AYLESBURY UNITED   Saturday 5th April 2014   NORTHWOOD FC

Calor Southern League Central Division

  Aylesbury United 0  Northwood 0  


Team line-up  

  Team line-up
1 Jack Sillitoe     1 Berkley Laurencin
2 Shane Wood     2 James Duncan (85m)
3 Keith Williams     3 Oliver Sprague
4 Jack Wood     4 Mark Burgess
5 Bill Morgan     5 James Burgess
6 Liam Smith (86m)     6 Craig White
7 Steve Hatch     7 Joakim Ehui
8 Greg Williams     8 George Nicholas
9 Joey Acheampong     9 Niko Muir
10 Stacey Field     10 Dave Lawrence (45m)
11 Paul Edgeworth     11 Karl Oliyide
Substitutes     Substitutes
12 Lee Grace     12 Tommy Walsh (85m)
14 Danny Jones     14 Giles Townsend
15 Ben Baines (86m)     15 Jerome Federico (45m)
16 Liam Murphy     16 Alan Bidt-Lecadour
17 Tony Joyce     17 -
      Referee: G Viccars  Assistants: A Rayment & M Stevens      
  REPORT by Alan Evans    Photos by James Brown  




The Woods continued their unbeaten away league record for 2014 with a goalless draw on a dry and bumpy pitch that was always going to make their particular brand of passing football difficult. Northwood were without suspended centre-back Steve Brown for the game and with manager Mark Burgess opting to drag twin brother James back from midfield to fill the gap, it gave his side a distinct disadvantage in height against a tall Aylesbury United forward-line.

The home side had been out of form in recent weeks, but they started well with Jack Wood flicking on a Keith Williams free-kick with a header that was not far wide, and then full-back Williams drove a shot from distance which was always rising and going over. Steve Hatch latched onto a loose ball in the box after seven minutes to bring Berkley Laurencin into action for the first time but the Woods goalkeeper was down quickly to save his low strike. Ten minutes later Liam Smyth found top scorer Stacey Field with a good ball but the striker hit a poor shot that Laurencin saved comfortably.

It had taken the best part of twenty minutes for Northwood to start threatening the Ducks defence when Joakim Ehui attached with pace down the right and cut the ball back to Dave Lawrence. He probably should have gone for goal but instead laid it off to Niko Muir, whose shot was blocked. Karl Oliyide was onto the loose ball and turned inside the box but lost his footing and the danger was cleared.

Lawrence was denied a great chance by an excellent interception by Shane Wood while Muir did well with a chest down from a free-kick but then chipped his shot straight into the grateful arms of goalkeeper Jack Sillitoe. A few minutes later, Sillitoe made a hash of an attempted clearance of a long ball, playing it straight to Ehui 30 yards out but he was relieved when he struck a shot that was always going wide of the empty goal.

The Woods lost Lawrence to a heel injury just before the break with Jerome Federico replacing him but, despite the extra pace that introduced, there was a slower start to the second half. It took fifteen minutes to warm-up before some good work from Muir set up George Nicholas for a strike which was wayward, but Northwood had their best chance to score after 66 minutes. Federico dummied a through-ball which allowed Oliyide to get into the box and ahead of his marker but though he beat Sillitoe with his shot, he also lifted the ball just over the crossbar.

The game was flowing more now, and Hatch was unlucky with a shot across the face of goal that he steered wide of the far post before Federico went close with a volley that was only just over the top. Field set up Smyth for a chance for the home side but he shot weakly at Laurencin who never really looked like being beaten and claimed high balls all afternoon.

At the other end James Duncan played a neat ball into Muir who made room for a crisp shot that flew just wide of the upright with the goalkeeper motionless. But the match petered out from there and the draw was a fair result on the day. With the Woods now ten points adrift of fifth place, the play-offs look out of reach for the side but there are still fifteen points to play for and the next is the penultimate home match when Marlow visit Chestnut Avenue for next Saturday’s club Community Day.