Northwood U18s 0 Ashford Town U18s 1

Thursday 4th October 2012



FA Youth Cup
2nd qual. rd.

Chestnut Avenue, Northwood
Team line-up


1 Garry Malone
2 Issac Alawode
3 Jamie McKay
4 Ronnie Blagden
5 Alex Ishola
6 Eric Nyarko
7 Darius Murray
8 Alex Delasalle
9 Aaron Garrick
10 Michael Elderfield  
11 Matt Cooper  
12 Luke Fox(4)  
14 Tom Ellis (7)  
15 Sam Beecham (8)  
16 -  
17 -  

The Woods good run in the FA Youth Cup came to a disappointing end as they were beaten by a suspiciously offside goal against league rivals Ashford Town. Having already been beaten 3-0 at Short Lane in a League game earlier in the season, Northwood were always facing a tough task in this game where the winners would play away to another top side in Staines Town.

The first-half started fairly evenly though with the Woods defensive pairing of Alex Ishola and Eric Nyarko looking strong in front of regular reserve goalkeeper Garry Malone who made a good save from a Joe Lynch long-range effort, while Luke Wilson headed the rebound over the top. Northwood were not really getting forward for any threat up front and Darius Murray wasn’t making the usual inroads down the flank so it was no surprise that it Ashford who continued to shade the game but they rarely threatened either.

After 41 minutes a half-chance fell to Joel Large and Ishola blocked his effort but two minutes later a long-ball threaded down the left released Tom Bovington who appeared to be several yards offside to all but the assistant referee who kept his flag down. Bovington had no doubts though and raced into the box to finish coolly with a low shot across Malone and inside the far post.

The Woods had a chance to level almost immediately as Murray teed up Ronnie Blagden but he shot wide of the target and Ashford were then gifted a great chance to go 2-0 up before the break when Isaac Alawode was adjudged to have brought down Bovington with a mistimed tackle. Skipper Conor Molyneaux took the responsibility of the spot-kick but ballooned it high over the bar.

Despite being a goal behind, the Woods were not really showing any signs of urgency in the second-half and the game never really sparked either, though Michael Elderfield found himself through on goal after getting the run of the ball on 67 minutes but goalkeeper George Armstrong saved his effort comfortably.

Yet, just four minutes from time, Northwood seemed to have levelled when a corner was swung in from the left which saw Armstrong fail to reach the ball and it was knocked into an empty net. But the celebrations were cut short as the Referee had spotted an infringement somewhere in the box and gave a free-kick instead.

Neither side had been at their best but it was Ashford who went through to the final qualifier and the subsequent draw for the first round proper has also disappointingly pitted the next winners into an all non-League tie, against either Needham Market or Lowestoft Town.

REPORT by Alan Evans