wright, Tharme (Maguire-Drew 81)

Subs not used: Dibble, Burgess, Deverdics, Hinds

Booked: Fondop, Rutherford

Referee: James Oldham

Attendance: 1,540
Match Result
Town
Town
0
Wrexham AFC
Wrexham AFC
0
The CNG Stadium
3:00PM Saturday 20 October 2018
Attendance 1540
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