Hayes & Yeading’s second pre-season workout saw Ritchie Hanlon’s side lose by the only goal to Southall in a Saturday morning game played on Burnham’s excellent 3G surface.
A strong United starting line-up saw nine regulars plus a brace of trialists and it was United who saw early openings come and go as both Jamie Hanlon and United’s trialist number 9 both failed to hit the target when seemingly well placed.
On the half hour mark with the hosts creating little going forwards, another chance came to United when the ball was laid off to Hanlon but his effort from the edge of the box was partially charged down by a Southall defender and the ball rolled safely to Michael Edegbe in the home goal.
Just a minute later the best chance of the game fell to United as Taylor Miles received the ball just outside the box, his low driven shot being excellently turned around the post by Edegbe.
Just before the break Hanlon was forced off injured and Steve Ngunga joined the game from the United bench however nothing of note was created and the two sides went in goalless at the break.
With both sides coming back out with the players that had finished the first half, in took just 9 minutes for the hosts to break the deadlock with what was their first real chance of the game as a low centre was fired home at the far post.
Just short of the hour mark Omar Rowe picked up the ball on the left corner of the Southall box, his shot across goal evading the dive of Edegbe but also going the wrong side of the upright.
On 62 minutes Southall substitute Luke Heneghan fired a free-kick past the United wall, forcing a fine diving save from Simon Grant in the United goal and ten minutes later Ngunga went on a mazy run down the right and into the Southall box however in trying to get a shot away he was crowded out by the home defence and the danger was cleared but only temporarily as United’s trialist striker Arnold Matshazi collected the ball just inside the area but his effort was pushed wide by Edegbe.
With ten minutes to play a double Grant save kept the deficit at just a single goal, Heneghan fired in a free-kick from the right into the United area, Southall’s #14 got his head to the ball six yards out forcing Grant to push his header out and when the ball dropped to a Southall player, his follow-up shot was again saved by Grant and the danger went away.
That was really it for clearcut chances and it was Southall who earned pre-season bragging rights this time around.
We thank Southall for their hospitality and wish them well for their forthcoming step 4 campaign.
Report by Kevin Watts.
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