Thame United 2 Aylesbury FC 0
Ten Man Thame make light work of the Moles
Report by Dan Legg
After a run of tricky matches at home, the Moles travelled the short distance to the Oxfordshire border to take on a free-scoring, yet heavily inconsistent Thame United side.
Manager Davis Haule had plenty of attacking options at his disposal, starting the match with what was effectively a front four, whilst youngster Alfie Touceda and the experienced Marvyn Watson slotted into the central midfield roles. In spite of a strong defensive line up, the Moles were to later struggle against the effortless counter attacking ability of the home side.
The recent weather conditions made for a scrappy start to the match, with both teams finding it difficult to play any sort of passing football. Albeit, it was the hosts that settled the quickest, with Liam Tack testing the FC goal from distance, but Ashley Jenkins was more than a match for the shot and parried it behind for a Thame corner.
The corner resulted in some very early drama. With the ball stranded in the mud bath-like goalmouth, a melee ensued, bodies were everywhere. Jordan Jenkins through his neck on the line for the cause quite literally, and the referee adjudged that Thame United midfielder Liam Tack had stamped on the FC defender, with the midfielder given his marching orders just 14 minutes into his debut. Unbelievably Thame were awarded an indirect free kick 10 yards out following the fracas. With the entire FC starting XI on the line to block the free kick, Marvyn Watson took the ball where it hurt, and the ball was eventually cleared away.
Even though it was the away side that had the man advantage, it certainly didn’t appear that way. The hosts were the side to continue to pile on the pressure, first ex-Mole Aston Goss had the opportunity to get one over his previous employer but fluffed his lines and put his low driven shot narrowly wide of the back post. Minutes later it was Goss again with another opportunity. This time he met a ball from the right-hand side with a diving header, the effort appeared to be goal bound, however, the thick mud meant the ball stopped dead on the line and the grateful Garry Jones was there to hoof the ball away and maintain the clean sheet.
The deadlock was soon to broken, after a spell of possession for the Moles, Thame utilised their pace with a quick counter attack. Jamie Essex’s cross field ball found the fleet footed Lynton Goss, who beat Derek Feyi for pace, before putting a deft cross into the back post, with the unmarked Dan West on hand to slot home from close range.
HT Thame United 1 Aylesbury FC 0
Aylesbury started the second half fairly brightly, with Hafid Bounyafe getting a shot on target away, but failed to really hamper Thame’s goalkeeper. FC continued to pile on pressure, with Joe Fitzgerald utilising the additional space on the field. A delicate ball into the danger zone from the full back could have fallen to Ty Deacon or Davide Pobbe to get a shot away, however, the attackers unwittingly obstructed one another, and a relieved Craig Hill happily gathered.
On the hour mark, FC w
ere given a golden opportunity to equalise. Garry Jones played an exquisite, deep cross to Brian Haule, who connects well with his header directed towards the bottom corner, however Hill reacted well down low to preserve his clean sheet.
With ten minutes to play, Joe Fitzgerald again was causing trouble, his cross was flapped away rather unconvincingly by Hill, the ball dropped to the feet of Garry Jones, who couldn’t quite steady himself to bury the ball into the back of the net, putting his close-range effort agonisingly wide.
And then the sucker punch came. For all of the Aylesbury pressure, it was Thame who increased their lead on 82 minutes, making the Moles pay for their lack of clinical finishing ability. A rather innocuous free kick from Lynton Goss, from around 25 yards out appeared to slip through Ashley Jenkin’s gloves, off of the underside of the crossbar and over the line.
The ten-man Thame side saw out the rest of the game rather comfortably, holding onto their two-goal advantage, and compounded the Moles to another defeat, returning to Buckinghamshire empty handed.
FT Thame United 2 Aylesbury FC 0
The Moles are back in action on Tuesday night (weather permitting), as they host the league’s bottom placed side Arlesey Town.
Aylesbury FC MOTM: Hafid Bounyafe
Match Rating: 2/5 – Early Drama, but the game lacked any really quality throughout.