NORTHWOOD FC   Saturday 9th November 2013   CHALFONT ST PETER

Calor Southern League Central Division

  Northwood 2 Chalfont St Peter 0   

Oliyide 45+3, Brown 88


Team line-up  

  Team line-up
1 Rob Blackburne     1 Michael Power-Simpson
2 James Duncan     2 Kevin Ayodele
3 Oliver Sprague     3 R Marsh-Brown (90m)
4 Mark Burgess     4 Gareth Paxton
5 Steve Brown     5 Graeme Hedley
6 James Burgess     6 Alex Paine
7 Joakim Ehui     7 Remmel Clarke
8 Craig White     8 Davis Haule (67m)
9 Niko Muir     9 Scott Fitzgerald (67m)
10 Dave Lawrence     10 Terrell Lewis
11 Karl Oliyide (76m)     11 Romaine Walker
Substitutes     Substitutes
12 Alex Nolan     12 Evandro Delgado (67m)
14 Koran Goodson     14 Danilson Vicente (67m)
15 Aaron McLeish (76m)     15 Tayo Cooker (90m)
16 -     16 Luke Brook-Smith
17 Jake Knight     17 Chris Christie
      Referee: Aji Ajibola; Assistants: A Anastasiou & Oscar Ayyadi      
  REPORT by Alan Evans     PHOTOS by James Brown  

Northwood’s unbeaten run in the league is now at seven matches, stretching back to the beginning of October, as a goal towards the end of each half proved enough to see off their latest challenge. The experienced Rob Blackburne became the Woods sixth goalkeeper of the season, while the absence of right-back Ramil Sheriff meant a debut for James Duncan and James Burgess came in for the suspended George Nicholas as the average age of the starting line-up was given an upward curve.

Chalfont St Peter, who fielded four ex-Northwood players in their own starting eleven, were looking for their fourth successive away win and began with plenty of confidence with Remmel Clarke making inroads down the right and one good cross had former Woods favourite Scott Fitzgerald stretching but unable to get a shot on target.

Blackburne was brought into action but dealt comfortably with a snapshot from Terrell Lewis on four minutes and the Woods were soon attacking themselves with Karl Oliyide feeding Dave Lawrence whose near-post strike was well-saved by Michael Power-Simpson.

A well-flighted ball from Oliver Sprague found in-form striker Niko Muir but his header lacked the power to beat the goalkeeper and then the Saints went close with Gareth Paxton steering Romaine Walker’s free-kick wide. With half-time looming, Fitzgerald went close for Chalfont with a well-struck shot flashing just wide of the post. Almost immediately a long-ball saw Muir beat the onrushing keeper to knock it over him and Oliyide raced through to bundle the ball home under pressure.

The Woods seemed happy to sit back on their lead after the break with chances few and far between. Joakim Ehui lashed an inviting ball across the face of goal which no-one could get a touch to and then Walker did a similar job at the other end but Sprague cleared away the danger.

The Saints made changes replacing the old legs of Fitzgerald and Davis Haule with Danilson Vicente and Evandro Delgado but it had little effect. Ehui fired one effort well over and then another a lot closer but still above the target after Oliyide had been replaced by Aaron McLeish, playing against his previous club. Time was running out for Chalfont and they finally had a go at finding an equaliser. Vicente flicked a header over the top on 80 minutes, Lewis saw his header comfortably taken by Blackburne and then a jinking run from Delgado ended with a shot which flew wide.

Having survived that brief flurry, the Woods suddenly killed the game with a second goal two minutes before the end of normal time as Steve Brown rose unchallenged to head home a pinpoint Lawrence corner. Again the Saints rallied in stoppage-time but had a headed “goal” ruled out for a foul on the keeper, who then had to make a late save from Walker to maintain his debut clean sheet.

It was far from a vintage performance but another three welcome points maintains Northwood’s position in sixth place, and now they move on to a difficult week on the road with trips to Egham Town and Rugby Town.