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Erith Town 31/3/2015 Drew 1-1

Match Report by Kevin Hall posted on 1st April 2015

Kingwell strikes to salvage point for United with last gasp equaliser

Match Stats

Date: Tue 31 Mar 2015

Kick Off: 7.45pm

Match Type: Southern Counties East Football League

Venue: Homelands

Score (FT): 1-1

Score (HT): 0-0

Referee: Michael Marsh

Assistants: Stuart Marriott & Bo Wang

Bookings:

Ashford:
Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

:
Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

Teams: ASHFORD UNITED
Joe Mant
Luke Cuthbert
Liam Whiting
Jamie Collado
Danny Lye (off 26)
Pat Kingwell
Gary Clarke
Michael Phillips
Keiran Byrne (off 77)
Darren Marsden
Tom Scorer (off 70)

Substitutes (used *)
Lee Winfield
Ollie Finch *(on 70)
Liam Walsh *(on 26)
Gary Mickelborough * (on 77)
Lloyd Blackman

ERITH TOWN
Joe Hagan
Taylor McDonough
Koby Botwa
Danny Willis
Chidi-James Williams-Agunboar
Sam Gent
Kery Kedze (off 70 )
Ola Kukoyi
Elyon Marshall-Katung (off 82)
Thomas Youngs (off 65)
Richard Morgan

Substitutes (used *)
Christain Howell * (on 70)
Jamie McMath
George Savage * (on 65)
Ajeon Kadeem
Ben Mundele * (on 82)


Attendance: 119

Ashford United’s 13 match winning streak seems a long time ago now, after they could only muster a draw from their home encounter with bottom of the table Erith Town.

It could however have been much worse, with the equaliser not coming until the 90th minute, when Pat Kingwell fired home from close range to save their blushes and salvage a point.

Buoyed by their draw at the weekend with third place Erith & Belvedere, the Dockers looked a far better side than one five points adrift at the foot of the Southern Counties East League table and they proved more than a match for United.

But such has been the changes at Erith Town this season, that not one player in the squad of 16 played in the visitors 2-0 victory over United at the Homelands 11 months ago. The two sides having battled away all last season to try and catch Champions Whytleleafe, with United finally finishing as runners-up, whilst the Dockers ended the season in third place two points behind the Nuts & Bolts.

Ashford started brightly enough forcing a succession of early corners, but they failed to capitalise on them, being only able to once test visiting goalkeeper Joe Hagan, who did well to tip a 16th minute Michael Phillips free-kick over the crossbar and out for a corner.

Keiran Byrne and Tom Scorer fired in long range shots which failed to find the target, the former given the thankless task of standing in for the holidaying Stuart Zanone, having appeared from the bench only twice in the previous ten matches.

Within two minutes of start of the second half, Referee Michael Marsh turned away home protests for a penalty when Scorer was felled inside the box, as instead of pointing to the spot he brandished a yellow-card in the face of Scorer, presumably for diving.

For the Dockers, Thomas Youngs was unlucky to see a great shot cannon back off the crossbar, then Kery Kedze missed a good chance, Ashford responded with Darren Marsden and Byrne combining well, but Taylor McDonough was on hand to clear the ball off the line.

Hagan though generally had little to do in the visiting goal, as too many Ashford moves broke down in the final third, the players seemingly all afraid to shoot when the target was in sight. Joe Mant was much busier than his opposite number, pulling off two great saves to deny Kedze & Ola Kukoyi, whilst Youngs fluffed an opportunity, firing wide when it seemed easier to score.

Mant though could do little to prevent the visitors taking the lead after 84 minutes, when United were caught by a swift move which ended with 16 year-old debutant substitute Ben Mundele finishing in style. The basement club, with only three wins on their travels rightly celebrated, but we saw the bizarre sight of already substituted Kedze running on to hug his team mates and get booked for doing so.

As the clocked ticked by, it looked as if Ashford would be recording a second loss in as many matches, but Kingwell was on hand in the final minute to get on the end of a Marsden free-kick. The ball finding its way through a crowd of bodies to reach the big defender, who then drilled it into the net for his third goal of the season, to earn United a share of the spoils.

The drama wasn’t quite over as in a controversial finish to the match Mr Marsh sent Assistant Manager & one of United’s substitutes Lloyd Blackman from the bench in the fourth minute of added time.

Both sides struggled in the blustery conditions which were never going to be conducive to an entertaining game, with a strong cross wind wrecking the second match running at the Homelands.

Hardly surprising therefore, that on not the most pleasant of evenings, the match was witnessed by just 119 spectators, which represents the lowest crowd for a league clash since the formation of United at the start of season 2011-12.

Match Reporter Kevin Hall