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Midweek joy for Corr as The Saints see off Coleshill Town in some style

Wednesday, 22 January 2020 20:41

SOUTHERN LEAGUE DIVISION ONE CENTRAL

St Neots Town        3         Coleshill Town       0        

St Neots took full advantage of their match in hand over Kempston Rovers as they clambered above them to the relative safety of 18th position with this impressive victory over visiting Coleshill Town.   It was the first ever meeting of the two sides and the victory lifted St Neots out of the bottom two for the first time since 11th September.   It was new Manager Barry Corr’s first league points and with three further consecutive home matches to follow, he will be looking for his side to capitalise on this confidence boost to move further away from the relegation zone.   Ironically the St Neots man-of-the-match was goalkeeper Finlay Iron who made a string of inspired saves, but this should not detract from what was a competent and well-deserved victory.    Coleshill arrived at St Neots in ninth place in the table and were looking to push on towards the play-off places but on the night, they were well beaten by a side gradually beginning to find an exciting rhythm in their play.   Corr opted for just one change to his previous line-up, with Jonny Butler recalled and Prince Mutswunguma rested after his trial with Watford the previous day.   Apart from Iron’s stellar display there were also excellent personal performances from Joe Neal whose two well-taken penalty goals opened his account at St Neots and Lewis Simper in midfield who was behind most of St Neots attacking moves.

The visitors made the better start taking the game to St Neots and shading early possession, but they threatened little with St Neots speedy on the break.   A low cross by Joe Sutton deflected off a defender requiring visiting keeper Paul Hathaway to make a smart save and Panny Boxer then had a net bound effort deflected for a corner.   After 23 minutes Tommy Boxer joined the home attack to have his searching cross cleared off the line by Shay Palmer but the ball was only returned to the St Neots defender and his second cross was forced in at the far post by fellow defender Thomas Dickens – his debut goal for St Neots.   Less than two minutes later in their next attack, St Neots doubled their lead as Lewis Simper was pulled down in the penalty area and Joe Neal confidently smashed the ball into the net from the spot for a 2-0 lead.   Lewis Rankin was proving the main threat to the St Neots defence, and from one of his inswinging corners, a Matthew Jackson header was well saved by Iron.   Rankin then was played clear of the defence, but the keeper held his nerve to block his shot when a goal looked inevitable.   At the other end a Joe Sutton corner was deflected wide and the first half ended with Joseph Smith being played clear wide on the right, but his finish was high and off target.

Coleshill began the second half in defiant mode sending on an additional striker, but this left a gap in defence that was quickly exploited just four minutes after the restart when the speedy Neal was cruelly upended as he went around Jackson.   The visiting player was booked, and Joe Neal got to his feet to confidently net his second penalty of the match.   After 65 minutes with Coleshill trying hard to get back into the match their hearts were broken when Iron produced the save of the match to deny Jordan Francis who was clear and should have scored, but this did not really deter the visitors and Iron had to produce a back breaking save to turn a Rankin free kick over the bar.   St Neots almost got a fourth goal when a 25 yards shot from Lewis Simper left the keeper motionless but rebounded from the crossbar and then substitute Prince Mutswunguma saw his shot cleared off the line from an Aaron Smith corner.   The high momentum of play never really ceased, and the one sour moment came seven minutes from time when visiting full back Shay Palmer was sent off after aiming a kick - off the ball at Joe Neal.   Reduced to ten men for the final few minutes Coleshill never gave up and still managed to test Iron in the closing minutes, but this was a match in which the youngster was determined to keep a clean sheet.

Saints Supporters' Man Of The Match - FINLEY IRON

Video highlights can be found here: https://youtu.be/ypVN12h4q6E

 

St Neots Town: Iron, Shaw, Smith, Butler, Dickens, Boxer (T), Gomersal, Boxer (P), Neal, Simper, Sutton

Subs:  Mutswunguma (for Shaw 67 mins), Goode (for Boxer (P) 74 mins), Clarke (for Neal 88 mins), Joseph and Foster.

Cards:  Butler  (Y – 34 mins)

Goals:  Neal 2 – both pens – (25 & 49 mins), Dickens (23 mins)

 

Coleshill Town:  Hathaway, Palmer, Webb, Jackson, Sinclair, Smith, Francis, Halsall, Molesworth, Rankin, Fitzharris

Subs:  Panzo-Antonio (for Webb 46 mins), Mannion (for Francis 67 mins), Clarke (J) (for Rankin (85 mins) and Williams.

Cards: Palmer (RED – 83 mins), Jackson (Y – 49 mins)

Goals:  none

 

Referee:  Thomas Hancock (Newmarket)

Attendance:       106

 

John Walker

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