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Saturday 31st January 1976

Two injuries, a suspension and a marriage meant that Northwood were forced to field an unfamiliar side in this vital Middlesex League clash on Saturday. They never really got a rhythm going on the confined Viking pitch, and in the end went down tamely to two second half goals.

This now leaves them out in the cold in the Middlesex League title race, after it looked at one stage as if they might run away with it. Their troubles began early on Saturday when the ground was declared fit for play by the referee, Mr Cole. Both managers wanted the game called off, but Mr Cole was adamant, and so Northwood kicked off up the hill in a gloomy frame of mind.

They cheered up, though, after a drab and goal-less first half in which they looked as likely, or unlikely, to score as their opponents. The game was a very unsatisfying affair, with neither side looking as if they had the players to break out of each other’s midfield grip.

All along, it looked as if they only way the deadlock would be broken would be through a defensive error, and sure enough, that was how Viking took the lead. A long ball caught the Northwood defenders napping, and as Saunders moved to intercept he lost his footing, and allowed Butler to shoot home the opener.

This goal knocked the heart out of the Northwood side, and only the dogged running of Ashley up front displayed any signs of life.

Not surprisingly, Viking added another, ten minutes before the end, when a quick break left the Woods defence badly exposed, and Boyle netted number two.

Northwood:  Russell, Dibbens, Hammond, Gould, Saunders, Tidd, Roberts, Ashley, McGowan, Clifford, Pearce, sub. Harman.