Boro draw at Farsley

Farsley Celtic 0 Stevenage Boro 0 AN advert for Blue Square Premier football this was not. On a cold and windy West Yorkshire evening in front of the Setanta cameras, Boro were given a stark reminder that in football, there is never an easy game. After th

Farsley Celtic 0 Stevenage Boro 0

AN advert for Blue Square Premier football this was not.

On a cold and windy West Yorkshire evening in front of the Setanta cameras, Boro were given a stark reminder that in football, there is never an easy game.

After the 5-0 thumping of Droylsden on Saturday, Peter Taylor's side were expected by all at Throstle Nest to win, and to win comfortably.

As it turned out, Boro, who fielded five of their January signings in the starting line-up, proceeded to play at times more as a bunch of strangers rather than a team.

Faced with a near gale-force wind and an equally blustery start from the home side, Boro were on the back foot from the off.

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In the eighth minute, a poor header back from Boro captain Ashley Westwood let in Damian Reeves but the home side's top scorer could only slice wide when one-on-one with goalkeeper Alan Julian.

At the other end, Steve Morison and Calum Willock looked to combine when possible, with Willock in particular looking dangerous with his pacy runs.

However, on the half hour, Willock had to be replaced by Tes Bramble after picking up a suspected hamstring injury while challenging for the ball.

The half passed by without too much incident as Farsley looked to pump long balls to the edge of the Boro area, which were easily dealt with by Westwood and Mark Arber.

Boro themselves were also looking to get the ball forward as quickly as possible, but could only muster two shots on goal towards the end of the half.

The first came from the energetic Lawrie Wilson, who blazed horribly over from the edge of the box, before Barry Fuller was wide with a 20-yard drive.

The second half was more entertaining, but with the wind still causing problems for both sides, the game continued to be scrappy.

Peter Vincenti was unlucky at the start of the half with a 25-yard shot that drifted a foot wide of the right post, while Wilson was getting forward to support the strikers at every opportunity.

Boro were lucky not to fall behind on 55 minutes though, when James Knowles had an overhead kick from eight yards superbly saved by Julian, who dived down to his right to tip the ball wide.

Wayne O'Sullivan was brought on for the last 25 minutes in place of the disappointing Junior Lewis who had a game punctuated with sloppy passes and poor control, while Scott Laird was replaced by Daryl McMahon for the final 10.

Boro continued to try and create chances, but Morison was often left isolated up front, managing only a header and a volley that were both comfortably saved by Curtis Aspden in the home goal.

The game petered out as time wore on, with neither side creating a clear cut chance leaving the 100 or so Boro fans rueing their team's poor performance.

If Boro are to gain promotion this season, then they must perform better than this, especially against the division's smaller teams.

Boro: Julian 7, Fuller 6, Murray 6, Westwood 6, Wilson 8*, Arber 6, Morison 6, J Lewis 5 (O'Sullivan 66m, 7) Laird 6 (McMahon 79m), Willock 7 (Bramble 31m, 6), Vincenti 6.

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