Aylesbury United 1 Hanwell Town 0
After the excellent victory over Brightlingsea Regent the previous Saturday, Hanwell travelled to Chesham United FC with whom Aylesbury United are now ground sharing with high hopes that they could at last get some points on the board after their dismal start to the league season. In the event, any hopes were shattered by the lifeless display that ensued and they had to be thankful that their opponents finishing was so woeful, otherwise the margin of defeat would have been a lot higher.
The sides showed a couple of changes from the previous week as with Callum Wright unavailable Tom Hunt came in to play up front whilst Jesse Kewley-Graham dropped to the substitutes bench to be replaced by Lewis Ochoa, making his first full start of the season.
In the first minutes of the game, Charlie Mitchell from the left played the ball into the feet of Harvey Killeen, who turned sharply but then shot over the bar. At the other end, Aylesbury's Jamie Jellis now cutting in from the right onto his left foot shot wide and then Xavi had to be quickly off his goal line to smother the ball at the feet of Sonny French. At the other end, one of the few times that we moved the ball with any fluidity culminated in Michael Buckley's shot being saved by the Aylesbury keeper Jack Sillitoe. His resultant throw out was intercepted by Charlie who played the ball through to Tom who drilled the ball over the crossbar.
After this relatively bright start to the game, play became very scrappy with little to report until Aylesbury took the lead mid way through the half. From way out on the left flank, Georges Ehui failed to block the weak cross from Tyriq Hunte and the ball found Lea Coulter completely unmarked some fifteen yards from goal and he had the time to pick his spot before emphatically driving the ball into the far corner of our net with Xavi left helpless. Coulter found the net again minutes later but thankfully the assistant referee's flag was raised for off side much to our relief.
At the other end we almost equalised as half time approached as Michael Buckley running onto a through ball rounded the keeper to the left of the goal. His driven cross took a deflection into the path of Charlie who completely missed his kick initially but recovered to drive the ball goalwards but it was blocked by a covering defender and the chance was gone. The game continued in a very mundane manner up to the interval with neither side looking like scoring whilst former Town defender Ryan Kinnane alongside Alex Collard at the heart of the Aylesbury defence had little trouble in defending the incessant long balls that we were playing in the direction of our lone striker Tom Hunt who despite all his efforts saw very little of the ball.
We were forced into a substitution at the interval with Michael Buckley unable to resume and his place was taken by Chris Mills.
In the opening period of the half we enjoyed the greater amount of possession but it was Aylesbury who looked the more likely side to score and Calum Duffy did very well to block Jellis's effort as he cut in from the right. Calum again came to our rescue minutes later when another attack down the right saw the ball reach
Hunte unmarked at the far post but a terrific block tackle by Calum averted the danger. From the resultant corner, the ball bobbled around in our goal area before it was hacked to safety.
We were forced into a second substitution when Kyle Watson who had been limping almost throughout the game limped off to be replaced by Karl Stevenson with Georges moving to mid field and Chris Mills dropping back to full back. We made our third and final substitution on the hour mark with Ricky Pither replacing Tom up front.
Much to our disappointment we seemed unable to build any attacks through mid field and our long balls forward had as little effect as they did in the first half.
As we pushed forward in our efforts to obtain an equaliser so gaps appeared at the back and Jellis right through with only Xavi to beat dragged his shot wide of the far post. From an almost identical position, French did the same and then Coulter normally so sure in front of goal missed a great opportunity to seal the game for the home side. In the final minutes, Calum moved up front to add some weight to our front line but had little effect and the final whistle came to signal the end of a very disappointing performance overall, a game in which the Aylesbury keeper was not called upon to make a save of any significance at all.
Side: Xavi Comas, Georges Ehui, Kyle Watson, Michael Buckley (c), Calum Duffy, Oliver Duffy, Glen Yala, Lewis Ochoa, Tom Hunt, Harvey Killeen and Charlie Mitchell. Subsitutes used: Chris Mills for Buckley (46), Karl Stevenson for Watson (57) and Ricky Pither for Hunt (60). Unused substitutes Jesse Kewley-Graham and Lamar Simpson.