Ferdi on fire as firsts see off Colliers
By Gary Brigden
A double from Matt Ferdinando helped the first team to a 2-0 win over Colliers Wood Utd on Friday night.
Colliers started slightly the better of the two sides, and almost created an opening inside three minutes, a ball forward by us was well swept up by keeper Sean Fallon and his huge clearance almost release Mario Embalo, but he was well defended, eventually, by Aaron Bogle.
Neat play involving Daryl Cooper-Smith, Matt Tanton and Matt Ferdinando ended with a Ferdinando cross being diverted away from the approaching Matt Auletta by Fallon.
We gradually started to take control of the game, but were restricted to long range efforts from Malachi Thomas and Ferdinando, which failed to trouble Fallon, but we did take the lead on 18 minutes.
A Ferdinando corner on the Rovers left saw Andrew White and Fallon jump for the ball, and somehow the keeper missed his punch and the ball floated into the Colliers net to give Rovers a 1-0 lead.
Twenty five minutes in and Matt Farrell did well to release Thomas on the left, he cut inside and found Auletta but his goalbound effort was blocked by former SCR man Charlie Emery. From the Ferdinando corner chaos ensued in the Colliers defence, with the end result of three players in the back of the net, and Will Boye hooking the ball clear.
Thomas then linked up well with Farrell but saw his shot deflected behind for another corner, but this time Ferdinandos delivery came to nothing.
Colliers were proving dangerous with on the break, but our defence was in solid form, and anything that got through them was comfortably gathered by Michael Eacott.
Cooper-Smith was denied by Fallon on 37 minutes when left one-on-one with the keeper. Colliers went close to levelling on 41 minutes when Embalo took on White and delivered a dangerous low cross, which was well defended by Aaron Bogle, but Colliers continued to press and in the end we were able to hook clear.
Daniel Hughes then launched a ball forward which was only partially cleared by White, dropping to Embalo who saw his shot blocked by Bogle, and in stoppage time Eacott did well to claim an in-swinging Colliers corner, under some pressure. Half time came with us holding a 1-0 lead.
Early in the second half Theo Woodhouse linked up with Tate Greenaway but his effort curled wide of the left hand post. On 53 minutes, decent deliveries from both White and Auletta almost created chances for Cooper-Smith, but Boye defended well and the danger passed.
Boye went into the book for a poor challenge on White, and from the free kick Rixon-Nicholls headed back across the face of goal, but Fallon did well to clear under pressure from both Ferdinando and Davies.
56 minutes saw Colliers make their first change replacing Kieran Russell with Elijah Ogunseye. Auletta found Cooper-Smith, but he was stopped in his tracks by Jake Hill, and the ball cleared. Tanton and Rixon-Nicholls then combined to set up Cooper-Smith who saw his shot blocked, and from the follow up Auletta's effort was blocked by Hill.
It was 2-0 on 64 minutes, neat build up play in the middle of the park saw the ball end up with Ferdinando and his curled effort nestled nicely in the top corner, to give Rovers some breathing space.
66 minutes saw neat link up between Tyrone Newton and Hughes set up Embalo who despite a tidy finish was caught just offside. A minute later and Colliers replaced the lively Greenaway with William Efambe.
We made our first change on 73 minutes introducing Craig Nelson for the excellent Ferdinando. Colliers made their final change two minutes later with Emery replaced by Mohammed Mohammed.
We were almost masters of our own downfall on 78 minutes, when Farrell dallied on the ball and gifted possession to Woodhouse, he was blocked initially by Bogle, and then the ball went out for a corner. From the delivery, Nelson blocked at the near post for another corner.
81 minutes saw Rixon-Nicholls replaced by Danny Fernandez. Carlos Talbot blocked superbly from a Farrell shot and on 82 minutes we made our final change replacing Thomas with Gus Lukuni.
Efambe flashed an effort wide of our right hand post in injury time, and the full time went to signal another home win, and a clean sheet.