Hayes & Yeading closed out pre-season with a 4-2 victory over FA Vase winners Ascot United at their very scenic Racecourse Ground on Saturday evening.
Somewhat unusually for this years’ pre-season campaign United were a little sluggish early doors with the hosts going close on five minutes as a shot across Jacob Adams went wide off the foot of the United post.
Just a few minutes later a scramble in the United area saw a last ditch Jerry Wiltshire interception poke the ball away for a corner as danger lurked large inside the six yard box.
With little creation thereafter coming from either side we were into the final ten minutes of the half when an excellent Hassan Jalloh throughball to Sam Ashton saw the striker denied by a well timed sliding tackle from the hosts ‘keeper.
Sixty seconds later a similar scenario at the other end saw #9 send #10 through, the striker being denied by a Tarik Moore-Azille tackle just as he was about to pull the pin and that was it for a fairly drab first 45 as the sides went in scoreless at the break.
The Manager made a single change at the break with Jamie Hanlon replacing Ashton while the hosts made three changes of their own.
The hosts again started well with two chances in the opening five minutes. #8 crossed from the left onto the head of an unmarked #10 who managed to head wide of the target and shortly after #9 headed a corner past Adams only for a well placed Jack Williams to head off the line.
The introduction of Steve Ngunga on 54 minutes seemed to push United’s attack up a gear and just three minutes after coming on the young winger cut out a poor clearance by the hosts ‘keeper, moved forwards and cut inside before curling a lovely shot into the bottom corner.
Just three minutes later however Ascot were level when #10 dispossessed Sanmi Odelusi just outside the United area, he advanced and fired in a low shot that Adams did well to push away only for #9 to arrive and tap the ball into an empty net.
A couple of minutes later the hosts needed to replace their ‘keeper with the goalkeeping coach due to injury however five minutes later they took the lead, another cross from the left from #8 being met in the middle but this time they headed home rather than wide.
United immediately made three further changes seeing the introduction of ‘keeper Simon Grant, striker Ayo Faniyan and a trialist in midfield, these changes almost reaped immediate reward as Faniyan fed the ball to Hanlon who saw his goalbound shot deflected wide of the target.
Grant was also quickly in action getting down well to hold a low shot from #8 and a couple of minutes later United were level as Faniyan again sprayed the ball wide to Hanlon, he moved into the box and fired past the home ‘keeper with his effort being turned into his own net by a sliding #2.
Thereafter things started to heat up a little, firstly Ngunga outpaced the Ascot #3 into the box only to be dragged down from behind, a penalty was awarded and I can’t help feeling that in a competitive match a red card may very well have been shown. Ngunga dusted himself down to take the kick, his effort was poorly struck and saved however the United man was quickly onto the loose ball to fire home his second of the game.
On 80 minutes Ngunga was chopped down just outside the box by the Ascot #2 who was cautioned for the offence. United’s trialist midfielder Lene Burden stepped up and curled the free-kick around the wall into the bottom corner to make it a 4-2 lead for the visitors.
Just a few minutes later another poor challenge from the #2 led to a melee of handbags and rather than issue red card(s) the referee decided to call the match to an end, full-time or abandoned, you decide, for me the result stands and we move on to competitive football in a weeks’ time.
Report by Kevin Watts.
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