Team: 1. Ogden 2. Lupepe (Sub Nhwziyo) 3. Bryan 4. Wager 5. Esdaille 6. Birtles 7. Cocks (C) (Sub Heap) 8. Oldham 9. Thompson 10. Bellamy 11. Socha (Sub Alderson)
Subs not used: Clapham & Calvert
BARB were denied a well-earned, hard fought point against a top AFC Liverpool side after a 92nd minute penalty won it for the visitors.
It was Liverpool who started the better as they were finding themselves in good positions with plenty of space.
Just 3 minutes in and Liverpool hit the home side on the counter attack and Humphreys goes very close.
This was an unusually slow start for BARB as Lamon hits a superb volley which was equally matched by a superb flying save from John Ogden.
Another counter attack from Liverpool and Ryan Cox strikes fiercely but went just wide, Ogden was stranded.
Borough couldn’t afford to give a talented side like this the space and time they were giving because they would make them pay.
Counters seemed to be the main source of attack in the first half as it was BARB’s turn now. Cocks pings a lovely ball down the line, great hold up play by Thompson who then threads in Socha who just couldn’t get enough on it to take it over the keeper.
This game started extremely fast paced but was so tight, one lapse in concentration from any player could have been costly.
Bacup then tightened up all over and stopped Liverpool getting their shots off which was needed or else the breakthrough would have come.
However having said this, right on half-time Liverpool go route one and it pays off. A simple ball over the top leads to Ryan Cox clean through racing in on goal and he just pokes the ball under the goalkeeper Ogden.
Half-Time: BARB 0-1 AFC Liverpool
BARB’s performance had to improve in which it did with a change of shape and personnel. As soon as the second half got underway it was clear that the performance was going to be upped from the home side and found the net early on but Cocks was adjudged offside, but this was much more promising.
As time ticks away inevitably spaces began to appear with opportunities following. With it staying 0-1 and BARB improving, the game was still there for them and to be honest it was just that bit of luck or bit of quality that would unlock the door.
The game then became even more open and end to end so was just who could get the killer next goal and on the 76th minute the breakthrough deservedly came for Bacup. It was a dangerous Matty Bryan corner which the towering figure of Laquan Esdaille headed across goal in which Lee Oldham was alert to and powered his header into the back of the net.
However the drama was far from over as in the last gasp 92nd minute Adrian Bellamy brought down the onrushing Liverpool midfielder. Penalty kick given, and just to add insult to injury Gareth Wager was sent off after already being booked earlier on.
After many an argument with the referee, Ronald Morgan calmly sent Ogden the wrong way to win it 1-2 in the very last minute.
Full-Time: Bacup & Rossendale Borough 1-2 AFC Liverpool
Another massive pill to swallow for the Borough but there were some great positives to take from the game going into Maine Road on Wednesday night.