Needham secure a good point in 0-0 draw

Needham's Luke Ingham clears the ball

Needham's Luke Ingham clears the ball - Credit: Archant

Needham secured a well-deserved point with this battling performance against a Kingstonian side who still have ambitions to reach the play-offs.

Sam Page and Needham's Jordan Patrick chase the ball

Sam Page and Needham's Jordan Patrick chase the ball - Credit: Archant

The Marketmen are now seven points clear of the drop zone and have 10 games to play.

Given that their preparations for the game were severely hampered by illness and injury this was an even more creditable performance by the hosts.

Indeed, Needham boss Mark Morsley was full of praise for his side’s performance.

“We’ve had huge illness and injury issues this week, right through the club”, he said.

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“Five of our first choice players were unavailable today. Our commitment was first class and I couldn’t ask for any more effort from the players. Even though they had more of the possession at times I’d felt we had the better chances overall.”

Kingstonian prevailed 4-2 in the reverse fixture last month but this game was an altogether tighter affair.

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The visitors started the match quickly and should have gone ahead as early as the second minute when the ball broke for Pelayo Pico Gomez but he blazed over from six yards.

Almost immediately fellow striker Andre McCollin got free in the left-hand channel only to disappointingly screw his effort wide.

Needham gradually got a foothold in the game and top scorer Michael Brothers floated a shot wide of the angle.

Lee Ingram and Billy Holland were working tirelessly in midfield and the former set up Ollie Mann but he was unable to find the target.

Ingram had a drive deflected over before home keeper Danny Gay was called into action to deny Dan Bennett.

The tempo of the game increased at the start of the second period and Pico Gomez flashed a left foot drive narrowly over.

Needham then went even closer when Jordan Patrick worked space for himself 20 yards out before curling an effort against the post. Kingstonian soon went down the other end and McCollin was denied by Gay.

As the half progressed the visitors seemed to run out of ideas with youngsters Jake Dye and Will Crisell having particularly promising games at the back.

Needham were looking the likelier side and Ingram powered in a 30 yard free kick straight at the keeper.

Right at the death Patrick found space on the edge of the area but was unable to find the finish as the game remained goalless.

Morsley, meanwhile, praised the display of youngsters Jake Dye and Will Crissal. “I believe in giving the youngsters their chance and that is what our academy is all about,” he said.

“Jake picked up the man-of-the-match award with a great performance at right wing back. He’s only 17 and we are just finalizing a two year contract for him at the club.”

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