A close encounter in sub zero temperatures ended all square as Hayes & Yeading United and Harrow Borough battled for top spot in the Capital League West Division.
Harrow started strongly and it was former QPR defender Pat Kanyuka who came to United’s rescue early on with a clearance off the line from Evandro Delgado’s goalbound shot. United responded when captain Philip Appiah laid the ball off to Daryl McLean and his chip shot just cleared the crossbar.
First team regular Jamie Hand was getting a good run out in midfield and he came close with a long shot which John Armand in the Harrow goal had to smother. In the 41 st minute, Armand was again able to deny Hand when another long shot needed to be tipped wide of the post.
It was from the resulting corner that Hayes & Yeading took the lead. Bruno Luz floated the ball in and McLean met it on the half volley in front of goal to put his side one up.
The second half started in a similar vain to the first, with Harrow doing most of the pressing. They thought they’d equalised five minutes in when the impressive Jerome Walker crossed in low from the right and former FEDO player Andrew Harewood tapped in at the far post, only for it to be ruled out for offside.
Six minutes later, Harrow did have their equaliser as Anthony Charlton turned a Harewood free kick in at the near post.
Harrow continued to press after the goal and Walker cut inside before unleashing a shot which Lee Harrison caught. It was against the run of play when Leon Henderson got in a tangle when trying to intercept Josh Christopher’s long pass and McLean nipped in behind him to slot the ball home for his and his team’s second.
A remarkable sequence of play saw both teams almost score in the 73 rd minute. First, McLean centred for Lewis Ferrell, whose rising shot was held be Armand. The Harrow keeper quickly released the ball, catching United with many players out of position and Walker found Delgado who rounded Harrison but found the angle he left himself too tight to get his shot on target.
United substitute Mark Brown almost got a debut goal soon afterwards when he raced onto Daniel Wishart’s lay off but Armand gathered his low shot in.
And it paid off for Harrow as they were to claim a deserved equaliser eight minutes from time with a well struck shot from Delgado which gave Harrison no chance.
Report by Nick Bell.
Website United Man of the Match: Daryl McLean.