Draw leaves Darlo game as crunch match

Last updated : 06 April 2002 By Matt Prior
United fans have probably been overfed on a gourmet of performances in the first half of the season that as we approach the end the crowd are getting a bit uptight when the goals aren't flying in ,recent poor performances by United have led to a supporters campaign involving the media to attract more fans down to Glanford Park.

The crowd was swelled to 4,794 and around 500 were following the away team as both sets of supporters waited eagerly for kick off ,as ever the minutes silence for the Queen Mother was impeccably addressed.

Onto the game and in skipper Peter Beagrie's notes he quoted on Rushden striker Onandi Lowe "expect the unexpected" and that is exactly what is was, the Jamaican International looks about as interested in the game as a pup in a hotdog factory but when he can be bothered he looks a very skilful and clever player that is a little surprising for a bloke so big.

A nervous opening led to a great chance for Ritchie Hanlon the Ex-Chelsea midfielder who should really have done better after being put through on goal,United keeper Tommy Evans rushed from his goal line to block on the edge of the box,the same player then hit a rocket of a free-kick which luckily for Evans was straight at him to palm away.

Paul Hall then was clean through again though Evans was alert to come and foil the former Coventry player.Scunthorpe's first effort came from a free-kick Beagrie flashing it just wide if Billy Turley's right hand post,Garcia then fired well over as the Iron looked as if they had weathered the early storm,Brett Angell had a half shot Beagrie losing out to Hall which resulted in the winger getting in a cross but the much travelled striker was unable to get a proper connection.

Martin Carruthers then missed a glaring chance a long punt upfield was contested in the air 25 yards out the ball broke to Gandhi who pushed on into the area but dragging the ball wide of the left post on his weaker left foot,a spate of bookings put the Iron under pressure Jackson,Vaughan and Matt Sparrow all getting on the wrong side of Referee Mr Mathieson who is one of the worst refs we've had this season.

The crowd was then treated to the highlight of the half a free-kick was drifted in for Lowe to scissor kick an effort at goal that was fingertipped over,from the resulting corner the same player headed just over,then the breakthrough a poor corner by the United skipper Beagrie led to him getting in another chance to put the ball back into the danger zone this time it was better Carruthers going in on the edge of the 6 yard box with defender Underwood at first it looked as if the United striker had just got there first but replays suggested it flicked off the head of the Rushden player,the crowd breathed a huge sigh of relief as the ref blew for half-time.

The second half was a real dour affair with the first effort a free-kick by Beagrie easily saved the only real talking point,things improved slightly though when Andy Dawson's left wing cross was met by Torpey who headed just wide.Disaster then struck the Iron failed to clear their lines at least twice and a mad scramble then led to the very impressive Lowe firing low into the left hand corner for a Rushden equaliser (80).

Both teams then rallied to take all three points from the match and United thought they had snatched victory three minutes into injury time Beagrie's corner was swung into the six yard area where a melee of players lashed a boot at the ball that ended up with it crashing against the bar and away to safety to deny Brian Laws' men and leave them needing now to take all six points available from the remaining two games of the season away at Darlington next Saturday and then at home against York