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 Farsley Celtic score four of the FA Trophy

BOOS sounded out at a sparsely-populated Lamb.

Not at the final whistle – although they were to come – but at the glowing substitute’s board announcing two more minutes to endure for the home supporters.

This abject and lifeless performance from the Lambs made a mockery of their late endeavours to force a replay three days earlier.


They may now have wished they hadn’t bothered.

A hat-trick from James Walshaw and a strike from Richard Marshall earned the Evo-Stik First Division North outfit and a home draw with Southport on December 10 in the First Round Proper.

It was no less than what they deserved.

Much sooner than Walshaw opened the scoring moments before half-time it was the Yorkshire side who looked the more inclined to progress in non-league football’s chief knock-out competition.

Lewis Nightingale and Marshall formed an energetic midfield pairing that left Tamworth looking lethargic and ponderous in the freezing conditions on Tuesday night.

It was Tamworth, however, who found the net first.

Louis Briscoe launched a sizzling volley into the top corner of Farsley’s net – but the referee’s whistle had already sounded for a proceeding offence.

A swift breakaway from Celtic went within a whisker of opening the scoring when Marshall crashed a thunderous 20-metre strike against the cross bar with James Belshaw wrecked.

While fortune favoured Tamworth on that attack, it was a brilliant sliding challenge from Connor Taylor that ended Walshaw’s ominous-looking run on goal after 11 minutes.

Farsley leveled the disallowed goal-scoring stakes when Walshaw leapt with Belshaw and slammed the free ball home, but Belshaw’s tumble gained the referee’s benefit of the doubt.

Celtic keeper Graeme McKibbin remained alert from Briscoe’s second attempt to cross from an initially-blocked corner to pluck Taylor’s header safely from the sky.

A break in play without chances of note ended in the 32nd minute when Jordan Deacey’s slide rule pass found Aaron Hardy in space to deliver a cross from out wide on the right but Walshaw’s header from eight yards out skewed wide.

Taylor entered the referee’s notebook for a foul 30 yards from goal, allowing Nightingale the chance to whip in a left-footed cross that Paddy Miller back headed over Belshaw’s bar. The Celtic skipper wheeled away in frustration – he knew he could’ve done better.

Marshall should have done better eight minutes before the interval when Lee Smith made a meal of a clearance and was pick-pocketed by the Celtic midfielder who poked a shot meekly wide.

Nightingale joined Taylor in the book for a clumsy pass on Tamworth’s Aaron Opoku. The deep free kick was headed goalwards by Newton. McKibben was alive to the threat, claiming the ball underneath his top-left stanchion.

The goal Celtic had threatened arrived on the stroke of half-time when Deacey delayed his pass perfectly behind the approaching defence for the arriving Walshaw to steady himself and coolly side foot beyond Belshaw.

The first event of note in the second-half arrived in the 56th minute when Taylor was replaced by Ross Dyer as Andy Morrell tried a different approach to break down Celtic.

To Morrell’s horror, it was the visitors who doubled their lead moments later. Smith had his pocket picked by Marshall, nipping the ball through for Walshaw to finish in similar fashion to his first, coolly, calmly and with confidence.

In the 62nd minute and it was three. Marshall was put through into acres of room behind the Tamworth defence and he placed firmly past Belshaw.

Belshaw did manage to get his paws to a shot minutes later when Nightingale’s run and shot from the left ended in the hands of the Tamworth keeper.

Tamworth were in disarray – and had Belshaw to thank for preventing Walshaw from landing his hat-trick.

An aimless kick up-field somehow found its way to the on-fire Celtic forward whose option to try and round Belshaw was thwarted by a well-timed diving interception.

Hollers of ‘forward’ from a despairing home crowd were heeded by Andy Burns, blasting ahead to Newton. The striker attempted an audacious lob from the right of the box that didn’t overly trouble the quick-moving McKibbin.

The hat-trick Walshaw threatened arrived five minutes before the final whistle when Marshall drilled back across a congested goal area for the striker to control and turn and blast home from metres out.

With 90 minutes on the clock, Burns’ 30-metre strike that was well held by the diving McKibbin brought ironic cheers from a now further-depleted home crowd.

It was Burns who sat dejected on the turf at the final whistle.

This was a performance Tamworth will need to quickly move on from.

With five wins and a draw thrusting the Lambs into the National League North play-off picture, Saturday’s trip to bottom club Altrincham cannot come quickly enough.

And Morrell will need look no further than this horror show for evidence that the form book counts for little when it comes to 90 minutes of football on any given Saturday afternoon, or a freezing cold Tuesday night.
Read more at http://www.tamworthherald.co.uk/horror-show-for-tamworth-fc-as-lower-league-farsley-celtic-score-four-in-fa-trophy-win/story-29945690-detail/story.html#gFUhg2im6vRj68Oc.99