Written by 
Rate this item
(0 votes)

Saints bright start undone by the Kings in a seven minute horror show.

Saturday, 07 April 2018 19:44

SOUTHERN LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION

Kings Langley       4         St Neots Town      3       

St Neots produced a shoddy first half performance to lose to Kings Langley for the first time.   It was a match of wildly fluctuating fortunes because apart from a seven minutes spell in that first half when the St Neots defence seemed to be overrun each time Kings went forward, the visitors’ looked comfortably in control and always enjoyed the larger share of possession.   Having taken an early lead, St Neots looked to be in cruise control but by the break they were trailing 4-1 with a mountain to climb in the second half.   They did restore some pride by winning thesecond period 2-0 but the record books will record an unexpected defeat against a side that looked to have been doomed to relegation if the normal end-of- season arrangements were in place.   It was the first time since February 2017 that St Neots had conceded four goals in an away league match.   In the middle of a testing spell of three games in five days, Manager Matt Clements rang the team changes brining in Stefan Broccoli for Dion Sembie-Ferris and Scott Sinclair for Tom Wood with his squad still ravaged by injury and illness.

An early goal seemed to set St Neots on the right path, for after four minutes skipper Luke Knight broke up an attack in midfield to find Tom Meechan with a ball to his feet.  The striker laid the ball off perfectly in the path of Knight who continued his run to fire low past Martin Bennett.   It was the skipper’s first goal since December.   As St Neots continued to prosper the home keeper had to make two good saves to deny Meechan and Nabil Shariff but after 18 minutes the match took a difference turn as Kings levelled with their first significant shot of the match.   The goal was set up by Louie Collier who ran diagonally through the St Neots defence before turning to cross for Mitchell Weiss to fire wide of Iron.   A minute later a Collier shot beat the keeper but rebounded from the foot of a goalpost and then in a three minutes spell the home side added two further goals with the St Neots defence looking shell shocked.   First after 22 minutes Mitchell Weiss claimed his second goal of the match with a looping shot that evaded the desperate attempts of defender and goalkeeper to reach and then a long clearance with the wide by Bennett caught the St Neots defence by surprise and a mis-timed back header by Liam McDevitt crept in the at far post for 3-1 to the home side.   St Neots did offer one shot in return as a Meechan effort was comfortably saved but five minutes before the break further disaster for the visitors when a free kick by Kevin Turner found defender Jorrell Johnson with time and space in the penalty area and he made it 4-1 to Kings at the break.

The home side came out after half time determined to slow the game to a walking pace and waste as much time as possible.   St Neots looked refreshed with Meechan firing beyond the far post after good work by Scott Sinclair and then crossing for Shariff to head narrowly over the bar.  The introduction of all three St Neots substitutes after 64 minutes signaled an all-out attacking policy from the visitors and three minutes afterwards Bennett produced the save of the match to deny Dylan Williams.   Five minutes later St Neots efforts were rewarded when a lengthy throw by Knight was not cleared and a determined Nabil Shariff scored from close range.  Shariff was a thorn in the side of the home defence, having one shot blocked on the line and a second saved and with nine minutes remaining from a free kick 25 yards from goal Luke Knight rifled in his second goal of the match.   St Neots continued to press but with most of the home players now defending there was no way through.  Almost six minutes into added time, a narrow-angled shot from Knight flew over the bar depriving him of a memorable hat trick and St Neots a point!

St Neots:  Iron, Sinclair, Norville-Williams, Knight, McDevitt, Parr, Broccoli, Bridges, Meechan, Shariff, Williams (D)

Subs:  Wiltshire (for Bridges 64 mins), Wood (for Sinclair 64 mins), Sembie-Ferris (for Broccoli 64 mins).

Cards:  Sinclair (Y – 39 mins), Williams (Y – 75 mins), Sembie-Ferris (Y – 75 mins), Knight (Y – 84 mins)

Goals:  Knight 2 (4 and 81 mins), Shariff (72 mins)

 

Kings Langley:  Bennett, Ward, Cook, Adebiyi, Johnson, Coldicott-Stevens, Collins, Turner, Weiss, Collier, Price

Subs:  Gauge (for Collier 80 mins), Toiny-Pendred (for Collins 88 mins), Hodgins, Kenny and Minchev.

Cards:  Coldicott-Stevens (Y – 16 mins)

Goals:  Weiss 2 (18 and 22 mins), McDevitt OG (25 mins), Johnson (40 mins)

 

Referee:  Elliott Kaye (Loughton)

Attendance:  132

 

John Walker

Read 483 times