JONATHAN Margetts’ 55th-minute strike inflicted a first defeat of the season on Oxford City in their Vanarama Conference North clash at Harrogate Town on Saturday, writes MATTHEW BRUCE.
City created numerous chances against a highly-fancied Harrogate side, but failed to take any of them.
However, it was the hosts, chasing their first win of the season, who carved out the best opportunities in the opening minutes.
Adam Nowakovski went close to putting the home side in front after four minutes, seeing his header blocked on the line.
Moments later, Simon Leni-ghan’s deflected shot drifted narrowly wide and Margetts’ headed effort just missed the target from the resulting cor-ner.
City came back into the game and almost edged themselves in front when Tom Winters’ cross-cum-shot clipped the bar.
Just a minute later Adi Yussuf had an effort blocked in front of goal, but Felipe Barcelos was unable to bring the ball under control quickly enough on the rebound, allowing Harrogate goalkeeper Phil Barnes to snuff out the danger.
The second half was ten minutes old when the hosts finally made the breakthrough.
Margetts latched onto an excellent through ball before slotting home past City keeper Mark Scott and into the bottom left-hand corner.
City continued to threaten as they went in search of an equaliser, committing more men forward the longer the game wore on.
Winters drew a flying save with an excellent curling shot which was heading for the top corner.
And Yussuf was also foiled by the Harrogate keeper as his bobbling attempt was tipped just wide.
But despite carving out a number of good chances City could find no way through as the hosts held on for their first win of the season.
Oxford City: Scott, Benjamin, Stonehouse, Del Alamo, Brown, Green, Barcelos (Afolabi 68), Pond, Yussuf (Wilson 82), Rodriguez, Winters. Subs not used: Malone, Arnau, Henderson.
Referee: S Lucas.
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