Eagles 3 Ducks 1
Bedford beat off opening day blues.
Bedford opened their points account on Tuesday evening with a 3-1 win over Aylesbury United. Coasting in the first half with three goals, Bedford were reduced to ten men just before the half time whistle, and this gave Aylesbury Utd confidence to lay siege to the Eagles goal.It was a great start for the Eagles when their first attack, with 4 minutes on the clock, resulted in a goal, and although it was credited to Lee Roache, it was his teasing low cross from the right byline that was completely messed up by Jack Sillitoe in the Aylesbury goal, as he helped the ball into the net from the near post.
Roache was at it again a couple of minutes later as he pushed in a ball from the right into the path of Ryan Auger, but the midfielder spooned his edge of area effort over the bar.
Having a great start to the match, Roache made the right wing his own early on, and in the 13th minute, pushed in a cross behind the Aylesbury Utd defence for Kyjuon Marsh-Brown. In trying to atone for his earlier mistake, Sillitoe came rushing out to the edge of the area to intercept the ball and boot it to safety.
Roache then went into the middle during a Bedford short corner between Auger and Ronayne Marsh-Brown. When the ball came over, there wasn't a defender near to the Bedford striker, but his touch let him down and Sillitoe was able to collect the ball.
Successfully keeping Aylesbury Utd at bay in the first part of the half, a long range shot came in from the hosts, and flew over the bar harmlessly.
The Eagles doubled their lead in the 34th minute, when Bradley Woods-Garness and Roache combined, and ended with a sublime pass from Roache to his team mate, inside the area. Woods-Garness rounded Sillitoe to slot the ball home from an angle.
The Eagles were enjoying a lot of possession, and when Sillitoe collected, but strayed outside his area, a free kick was awarded. Mr. Cutmore felt only a yellow card was needed, and the Aylesbury Utd ‘keeper was allowed to stay on the field. A third goal came from the free kick, as Ryan Auger placed the ball over the the Aylesbury Utd wall and into the top right hand corner, giving Sillitoe no chance whatsoever.
There was further drama just before the half time whistle, when Kyjuon Marsh-Brown was sent off for violent conduct after a confrontation with an Aylesbury Utd defender. This prompted an outcry from the Eagles’ fans, as they felt that Aylesbury Utd should have been down to ten men following Sillitoe’s infringement.
Aylesbury Utd came out for the 2nd half with renewed confidence, and proceeded to attack the Bedford goal.
A free kick was punched away by Harpur, but fired back in by Bruno Brito. Much to the relief of the Bedford goalie, the ball cannoned off the right hand post and into the arms of Harpur.
The Eagles desperately defended a corner before a bit of respite saw Roache put the ball into the path of Woods-Garness, who fired over the bar.
The visitors came back and a lucky ricochet off an attacker bamboozled Harpur, with James Peters coming to the rescue with a clearance away from the line.
A long-range shot from Greg Williams then tested Harpur, and the ‘keeper pushed the ball away for a corner.
Bedford were under intense pressure, and for the second time in the the half, Brito found the right hand post, after the ball was played back to him and his vicious shot beat everyone except the foot of the woodwork.
In a rare foray into the Aylesbury Utd half, Ben Sawyer had enough room to send in a stinging shot that was pushed off for a corner by Sillitoe, and the Aylesbury Utd defence did the rest in defending the corner.
Two substitutions towards the midway point of the half seemed to settle Bedford, when Andrew Phillips and Ashton Grant came on for Ben Sawyer and Devante Stanley. And with just over 10 minutes remaining, defender Kwai Marsh-Brown was brought on at the expense of Bradley Woods-Garness to give a hard working but tiring defence a fresh pair of legs.
As the half counted down to the finish, Aylesbury Utd were trying more long-range stuff, giving Harpur some easy catches as the ball came entered the area.
A corner two minutes from time, however, saw the ball pin balling around the area, as Aylesbury Utd couldn’t get the ball in the net and Bedford, with some freestyle defending, couldn’t get the ball away, until eventually, it was cleared .
Three minutes into ‘time added on’ Substitute, Jamie Jellis fired in from the edge of the area, and unfortunately for Harpur the ball had enough speed to slip through his fingers and bounce into the net. Renewed, for the rest of the four minutes added time, Aylesbury Utd went for a second, but ten-man Bedford held on for their first win of the season.
Eagles: 1. Adam Harpur, 2. Paul Cooper, 3. Ronayne Marsh-Brown (c), 4. Jemale McKenzie-Lowe, 5. James Peters, 6 Devante Stanley (Ashton Grant 71), 7. Ben Sawyer (Andrew Phillips 66), 8. Ryan Auger, 9. Lee Roache, 10. Bradley Woods-Garness (Kwai Marsh-Brown), Kyjuon Marsh-Brown.
Subs not used: Matt Clifford, Omar Naseri.
Referee; Hallam Cutmore.
Assistants: Paul McVey & Tom Beeton.
Star Man: Bradley Woods-Garness.