The Menace are fleet of foot as they down United
Home comforts help the Menace ease to a 3-0 win versus Fleetdown United.
Town made three changes to the team that lost away to Hawkinge Town the previous Saturday. Lewis McIntyre and Adam Tarrant returned to the side as full backs, and Drew Newton was recalled to the team as a holding midfielder. Adrian Butler and Adam Toubal dropped out due to injury, and Hady Traore started a three-match suspension for his indiscretion in the last game.
Peckham started the brighter team in the first half carving out a couple of half chances, and it didn’t take long for this initial pressure to be rewarded. A corner was cleared, but only to the edge of the box where Herve Mbongue was able to take a touch and then pick his spot through a crowd of players and into the far left corner of the goal. The goal galvanised Fleetdown United who managed a sustained period of pressure, but were unable to really test McArdle in goal, as Town’s defensive line held firm.
It was the home side though that could have extended their lead after 20 minutes, when Cani burst into the box. The forward appeared to be clipped by the ‘keeper, but he stayed on his feet, and the ball was pushed too far wide to get a shot in. Fleetdown were able to escape with a corner, or so everyone thought other than the assistant referee, who inexplicably signalled for a goal kick! The Menace didn’t have to wait long for their second goal, as Town’s French forward scored a fantastic solo goal – his sixth in seven games. The ball was played through to Mbongue, his first touch was well weighted and took him into the box, and as the ‘keeper advanced he coolly stroked the ball back across the goal and into the back of the net.
The second half was a lively affair as Peckham strove to secure the three points, but were unusually wasteful in front of goal. Cani could have had a hat-trick on another day, but his finishing was not up to his usual standard. Dance and Meta also had chances, but failed to test the visiting ‘keeper, including a last ditch goal line challenge that prevented Dance completing a tap-in. Peckham were handed a chance to finally seal the game after 70 minutes when a late tackle brought down Mbongue when through on goal. He stepped up to seal his hat-trick, but blasted his shot against the bar, and then took a touch from the rebound leading to an indirect free-kick to Fleetdown United.
The Menace were struggling to put the game to bed, and were thankful to McArdle for pulling off a point-blank save following a sliced clearance to preserve the team’s clean sheet. The team and supporters were able to finally breathe easily when substitute Youssef Bouimane secured all three points in the 90th minute. Confusion between the visiting goalkeeper and defender meant the ball fell loose, and Bouimane rolled the ball into the empty net. The final whistle arrived shortly after, and players and supporters were able to celebrate together at the Dulwich Park end of the ground.
Head Coach, Mary Phillip, said “It was a decent team performance, but we just lacked that clinical edge to make it more comfortable. Overall, we are happy to be back to winning ways [following last week’s loss at Hawkinge Town]”. Next up for the Menace are the league leaders, as they travel to Staplehurst Monarchs looking to close the gap to the top of the table. You can keep up with all the Menace news on Twitter and Instragram by following @PeckhamTownFC. Finally, we would like to say a big thank-you to David Bauckham for visiting the Menace Arena this Saturday. His photos accompany the match report, and a selection will feature in the March edition of When Saturday Comes.
Peckham Town (4-4-2): Larry McArdle; Lewis McIntyre, Alfie Ball, Hiram Laud - Anderson, Adam Tarrant; Kevin Dance, Drew Newton, Lukman Mojeed (c), Nicky Meta; Herve Mbongue, Kladji Cani. Subs: Youssef Bouimane (on for Dance) and Benson Aderibigbe (on for Tarrant)
Fleetdown United: Daniel Assender, Connor Chapman, Matt Dudley, Thomas East, Kevin Fitzpatrick, Levi Gold, Kyle Gurney, Wesley Jno-Baptiste, Caiden Lomas, Daniel Pinder. Subs: Harry Bell, Tom Bell and Alfie Clarke
Officials: Steven Martin, Daniel Wyatt and Liberatore Di Cesare