Middlesbrough and Sheffield Wednesday share points in goalless draw

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Sky Bet Championship

Middlesbrough 0-0 Sheffield Wednesday

A goalless draw meant that Middlesbrough and Sheffield Wednesday shared the points in the Championship at the Riverside Stadium last night.

Middlesbrough manager Tony Pulis made three changes to the side that were knocked out of the FA Cup by Brighton at the weekend with Britt Assombalonga, Grant Leadbitter and Stewart Downing coming into the side in place of Ashley Fletcher, Adam Clayton and Martin Braithwaite.

Sheffield Wednesday on the other hand made six changes following Saturday’s 3-1 victory at home to Reading in the FA Cup.

Middlesbrough started the game well, and came incredibly close in the 12th minute when Patrick Bamford’s header on the end of Adama Traore’s ball was just kept out by keeper Joe Wildsmith.

Boro’s lively start didn’t materialise however, and Sheffield Wednesday grew into the game. They came close in the 39th minute when Lucas Joao beat a defender and his shot forced a good save from Darren Randolph to his left.

The visitors came close again in the third minute of added time when George Friend gifted the ball to Ross Wallace, who fired just wide of the mark from long range.

Middlesbrough played much better in the second half, and should’ve scored four minutes into the half when Daniel Ayala’s goalbound header from a corner hit Assombalonga and went wide as a result.

15 minutes later, the hosts came incredibly close when Ben Gibson headed against the post on the end of a free kick.

Sheffield Wednesday only really threatened in the 73rd minute when Joel Pelupessy’s powerful long range effort went just over the bar.

Tony Pulis’ side continued to pile the pressure on Wednesday, and came close six minutes from time when Downing’s powerful shot went just wide following a corner.

Boro’s last real chance of the game, which they really should’ve taken, came in the 87th minute when Ayala’s header from a corner bounced over.

The result puts Middlesbrough three points off the play-offs in 8th, while Sheffield Wednesday sit in 16th.

Middlesbrough: Randolph, Shotton, Ayala, Gibson, Friend, Howson (Clayton 79), Leadbitter, Downing, Traore, Bamford (Gestede 79), Assombalonga (Braithwaite 79).

Subs not used: Konstantopoulos, Fletcher, Fry, Christie.

Sheffield Wednesday: Wildsmith, Venancio, Pudil, Thorniley, Palmer, Butterfield (Boyd 66), Reach, Pelupessy, Fox, Wallace (Nielsen 90+1), Joao (Nuhiu 73).

Booked: Thorniley and Reach

Subs not used: Hunt, Jones, Rhodes and Dawson.

Attendance: 24,120


Late Millwall equaliser sends Rochdale FA Cup tie to replay

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Emirates FA Cup 4th Round

Millwall 2-2 Rochdale

Wallace 17 pen  Henderson 32

Thompson 90  Done 53

Millwall narrowly avoided an FA Cup upset thanks to a late equaliser from Ben Thompson as they drew 2-2 at home to Rochdale at the New Den yesterday.

Jed Wallace put the hosts in front with a 17th minute penalty before goals from Ian Henderson and Matt Done either side of half time put Rochdale in front for much of the second half.

Thompson equalised for Millwall just before added time to trigger a replay.

Manager Neil Harris made nine changes to his side following a 4-3 win at Leeds United last week, while visitors Rochdale, who are struggling in League 1 hadn’t played for two weeks.

The two sides were fairly evenly matched early on, but the hosts were awarded a penalty in the 17th minute when Fred Onyedinma was brought down by Donervon Daniels in the box. Wallace stepped up and smashed the ball in the bottom-left corner to put his side in front.

Millwall almost doubled their lead two minutes later when Tom Elliott rounded the keeper but his effort was cleared off the line.

Rochdale then came close in the 31st minute when Mark Kitching beat a defender before his effort was blocked by Jason Shackell.

Dale equalised moments later when Andy Cannon played an impressive ball through to Henderson and he curled it round the keeper.

The visitors started brighter in the second half, and took the lead when Cannon put in a good ball, which was helped on its way by Tony Craig, and Done smashed the ball into an open net.

Millwall looked better once they brought Steve Morison on and reverted to a 4-3-3 formation.

Elliott headed over from Onyedinma’s ball in the 63rd minute, and then he had another header denied by keeper Josh Lillis five minutes later.

Three minutes from time, Elliott had a shot blocked before it went out of play. The hosts then got the equaliser they’d worked hard for in the last minute when Thompson volleyed home into the bottom-right corner on the end of an impressive ball from Morison.

The result means the two sides will face each other in a replay soon at Spotland.

Millwall: Martin, Romeo, Cooper, Shackell (Morison 59), Craig, Wallace, Thompson, Tunnicliffe (Williams 84), Ferguson, Onyedinma (Gregory 85), Elliott.

Subs not used: Archer, McLaughlin, Meredith, Saville.

Rochdale: Lillis, Daniels, McNulty, Delaney, Rafferty, Cannon (Rathbone 80), Camps (Adshead 51), Kitching, Done, Henderson, Andrew.

Booked: Camps and Andrew.

Subs not used: Ntlhe, McGahey, Thompson, Inman, Moore.

Attendance: 8,346




Gateshead and Woking share points in National League clash


Vanarama National League

Gateshead 1-1 Woking

Fox 80             Grego-Cox 51

Gateshead and Woking shared the points on Tuesday night with a 1-1 draw in the National League at the Gateshead International Stadium.

Republic of Ireland under-21 international Reece Grego-Cox took the lead for Woking early in the second half but it was cancelled out by Burton loanee Ben Fox ten minutes from time.

The two sides came into the game neck and neck in the National League table, with Gateshead in 15th and Woking 16th, but the hosts had two games in hand on the Surrey side.

Gateshead manager Steve Watson named an unchanged side following the 3-1 win at Chester City on Saturday, while full-back Matt Young was preferred to Fabio Saraiva in the Woking side.

It was an uneventful start to the game, and the first real chance didn’t come until the 24th minute when Woking’s Grego-Cox put in a good ball from the right but Jonathan Edwards couldn’t quite meet the cross at the far post.

The visitors then came close at the end of the first half when they had numerous shots blocked before Charlie Carter hit the ball over the bar.

Woking made a great start to the second half, taking the lead just six minutes in. Following good work on the right, Grego-Cox latched onto a good ball and his shot came off the post before beating Dan Hanford.

Gateshead put the foot on the gas more following the goal, and they came close ten minutes later when Scott Barrow’s impressive ball forced a risky clearance from Joey Jones that went just wide of his own goal.

The hosts then equalised in the 80th minute when the ball fell in space to new midfielder Fox who blasted his shot in the bottom-right corner to beat Nathan Baxter.

Steve Watson’s side then looked favourites to grab a win, and nearly did so in the 82nd minute when Barrow’s shot from the left forced a great save from Baxter to the right.

Gateshead failed to threaten after that however and the two sides shared the points.

Gateshead: Hanford, Vassell (Kerr 54), Fyfield, Byrne, Barrow, Penn, McLaughlin, Fox, York, Preston (McNall 54), Burrow.

Booked: Byrne

Subs not used: O’Donnell, Bell, MacLeod (GK)

Woking: Baxter, Young, Staunton, Jones, Ramsay (Stojsavljevic 85), Isaac (Appau 87), Ferdinand, Grego-Cox (Banton 89), Carter, Cook, Edwards.

Booked: Ferdinand

Subs not used: Saraiva, Mason (GK)

Attendance: 470 (14 away)

North Shields beat Consett in seven-goal thriller

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Ebac Northern League Division 1

North Shields 5-2 Consett

McFarlane 22,73         MacKay 30

Ormston 47 pen    Sweet 49

Forster 52

Bainbridge 90+1

North Shields beat Consett 5-2 at the Daren Persson Stadium in the Northern League today.

Craig McFarlane (2), Gary Ormston, Adam Forster and Gareth Bainbridge were the scorers for the hosts while forwards Michael MacKay and Michael Sweet netted for the visitors.

The game was one of only two games (the other being Whitley Bay v Guisborough) in the Northern League today as most games were postponed due to snow covered or frozen pitches.

It was a lively start from both sides, as Consett’s Sweet and North Shields’ Lee Mason came close on occasions for the two sides.

North Shields took the lead in the 22nd minute in a controversial manner as McFarlane headed home from a corner but was adjudged by some to be climbing for the header.

The home side’s lead only lasted eight minutes however as Danny Craggs played a great ball through to MacKay who buried it in the bottom-right corner.

Consett nearly had another goal 10 minutes later when North Shields’ keeper Sean McCafferty missed the ball when going to tackle a forward but luckily Richard Pell was there to clear Sweet’s effort off the line.

Just two minutes into the second half, the hosts were awarded a penalty when a forward was brought down just inside the box. Midfielder Ormston stepped up and buried the ball in the bottom right corner.

North Shields’ lead once again didn’t last long as Sweet smashed the ball past McCafferty from close range two minutes later after poor defending from Joe Robson.

The hosts regained the lead in the 52nd minute when Forster took advantage of a loose ball and he hit it past the keeper in the top-right corner.

Ben Harmison nearly made it four for North Shields in the 60th minute when his close-range header was well saved by James Platten.

The Robins got a fourth in the 73rd minute when keeper Platten slipped and McFarlane was able to slot the ball into an open goal to score his second of the game.

The hosts capped off a brilliant afternoon in the 91st minute when a mix up between the Consett defenders allowed substitute Bainbridge to get round the keeper and bury it into an open net.

North Shields: McCafferty, Robson, Pell, Hughes, Summerley, McFarlane, Ormston, Sampson, Forster (Richardson 81), Harmison (Wilson 73), Mason (Bainbridge 87).

Booked: Harmison

Sub not used: Dodds

Consett: Platten, Convery (Gray 70), Purewal, McKinnon, Lavery, Craggs, Slocombe, Smith, Cassidy (Kay 76), MacKay, Sweet.

Booked: Slocombe

Subs not used: Lawrence, Scott, Dowson.




Late strike from Franks sees Morecambe and Stevenage share points

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Sky Bet League 2

Morecambe 1-1 Stevenage

Ellison 23          Franks 89

Morecambe and Stevenage shared the points in a poor 1-1 draw in League 2 at the Globe Arena today.

Veteran forward Kevin Ellison took the lead for the Shrimps early in the game before substitute Fraser Franks got a late equaliser for the visitors.

Morecambe manager Jim Bentley named an unchanged team following a 2-0 win at Grimsby Town last week while Stevenage’s only change after the 0-0 draw at home to Reading in the FA Cup was Dale Gorman who replaced Mark McKee.

It was a fairly uneventful opening to the game, and the first chance didn’t come until the 16th minute when Steven Old’s close-range header on the end of Aaron McGowan’s cross was just kept out by Stevenage’s Tom King.

Seven minutes later, the Shrimps took the lead through Ellison. Luke Conlan made a great run on the left and his shot was parried by Tom King before the 38-year-old slotted home the rebound to score his third goal in three games.

Stevenage’s first notable chance came in the 32nd minute when Ben Kennedy headed over on the end of a good cross from the right.

Chances were few and far between following this in what was a scrappy, physical encounter. After in-form youngster Callum Lang was subbed at half time due to injury, the Shrimps sat back to defend.

Stevenage didn’t really challenge the Morecambe defence until substitute Jamie Gray forced a good save from Barry Roche one-on-one in the 76th minute.

Ellison then had the only real chance of the second half for the hosts when he made a good run on the right but his shot didn’t really trouble the keeper.

Defender Franks was brought on by Stevenage manager Darren Sarll, who looked to utilise his aerial presence by playing him up top. This tactic paid off as Franks smashed the ball into the top left hand corner on the volley in the 89th minute to grab a point for the visitors.

With five minutes added, Stevenage suddenly looked favourites to win the game but luckily the Morecambe defence just about managed to prevent another goal.

The result means Bentley’s side move up to 19th, six points off the drop zone ahead of a tough trip to Luton Town next week while Stevenage remain 15th before facing Reading away in the FA Cup on Tuesday.

Morecambe: Roche, McGowan, Old, Lavelle, Muller, Conlan, Rose (c) (Fleming 68), Kenyon, Lang (Wildig 45), Ellison, Oliver (McGurk 87).

Booked: Old, Rose and Wildig.

Subs not used: Maher, Lund, Thompson, Campbell.

Stevenage: T King, Henry (c), Wilmot, J King, Martin, Kennedy, Smith (Franks 82), Gorman (Conlon 66), Pett, Newton (Gray 69), Godden.

Booked: Smith and Newton

Subs not used: Fryer, Wilkinson, Vancooten, Georgiou.

Attendance: 1,268

Mansfield earn home replay against Championship side Cardiff

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Emirates FA Cup Third Round

Cardiff City 0-0 Mansfield Town

League 2 side Mansfield Town took third place Championship side Cardiff City to a replay in the third round of the FA Cup today.

Cardiff manager Neil Warnock made five changes to the side that lost to QPR on New Year’s Day while Mansfield boss Steve Evans named an unchanged side following a 3-1 win over Carlisle United on the same day.

It was an uneventful opening half hour to the game, with the first real chance coming in the 36th minute when Callum Paterson linked well with Kenneth Zohore, and the former’s effort was parried away by Mansfield keeper Conrad Logan.

Youngster Rhys Healey then came close for the hosts four minutes later forcing another good save from Logan, who punched the ball away.

Mansfield came close on the brink of half time when CJ Hamilton headed over on the end of a good Paul Anderson cross.

Early in the second half, Cardiff’s defence looked rather shaky and the visitors came close six minutes in when defender Joe Bennett gifted the ball to Alex MacDonald and his long range strike went just wide.

Evans’ side then came close again in the 60th minute when Lee Angol got the ball in space and his shot was blocked by Sean Morrison.

Cardiff’s best chance came moments later when Healey cut in from the left and his effort was cleared off the line by Malvind Benning.

Mansfield then came close in the 79th minute when Anderson cut in on the right and his shot was blocked by Jazz Richards.

Desperate not to take the game to a replay, Cardiff looked for a winner in the late stages and Lee Tomlin’s well driven shot in the 90th minute was well saved by Logan.

Four minutes into added time, Mansfield defender Krystian Pearce nearly headed the ball into his own net following a free kick, but Logan managed to keep it out.

The result means the two sides will meet again at the One Call Stadium on the week commencing 15 January.

Cardiff City: Murphy, Richards, Morrison (c) (Damour 75), Manga, J Bennett, Paterson, Halford, Tomlin, Healey (Hoilett 77), Mendez-Laing, Zohore (Pilkington 80).

Subs not used: Feeney, Etheridge (GK), Bogle and M Harris.

Mansfield Town: Logan, Anderson, Pearce, R Bennett, Benning, Potter, Mellis (Atkinson 90+2), MacDonald, Hamilton, Hemmings (Spencer 45), Angol (Sterling-James 75).

Subs not used: Digby, Olejnik (GK), White, Butcher.

Attendance: 6,378


Lancashire derby clash abandoned at half time

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Sky Bet League 2

Accrington Stanley A-A Morecambe

Kee 27

The game between Accrington Stanley and Morecambe at the Wham Stadium in League 2 today was abandoned at half time due to a waterlogged pitch with the hosts leading 1-0 at the time.

Billy Kee scored the only goal of the game for Stanley in the 27th minute.

Accrington came into the game following their only win in December which was a 3-0 victory away at Grimsby Town on Saturday.

Morecambe made one change to the side that won 4-3 against Yeovil Town on Friday, with Alex Kenyon coming in for the injured Andy Fleming.

The Shrimps started the game really well, with Steve Old’s long range effort forcing a great save from Aaron Chapman to his left just three minutes in.

Jim Bentley’s side could’ve taken the lead 14 minutes later when Callum Lang was through on goal but he went to ground and was booked for diving.

Kevin Ellison then headed just wide from an Aaron McGowan cross on the right in the 25th minute.

Two minutes later, Accrington were in front against the run of play with Kee backheeling it past Roche from close range following a good run on the right from his strike partner Kayden Jackson.

The hosts nearly doubled their lead just moments later when Kee headed just wide on the end of Sean McConville’s cross.

The rain was then falling at speed, and the pitch no longer looked playable.

The last chance of the game came when McConville’s brilliant free kick was well saved by Barry Roche in the 40th minute.

The game was then unsurprisingly abandoned at half time.

Accrington Stanley: Chapman, Johnson, Richards-Everton, Hughes, Donacien, Clark, Nolan, Brown, McConville (c), Jackson, Kee.

Booked: Clark and Kee

Subs not used: Leacock-McLeod, Sykes, Stryjek, Wilks, Ogle, Hmami, Watson.

Morecambe: Roche, McGowan, Muller, Old, Lavelle, Conlan, Rose (c), Kenyon, Lang, Ellison, Oliver.

Booked: Conlan, Lavelle, Lang

Subs not used: Nizic, Thompson, Campbell, Wildig, Lund, Osborne, McGurk.