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Match Reports

Town 2 - 2 Tranmere Rovers - Town earn hard fought point to stay second

19 October 2021

Match Reports

Town 2 - 2 Tranmere Rovers - Town earn hard fought point to stay second

19 October 2021

Goals from strike pair Jack Muldoon and Luke Armstrong helped Town secure a point in a hard-fought 2-2 draw at home to Tranmere Rovers.

Town overcame the setbck of a Jay Spearing penalty to take the lead early in the second half but were pegged back by a Kieron Morris strike and had to settle for a deserved point.

It was a clash that started slowly but sparked into life with a pair of penalties at the end of first-half that set up a second-half that bristled with action and near misses as both sides sensed the opportunity to come away with all three points.

Ultimately though both had to settle for a point apiece that maintained their positions at the top end of the table.

Town were boosted by the return of fit again Lewis Page and he returned to the starting line-up in place of Connor Hall, with the big defender missing out with a minor knock.

The visitors named an unchanged line-up to the one that earned their first away win at Carlisle United on Saturday for a game that pitted the division's top scorers in Town against a Tranmere side that possessed the meanest defence in the League Two.

The first chance of the game fell to the visitors when with Ryan Fallowfield down after a 50/50 challenge, Sam Foley broke down the Town right but hit his effort straight at Mark Oxley when well placed.

Callum McManaman then found himself on the edge of the Town box but hit high and wide over Oxley's crossbar.

Town were struggling to impose themselves on the game in the early stages with Rovers combative midfield duo of Spearing and Tom Davies nullifying Town's creativity and ambition.

Josh Hawkes then tested Oxley before on the half-hour mark Jack Diamond was adjudged to have brought down Josh Dacres-Cogley. Spearing stepped up to crash home the resulting penalty.

A tough ask was then ahead for Town in trying to breach a defence that had posted eight clean sheets and conceded just four times through 12 games this season.

There was almost an instant response from Weaver's side though as a George Thomson free-kick was cleared behind.

From the resulting corner Town were handed an opportunity to draw level when the referee pointed to the spot after Will Smith was fouled and up stepped Muldoon to hit high into the top corner to register his sixth goal of the campaign.

On the stoke of half-time Smith was again in the thick of the action when another Thomson corner found his head and his goalbound effort was deflected away from danger.

Town came out after the break in positive mood, looking to set the tempo early and evidenced by Armstrong pressing down the right to fashion an opening that tested Ross Doohan.

It was Armstrong who put Town ahead on 51 minutes after an Alex Pattison run took him beyond the Rovers defence. His shot was blocked by Doohan but Thomson's header teed up Armstrong to nod home.

Before Town had chance to draw breath the game was back on level terms when Morris prodded home after Elliott Nevitt's shot had rebounded off the bar.

Five minutes later the visitors were forced into the first change of the night when injury curtailed Josh Hawkes evening, with the midfielder replaced by Liam Feeney.

Smith had to be at his best on 70 minutes when a mix-up at the back provided the visitors with an opportunity but the Town centre-back was alert and on hand to vert the danger.

With the final ten minutes approaching a neat move between Fallowfield and Thomson freed up Muldoon who let fly with an effort from the edge of the area that flashed just wide.

The visitors then thought they had scored a late winner when Oxley's palmed away a Rovers cross only for the ball to fall to McManaman but his shot cannoned off the top of the bar.

The chance proved to be the last action of the night as the point proved enough to keep Town in second place in the League Two standings.

TOWN: Oxley, Fallowfield, Page (Sheron, 83), Smith, Burrell, Thomson, Falkingham Pattison, Diamond, Muldoon, Armstrong.

Subs not used: Cracknell, Kerry, Power, Orsi, Martin.

Goals: Muldoon (39, pen), Armstrong (51)

Tranmere Rovers: Doohan, Dacres-Cogley, MacDonald, Davies, Morris, Spearing, McManaman, Hawkes (Feeney, 62), Foley, Nevitt, Clarke.

Subs not used: Knight-Percival, Watson, Maynard, Murphy, Duffy, O'Connor.

Goals: Spearing (35, pen), Morris (55)

Booked: Dacres-Cogley (90)

Referee: Declan Bourne.

Attendance: 2,573 (576 away)

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