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Wednesday, 16 April 2014

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Joe Garner late strike salvages ‘big’ point for Carlisle Utd

Joe Garner spared Carlisle United’s blushes with a late leveller at winless Bury but Greg Abbott insisted: It’s a big point.

Joe Garner photo
Joe Garner celebrates

The striker’s last-minute goal salvaged a 1-1 draw for the Blues at Gigg Lane against the rock-bottom Shakers. Garner’s second goal of the season came after United had struggled to break down Kevin Blackwell’s side, who have gone 12 games without victory since the start of the season.

But manager Abbott said his team had shown character to earn their 90th-minute point – four days after their 4-0 hammering at the hands of Notts County.

“After Saturday’s debacle getting something out of this game was important and we deserved it,” Abbott said.

“You don’t want to be the first team to be beaten by a side that’s not won a game, but Bury will win games, I guarantee you that.

“Teams will come here and go ‘wow, that was some game we’ve been in’. They started at an unbelievable tempo and we had to defend manfully.

“We did that, we edged back into the game, wore them down with our persistence and finally got our goal. It wasn’t pretty at times but it was exciting.

"It's a good point and a big point."

Bury's Leeds loan midfielder Zac Thompson’s 36th minute goal looked set to send United tumbling to a second straight defeat.

But Garner, who signed a second month’s loan on the eve of the game, kept his nerve to fire home after a pass from sub Mark Beck.

It was his second in six games and came after Abbott had used the Watford man as a lone central striker in a new 4-3-3 formation. Frank Simek, Peter Murphy and Liam Noble were all recalled by the Carlisle boss.

Abbott added: “In the first half we didn’t pass it enough but credit to Bury – they smothered everything, made the midfield area 150mph and we couldn’t get it down and control the tempo. But I did that [formation change] to make us tougher and I thought we defended our goal much better than we did on Saturday. Mike [Edwards] and Peter [Murphy] will know they have been in a hell of a game but they did their jobs very well.”

United remain 13th in League One and are now unbeaten in their last four away games.

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