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Match Report: Barrow AFC 2-2 Stockport County

26 December 2023

Club News

Match Report: Barrow AFC 2-2 Stockport County

26 December 2023

Barrow held league leaders Stockport County to a 2-2 draw in front of a record-breaking crowd at the SO Legal Stadium.

Barrow did what many would have considered to be the unthinkable and raced into a 2-0 lead inside 24 minutes thanks to goals from Ben Whitfield and Kian Spence. However, the game was flipped on its head just before the break when Dave Challinor showed bravery to make two first-half changes, and one of those substitutes in the form of Nick Powell pulled a goal back before the break. Akil Wright soon leveled.

Coming into the game Pete Wild made four changes from Friday night’s win over Crewe Alexandra as Luca Stephenson, Dean Campbell, Robbie Gotts, and Dom Telford all came into the team.

And despite the host of changes Barrow started the game very strongly and found themselves infront after less than two minutes on the clock. Elliott Newby dinked a great ball to the back post where Spence volleyed the ball towards goal, and Whitfield came rushing in to tap it home.

Barrow continued to dominate the early proceedings and soon doubled their lead through Spence. Skipper Niall Canavan played a great ball through the lines to Whitfield who smashed a low ball across the face of the goal where Spence rushed in to tuck the ball home.

After a long opening 30 minutes for the visitors, they finally created their first opportunity when Callum Camps skipped past one Barrow defender before blasting the ball wide of the target from range.

Barrow continued to run rings around the league leaders which promoted County to make two first-half changes. And it was a substitute who pulled one back just before the break after Powell’s low effort from range crept under Paul Farman.

The leaders came out of the block flying in the second period and found themselves level after former Bluebird Wright headed the ball into the back of the net after a short corner.

Stockport continued to push forward in search of a third goal and was denied by a heroic block from George Ray after Odin Bailey curled a low effort towards the goal after a cutback from Powell, but our number five did sensationally to make the block.

After that chance, it was Barrow’s turn to attack again and this time Spence flashed a shot just wide of the top right corner from range.

Barrow continued to dominate the later stages of the match and was denied a winner after a wonder save from Ben Hinchliffe after Newby’s looping volley landed into the path of Acquah who stabbed the ball toward goal only to be denied by the keeper who clawed it away.

We then thought we'd won it when Ray acrobatically volleyed the ball into the roof of the net only for the referee to blow up for a foul in the build-up.

After a thriller of a game between two top sides a 2-2 draw was potentially the result both teams deserved.

Barrow XI: Farman, Ray, Canavan ©, Ray, Stephenson (Feely 75), Newby, Campbell (White 66), Gotts (Foley 55), Spence, Whitfield (Garner 75), Telford (Acquah 55).

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