THERE was nothing to choose between St Albans City and Gloucester City as the pair played out a goalless draw in the National League South on Saturday.

A keenly contested clash saw both sides struggled to create clear openings as their respective defences stood firm.

A largely insipid game had a frantic start and the Saints could have led with just 20 seconds on the clock when Ralston Gabriel squared for David Moyo.

His low shot was well hit but the Gloucester keeper was equal to the effort and did superbly to deny the visitors a dream start.

That was the only real chance St Albans managed to muster in the first period as they looked to produce a solid display at the back.

The Saints’ defence was tested throughout the first period and both Sam Avery and Tom Knowles wasted presentable chances when heading wide.

A battle in the midfield had largely defined the first 45 minutes of the game and the theme continued after the half-time interval.

Neither side was really able to assert themselves and wasted some good chances from free-kicks.

With the game ticking towards its conclusion, Jake Jackson managed to force his way through and forced a fine stop from Dean Snedker.

That intervention proved to be vital as the Saints held on to secure a hard-earned point which arrested a worrying slump of form.

The draw came on the back of a hugely disappointing 4-1 defeat to Torquay United last Tuesday evening.

Ian Allinson’s men struggled to come close to their play-off chasing rivals and were on the backfoot from the outset at Plainmoor.

It took just six minutes for the home side to take the lead when Jamie Reid found the bottom corner with a placed shot.

City made a rapid response to going behind and were back on level terms three minutes later.

They equalised in impressive fashion when the ball fell to Clovis Kamdjo in the box and he controlled well before finishing with a half-volley.

That was as good as it got for St Albans and United restored their lead before the quarter of the hour mark when Tom Bender turned into his own net.

Reid then added his second of the day with a strike from the edge of the box to give Torquay breathing space and Jake Andrew completed the scoring with a low effort from eight yards out.

A point from their last two outings leaves City sitting 12th in the National League South table and they have failed to win four of their last five games.

Nonetheless, the Clarence Park club are just three points shy of the play-off places having played 18 games in the league so far this season.

They will look to pick up their first win since the end of October when they take on Weymouth in the FA Trophy on Saturday.

The Saints follow the third qualifying round clash with a league visit to Truro City the following week.

Truro City are currently five points above the relegation zone with 17 points and occupy 18th position having won just four games in the league so far this season.