Super-sub Gareth Grant wins it for Farsley AFC at Ramsbottom United
By James Grayson
Super-sub Gareth Grant’s wonder goal ended Farsley AFC’s winless run as Neil Parsley’s men won 2-1 at second-placed Ramsbottom United.
It was a vintage away performance against a team that were hot on the heels of leaders Skelmersdale United before the game in second-place in the Evo Stik Division One North table.
Farsley, who fielded new York City loan signing Mike Atkinson, hadn’t won since the 2nd February so the omens didn’t look good. Farsley did ride their luck and goalkeeper Tom Morgan was their man of the match. Inside the opening 20 minutes Ramsbottom’s Lee Gaskell had a shot cleared off the line before Morgan denied Gary Stopforth and then Phillip Dean rattled the crossbar.
Ramsbottom looked good value, but Farsley dug-in and went a goal ahead just before the break. Ryan Harrison’s floating free kick landed kindly for centre-half Matt Dempsey and he headed home from close range.
Ramsbottom equalised in the 57th minute when Jon Robinson twisted and turned in the penalty area to score. Minutes later Morgan turned away a Dominic Smalley header as Ramsbottom turned the screw.
But, Farsley weathered the storm and the help of Neil Parsley’s inspirational substitution, they got the winner. Stalwart Grant replaced Adam Priestley and within eight minutes of coming on, the striker had scored.
Matty James was the provider, the playmaker showing the tricks he has stored in his lock with a deft pass which opened the door for Grant. He still had a lot to do, but he made the chance look easy with a curling finish which crashed off the stanchion and into the net.
Farsley had further chances to seal the win, but Grant’s moment of genius was enough ahead of a local derby with Harrogate Railway on Easter Monday.
Ramsbottom United: Collinge, Smalley, Ayres, Stopforth (Pilkington 63), Dawson, Warrender, Spencer, Edghill, Gaskell, Robinson (Purcell 73), Dean (Hulme 77). Subs unused: Proudfoot, Kuba-Kuba.
Farsley AFC: Morgan, Atkinson, Bambrook, O'Brien (captain), Dempsey, Etherington, Priestley (Grant 67), Walton, Mallory, James (Tiani 93), Harrison (Davies 91). Sub unused: Higginson.
Referee: Elizabeth Simms
FAFC man of the match: Tom Morgan