Blues bounce back!
Spartan South Midlans League Premier Division
Saturday 27th August 2016
Hertford Town 4(3) Wembley 1(0)
The Blues bounced back from their FA Cup disappointment of the previous weekend to record an emphatic victory over a Wembley side that had also started their league campaign with six points from two games.
Taking the game to their visitors straight from the kick-off, it took the Blues less than two minutes to go a goal up. A corner on the left was partially cleared to Glenn Draper out on the right where he combined with Phil Lowen to set up Ollie Sharman for a low cross into the box. Central defender Jay Lovell, who had stayed forward following the corner, took one touch to control the ball and then drilled it unerringly into the far corner of the goal to give the Blues the impetus they were looking for.
The Blues were now in charge of the game and it came as no surprise when Ben Andreos doubled their advantage in the 14th minute. It was a firm header from Phil Lowen that set up the opportunity for Ben to outpace the left side of the Wembley defence and slot home from 15 yards.
Up to this point the visitors had been on the back foot but their response to going two goals down was positive and immediate. They picked up their game and within five minutes they had drawn two excellent saves out of the Blues custodian, Jayden Purdue. The first of these was an acrobatic tip over the bar, when backpedalling, after two headers had uncharacteristically been been lost by home defenders.
At this stage, Wembley were perhaps enjoying their best period of the game and the Blues were being forced backwards to protect their lead. The tables began to turn, though, after Dan Ferrigno had grazed the top of the bar in the 27th minute. An impressive double save from the Wembley keeper to deny first Ed Taylor and then Ben Andreos prevented the Blues adding a third on the half-hour mark but, with half-time approaching, they were powerless to prevent Tyler Hatherly trebling the Blues tally with a fine individual effort. Receiving a long throw-out from Jayden Purdue, ten yards inside his own half, Tyler ran through the Wembley defence, all the way to the edge of the penalty area, and struck the ball low into the bottom corner to effectively leave the result in no doubt.
The visitors came out for the second half clearly disheartened by the scoreline and the Blues began to dominate proceedings. Both Phil Lowen and Ben Andreos came close to adding a fourth but it was Ricky Light who ultimately achieved the feat with a stunning left volley from the edge of the box that went in off the inside of a post with a quarter of an hour remaining.
Wembley were not about to ‘throw in the towel’, though, and almost straight from the restart, they had pulled a goal back with sharp counter-attack.
Although the Blues had been on top for most of the half Jayden Purdue was still required to come to their rescue with two more excellent saves, one before and one after these two goals.
With the three points firmly in the bag, substitute Mark Summers almost put the ‘icing on the cake’ with a fifth goal when he received the ball from Tyler Hatherly on the right-hand side of the box, turned past his marker and drilled a low shot at the near post that was well-saved with his legs by the Wembley keeper.
With nine points from their opening three games the Blues can now look forward to next Saturday’s visit to Hertingfordbury Park of another of the league’s early-season pacemakers, Berkhamsted.
Team: Jayden Purdue, Ollie Sharman, Ed Taylor, Dan Ferrigno (Sam Ruff 69’), Glenn Draper, Jay Lovell, Adam Murad (Lee Roberts 64’), Phil Lowen, Ben Andreos (Mark Summers 76’), Ricky Light and Tyler Hatherly.
Subs not used: Jack Bartlett & Matt Thomson.
Match Report by Ray Greenall