Liversedge leave it late as Simpson rescues vital point

Paul Walker produced some dangerous crosses but Liversedge were held to a draw by AFC Mansfield as they slipped six points behind NCE Premier Division leaders Staveley Miners. Picture: Allan McKenzie
Paul Walker produced some dangerous crosses but Liversedge were held to a draw by AFC Mansfield as they slipped six points behind NCE Premier Division leaders Staveley Miners. Picture: Allan McKenzie

Liversedge were left frustrated after been held to a 1-1 draw by AFC Mansfield in the Northern Counties East League Premier Division last Saturday.

Mark Simpson’s 88th minute goal rescued a point for Sedge but they have slipped to fourth place in the table.

Staveley Miners Welfare won their top of the table clash at Penistone Church 3-1 and extend their advantage to three points, while they are six clear of Liversedge.

Leading goal scorer Joe Walton was forced to start on the bench after picking up a knock in the 1-1 draw at Yorkshire Amateur the previous week and was replaced in the starting line-up by Emile Sinclair.

Mansfield may lie third-bottom in the table but produced some terrific defence to keep Sedge at bay for much of the game.

Liam Marsden produced a couple of dangerous long throws into the area, while Sedge were caught offside from a Jack Hardcastle free-kick following a foul on Paul Walker.

The home side continued to be frustrated as Michael Bottomley was off target with another half chance following neat build up play.

Bottomley attempted a long distance shot on the half volley which was tipped over by the Mansfield goalkeeper to keep it goalless.

Sinclair then smashed a shot against the post following more good play by Marsden before Oliver Fearon headed straight into the goalkeeper’s arms from eight yards out.

Sedge also forced a number of corners but the Mansfield defence remained resolute.

Liversedge continued to have the better of the second half and Bottomley forced an excellent save at full stretch.

Mansfield had been restricted to breakaway chances for much of the game but they took a surprise 80th minute lead through Ross Duggan.

Walton was thrown on in the final stages and as Sedge went in search of an equaliser, Simpson was off target with a header following Walker’s free-kick.

More excellent defending denied Walton following a break before the equaliser came two minutes from time when Simpson showed his goal scoring prowess, netting with a header at the back post.

Liversedge are due to visit Penistone Chucrh in the NCE League Cup fourth round on Wednesday (7.45pm).

They  do not have a game on Saturday but are back in action next Wednesday (February 19) when they visit neighbours Eccleshill United.