Goalscorers: Roofing: Campbell, Gordon. SRCA: Proctor (2)
After the disappointment of going out of the FA Cup in injury time at Guisborough in mid week the management team made a number of changes to the team. Wayne Buchanan, transferred from South Shields, was brought in for his debut replacing the unavailable Byrne, Brown replaced Hope and Charlton came in for Hughes. On the bench were new signings Ryan Noble and Ross McNab.
RCA started really well forcing the “Roofers” to defend, in the opening five minutes a good through ball from Larkin found Callen free on the right, he cut inside before shooting narrowly wide of the target.
Roofing showed what they could do on the break when danger man Campbell picked up a long ball out of defence, outstripped the RCA defence before shooting, forcing a good save from Morris, Chow following up headed home but was adjudged to be offside.
A minute later and RCA were back on the attack, Drysdale sent a ball out the left wing for Charlton who in turn played the ball forward to Larkin inside the penalty area but he fired into the side netting.
RCA continued to press and in the 12th minute Brown won the ball in midfield then sent an inch perfect pass to Callen who fired in a shot which Hunter managed to get a finger tip to and the ball flew off the bar and out for a corner.
Roofing cleared the ball up field from the corner and Campbell once again picked up the loose ball and fired in a low shot which Morris did well to palm away and Richardson was able to clear the ball.
The game was picking up pace now and both teams were attacking at every opportunity; the next chance fell to Larkin after some good play between Callen and Proctor opened up the Roofing defence, but the RCA striker shot wide.
RCA’s persistence was almost rewarded minutes later when the won a succession of corners, from the third corner the ball fell on the edge of the box to Callen who thundered in a shot which was blocked by White, the ball rebounded to Larkin, but he fired over the bar.
It was all RCA at this point and it was no surprise when they took the lead in the 25th minute, a cross into the box by Brown was headed away by Myers but only as far as Larkin who volley in a shot which was parried by Hunter but the rebound fell to Proctor who smashed the ball into the roof of the net.
The home side were creating little at this point and RCA almost doubled their lead when a great passing move between Proctor, Callen and Noble produced a shot from Reece Noble which Carson cleared away for a corner. From this corner the ball was once again cleared up field and this time Campbell burst past a static RCA defence and hit a tremendous drive past the outstretched hand of Morris and into the bottom corner of the net.
Worse was to follow for RCA when minute later Campbell picked up the ball on the left and sent a speculative ball into the box where the RCA defence made a terrible mess of clearing the ball and it fell to ex-RCA player David Gordon and he made no mistake from eight yards out firing into an empty net. From being comfortably in the lead to being 2 – 1 down in two minutes was a major blow to RCA.
They responded in the only way they know by pushing forward and were almost rewarded when Callen broke through and produced a fine finish only to see his shot superbly saved by Hunter again.
The Roofer’s keeper then produced the save of the game so far when he made a point blank save from a Larkin header which he palmed away for a corner.
In the opening minute of the second half the home team were awarded freekick 25 yards out, Gordon took the kick which flew across the face of the goal and went narrowly wide of the far post.
As the game settled a long ball out of defence from Morris landed in front of Larkin who outpaced the Jarrow defence, but could not keep his shot down and it flew over the bar.
The game was flowing from end to end with neither team really testing the keeper.
RCA equalised in the 64th minute when Noble cut in from the left before playing a square ball to Proctor who curled a trademark shot from 25 yards out into the top corner of the net giving Hunter no chance.
Two minutes later and Jarrow should have gone back in front when a delightful cross from Rundle was met by Chow, but he managed to head over from six yards out.
With both teams tiring they started to make substitutions RCA brought on Ryan Noble for his debut and his first contribution almost produced a goal as he skipped past the challenge of the last defender before shooting past Hunter, but his effort rebounded off the far post and was cleared.
The game became very scrappy with both teams guilty of niggly little fouls. Jarrow almost pinched the points when Rundle was inches away from connecting to a Marshall cross into the penalty area and in the final minutes of the game he fired wide of the post.
RCA were well on top in the opening half hour, but with only one goal to show for their effort they were always in danger of conceding to the fast breaking Campbell and so it proved.
While we looked solid defensively we never look comfortable at the back when we are attacking especially from our set pieces in the opponents' half.
However, our first point of the season was well deserved and throughout the team there were some very good displays.