With Aylesbury topping the table and Bedford on the ascendancy, this was always destined to be a close fought battle. Both teams had their chances, but the defences held firm and the points were shared, with neutrals probably seeing it a fair result.
With Eagles supporters a sizeable chunk of the 181 in attendance, both sets of fans exercised their vocal chords as the match got underway. The first realistic chance of this reasonable even game went the way of the Ducks as Mark Riddick headed across goal with Jamie Greygoose stranded in the Bedford goal, but the player who latched on to it missed his opportunity.
Minutes later Bedford had their first chance as Rob Sinclair passed wide to Dan Walker who came inside and shot, but the effort was easily gathered by Aylesbury's Jack Hopwood.
Midway through the half Bedford had several chances that came to nothing, first Rene Howe after winning a header put in a low pass to Craig Mackail-Smith, who under pressure from the defence, put the ball over. Then Walker passed to Mackail-Smith who dummied the ball to Drew Richardson whose shot went wide, taking a deflection on the way. The resulting corner went to Walker whose shot cleared the bar.
Half an hour in it was again the home sides chance with a corner, but Jamie Rudd could only put the ball over the bar. Two further corners for the Ducks came to nothing. Then came a chance for Bedford's Howe, but his shot was defended.
Half Time came and went, but the second half continued as the first ended, with play reasonably even, with the visitors just edging the chances. Aylesbury with three players signed that day and sitting on the bench, decided to give them an airing and made their three changes in a ten minute period. With some fifteen minutes remaining Bedford also rang the changes, Danny Setchell replacing Sinclair and Matt Sparrow, back from his three match suspension coming on for Howe.
More corners came to Bedford, first Hopwood was forced to tip the ball over the bar, and then that resulting corner saw Walker launch a pile driver that was blocked before the ball went off for a goal kick. More chances came and went for the visitors, before Aylesbury's Harry Jones missed a sitter, putting it over the bar.
with three minutes of added time, the Eagles made their final change, with Connor Tomlinson replacing Mackail-Smith with a couple of minutes of play remaining. Against Yaxley on Saturday that was plenty of time to get the winner for the young forward, but this time there was no such opportunity and as the referee blew the final whistle, both sides would rue their missed chances.
The online matchday program can be found here.
Photos from the match courtesy of Aylesbury United can be found here.