Stamford AFC give visiting Ramsbottom a 3-0 head start

Stamford AFC v Ramsbottom United. Photo: Geoff Atton EMN-150921-122543001

Stamford AFC v Ramsbottom United. Photo: Geoff Atton EMN-150921-122543001

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Stamford’s leaky defence conceded three goals to the worst attack in the league on Saturday before launching an impressive comeback to draw 3-3 with Ramsbottom United.

After a bright start some poor defending at the back saw the Daniels face a 3-0 deficit at halftime, which came as somewhat of a shock considering bottom of the Evo-Stik NPL Ramsbottom had only managed to score three goals in their first eight games before the weekend.

However Samuel Grimshaw struck twice and Lee Gaskell added a goal on the stroke of halftime to make a come back an almighty task.

Cue an inspirational double substitution by manager David Staff and a terrific turn around. David Bell and Dan Clements replaced Will Rawdon and Nathan Hick and they soon made an impression on the game.

Ryan Robbins scored two goals in the space of four minutes and Cameron Powell snatched a point in the last minute of the match.

The whole day got off to a strange start as the kick-off was delayed for 90 minutes after the match officials got stuck on the A1 following an accident.

However when the game did kick-off Stamford came out firing. In the opening stages Robbins, Jon Challinor, Andy Hall, Greg Smith, and Richard Jones all went close for the hosts at the Zeeco Stadium. But once again errors cost Stamford dear and on the half hour mark they lost possession in the middle of the park and the home defence tried to play the offside trap but got caught out, leaving Grimshaw acres of room to round the helpless Daniels’ keeper Richard Knight and score from close range.

Grimshaw struck again just eight minutes later, tapping in from close range from a cross from Jamie Rother. Shortly after the visiting striker had a golden chance to record his hat-trick but skipper Jones blocked the ball off the line with Knight beaten.

But the reprieve was not to last long after a comedy of errors gifted the visitors a third.

First. Powell lost the ball in his own half and then Jones missed his tackle. His centre back partner Lewis Carr half cleared the ball but Grimshaw chased it down and turned provider, laying it into the path of Gaskell to tap home.

Despite a calamitous first half Stamford came out with plenty of belief in the second half. The Daniels started well with Bell and Challinor hitting shots just wide. But in truth Stamford should have been four down, another miscommunication in defence allowed Grimshaw the ball and his neat chip over Knight was denied only by the cross bar.

Robbins was the man to get Stamford back into the match. He had been denied earlier by a good save from Ramsbottom stopper Grant Shelton and some physical defending but with 15 minutes left to play he buried Greg Smith’s excellent cross into the net.

After another scare from Grimshaw the St Kitts and Nevis international finished another good cross, this time from Hall.

In the final moments Powell rose highest to convert a David Bell corner to earn an unlikely point.

Stamford AFC: Richard Knight, Jon Challinor (Jordan Neil) Will Rawdon (Dan Clements), Lewis Carr, Richard Jones, Cameron Powell, Nathan Hicks (David Bell), Andy Hall, Gregg Smith, Jordan Smith, Ryan Robbins. Subs unused: Dominic McGarr and Lynas King

Ramsbottom: Grant Shelton, Kyle Harrod, Luke Heron, Prince Heywood, Andrew Dawson (Andrew Fitzgerald), Philip Edghill, David Kuba Kuba (Cleavon Beadle), Alex Meaney (Charlie Russell), Jamie Rother, Lee Gaskell, Sam Grimshaw. Subs unused: Jake Cliffe and Melford Knight.