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AYLESBURY UNITED   Saturday 6th December 2014   NORTHWOOD FC

Evo-Stik League Southern Division One Central

  Aylesbury United 5  Northwood 3  

Waites 10, Putman 18,
Hatch 34, Blackett 38,
Grace 88

Murray 25, 85, Muir 35

Team line-up  

  Team line-up
1 Jack Sillitoe     1 Berkley Laurencin
2 Shane Wood     2 Omar Vassell (46m)
3 Jake Bewley     3 Andy Lomas
4 Jack Wood     4 Mark Burgess
5 Bill Morgan     5 Nick Turner
6 Greg Williams (83m)     6 Jordan Lawal
7 Steve Hatch     7 Joakim Ehui
8 Jesse Waites     8 Will Hudson (88m)
9 Jason Blackett     9 Niko Muir
10 Stacey Field (83m)     10 Michael Murray
11 Lewis Putman     11 Rob Hastings
Substitutes     Substitutes
12 Paul Edgeworth     12 Dave Lawrence (88m)
14 Shaun Owens (83m)     14 James Burgess (46m)
15 Lee Grace (83m)     15 George Nicholas
16 John Mulholland     16 -
17 Tony Joyce     17 -
      Referee: Gareth Viccars; Assistants: Karl Tribe & Mat Filipiak      
  REPORT by Alan Evans    PHOTOS by James Brown  




After a ten day break, the Woods were hoping to bounce back to form and improve their faltering position in the league table but a leaky defence led to another away defeat at the hands of an Aylesbury side impressive in attack.
With both Ismael Ehui and Perry Dicker missing out through suspension plus Nana Asamoah and Sam Byfield unavailable, it meant that Mark Burgess had only 13 fit players for the match while the Ducks gave a home debut to striker Lewis Putman, the Division’s leading scorer, snapped up from Hanwell Town.

The Woods had the early efforts on goal with goalkeeper Jack Sillitoe saving well from Joakim Ehui after he had got on the end of a Niko Muir cross. Then Michael Murray flicked a Will Hudson ball goalwards but it was straight at the keeper. But after just ten minutes, Hudson was left in a heap on the floor thirty yards out after what looked like a foul and play was allowed to continue with Jesse Waites firing past a stranded Berkley Laurencin to open the scoring with a soft goal.

It was a real blow and the defence never really recovered from that early setback in the first-half. Putman went close two minutes later, cutting in from the right but his shot only found the side-netting and then Laurencin was forced into a fine save to deny Jason Blackett. The pressure continued, though, and then Putman doubled the advantage when rifling an unstoppable left-foot shot into the top corner from 20 yards having been given too much space around the edge of the box.

Blackett then missed a great opportunity when bursting through on goal as his shot was tame and easily taken by Laurencin. Yet, the Woods showed that they were perfectly capable of scoring themselves when they were awarded a free-kick wide on the left and Murray hit an accurate skidding shot that beat Sillitoe at his near-post.

Northwood went in search of the equaliser and Muir went close twice in quick succession, firstly shooting just over after turning well onto a Hudson ball and then seeing the ‘keeper make a comfortable save from the next. But on 34 minutes, Aylesbury struck again out of nowhere when Steve Hatch drove a shot hard and low into the bottom corner with Laurencin again struggling to get anywhere near the ball.

Yet, within a minute, Murray played a neat ball through to Muir who made it two goals in two games since his return to the club with a crisp finish which again brought the Woods back into the contest. If they had managed to keep it to 3-2 until the break, that may have given them plenty of hope but on 38 minutes, Blackett rose high at a corner to plant a firm header past Laurencin and it restored the Ducks two-goal advantage once again.

James Burgess replaced an out-of-sorts Omar Vassell at right-back for the second-half and the Woods set about attempting to recover their difficult position.

A clever flick from Murray gave Ehui the first chance of the half but his effort was saved low down by Sillitoe and Murray himself shot just wide soon after. Decisions continued to go against the Woods on the pitch as Greg Williams somehow escaped a booking for a bad tackle on Jordan Lawal but then saw Hudson yellow-carded a few minutes later for something that looked more moderate.

After 61 minutes, the Woods went very close to pulling a goal back as Murray got on the end of a Hudson cross and shot past the ‘keeper only for Shane Wood to clear off the line.

There were a couple of penalty appeals that fell on deaf ears as Northwood continued to press while Ehui shot wide from another good position as time began to run out for the Woods. Then, after 86 minutes, another free-kick was awarded, this time on the right edge of the box and Murray showed his prowess from a dead-ball once again by beating Sillitoe with another skidding shot that bounced up and over the diving ‘keeper.

Aylesbury had hardly had a look-in apart from defending solidly up until now but having conceded a third goal, suddenly they forged forward again and two minutes later, a cross from the left was met at the near-post by a Lee Grace flick and it was 5-3 and suddenly all over. It is now two months since the Woods only away win the league and with just that one win in ten away games, they will need to improve to avoid the drop towards the bottom of the table.