An own-goal conceded by North Greenford on the stroke of half-time in controversial circumstances proved enough to secure this narrow win for Bedfont Sports and end United’s impressive recent three-match winning run.
Whilst, in a closely-contested and evenly-matched scrappy first period, Greenford had more of the play particularly during the opening exchanges, as the half progressed the hosts looked the more dangerous of the two teams in their opponents’ final third.
Early efforts by Blues striker Jamal Velinor and recent signing James Simmonds were followed by scares at the other end when keeper James Harry struggled to deal with an on-target Bradley Wilson strike, and Simmonds was in the right place to block another goal-bound Eagles shot on the goal-line.
With half-time approaching a period of United pressure saw Simmonds and George Moore come close to breaking the deadlock but as it happened, just when the period was moving into stoppage time, it was the hosts who succeeded in taking the lead, scoring what was to eventually prove the match-winning goal.
A free-kick awarded for a foul by Blues left-back Ryan Murphy on Wilson was taken quickly –although from the wrong spot – and was played into the six-yard box. With pressure from Eagles winger Leon Daley, the ball came off the post before striking Harry on the back and bobbling over the visitors’ goal-line.
Greenford made a lively, determined start to the second period and, within twenty minutes of the resumption, had seen another three efforts apiece from Simmonds and Moore come agonisingly close to levelling the score. On another day at least two of these would have found the back of the net!
The Blues continued to dominate play during the final stages of the contest but, in the end, were unable to break down the home defence. The Eagles hung on to secure all three points and move the club up to eighth place, leapfrogging Guildford City in the CCL Premier Division table.
NGU Team: James Harry, Anthony Rowlands (captain), Ryan Murphy, Charlie Conner, Josh Lewis-Evans. Matt Travis, George Moore, Daniel Vincent, Jamal Velinor, James Simmonds, Georgie Brown