Saturday 17th April 2010
By Mark Edwards
...and finally...a win!!
After being without a game for two weeks most of the team had been called upon to supplement the 3rds so had kept a reasonable level of fitness, though for the 5 players who played major parts in winning 1-0 for the Thirds immediately before our kick-off (Whitlock, Harrigan, Maillardet & Stanley) this was a real test. A late injury to Leigh Hawkes also playing for the 3rds who was due to deputise for the injured Edwards in goal left the team with a last minute decision to play Edwards with goal kicking duties distributed between Friend & Arnold.
A bright start for Farnborough led to some good interplay on a good pitch but with Latter Day Saints boasting a dangerous and quick midfield and forward line, shown during Farnborough’s early season mauling, meant that it was important to get off to a good start. Latter Day Saints began to dominate the midfield and good close control led to an unmarked run into the Farnborough box where the midfielder hit an early cross/shot which squeezed between Edwards and the post to put Latter Day Saints 1-0 up. From Farnborough’s point of view a soft goal but it does highlight the need for proper pre-game preparation.
The goal seemed to galvanise Farnborough and instantly led to several half chances but the shots tended to be speculative efforts and highlighted the nervousness of Farnborough in trying to force their first win. Adelata who had been struggling was replaced by Maillardet and his energy combined with Amin’s control and tackling wrestled back the midfield in Farnborough’s favour.
Good play down Farnborough’s right led to a ball over the top that Harrigan raced onto and coolly lifted over the keeper to even the score. Almost immediately another ball in from the Farnborough right had the Latter Day Saints goalkeeper and defender hesitating and Kamara nipped in between them both to head the ball on then finish into an empty net. Two goals in a minute changed the face of the game and Farnborough now dominated playing out the half creating several more good chances but not taking any.
The second half continued in a similar vein but as Latter Day Saints pushed more players forward seeking the equaliser the game became stretched with chances created at both ends but a mixture of good goalkeeping and poor finishing at both ends meant the score stayed unchanged. Stanley replaced Harrigan, who had magnificently played 160 minutes in the afternoon with only a 15 minute break, and the reshuffle saw Gardiner go up front.
The last 15 minutes saw Farnborough nervously holding out whilst trying to make the game safe and with 5 minutes to go a flowing move again down the right side saw Gardiner in time and space to fire home a deserved third. Barclay came on for Farnborough with Maillardet moving to centre half and Arnold withdrawn. The final minutes saw one final effort from Latter Day Saints blasted straight at Edwards who made amends for the earlier mistake by pushing the shot away to safety.
So finally a win for the 4ths who have had a season beset by unavailability and call ups to other teams within the club. Special mention to Richard Whitlock who played full games for both the 3rds & 4ths with hardly a mistake all afternoon, an outstanding effort.
Team: 1. Edwards; 2. Friend; 3. Brazier; 4. Whitlock ; 5. Arnold; 6. Gardiner; 7. Adelata; 8. Amin; 9. Kamara; 10. Abeysina; 11. Harrigan
Subs: 12. Maillardet; 13. Stanley; 14. Barclay
Man of the match: Michael Amin