FOOTBALL: Poor run continues as Louth Town throw away two goal lead

Louth Town's Carl Martin EMN-150216-093642001
Louth Town's Carl Martin EMN-150216-093642001

Louth Town returned from Clipstone empty handed on Saturday after throwing away a two goal lead against the championship favourites.

With huge selection problems because of injuries, manager Paul Walden brought back Rocky Rawlings into the 11 along with new signing Michael Twigge while Lee Croft was available again as they travelled with only 11 outfield players.

This didn’t seem to bother the visitors, after only five minutes Rocky Rawlings put in a teasing cross that fell to Steve Norton, who’s volley went just over the bar.

The White Wolves didn’t have to wait long for the breakthrough as minutes later the impressive Jordan Smith turned his man inside out before hitting his cross low and hard. Jamie Coulson was the first to react laying the ball square to Norton who fired Louth in front.

Five minutes later Louth doubled their lead, after a set piece the ball fell to Carl Martin and when everyone thought he was going to shoot he played a delightful ball into Coulson, who finished clinically.

Louth defensively were dominant as the home side looked to get back into the game and when Scott Drury was called into action he proved he is the best ‘keeper in the league.

The second half was only two minutes old when a fantastic move involving Norton and Smith found Danny Kilmore who played a delightful ball through to Coulson, but he shot wide with only the ‘keeper to beat.

That was the let off the home side needed and as they broke Twigge and Rawlings made a mess of a clearance that saw the later booked and from the free kick the ball wasn’t cleared and was put into the net from the edge of the area.

While Louth were licking their wounds the home team restored parity with confusion in the box the home striker was gifted the simplest of tap ins.

Instead of Louth regrouping and going again it seemed to knock the stuffing out of them and when the lively Matty Ord raced clear Drury charged out to the edge of the area, but the forward got their first and the ref pointed to the spot and the penalty was duly dispatched to give the home side the lead.

Lee Croft replaced Kilmore as the home side changed formation and they thought they had their own penalty when Norton went round the home ‘keeper and was brought down, but to the dismay of the visitors Norton was booked for diving.

Louth did improve as the half wore on but couldn’t find the equaliser, then in the last minute Coulam was caught in possession and the striker made the game safe with a shot into the corner of the net.

It was hard to take for the visitors but a lesson in putting the game to bed when they should have been coming back to Lincolnshire with all three points.

Manager Paul Walden said: “The different emotions during the 90 minutes are hard to describe.

“We were truly unplayable for 50 minutes of great football and attitude. They carried out instructions to the letter and if we had got the third goal we could have really embarrassed the title favourites, we were that good.

“But we didn’t put it to bed and bad habits crept into our game and we basically handed the victory to them. We have took just 1 point from the last 9. We would be sat in a promotion place now if we had done our jobs right but we are not.

“We have three big games coming up and we need a response, but I have every faith in this group of players and if we can go back on another run we can still be up there at the end of the season.”