King's Lynn 0 Hastings Town 0
30th January 1999
GARY Mills knew should have won this game and was clearly disappointed his side failed.
Mills was not happy with the way his front three performed but pleased the Linnets maintained their unbeaten run in 1999.
The manager said: "It's not bad when you expect to go and win every game. We were confident we could have won it but too many players did not play to their potential.
"It's nice to get another point but we never really got going: They came and made it difficult for us but 1 thought my front three did not play as well as they have - the ball was coming back to us too often.
"But we've gone throughout January without losing and we've got to try the same in February"
Hastings, a club uncertain of its future, came with the intent of taking a point and the delight shown by their players in the dressing room area after the match proved how happy they were with the result.
But Mills was less than impressed by what he saw: "I was disappointed in them. They slowed everything down at throw-ins, free kicks and goal kicks.
"They made it very hard and I kept telling the referee they were making it a poor game." The man in black obviously took notice as he added about eight minutes of injury time.
Mark Turner was guilty of missing Lynn's best chances in the first half and the home side struggled to create openings after the break. Hastings were mostly restricted to long range efforts although Dave Robinson was forced to clear off the line.
Mills said: "My back four did OK. We tried to knock the ball sometimes hen we didn't have to.
"And, being the home tearn we defended too much for my liking. But we got another clean sheet and I'm delighted with that. I look at Hastings and I know we're a better side than them. That gives us heart."
As a spectacle, the match was about as exciting as watching Arsenal's defence, but it could have been a different story had it not been a controversial decision from the linesman.
After 14 minutes, Dave Puttnam released Lee Allen and the on-loan striker ran on to the ball, then controlled it before the official raised his flag for offside.
Allen went on to net what he thought was his second Lynn goal while the crowd and assistant manager Damn Gee berated the linesman. Lynn wasted their best chance of the match four minutes later. Mills, who had an outstanding first half, sprayed a great bell to Puttnum and he weaved his way into the box before laying off a neat pass.
Both Turner and Jon Palmer. had. the opportunity simply to tuck the ball home but they seemed to leave the ball for each other and when Palmer eventually shot, he was off balance and the ball sailed wide.
Turner then dragged another good chance past the post after good work by Allen before Hastings enjoyed their best spell of the game.
Terry White and Danny Chapman were off target with long range strikes but Steve Yates 20-yarder forced Chuck Martini into a diving stop after the ball deflected off Turner.
After that good save, the bad side of Martini reared its ugly head late in the half. He flapped at a corner and Chapman thought he had scored but Robinson cleared off the line.
Mills made a switch at half time, bringing on Lee Wilson for Palmer, and the substitute recorded the Linnets only effort on target five minutes into the second period.
Allen flicked on Martini's goal kick and Wilson raced through but Hastings stopper Tony Kessell did well to block with his legs.
Officials were again called into action midway through the half following another Lynn attack. Tony Spearing did well to put in Allen but the keeper got the ball before him.
The linesman on the far side flagged for what he thought was an infringement and the referee ran over to discuss the decision. The linesman felt Kessell had handballed outside the area but the referee pointed to his chest and no action was taken.
With 15 minutes left Lynn produced their best move of the game. Puttnam and Allen played a defence splitting one-two and Puttnam's cross was met by Wilson but his glancing header went just wide.
: Martini, Hoyle, Spearing, Robinson, Fuff, Mills, Turner, Ramsey (Cotterell 80), Allen, Palmer (Wilson 45), Puttnam. Subs (not used): Clark
: Kessell, Smith, Mintram, Tuppney, Sargeant (Myall 77), Ball, White, Chapman, Jones, McRobert (Simmonds 60), Yates. Sub (not used): Elford.
|Shots on |
|Shots off |
||Spearing (55, foul)
|| White (41, foul)
Chapman (89, kicking ball away)