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Match Reports

MATCH REPORT: Harrogate 3 - 0 United

Report from the Saturday away game

23 April 2022

United's penultimate away trip of the 2021/22 season was to North Yorkshire and Harrogate.

And both teams knew that League Two safety was assured heading into the game following the Monday round of results.

Paul Simpson went with an unchanged line-up from the Mansfield victory, with the message to the players to make sure they did things properly through the final three fixtures.

Corey Whelan was back from illness and onto the bench, with Tobi Sho-Silva missing out through injury, and the remainder of the substitutes were otherwise unchanged.

United had an early chance when Riley popped a pass to Gibson in the centre circle. He strode forward, but a heavy touch allowed the tackle to be made before he could turn it into something meaningful. 

Simeu had to dive low to clear as the yellow shirts got forward in numbers, and he was relieved to see his header avoid the post and hit the advertising boards as it left Howard stranded.

Striker Luke Armstrong nodded a Thomson delivery wide from the edge of the area as the game waited for a spark, and the same player put one right at Howard from a tight angle moments later.

A wild clearance from Power from a low Armer cross swirled behind for a corner, and the delivery from the set piece caused problems as it dropped awkwardly in the box. Burrell did enough to get it to safety.

Harrogate took the lead from nowhere on 18 minutes when Pattison slid the ball on the overlap to Thomson. His delivery looked to be harmless but Diamond, who had been handed the players' player of the season award ahead of kick off, ghosted in to loft a neat header over the advancing Mark Howard.

The Blues had a run of corners, which came to nothing, and the home lead was doubled 10 minutes later when Thomson swung a teasing free kick from wide into the mix. Rory McArdle found the space he needed to guide it into the bottom corner.

Harrogate came again just before the break with Pattison well advanced with the ball at his feet. He tapped it onwards for Muldoon, who suddenly had just Howard to beat. The stopper stuck a boot out to make a vital save.

An effort from Riley from 19-yards was easy for Cracknell to gather, after he'd combined with Alessandra to make room for a drive, and there was plenty to talk about as the blue shirts headed towards the tunnel for their half-time chat.

The Sulphurites had the first chance of the second period when Pattison sent Armstrong on a run. He showed patience as he ran onwards and Howard had to get his body in the way when the shot eventually came.

A Riley long throw was returned after Burrell had hooked it away at the other end, and it was punched by Cracknell, which led to Riley trying the same. Dickenson pulled wide when it rolled to his feet and he forced a save from the stopper as he saw a crunching thunderbolt late.

Omari Patrick bent one wide from distance as he looked to lift his team, and there was better from United as Dickenson laced a cross across the face of goal. Riley hooked it back into the area, and Alessandra jumped high to guide a header at the nets. Cracknell did well to get across and beat it away.

The Sulphurites were close on 62 minutes when Armstrong and Pattison carved a way through. The shot from the midfielder was charged down, but that left it on a plate for Muldoon to strike. It smacked the underside of the bar and spun back off the line for Howard to take.

Carlisle had a great chance to get one back on 68 minutes when a half clearance was lobbed back into the box. It dropped over Alessandra's shoulder, but it was spinning and moving wickedly, and he could only touch it past the post.

There were shouts for handball as a Dickenson free kick from the right wing was flicked on by Patrick. It bounced up sharply, and the fans behind the goal claimed as one as it appeared to hit an arm. Omotoye threw a boot at the loose ball, but it took a deflection and curved wide of the mark.

The hosts went on a searing break when they cleared from inside their own half, and Muldoon had Diamond in close attendance all the way. The latter found the side netting when he fired on the sprint.

Howard had to go full length to save from Muldoon as he stepped inside to let fly, and Cracknell mirrored it when his top corner was threatened by a precise Gibson attempt late in the day.

United had plenty of shirts in the away box as they peppered it through the closing stages, but it was Diamond who wrapped things up in time added on when he beat the offiside trap before calmly thrashing it in.

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Goals

Harrogate Town - Diamond (18, 90), McArdle (27)

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Bookings

Harrogate Town - Austerfield (66), Sheron (70)

Carlisle United - Devine (35), Feeney (56)

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Teams

Harrogate Town - Cracknell, Burrell (c), Thomson, Sheron, Pattison, Muldoon, Austerfield, Diamond, McArdle, Armstrong (Martin 84), Power. Subs - Giles (gk), Beck, Legge, Ilesanmi, O'Boyle.

Carlisle United - Howard, Devine (Mellor 80), Simeu (Omotoye 50), Feeney (c), Armer, Riley, Mellish, Gibson, Dickenson, Alessandra (Dennis 68), Patrick. Subs - Norman, McDonald, Whelan, Roberts. 

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Match officials

Referee - Rebecca Welch
Assistant Referee 1 - Stephen Wade
Assistant Referee 2 - Matthew Parry
Fourth Official - Declan Ford
Observer - Mark Haywood

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Attendance - 2,707 (600)


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