Gainsborough Trinity stretch unbeaten away run to 10 matches

Gainsborough Trinity manager Curtis Woodhouse was left ruing a controversial penalty decision on Tuesday night, despite his record-breaking side making club history.

Striker Gregg Smith celebrates with the travelling supporters after the 1-0 win at Lancaster on Saturday. PHOTO: John Rudkin
Striker Gregg Smith celebrates with the travelling supporters after the 1-0 win at Lancaster on Saturday. PHOTO: John Rudkin

Trinity earned a 2-2 draw at bottom-of-the-table Stafford Rangers to stretch their unbeaten away run to 10 matches – the best ever in the club’s history.

Second-half goals by Gregg Smith and Declan Bacon wiped out an early Jake Charles tap-in, but after Trinity missed chances to secure victory Rangers snatched a point with a last-minute Charles penalty – Simon Russell controversially judged to have fouled Josh Green.

The draw ended a run of two successive victories after a 1-0 win at fourth-placed Lancaster on Saturday and meant Woodhouse remained unbeaten on the road since coming to the club.

“I am delighted with the away run. Who would have though that three months ago,” said Woodhouse, ahead of another away trip, this time to Bamber Bridge, on Saturday..

“But I am disappointed. In the first half we were poor and well off the standards we have set.

“In the second half we were a lot better and controlled the game for long periods, so I am disappointed we conceded a late penalty which cost us the three points.

“I don’t know a single person who thought it was a penalty – that one has gone against us.

“George (Willis, keeper) didn’t have a shot to save, so it is not as if they carved us open. We looked comfortable, sat deep and soaked it up. But then the referee gave a penalty that wasn’t, so it is difficult for me to be critical of the lads. An error by the referee has cost us.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​”​

Trinity had their own penalty appeals waved away after just eight minutes when Jordan Adebayo-Smith was through and appeared to be tugged back.

Four minutes later Rangers took the lead when Charles tapped in after Willis did well to deny Jack Sherratt.

Just before half-time Adebayo-Smith did well to create space before being denied by the home keeper.

Seven minutes into the second half Smith pressured a defender to force the equaliser and Bacon fired the visitors in front from a Simon Russell cross.

After the 1-0 win at fourth-placed Lancaster City on Saturday thanks to a Nicky Walker strike, Woodhouse had praised his side, saying: “We were so dogged it was unbelievable. Defensively we were so good and I am so proud, it was humbling to see them put their bodies on the line.

“The lads have got to enjoy that because everyone was fantastic. Our form away from home has been unbelievable, which says a lot about our character. George (Willis) made some good saves but how we did not get a penalty today!”

Talking about a fantastic reception the supporters gave the players at the final whistle, the manager added: “We have got that bond with the supporters. It was a great moment to go over and get the reception the lads got.

“You have to earn standing ovations, the fans expect big things of us and we are delivering. ”

At Lancaster, Trinity took an eighth minute lead when a good delivery to the back post from Jack Walters saw Gregg Smith head into the path of Nicky Walker to smash the ball into the roof of the net.

Eighteen minutes from time Jordan Adebayo-Smith went down under a challenge from the keeper, but penalty appeals were waved away.

However, the star of the show was at the other end as keeper Willis made a series of stops to deny the home side an equaliser.