Saturday 8 December // Vanarama National League // Attendance: 804 // Report from KentOnline
Maidstone United fell to a 1-0 defeat at Barrow on Saturday afternoon.
Harry Wheeler handed debuts to Ross Worner, Charlie Wassmer and Jake Robinson – they were three of a total of eight changes to the starting line up that faced Oldham Athletic.
The Stones lined up a 3-4-1-2 formation with George McLennan and Wassmer either side of Rob Swaine in a back three.
There were a few early nerves in the new-look Stones defence with Barrow fancying their chances of getting in behind, be it balls over the top or using their wing-backs.
The Stones got in a mess from a long ball in just the fourth minute with Jacob Blyth going through one-on-one but new keeper Worner made a superb double save, somehow getting to his feet to making the second stop.
Maidstone looked disjointed – hardly surprising given all the changes – but grew into the match and went close with a double chance of their own in the 19th minute.
First, Robinson’s header from Sean Shields’ cross was well saved by Joel Dixon and Jake Cassidy’s follow-up hit the post.
Swaine had a header saved shortly after as Maidstone enjoyed a good little spell but Barrow, who’d suffered after losing central midfielder and captain Jason Taylor, picked up again.
Blyth was inches away from a connecting with a diving header and, at the end of the half, Worner made another excellent save after Smith collected Kemy Agustien’s pass and aimed for the far corner.
The Bluebirds went close in the opening stages of the second half, too, Blyth’s header from an Agustien free-kick hitting the post.
Maidstone were now playing into the wind and it was hard to get out of their half at times, with clearances holding up in the air.
Barrow pressure was growing and they took the lead in the 62nd minute after a move down the left.
The ball was moved inside with Worner spilling Agustien’s shot from the edge of the box and Smith followed in to finish the rebound.
Barrow were looking a good bet for more goals but there was a chance for the Stones when Robinson fired over after Barrow failed to deal with McLennan’s cross.
It was largely one-way traffic, though, and Rhys Turner should have made it two when set up by Smith.
Another nice move resulted in a fine save by Worner from Jack Hindle at the far post.
Moments later, in the 84th minute, Barrow were down to 10 men when Norrington-Davies was sent off for pulling down Stones substitute Elliott Romain as he raced in on goal.
Romain had certainly given Barrow something to think about, already taken out by Dan Jones just after coming on.
Barrow: Tyler Smith 62
Maidstone United: –
Barrow: Joel Dixon, Jack Barthram, Rhys Norrington-Davies, Jason Taylor (Steve Jennings 23), Dan Jones, Brian Wilson, Kyle Jameson, Kemy Agustien, John Rooney (Rhys Turner 69), Jacob Blyth, Tyler Smith (Jack Hindle 78). Subs not used: Connor Brown, Luke Burgess
Maidstone United: 1. Ross Worner, 29. Charlie Wassmer (9. Elliott Romain 77), 25. Rob Swaine, 3. George McLennan, 18. Sean Shields, 22. Michael Phillips, 24. Simon Walton (10. Jack Paxman 86), 16. Dan Wishart, 21. Ollie Muldoon (28. Aryan Tajbakhsh 57), 19. Jake Robinson, 24. Jake Cassidy. Subs not used: 5. Will De Havilland, 8. Jack Powell.
Who was your man of the match against Barrow?
- Ross Worner (41%, 7 Votes)
- George McLennan (12%, 2 Votes)
- Elliott Romain (12%, 2 Votes)
- Jake Cassidy (6%, 1 Votes)
- Jake Robinson (6%, 1 Votes)
- Dan Wishart (6%, 1 Votes)
- Michael Phillips (6%, 1 Votes)
- Simon Walton (6%, 1 Votes)
- Jack Paxman (6%, 1 Votes)
- Rob Swaine (0%, 0 Votes)
- Sean Shields (0%, 0 Votes)
- Ollie Muldoon (0%, 0 Votes)
- Aryan Tajbakhsh (0%, 0 Votes)
- Charlie Wassmer (0%, 0 Votes)
Total Voters: 17