Boston United pick up a battling point at Southport to boost survival hopes

Honours ended even as Boston United claimed a hard-fought point on the road following Tuesday evening's long trip to Southport.
Watch more of our videos on Shots!
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Backed by 67 vociferous away supporters, the Pilgrims turned in a vibrant first half display and deservedly led through Billy Chadwick's deflected effort in the 35th minute.

Southport levelled three minutes before the break when the ball bounced into the net off the head of Niall Watson - and neither side were able to find a second half breakthrough.

United boss Ian Culverhouse had named an unchanged squad for the visit to Haig Avenue - following hot-on-the-heels of Saturday's longest trip of the season to Blyth Spartans.

Boston picked a useful point at Southport.Boston picked a useful point at Southport.
Boston picked a useful point at Southport.

The Pilgrims were bright early on, against opponents inactive at the weekend. Both Zak Mills and Sam McLintock went close in the early stages, while veteran home keeper Tony McMillan denied Chadwick with a smart stop.

Cameron Gregory produced routine saves to deny Watson and Connor Heath before United came within a whisker of breaking the deadlock when Chadwick's 25-yard free-kick rattled the crossbar.

United took the lead 10 minutes before the break when Chadwick interchanged with Jordan Burrow, before seeing his long-range effort deflect past McMillan.

The Sandgrounders levelled seven minutes later when Gregory could only parry Tyler Walton's cross - and the ball bounced into the net off the fortunate Watson.

Gregory produced a fabulous save after the break to claw aside Heath's header, while Chadwick countered brilliantly to tee up Lirak Hasani, but the Gateshead loanee skewed horribly off target at the back post.

United introduced Jake Wright as a second half substitute, ahead of his impending two-match suspension, but he had to be replaced four minutes from time after taking a nasty knock to his ankle.

Both sides threw plenty forward in the closing stages, but a draw was arguably fair on the balance of play, despite an excellent start from the Pilgrims.

Southport (4-3-3): Tony McMillan; Keenan Quansah, Chris Doyle, Adam Anson, Michael Carberry; Charlie Munro, Charlie Oliver, Jack Bainbridge (Dylan Vassallo 46); Niall Watson (Josh Miles 72), Connor Heath (Joe Adams 81), Tyler Walton. Subs (not used): Jack Doyle, Josh Hnami.

Boston (4-1-2-1-2): Cameron Gregory; Tom Nixon, Luke Shiels, Ben Pollock, Ethan Sephton; Tom Platt; Zak Mills, Lirak Hasani (Jake Wright 67, Will Atkinson 86); Sam McLintock (Tre Mitford 87); Jordan Burrow, Billy Chadwick. Subs (not used): Keenan Ferguson, Luther Munakandafa.

Referee: David McNamara.

Attendance: 627 (67 visitors).