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Match Reports

Town 3 Braintree 1

24 November 2018

Match Reports

Town 3 Braintree 1

24 November 2018

Town came from behind to move up to fourth with a 3-1 win over Braintree at The CNG Stadium.

After an initial scare in the first half when they fell behind to a Justin Amaluzor effort, goals from Jack Muldoon, George Thomson and an outstanding volley from new signing Michael Woods sealed the win.

Harrogate returned to action at The CNG stadium after an extended break courtesy of the international break. 

Simon Weaver named an unchanged line up that took on Chesterfield as Town welcomed Braintree looking to continue their impressive run in the National League.

Despite being further down in the table, Braintree started the brighter of the two sides.

Defender and Captain Joe Ellul had the first chance of the game as an early corner found him free in the middle, but he could only aim his effort at town stopper James Belshaw.

Striker Virgil Gomis also looked a handful in the early exchanges as Harrogate tried to move the ball on the floor and get a grip of the game.

Despite a succession of corners Town struggled to create any concrete chances in the opening 20 minutes, with Braintree also struggling to offer any threat towards the Harrogate goal.

The game was quiet until the 26th minute when Amaluzor broke through the Town defence, dribbling inside from the right wing and managed to bend an effort around the standing Belshaw to put his side in the lead.

Going towards the half hour mark Harrogate had yet to register a shot on target, Muldoon registered the first effort of the day as he hit a shot from the edge of the box, but his shot was to wayward to trouble the Irons keeper.

On the stroke of half time Mark Beck had a good effort on goal but he couldn't aim his attempt towards the inside of the post.

But the top goal scorers in league were to go into half time on a level playing field, as Josh Falkingham played a lovely weighted ball which cut up the Braintree defence and rolled into the path of Muldoon who efficiently bended his effort around the keeper.

At the start of the second half it was Town who looked the liveliest, really asking questions of the Braintree defence with good crosses from Fallowfield and Leesley giving Beck something to attack.

And it was Beck who nearly doubled town's lead in the 57th minute as Fallowfield released Muldoon who played a lovely weighted cross across the face of goal, but Beck was inches away from connecting.

Much like the first half action was limited from both sides, until the 64th minute when Muldoon picked out Thomson in the box who hit his shot low and hard in order to beat the Braintree stopper George Legg.

In the 76th minute Michael Woods made his second Harrogate Town debut to the delight of the singing Harrogate faithful.

And Woods would have a second debut to remember, in added time Woods played a lovely one two with Beck and then hit a sweet volley which flew past the Braintree stopper and confirmed another win for Town, moving them up to fourth in the table.

Harrogate Town: Belshaw, Fallowfield, Falkingham, Howe, Burrell, Thomson, Emmett, Beck, Leesley (Kerry 79), Muldoon (Woods 76), Kitching

Subs not used: Cracknell, Langmead, Williams

Goals: Muldoon 44, Thomson 64, Woods 90+3

Booked: Leesley, Fallowfield

Braintree: Legg, Muleba, Lyon-Foster, Ellul, Gabriel, Allen (Cass 67), Richards, Ochieng, Amaluzer (Wabo 77), Barrington, Gomis (Crook 85)

Subs not used: Nieskens, Sagaf

Goals: Amaluzer 26

Booked: Lyons-Foster

Referee: S Mather

Attendance: 1454

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