Tempers flare as Garstang claim dramatic winner

Garstang FC manager Lee Baker.
Garstang FC manager Lee Baker.

Ryan Dodd’s injury-time winner gave Garstang victory in their first game for five weeks.

From the outset, it was clear that neither team would be able to play any pretty football as the pitch was very soft and uneven.

The first half was quite attritional as both teams tried to get a foothold in the game.

Matty Poole curled a free-kick over the wall but his shot went just wide of the post and bar, while Jonny Hothersall’s pinpoint cross set up Alan Coar, only for the keeper to save well.

Dan Curwen in the Garstang goal almost gifted the home side the lead when his throw fell to a Turton forward, whose resulting shot went well wide.

The deadlock was eventually broken on 41 minutes when Poole’s corner was half-controlled by Alan Coar with the ball falling to Hothersall, who slotted home.

There was still time before the break for Hothersall to see an effort brilliantly saved after great work by Ric Coar.

Alan Coar saw a shot well saved at close range before Garstang came under increasing pressure down their left-hand side.

A harsh free-kick on 86 minutes saw Kieran O’Connor stop a goalbound effort with his hand, collect a red card in the process and the referee also awarded a penalty.

Kieran Sisson put away the spot-kick, giving Curwen no chance, as Turton pushed for the winner with the clock ticking down. The game changed three minutes into injury time when Curwen could only parry a Turton corner and the rebound was turned into the Garstang goal, only for it to be ruled out for offside.

What followed was two minutes of madness as the home side’s players and management lost their heads with the Turton manager and assistant both dismissed.

Curwen hit a long clearance deep into the Turton half, and with the defenders still distracted by earlier events, Dodd was allowed to get behind them and fire home.

After the restart, there was still time for a Turton player to be sent off for kicking out at Coar before the referee finally blew for full-time.