At last! Blues win on a Tuesday!
Bostik League North
Tuesday 24th October 2017
Witham Town 2(1) Hertford Town 3(1)
(Wade 24’, Light 52’, O’Connor 90+2’)
Tuesday’s visit to Witham Town brought a huge sigh of relief to the Blues when they recorded their first victory of this season’s campaign on a Tuesday. All four of the Blues’ league defeats have been suffered on a Tuesday night and therefore this win – which carried the Blues up to seventh in the table – brought to a welcome end a sequence with which the Blues were understandably very displeased with.
With this record in the back of their minds and with their hosts looking for a win to lift themselves up the table, the opening exchanges were unsurprisingly cautious. Neither team were having very much joy in trying to break down their opposing defences and, consequently, there was very little action of note in the first twenty or so minutes.
That all changed in the 24th minute when Tommy Wade grabbed the lead for the Blues with a low drive from fifteen yards out. He had risen above the home defenders to power a header towards goal from Matt Thomson’s excellent free kick and when the ball rebounded back to him, he pounced to find the back of the net.
It was the boost the visitors needed and they duly took command of the game and, in the course of the next ten minutes, both Brett O’Connor and Ricky Light came close to adding a second with good efforts from around the edge of the box. Brett’s shot was well saved and Ricky’s grazed the junction of post and bar.
The Blues had slightly dropped their guard, though, and allowed their opponents back into the game by conceding a fairly soft equaliser. They failed to shut down a shot from the edge of the box which could only be parried by Charlie Mann when it bounced up in front of him and was prodded home by Max Bradford. The Blues had relaxed and paid the price.
Both teams came out for the second half with renewed vigour and, less than five minutes in, a reckless tackle saw Witham’s Tyler Corlett shown a straight red card and with it the Blues were thrown a significant advantage which they were to make full use of.
From the resulting free kick, Ricky Light found the bottom corner of the net to regain the Blues’ lead and put them back into control.
Michael Toner had a good opportunity to add a third in the 58th minute from Brett O’Connor’s cross and fourteen minutes remained when Tommy Wade headed onto the roof of the net from another well-taken free kick by Matt Thomson.
Billericay loanee, Charlie Cole, was introduced into the action in the 85th minute and two minutes of added time had been played when he turned cleverly and played a perfectly weighted ball into the path of Brett O’Connor who then lobbed the home custodian as he rushed off his goal-line.
The three points were safely in the bag but surprisingly enough time remained for the home side to salvage some pride with a very late consolation goal from Samuel Ashford.
Having moved up the a season-high position of seventh the Blues now face a break from league action with a visit to Corinthian Casuals in the FA Trophy on Saturday 28th October and a home Herts Senior Cup tie with Cheshunt on Tuesday 31st October.
Team: Charlie Mann, Ollie Sharman, Luke Foster, Matt Thomson, Michael Toner, Dan Palmer, Ricky Light (Davy Edmee 90’), Charlie Edwards, Charlie Ruff (Mark Summers 72’), Tommy Wade (Charlie Cole 85’) and Brett O’Connor.
Subs not used: Daniel Bond and Ben Andreos.
Match Report by Ray Greenall
Video © 2017 Nathan Hobley