Although Saturdays Kent Invicta League game on paper would have seemed straightforward to most observers. It proved to be otherwise as Lewisham proved to be a tough nut to crack.
Local rivalries between teams irrelevant of their form can raise their respective games and bring out their battling qualities. this game proved no exception. On to the action.
Firstly, both MVP and Lewisham Boroughs players observed the minutes silence impeccably.
In the first few minutes of the game both teams had some possession of the ball and really nullified each other out, MVP had the lions share in this period but we didnt threaten the home goal until the quarter hour mark when a good move down the left involving Chris Mcdermott and Stephen Munn led to Munn getting round the back of his full back and sending a low cross into the box which went just behind Dominic Elmes and was cleared to safety. MVP now had a hold on the game and shortly afterwards debutant Mcdermott done some fine hold up play to lay off James Knight who sent in a lovely cross into the Lewisham box again this was scrambled away by the Borough rearguard. We continued to pepper the Lewisham goal with two good efforts by Mcdermott one a header over by an excellent Gary Phillimore cross. the second, a shot over the bar after good work by Ted Keen.
Lewisham forged their only real chance in this period when Beckford who was Boroughs best player on the day., cut inside Munn and hit a right foot shot which sailed past the right hand post of the MVP goal.
Our best chance of the half was to come after this when Knight sent another good ball into the box. And, at the far post Elmes met the ball with a left foot volley as the ball curled it looked destined to go in but just went past the left hand post. wonderful effort deserved more really.
our last chance of the half came when Philimore sent another cross into the box and this time Mcdermott flashed a right foot volley wide. Our referee shortly afterwards blew the half time whistle and the game remained goalless.
For all our endeavour we still hadn’t managed to find the net but possession wise and football wise on what was a tricky surface MVP were dominating proceedings.
MVP continued in the same vein in the second half with some good probing play and again it was Mcdermott with more excellent hold up play who teed up Keen who hit a stinging shot which deflected off a defender for a corner. This elusive goal looked to be coming soon.
it was then that MVP made their first change of the afternoon when the hard working Knight was replaced by the pacey Adrian Brown. This gave us an extra dimension going forward with the additional pace.
Lewisham then got a red card when their no 8 Douglas was sent off by the ref it seemed a routine booking but Douglas further remonstrated with the official this assuming to everyone led to his dismissal.
We continued to push forward in the rainy/blustery conditions and this time Keen drove over the bar following some battling work by Darren Shelton who literally ran through three opponents to get the ball to Keen.
Further chances fell to Shelton with a looping shot that Boroughs keeper Cox gathered, Brown, who after a deep cross by Munn drove over the crossbar from a difficult angle. Keen with his tireless running forcing an excellent save from their keeper. Then, MVP finally got their reward when Brown picked the ball up in midfield and drove towards Boroughs goal, He layed the ball into the path of Mcdermott who held the ball allowing Brown to speed past him. Mcdermott guided the ball back into Browns path and he cooly finished with the outside of his right foot. 1-0 to MVP. Another change by us Shelton off Thomas Mayfield on.
Further pressure following this led to more chances as MVP looked to extend their lead. Keen flashed a header wide, a defelcted Mcdermott shot that just went over the bar. Gary McCarthy up from centre half at a set piece found the ball at his feet and hit a scorcher which Cox parried away well to safety. Brown, this time on the left sent a dinked cross over the bar.
Although this period of the game was being dominated by MVP it was not without some scares the other end. Beckford was the main instigator, he forced an excellent save from Ben Ashton in the last couple of minutes after he created some space in the box. Which Ashton saved well with his legs. MVP coped well though with Borough and shackled their forwards well.
Mr Eacott sounded the final whistle and we came away with the spoils in a hard fought victory. We now need to continue this form as we entertain our tenants and rivals Bridon Ropes FC at the MVP stadium this bank holiday Monday 31st August 3pm KO in what is a must win game to continue our push towards the top of the table.
FINAL SCORE AT LADYWELL ARENA.
LEWISHAM BOROUGH 0 V MVP 1
COME ON THE MVP !!
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