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Grantham Town beat Ossett United in the Northern Premier League





Grantham Town earned a vital three points on Saturday with their second home win of the year.

A goal in each half saw them come from behind to beat relegation rivals Ossett United and close the gap on them to four points.

Head coach Louis Bland recognised what an important result it was for his side in their battle against relegation from the Northern Premier League East Division, writes Graham Cowell.

Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts
Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts

Bland said: "We spoke on Thursday and before the game about how important this weekend is.

"The gap could be down to one point come Monday, but equally it could have been up to 13.

"We were really poor for the first half, but we reacted well after half time. When they played their stuff, we were much better than Ossett and I am really proud of the boys."

Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts
Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts

Both sides looked lively for the opening couple of minutes.

Harry Olivant went on the first of many runs down the flank and delivered a deep cross for Brad Munns but Ossett goalkeeper Callum Hiddleston was in the right place to gather the shot above his head.

The visitors forced two quick corners but couldn’t muster a shot at goal from either.

Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts
Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts

Neither side showed a cutting edge and cancelled each other out easily.

A rare breakthrough came on 11 minutes when Adam Priestley broke through three Grantham challenges to hit a shot that Curtis Hall gathered low down.

The Gingerbreads were second to almost every ball in the Ossett final third and looked short of attacking ideas.

Ossett took the lead on 22 minutes when the Gingerbreads gave the ball away in the centre of the field.

A defensive header hit Sam Hooper and dropped for Niah Payne who ran at the Grantham defence and crossed to the far post where former Gingerbread Adam Watson met the ball perfectly to open the scoring.

The two sides exchanged shots just before the half-hour mark, but neither side hit the target.

Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts
Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts

Munns went on a direct run from just inside the Ossett half but the ball wouldn't settle for him and his shot went wide. At the other end, Payne cut inside to let fly from distance, but couldn't keep his shot down.

The Gingerbreads equalised out of nothing after 32 minutes. Sisa Tuntulwana’s free kick into the Ossett penalty area fell nicely for Sam Muggleton and he fired home to level scores.

The game began to take on a look of a mid-table end-of-season match with neither side looking likely to establish a lead.

There was only one more chance before halftime. Ossett won a corner which Hall punched clear from under his crossbar. Priestley got to the loose ball first but volleyed wide of the target.

After half-time, Grantham began to look more lively. Ryan Rushen combined with Rodrigo Goncalves and Olivant in the fifth minute of the half to set up Elliott Walker, but he fired his shot wide.

Rushen and Walker worked together again after 56 minutes, but again, Walker missed the target.

Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts
Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts

A minute later, Grantham were in front with a good move on the left. Olivant took on the Ossett defence and got into the penalty area. He drove a low cross that just evaded Rushen, but Tuntulwana controlled the ball before firing past Hiddleston.

Tuntulwana and Olivant worked well again a few minutes later as Grantham began to get on top of the game. Tuntulwana’s throw-in fell to Olivant, but his shot was blocked by the Ossett defence.

The Gingerbreads got the rub of the green on 66 minutes. Tuntulwana’s challenge on Priestley inside the penalty area looked like a certain spot kick for the visitors, but referee Mr Ruddock decided there was no foul.

Chances came and went around the 70th minute. Rushen had a one-on-one with Hiddleston, but the Ossett goalkeeper saved well at the expense of a corner.

Walker and Olivant opened up the visitors’ defence again, this time Olivant forced another save from Hiddleston.

A long throw into the Grantham penalty area was not cleared and fell to Priestley as Ossett tried to get back on level terms. His volley on the turn flew over the top of the Grantham goal.

Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts
Action from Grantham's home win over Ossett. Photo: Toby Roberts

It was Grantham who finished strongest and looked more likely to add a third goal than Ossett did to equalise.

Rushen and Walker set up Tuntulwana with five minutes left, but his shot was swept just wide.

As the game went into added time, Olivant popped up on the right and cut inside. His low shot was deflected just wide.

Curtis Morrison almost set up a third in the third minute of added time. In a move similar to the Gingerbreads second goal, he crossed low from the left, but this time neither Rushen nor Tuntulwana could get the vital touch.

Ossett almost snatched an equaliser in the last minute of added time. A miskick in the Gingerbreads penalty area came to Priestley, but fortunately for Grantham, he scuffed his shot wide.



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