As the Harrogate team lined up for the kick off you couldn't help thinking that some of them were really in the wrong place. At least half of them should have been at Aintree running the Grand National. But that's the Evo-Stik First Division North for you. Big ugly teams whose prime aim is to stop the other team playing any football. Think the Wakefield Avatars, the Camels of Laird and more.
Here, Harrogate Railway had enough duffer buffers to smother the silky skills of Salford's Jack Redshaw, Steve Murty and Haydn Eames. Even so, Salford should have opened the scoring mid way through the first half when Adam Morning, standing on the edge of the six yard box, managed to sky a cross from Jack Redshaw over the bar.
Instead it was Harrogate that took the lead with their first shot on goal shortly after. Despite the Tanks' goalie going off injured Salford couldn't take advantage. Half time: Salford City 0 Harrogate 1.
Early in the second half Salford drew level, Brett Mbalanda putting through Glyn Barker who rifled it past Harrogate's sub keeper to make it 1-1. After that, Harrogate rattled the Salford cross bar, and Rhodri Giggs - on as a sub - had a couple of chances but neither team could make the breakthrough. So a draw it was – neither a victory for skill or for brawn. And the two teams meet again on Tuesday in Harrogate.
Photos by Gareth Lyons.