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Looking good for Magpies

PUBLISHED: 16:48 06 March 2008 | UPDATED: 10:26 12 July 2010

HARLESTON Magpies Men now only need one more point from their remaining four games to clinch top spot in the league after beating visitors St Albans 2-1.

HARLESTON Magpies Men now only need one more point from their remaining four games to clinch top spot in the league after beating visitors St Albans 2-1.

Magpies knew that they could draw upon their 2-1 victory at St Albans earlier in the season and there was an increased energy and focus in their pre-match preparation.

St Albans set up defensively from the start, clearly not wanting to give Harleston any early chances.

As a result Magpies kept possession early on but the organised St Albans defence restricted them from creating any clear-cut chances.

Magpies did maintain good pressure on the St Albans defence with an effective press and ensured that the away team never got an extended period of possession.

Magpies eventually forced a short corner that was well converted by birthday boy Andy Hipwell, making up for missing an earlier chance when he put the ball wide after being quickly closed down by the St Albans' keeper.

St Albans did then enjoy a little more of the game and forced a string of short corners which were well dealt with by the defence - with Ian Martin making a good save, getting down very quickly to save at his right-hand post.

Magpies then grabbed their second of the game when Hipwell snaffled possession on the halfway line and put through super-sub Jimmy Wheeler who coolly slotted the ball past the oncoming keeper.

St Albans ended the half strongly after a forward turned in a rebound after Gill saved an initial short corner.

Hipwell had a drag flick brilliantly saved on the line by the St Albans post man and Carl Sitch was unable to turn the ball in after being left free at the back post. However, a solid defensive display from the entire team ensured David Ling and Leigh Sitch enjoyed a relatively comfortable second half at the back.

In the end the match finished 2-1 to Harleston.

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