AFC Stoneham 2-0 Town
By Jack Smith
Two quick goals just before half-time condemned Romsey Town to their second defeat in three days against an in-form AFC Stoneham at the Elliotts Arena
Town welcomed-back Jordan Chalk into the side, back after a lengthy break from the game due to injury, and despite a lack of match practice, it was he and his fellow forwards that looked lively in the first 20 minutes of the game, winning a number of corners and free-kicks but the steeliness of the home side’s defence put pay to any chance of Town seizing any initiative. Stoneham’s attack saw a similar resolve in Town’s defence early on, and would have been familiar with Lukas McCartney, making his debut for Romsey after signing from Stoneham earlier in the week.
As the game wore on, chances were becoming less frequent and it seemed as if both sides would go into the break level, but with five minutes before half-time, the home side took the lead through a fabulously-taken free-kick by Chris Manning which curled around the wall and beyond the despairing gloves of Amadeusz Skrzyniarz.
A shell-shocked Romsey struggled to get a grip on the remaining minutes and as stoppage-time loomed, a fine move stretched their back-line which gave Terry New a chance to make it 2-0, which he duly did.
With a two-goal-cushion, Stoneham began to sit on their lead with Town’s defence giving them few chances to add to their goal-tally. The pace of Chalk – who performed admirably after being briefly knocked-out after a heavy foul midway through the first-half - and Mark Irvine as well as smart hold-up play from captain Dan Fox gave Romsey some rejuvenation in attack but as every ball bounced away from them and saw Stoneham’s defence keep them at bay, it became apparent that it was not to be their day.
- Fox (C)
- Jake Graham
- Josh Graham