A Jeremiah Maja goal gave the Millers a 1-0 win against 4th placed AFC Hornchurch.
It was a fitting farewell to Mill Field in our last competitive game after 65 fond years. It was a brilliant occasion with 413 in attendance and it was a superbly grounded out result for an Aveley team who just don't concede goals.
Lamar Johnson pulled off some brilliant saves and the defensive unity helped the Millers to three points and only three points off the playoffs with one game to go. However, we need a 22 goals swing in the last game of the season to get into the top five.
The Millers started the most lively as good work from Jeremiah Maja almost set up Mason Bloomfield for a really good chance six yards out, but John Easterford did well to cut out the cross and deny the Millers the perfect start to the momentous occasion.
Leon McKenzie was lively as the visitors tried to get in front to spoil the leaving party. His first effort was so close to going in but it went wide of the left hand post. McKenzie then played in ex-Miller Abs Seymour but he was shepherded well by Hussain Jaffa.
Martin Tuohy went through on goal but he had Lamar Johnson in his way who made a terrific save to deny another ex-Aveley player.
After Leon McKenzie was fouled Abs Seymour whipped in a dangerous ball in which saw Elliott Styles header cleared off the line by Hussain Jaffa and Tommy Spillane was then on hand to scramble away a Sam Bantick effort.
We almost took the lead after more great work from Jeremiah Maja who found Ross Gleed who connected perfectly but his half volley went a whisker over the bar.
A goal was coming and finally it did. Lamar Johnson superb kick was flicked on by Ross Gleed to Jeremiah Maja. Maja nipped in front of Teddy Nesbitt and then volley superbly past Sam Mott to put the Millers ahead in the local derby. Aveley 1-0 AFC Hornchurch.
Throughout the game there was a smattering of yellow cards, in the first half it saw yellow cards for Max Mitchell and Joe Clark for the Millers and Leon McKenzie for the visitors.
We almost made it 2-0 on the stroke of half time, a corner wasn't cleared properly, Adalberto Pinto tried his luck but Sam Mott smartly denied him, it came back out to Hussain Jaffa who almost killed him marker as he lunged at the ball. It eventually fell to Mason Bloomfield who finished past Mott, but it was ruled out for an offside.
Up the other end with the last play of the half Sam Bantick had a huge chance for the Urchins after the ball fell kindly to him in the box, but his effort lacked pace and power as he was denied by Lamar Johnson.
Half Time: Aveley 1-0 AFC Hornchurch.
A dangerous cross from Teddy Nesbitt almost drifted into the top corner from kick off but Lamar Johnson was on hand to tip the ball just over the bar.
More yellow cards followed as Adalberto Pinto picked up a yellow after blocking the goalkeeper and Gary Cohen took out Jeremiah Maja. Soon following that Michael Toner picked up one for a late tackle on Lee. But a main talking point of the second half saw Gary Cohen took out Jeremiah Maja again, but he escaped a second yellow card.
Martin Tuohy came very close to pulling the Urchins level as his effort was clawed away from goal by the impressive Lamar Johnson who had a superb game.
Hornchurch kept on coming but weren't getting any luck as the Millers defended manfully. If you look at the Millers defensive record, we've only conceded three goals since the 18th of March, and all those goals were penalties, alongside this eight games unbeaten for Aveley F.C.
Leon McKenzie again had two massive chances, but somehow he failed to score. A cross in from Abs Thompson looked easier to score than miss but he somehow put his free-header wide of the right hand post. He then had a right footed goal-bound effort hooked clear by Tommy Spillane.
The Millers were then reduced to ten men as Joe Clark dived in on Abs Thompson and missed the ball, and the referee didn't hesitate to pull out the second yellow and red card. Which meant we had to defend for the last five minutes with ten men.
Late into the six minutes added on time, Lamar Johnson pulled off an incredible save. Kenzer Lee met a Nathan Cooper cross at the back post, it looked like it grabbed Hornchurch a point but Lamar Johnson stuck out his left hand and made a brilliant stop to guarantee us all three points.
Full Time: Aveley 1-0 AFC Hornchurch
Millers XI | Lamar Johnson (C), Dan Odamo, Joe Clark (Red Card 86'), Michael Toner, Tommy Spillane, Hussain Jaffa, Max Mitchell (Michael Noone 90+2), Adalberto Pinto, Mason Bloomfield, Jeremiah Maja (Gaz Dauti 90+2), Ross Gleed (Ramone Cassidy-Sinclair 77)
Unused Subs: Joshua Luther, Joe Paxman
Urchins XI | Sam Mott, Gary Cohen (NAthan Cooper 73), Teddy Nesbitt (George Purcell 73), Kenzer Lee, John Easterford, Elliott Styles (C), Sam Bantick (Abs Thompson 65), Jed Chouman, Leon McKenzie, Martin Tuohy, Abs Seymour
Unused Subs: Ross Wall, Alex Bentley