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Report: Blyth Spartans 1-1 Farsley Celtic

A first Farsley goal for Ashley Smith-Brown wasn’t enough to hand Farsley Celtic back-to-back wins, as an injury-time strike from Paul Blackett snatched a dramatic point for Blyth Spartans.

After winning in dramatic fashion on Saturday, this time it was Farsley who were on the receiving end of a late goal, as Smith-Brown’s first-half effort was cancelled out by Blackett.

In truth, Adam Lakeland’s side could have been out of sight before Blyth got a foothold in the game, but on the overall balance of play, a point was probably a fair result.

The Celts took control of the game in the early stages, and came agonisingly close to opening the scoring when Tom Allan headed against the crossbar, before Jimmy Spencer’s follow-up was well held by Brad Young.

Shortly before the half-hour mark Farsley deservedly took the lead, a well-worked move resulted in Spencer’s cross finding Ashley Smith-Brown, who fired into the bottom corner on the half-volley.

The visitors continued to play some excellent, fast-flowing attacking football, with Carl Johnston and Tyler Walton both curling over in quick succession after slick moves.

Smith-Brown could have added to his first goal for the club as the half drew to a close, finding himself one-on-one with Young, but the Blyth ‘keeper stood strong to make an excellent save.

On the stroke of half-time the hosts had their first real opening of the game as Paul Blackett was played through on goal, but despite beating Drench the upright came to Farsley’s rescue.

Less than five minutes after the restart Connor Thomson had a glorious chance for the hosts, rounding Drench only to somehow fail to get a shot off as Farsley recovered in numbers.

Spencer then had a big chance to double Farsley’s lead after Tom Allan’s header found him at the back post, but the forward slipped as he shot and his effort flew over.

And the Celts were left to rue those missed chances when Blyth struck in added time, the ever-threatening Paul Blackett breaking in behind, rounding Drench and rolling the ball into the empty goal.

Both sides did have chances to snatch all three points after that, as Luke Parkin was unable to turn home Adam Clayton’s cross at the back post, before with the final action Michael Cain struck a free-kick against the crossbar.

Blyth Spartans: Young, Alex, Charlton (McKeown 52), Elsdon, Cunningham, Cain, Thomson, Heslop © (Dart 90+4), Blackett, Gbolahan (Griffiths 46), Guy. Unused subs: Russell, Pearson.

Farsley Celtic: Drench, Richards, Smith-Brown (B. Atkinson 74), C. Atkinson, Allan, Clayton ©, Johnston, Walton (Charles 62), Spencer (Parkin 85), Syers, Hayhurst. Unused subs: West, Lane.

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