North Greenford UnitedApologies for the delay in updates due to domestic commitments.  Firstly the 1st Team suffered a second successive defeat on the road, losing by four goals to two at Biggleswade Town.  Visits to Biggleswade have been problematic for the Tangerines, this being the third loss in as many seasons.  We are getting better though, losing 0-4 two seasons ago, 1-4 last time and 2-4 on this occasion!

No-one could fault the endeavour this time round but the main difference between the teams seemed to be that when Biggleswade had the ball, it wasn’t easy to dispossess them whereas Ashford, although producing some excellent moments, all too often squandered possession, twice with disastrous outcomes. 

The match was relatively even in the opening stages but Ashford were the architects of their own misfortune when Biggleswade went ahead before the 20 minute mark, following a poor clearance by Paul McCarthy.  It was match on though six minutes later when, in their best move of the match, Ashford equalised.  Ed Thomas galloped down the left flank and sent over a perfect ball for Mark Bitmead to hammer towards goal leaving Kofi Lockhart-Adams to glide home.  Kofi looked suspiciously offside but there was only a muted protest.

Sadly though Biggleswade regained the lead shortly before half-time when the ball eventually found the net after a whole series of ineffective half clearances.

Ashford continued to play with endeavour in the second period but their opponents always looked dangerous and Ashford’s propensity to give the ball away once again cost them.  Alex Duffy did well to retrieve a dangerous situation but from deep in his own half, a poor clearance gave the home side a throw in and before you could blink, it was 3-1 in their favour, and almost certainly game over.

Ashford’s cause was not helped when Ed Thomas had to be stretchered off, as he attempted a right wing cross with no-one near him.  It was hard initially to see what had happened but it seemed it was a shoulder injury and hopefully Ed will make a swift return.

Biggleswade then turned the screw on 90 minutes with a fourth goal but Ashford at least had the last word when Pietro Palladino, Ashford’s best player by a mile on the day, found himself at a very acute angle but a piece of deft skill enabled him to turn the ball into an unguarded net to make the final score 2-4.

On to the new week and tonight (Monday) the Suburban side are at home to Metropolitan Police in the Suburban League Challenge Shield.  Following that, on Tuesday, we entertain North Greenford United in the quarter-final of the Middlesex Senior Cup, with the winners drawn at home to Northwood or Hampton & Richmond in the semis.  Kick-off is 7.45 pm for both matches.

The Under-18 match away to Hayes & Yeading scheduled for Monday has been postponed, whilst the Ladies enjoyed a 2-1 victory over Brook House Ladies in the Middlesex Junior Cup.  The girls will now be away to either Enfield Town (3rds) or Queens Park Rangers Reserves in the Quarter Finals.