NORTHWOOD FC   Saturday 13th January 2018   ARLESEY TOWN FC

Evo-Stik League South, East

  Northwood 3  Arlesey Town 1  

Newman 28, Williams 31, 61

Andrews 56

Team line-up  
  Team line-up
1 Xavi Comas     1 Lewis Elsom
2 Wilson Chingoka     2 Ryan Lamond
3 Tom Gilbey     3 Dammy Nickels-Benson (46m)
4 David Taylor     4 Elias Moses © (70m)
5 Matt Hall     5 Joe Steele
6 Lewis Hobbs     6 Henry Musay
7 Meshach Williams (69m)     7 Kai Stonnell
8 Tyler Hatherly ©     8 Rafe Goodman
9 Jermaine Osei (53m)     9 Nathanial Fowler (90m)
10 Dernell Wynter     10 Taz Andrews
11 Harry Newman (76m)     11 Bill Plumpton
Substitutes     Substitutes
12 Isaac Olorunfemi (53m)     12 Luke Abraham (46m)
14 Romelle Alomenu     14 Ash Farooqui
15 Paolo Montella (69m)     15 John Bailey (90m)
16 Nebay Haile (76m)     16 Charlie Scott (70m)
17 Femi Azeez     17 Dion Gibbs
      Referee: Jack Bloxham; Assistants: Sam Gregory & Paul Andrews      
  REPORT by Robin Piper   PHOTOS by James Brown  




Northwood put a turbulent few days behind them following the shock resignation of manager Simon Lane by registering a comfortable win over bottom team Arlesey to put a smile back on the face of the Woods faithful.

Coach Jake Heracleous took charge of the Northwood team and he brought his protégé Meshach Williams back into the fold to start on the right flank, while St Albans City loanee Dernell Wynter partnered Jermaine Osei in attack following the midweek departure of Mahlondo Martin to Chalfont St Peter.

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Any fears of Northwood players feeling sorry for themselves were quickly dispelled as they began the game in positive fashion with their midfield, marshalled by Tyler Hatherly and Wilson Chingoka, taking control. Chingoka’s cross-field ball picked out Williams whose cross found the head of Harry Newman but his effort  was blocked while Osei latched onto a under-hit back-pass to round keeper Lewis Elsom but his shot from a tight angle cannoned off the upright.

Woods’ dominance continued, with Arlesey unable to get any sort of foothold on proceedings and Wynter had a couple of efforts which failed to seriously trouble the visitors’ goal before Osei tried his luck from distance but was wide of the target. Newman was enjoying plenty of space down the visitor’s left flank and he fed Hatherly, who got to the by-line and set up Williams, whose close-range shot was blocked before a another slick Northwood move culminated in Chingoka seeing his chip from the edge of the box land on the crossbar.

However, Northwood finally broke the deadlock on 27 minutes as Newman gave Elsom no chance with a fierce shot after Arlesey had failed to clear their lines, for the Woods’ winger’s fourth goal of the season. And Newman was in the thick of it again as he sent over a teasing cross which just evaded the on-rushing Osei and Wynter.

But Woods didn’t have to wait long to increase their lead as a sweeping move involving Chingoka and Wynter led to Williams applying the finish on 32 minutes to mark his return with a first goal since September. Northwood pressed for a third goal before the break, keeper Elsom dealing comfortably with a shot from Osei before Ryan Lamond prevented Williams adding to his tally with a goal-line clearance.

Normal business was resumed after the break as Woods maintained the pressure on an overworked Arlesey defence, Wynter shooting over when well placed. Northwood were forced into a change on change on 53 minutes as Osei began to feel his recently damaged hamstring and made way for Isaac Olurunfemi, Williams moving up front to partner Wynter.

As  Woods looked to regain their rhythm, Arlesey began to produce some cohesive play as Nathanial Fowler had a shot blocked before Rafe Goodman sent an effort narrowly over the bar following a corner. And the visitors were rewarded for the endeavour as they reduced the arrears with 56 minutes on the clock, Taz Andrews finishing from close range after Northwood keeper Xavi Comas had failed to gather Kai Stonnell’s cross-shot.

However, Arlesey’s  joy was short-lived as Woods regained their two-goal advantage in rather fortuitous circumstances,  Elsom’s attempted clearance cannoning off Williams and into the unguarded net for the latter’s second goal of the afternoon on 61 minutes.

Arlesey to their credit refused to throw in the towel and Goodman tried his luck with a smart half-volley from distance but Comas was on hand to make a comfortable save while at the other end Elsom turned away David Taylor’s header.

Northwood made a couple of substitutions with Williams and Newman making way for Paolo Montella and Nebay Haile respectively, Hatherly maintaining the pressure with a strong run and shot that was saved by Elsom. Montella, Chingoka and Olurunfemi all went close to extending Northwood’s lead as the visitors remained encamped in their own half. But following a rare foray into Northwood territory, Comas was on hand to save bravely at the feet of Fowler.

However, Woods were unable to add to their tally with Wynter’s curling effort which drifted past the far post the last moment of note on a highly satisfactory afternoon for Northwood.