vs Leverstock Green (H)
SSML Premier Division
20th November 2018
A cold damp evening saw a decent crowd for a midweek game. Leverstock started strongly with Alex Yearwood attacking down the right and going around Robbie Ponting who had come out to close him down, he pulled the ball back to Salim Sahnoun but his shot went across the goal and past the far post.
From an early corner Alex Condon shot wide and from a free kick Sahnoun put in a ball that James Hatch headed clear, Arlesey then broke out quickly with Lorrell Smith but although he ran into a good position his shot went past the post. The Leverstock front 2 combined well for Sahnoun to put in a cross that Ponting took well. Slowly through good defending Arlesey absorbed the Leverstock pressure and turned to pushing forward themselves; Ross Taylor put in a good cross to Hatch who chested down and hit a shot that deflected off a defender and looked to be heading goal ward before Rob Parlington in goal only just managed to grab.
Lorrell Smith played a good ball to Hatch who hit a good shot that Parlington parried well for a corner that was cleared. From a throw Hatch headed onto Smith but his shot went over the bar. As the pressure grew Hatch found Taylor who found Smith in the box, he fed the ball back to Alex O’Brien who for the 3rd time in 3 games fired a great shot past Parlington for 1-0 on 25 mins and another great team goal.
As Arlesey clicked into gear Ryan Lamond hit a good cross/shot that the keeper did well to push over the bar for a corner that was cleared and on 30 mins Lamond crossed in and Smith headed it behind the keeper but somehow he managed to grab it as it headed toward the goal. Ash Fuller then cut in and hit another great shot that Parlington punched over the bar as Leverstock just hung on in the face of this onslaught.
Another cross in was headed out but only to Fuller whose shot just skimmed the post and a longer range effort by Aedan Gaffney was taken by the keeper, and then another cross in was headed by Hatch and the ball bounced off the cross bar with the keeper beaten.
On 43 mins from a free kick Sam Nair for Leverstock put a good ball over the wall pulling a good save out of Ponting as he pushed it over the bar; the corner was cleared leaving it 1-0 at the break.
Arlesey started the half with purpose with Hatch making a great tackle on the half way line and feeding in O’Brien whose shot was blocked. From a Leverstock free kick Hatch won the header and found Fuller who quickly broke as he found Smith but at this point it was pulled back for an infringement on the defender. A good move saw O’Brien find Gaffney who returned the favour back to O’Brien but his shot was blocked; and from a FK another Hatch header was well taken by the keeper.
Leverstock thought they had got back into the game in the 60th min as Sahnoun went down the right and as Ross Taylor slid into tackle he caught the attacker right on the line of the box and the Ref awarded a penalty. Sahnoun put the ball on the spot but Robbie Ponting went the right way saving it before Tom Guiney reacting 1st put the loose ball out for a corner that was cleared.
Arlesey resumed their quest for another goal as Fuller hit a shot across the goal that beat the keeper and the post. Sahnoun saw yellow for a foul on Guiney before gaffney and Luke Preedy clash and tangled together which earned a card for both of them.
Sahnoun went down on the edge of the Arlesey area for a FK and Nair hit another good shot that brought a good save out of Ponting; this came out to Yearwood who shot over the bar. Arlesey pushed on as Hatch pulled the ball back to Lamond whose shot was block but it came back to hatch whose shot came off a defender before breaking to the ever lurking Smith who instantly hit a smart low drive into the bottom corner for a deserved 2-0 on 72 mins.
Arlesey kept going as Lamond headed wide from a free kick and from a corner that was well taken by Partington. Leverstock replaced Alex Condon with Alex Witham as they pushed another player up front as they didn’t give up and a good ball in found Sahnoun who turned well to shoot past the post and from a cross a great tackle by Guiney dispossessed Witham.
As the game wound down Arlesey kept control and kept Leverstock at bay making a couple of late substitutions to see out the game ending with their 7th clean sheet of the season and the 4th win of the month.
This was a good contest against a good Leverstock side but Arlesey showed a good work rate and team effort in this one and this can go down as a good win.
Next up maybe one of the defining game of the season as we go to 2nd place Biggleswade FC on Saturday for maybe the toughest game of the season so far.
Team : Robbie Ponting, Lewis Sinclair, Ross Taylor, Aedan Gaffney y (Darvall 90), Tom Guiney ©, Adam Randall, Ryan Lamond (Makuza 87), Alex O’Brien, Lorrell Smith, James Hatch, Ash Fuller.
Subs; Makudzeyi Makuza, Jason Darvall, Adam Brown, Derek Newton, Kai Ashley.