Harrow Borough3 East Thurrock United 1
Two new faces injected some new life into Harrow’s season. The second half performances of wide-man Chet Johnson and debutant striker Steve Ferguson, newly signed from Tooting & Mitcham, were the catalysts for some vibrant attacking play and Harrow’s first league win since 21 January.
There were some changes after the awful evening against Concord last Tuesday. Out went Lee Wootton, Aryantaj Tajbakhsh and Jon-Jo Bates, with Rob Wolleaston, Danny Buckle and Johnson coming in to replace them. Straight from the kick-off Borough looked to have more purpose, and they were in front inside a minute. Michael Barima sent Tristan Toney in on goal, but he delayed his shot and allowed a defender to block for a corner. Johnson’s far post delivery was nodded across goal, and although Keith slammed the ball to clear it, Danny Leech got his foot in the way and it flew into the net.
Johnson, looking very lively, had a shot blocked, before bringing down a Toney cross and shooting wide. But the visitors levelled after 18 minutes. Ruel got down the left, Rickelle Christian slipping as he attempted to track back. His cross dipped over Jack Bonham and went into the goal. Bonham saved a shot from the same player, before a decent Harrow build-up ended with Barima’s shot blocked and Buckle’s follow up deflected wide. Buckle climbed highest to meet the resulting corner from Johnson but saw his header saved by Wray. Gilbey fired wide for the Rocks before a ‘route one’ attack nearly paid off, Bonham’s long free-kick nodded on by Wayne Walters for Buckle to shoot, his effort saved by Wray’s legs.
Into the second half, Johnson fired over the bar after cutting in from the left. Collins shot across goal for Thurrock before Ferguson came on after 61 minutes for a misfiring Toney. It took only two minutes for him to have a positive effect. Johnson’s corner was cleared to the right, where Buckle chased it down and played the ball infield to Ferguson. His fine cross was swept past Wray’s right-hand by Leech, for his second goal of the day.
Ferguson’s intelligent movement brought a new dimension to Harrow’s play. Johnson’s shot was saved, and a Lee Wootton drive was blocked after a Johnson corner was half-cleared. Barima headed wide from a Johnson cross, and Ferguson chased a ball that looked like it was going out, turning it into an effort that Wray had to save with his feet. Johnson then made a mazy run ending with a shot that Wray tipped over. Leech headed the resulting Johnson corner across the goal.
After 88 minutes, Harrow sealed the win with a third goal. A clever Ferguson run created a space for Barima to surge up the right. His cross was intended for Wolleaston in the middle, but Peddie got to the ball first. However, his intended clearance soared over Wray, hitting the post. But the ball rebounded out, hit the unfortunate Wray, and went into the goal.
Bonham saved a late Gilbey shot to ensure that there was no nail-biting at the death.
Harrow continue an important week with a trip to Margate on Tuesday and another home game next Saturday against Metropolitan Police