Great Harwood Town 0 Irlam Town 1(Game 1)
September 5th 1984
Harwood pay price for early goal miss
COURTESY OF OUR VERY GOOD FRIENDS AT THE LANCASHIRE ACCRINGTON OBSERVER
Great Harwood Town’s brief flirtation with pulsating cup action gave way to the nitty gritty of league action on Saturday.
Following their exciting ding-dong cup tie against Clitheroe earlier in the week, the Reds were hoping to get back to winning ways against Irlam Town.
However, the end-to-end dynamics of the cup were replaced by a tight, defensive battle in which the chances fell few and far between.
in fact, the two best chances of the match-one to each side-were products of mistakes rather than genuine skill on the ball.
Harwood’s golden opportunity came early in the match when Mick Marren seized on a misunderstanding in the Irlam defence and raced in from about 12 yards only to pull his shot wide.
The away team’s finishing proved to be better. They went ahead about four minutes into the second half when Brian Foy lost possession and watched aghast as centre forward Wilson ran through and rammed the ball home to give Irlam the lead.
Afterwards Harwood boss Rick Grogan said: “It was a very hard, tight game. Irlam were a reasonable side-very strong and very physical, especially at the back. They have conceded only three goals in six games and scored about thirteen, so they are always going to be a difficult side to beat this season. The problem was that we didn’t create any chances at all. We never had a really good chance in the second half.”
Rick will be hoping for better things on Saturday at Ellesmere Port when the Harwood side is likely to look a little different, with skipper Brian Moran returning and one or two injury problems now beginning to clear up
Great Harwood Town 0 Irlam Town 1 (Game 2)
September 19th 1984
BOWMAN GOAL CLICHES VICTORY FOR HARWOOD
Great Harwood Town kept right in touch with the North West Counties League Second Division leaders with a victory over last season’s League Cup winners in a game Rick Grogan’s men dominated from beginning to end.
The game was played in difficult conditions, on a bumpy pitch and with a strong wind blowing and although Town had the disadvantage of playing into the wind in the first half, they still created the only goalscoring chances of note.
Ellesmere Port, who have lost practically all of the side that won the N.W. Counties League Cup last term after beating Accrington Stanley 4-3 in the semi-finals, struggled to make their presence felt throughout and when John Bowman put Harwood ahead with a close-range effort two minutes after the interval, it seemed that Harwood with the wind behind them, would go on to register a very convincing victory.
It wasn’t to be, with Harwood having to be content with a win by a single goal margin, but whatever the size of victory, it still brought two very useful points to keep the Showground side well in touch with the Division leaders.
Bowman came close to adding to his tally when a 25-yard effort hit the post and Stuart Lally went close to boosting Town’s score on a couple of occasions.
Harwood’s line up was:
Maher, Vercoe, Procter, Martin, Dobson, Moran, Burton, Bowman, Foy, Marren, Lally.
Sub. Greenhalgh (not used)
Town reserves drew 1-1 with Keighley Green in their East Lancashire League clash at the Showground on Saturday.