Chesham United 3 : 3 St Neots Town FC
Chesham United 3 : 3
St Neots Town FC
Tuesday 12 August, 2014 19:45

Southern League Premier Division


CHESHAM UNITED      3         ST NEOTS TOWN      3      


The two Chesham strikers had last season plundered 64 league goals between them in theSouthern League Premier Division before transferring to St Neots in the close season but neither playedagainst their former side with Drew Roberts (suspended) and Chris Dillon (injured).   However last season’s runners-up Chesham had replaced them very effectively with new striker Ryan Blake who scored three goals for them in a fourteen minutes first half spell to put his side in what seemed an insurmountable half time lead.  What was said in the St Neots dressing room at the break is not recorded but it certainly had the desired effect as St Neots came out firing on all cylinders to retrieve their three goals deficit and only be denied a winning goal deep into added time.   After their opening day victory at Hereford, St Neots made just the one enforced change to their starting line up with Matt Nolan coming in for the injured Dillon.


It was a first half that St Neots will be happy to forget.   They capitulated very quickly as the speedy Chesham attack cut the defence to shreds aided by some very sloppy defending under pressure.   As early as the second minute St Neots skipper Gavin Hoyte was happy to concede a corner and then Nathan Abbey had to sprint off his line to dive fearlessly at the feet of former Saint Simon Thomas who was clear on goal.   And the early pressure paid off on 16 minutes when Ryan Blake was allowed too much space and time to cleverly lob the ball over the goalkeeper from the near post after good work by Ashley Smith.   Abbey then had to dive full length to push away a stinging shot from the same Chesham player but after 24 minutes it was 2-0 as Thomas rounded Arthur Lee to cross for Ryan Blake to get his second goal.   St Neots efforts were spoiled by sloppy passing that was too often careless or ambitious and up to that point they had managed just two lengthy shots by Lewis Hilliard both of which were comfortably gathered by Shane Gore.   On the half hour Blake completed his hat trick after a bad mistake by Gavin Hoyte but it could have been worse for St Neots because before the break Blake unmarked at the far post totally misjudged a cross that should have produced his fourth goal.


Chesham managed just one early second half effort on goal well saved by Abbey but the game hadtransformed with St Neots dominating possession and calling the shots.   Matt Spring had a net bound effort blocked and then after 53 minutes the visitors introduced Nathan Frater for Martel Powell and he re-energised the attack.   Within two minutes of his appearance he was on the end of a Mason Spence and Lewis Hilliard move down the right to score from close range and put St Neots back in the game.  Gore then twice saved well to deny Hilliard and Matt Nolan and Gavin Hoyte lobbed onto the roof of the net.   St Neots continued to press and with thirteen minutes remaining a lengthy effort by Ryan Frater was diverted by the head of Jay Davies over the head of the home goalkeeper to make it 3-2.   Now the impetus was really with the visitors and four minutes later Hilliard went round his marker on the right and crossed for Arthur Lee to score from close range.   It could have been the most unlikely St Neots victory for two minutes into added time Gore saved brilliantly from Hilliard and at the other end as the home side broke for a rare attack Abbey emulated that save as Thomas threatened an unlikely winning goal for Chesham.



St Neots: Abbey, SpenceLee, Spring, Frater (R),HoyteDaviesFord, NolanHilliard, Powell

SubsFrater (N) (for Powell 53 mins), Ferrari,Bickerstaff, Ivey-Ward and Greygoose.

Cards: none

Goals: Frater (N) (55 mins), Davies (77 mins), Lee (81 mins)


CheshamGore, Fletcher, Prosper, Brown, Purse, Hamilton-Forbes, Fotheringham, Smith, Blake, Thomas, Bell.

Subs: Towner (for Bell 73 mins)Nwokeji (for Blake 78 mins), Cooper (for Smith 87 mins)

CardsThomas (Y – 67), Brown (Y – 90+5)

GoalsBlake (3) (16, 24 & 30 mins)




RefereeSteve Bates (St Albans)


John Walker