Milton Utd 0-2 Didcot Town
Railwaymen made to work for their 4th win in succession
Didcot Town extended their pre-season winning run to 4 last night with an extremely hard fought 2-0 victory over neighbours Milton Utd who themselves put in a very spirited display.
With Callum McNish, Morgan Williams and Michael Alexis away along with Luke Carnell still nursing his way back to fitness Didcot unsurprisingly made changes from Saturday’s win over Redditch Utd. Leigh Bedwell was back in goal and there were also starts for youngsters James Tanner and Brett Gardner while David Murphy had his first start of pre-season in attack in place of Felipe Barcelos.
The game took a while to settle down on a decent surface considering the recent hot weather and Didcot went close when a quick free kick enabled Murphy to get a snapshot off that was well turned over by the Milton goalkeeper Craig Griffiths.
Stuart Cattell had Didcot’s best chance of the half when he got to Matt Woodley’s corner but placed his header wide of the target. Didcot for all their possession were struggling to break down their stubborn hosts and only had a few pot shots from distance to show for their efforts which all in truth were more threat to the new housing development behind the goal than to Griffiths.
Half Time Milton 0-0 Didcot
The second half continued in much of the same vein as Didcot unsurprisingly dominated the ball but Milton were defending superbly well and were looking a threat on the break. In fact the hosts should have taken the lead when Sam Barder was caught in possession and with Didcot having pushed forward a long ball was seized on by the Milton striker but Leigh Bedwell was out brilliantly to save for Didcot.
Lance Williams who was having another good game in midfield for Didcot then struck a post from another Woodley corner and then it was Woodley himself who chanced his arm from 25 yards but his fizzing left foot shot went narrowly over.
David Murphy picked up a nasty looking knee injury as he was shooting towards goal and was replaced by Barcelos, Didcot rang the changes over the next few minutes with McNeill, Thomas, Humphries and Reid all introduced into the action. Humphries and Reid in particular gave Didcot more impetus and it was those 2 who combined from the corner which Didcot were to score the opening goal from.
On 84 minutes Humphries and Reid took a short corner on the left hand side and Reid’s cross was met at the back post by a stooping Adam Learoyd who scored from close range to give Didcot the lead.
Barcelos should have made it two when he got in behind the defenders and as he closed in on goal the outcome seemed inevitable but Griffiths saved well to his left from Barcelos prodded effort.
The victory was sealed in the dying moments when Reid again picked the ball up and ran with pace at the Milton backline, he evaded 2 challenges and as he was about to pull the trigger was caught by a tired desperate lunge from a Milton defender for a clear penalty. Felipe Barcelos took the responsibility and drilled it into the bottom corner to give Didcot the scoreline they more than deserved overall. Credit however must also go to Milton Utd who made life extremely difficult for Didcot and also made a few good chances of their own. We wish them well for the new season.
The full time whistle blew seconds later on another valuable 90 minutes for the Railwaymen who are next in action on Saturday as they travel to Highworth Town. 3pm kick off.