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Canterbury City 27/12/14 Won 5-0

Match Report by Kevin Hall posted on 28th December 2014

No home comforts for Canterbury as Zanone strikes four times in emphatic victory

Match Stats

Date: Sat 27 Dec 2014

Kick Off: 3.00pm

Match Type: Southern Counties East Football League

Venue: Homelands

Score (FT): 5-0

Score (HT): 1-0

Referee: Wally James

Assistants: Joe Fox & Michael O'Bree


Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

Joe Mant
Adam Cuthbert
Luke Cuthbert
Michael Phillips (off 76)
Danny Lye
Pat Kingwell
Liam Whiting
Tom Scorer (off 67)
Stuart Zanone
Darren Marsden
Gary Mickelborough (off 84)

Substitutes (used *)
Michael Smissen * (on 84)
Keiran Byrne * (on 67)
Harry Priddle
Ollie Finch * (76)
Jordan Harris

Shannon Harris
Sam Baker
Sam Kettle
Ben Gorham
Nick Blackman
Steven Baines
Dan Lawrence
Cameron Heffernan (off 74)
Dan Gonzalez-Bello (off 88)
Ira Jackson
Rob Lawrence

Substitutes (used *)
Dan Shearing * (on 88)
Alex Kendall * (on 74)
Dan Wrench
Duncan Adams
Steven Lloyd

Attendance: 304

An impressive Ashford served up a Christmas cracker hitting five without reply in the Southern Counties East League 5-0 victory over their tenants Canterbury City, thanks mainly to a four-goal salvo from ace goal getter Stuart Zanone.

The striker who has now bagged 23 goals in 18 appearances since joining the Nuts & Bolts – including 16 in the last seven matches – struck the only goal in the first half, before completing his four-goal haul during the second 45 minutes, after Liam Whiting had doubled the lead six minutes after the re-start .

At a crisp and cold Homelands, the heavy pitch was playable if a bit boggy in places, following heavy Boxing Day rain, but it was United who seemed to adapt better to the conditions as game progressed.

Tom Scorer struck a fierce shot on 19 minutes which warmed the hands of City keeper Shannon Harris, following a marauding run down the left from full-back Luke Cuthbert.

Then seven minutes later the opening goal came, when Zanone pounced onto a loose ball inside the box to skilfully lob the advancing Harris, it was the type of opportunist goal that the Homelands faithful are fast becoming accustomed, but needed great composure to execute the required purchase on the ball to find the net.

Harris then pulled off a good double save to deny firstly Scorer and then from the re-bound Michael Phillips as the ball pinged around in the City penalty area.

In the latter stages of the opening period, Canterbury had chances to draw level as Dan Lawrence twice spurned good opportunities, but they were a touch unlucky in the third added minute when Dan Gonzalez-Bello saw his shot bounce off the top of the crossbar.

On 51 minutes, Whiting in just his second appearance since 13th September, gave Ashford a bit of breathing space, with a good finish after pouncing onto some hesitant defending from the hosts to score his first goal since March.

Gary Mickelborough then forced a good save from Harris as Ashford sensed that further goals could be added and whilst City also fashioned some openings, they lacked any know how in front of goal, youngster Ira Jackson found his compass off the radar on three occasions.

A delightful through pass from the impressive Darren Marsden then set up Zanone, who coolly rounded the keeper to slide the ball in and put Ashford three in front after 64 minutes.

Joe Mant, although less busier than Harris, leapt like a salmon, to finger-tip the ball past the post and deny Rob Lawrence and as Ashford surged forward Harris was on hand to deny Marsden and Zanone in quick succession.

Salt was then rubbed into the Canterbury wounds when the prolific Zanone thundered in a low drive in the 85th minute to complete his second hat-trick in Ashford colours. United though were still in no mood to let up and in stoppage time, – of which there were eight added minutes – Liam Whiting struck the crossbar, before Zanone put the icing on the cake and made it 5-0 when he grabbed his fourth of the afternoon.

It has been quite a run for the ex-soldier, who has currently found the net in seven consecutive matches and should his eye for goal continue at the same rate, he could be close to matching the 47 goals he grabbed two seasons ago for Rochester United and Thamesmead Town respectively.

Whilst the ace marksman will no doubt take all the plaudits, mention should be made of Pat Kingwell who is a tower of strength at the back in central defence and put in another whole hearted solid 90 minutes and was in no mood to let Canterbury get anything from the game.

Match Reporter Kevin Hall