St Neots Town FC 1 : 3 Redditch United
Match
36
St Neots Town FC 1 : 3
Redditch United
Saturday 20 February, 2016 15:00

 

Southern League Premier Division

 

ST NEOTS TOWN       1         REDDITCH UNITED       3      

 

For the second time in successive games St Neots scored first against promotion chasing visitors but after 90 minutes Redditch had proved themselves the better side and worthy of all three points. The victory carried the Worcestershire side closer to the top of the table – now within three points of leaders Poole and looking capable of a genuine challenge for the automatic promotion place. St Neots maintained their improvement since the departure of Manager David Batch but created too little seriously to test the visiting defence. They are missing the finishing of Tom Meechan now departed for Football League football at Newport County and their luck in front of goal continues to desert them with Drew Roberts seeing a header rebound from the crossbar. Matt Smyth was back in defence in a reshuffled team with recent signing Charlie Coulson starting on the bench and fit again goalkeeper Ben Jackson coming in to replace Andy Wilton. Three of the sides below St Neots picked up points on the day so a return to winning ways must now be the priority for Andy Davies’ charges.

 

 

 

St Neots began the brighter and might have had a goal as early as the second minute when Dipo Akinyemi cleverly nicked the ball past his marker to advance on goal but his narrow angled finish was kept out of the net one handed by the retreating goalkeeper. Drew Roberts then drove a shot wide whilst at the other end Redditch were adopting a shoot on sight approach with Ashley Sammons twice shooting over the bar from distance and George Carline seeing his effort pass the wrong side of a post. Tom Ward then did well to clear off the line from Carline following an Osborne corner and after 22 minutes St Neots were in front.   Matt Smyth broke up a Redditch attack and the ball found its way to Josh Dawkin whose cross was headed in by Adam Tann for his first league goal of the campaign. Five minutes later visiting keeper Jose Viega had to leave his line smartly to save at the feet of Akinyemi after a neat three-man approach but Redditch were gradually beginning to get on top and after 29 minutes a shot across the face of goal by Jamie Osborne just eluded Jackson’s dive and deflected in off the inside of the far post.

 

 

 

Four minutes later Redditch were ahead as Jackson made a fine save, getting down to parry a James Mutton header from a Sammons corner but the ball fell kindly for Jordan Cullinane and he drove it into the net through a forest of legs in the six yards’ box leaving Jackson unsighted.  

 

St Neots tried hard to reply but Dawkin had a shot blocked after good work by Peter Clark and the half ended with Shearer wasting a golden chance for the visitors firing over the bar when left unmarked from a Luke Shearer cross.

 

 

 

As in the first half St Neots restarted brightly with Akinyemi setting up Clark whose shot was too high. However, Redditch were soon back in control skillfully slowing play down to frustrate the home side but still creating goal scoring chances with Thompson having one shot deflected for a corner and a second well saved by Jackson. Using his pace, substitute Jazz Luckie, on for the limping Shearer, then created an opening but Jackson left his line to drive him wide of goal.  

 

After 65 minutes St Neots decided on a change in tactics and Drew Roberts was pushed up to lead the attack in place of Akinyemi with Charlie Coulson on in midfield and Peter Clark pushed more forward just behind Roberts. Clark fed Dawkin on a run forward but his shot was blocked and Roberts was denied as his effort rebounded from the woodwork.  

 

 

 

Redditch always looked dangerous at set pieces and from an Osborne corner Coulson cleared off the line and the visitors sent on two fresh pairs of legs up front to test the St Neots defence. These tactics brought the clinching goal seven minutes from time when two of the substitutes combined with Molyneux crossing from the left for Luckie to tap in at the far post for 3-1 to kill off St Neots’ hopes of a share of the points.

 

 

 

St Neots:  Jackson, Anton, Longden, Tann, Ward, Smyth, Casey, Clark (P), Roberts, Akinyemi, Dawkin

 

Subs:  Coulson (for Akinyemi 65), Hobbs, Ofosu, Heywood and Jeckells.

 

Cards:  Longden (Y – 31)

 

Goals:  Tann (22 mins)

 

 

 

Redditch:  Viega, Cullinane, Flanagan, Loveridge, Mutton, Richards, Thompson, Osborne, Shearer, Sammons, Carline

 

Subs:  Luckie (for Shearer 46), Molyneux (for Sammons (67), Johnson (for Thompson 81), Young and Bridgewater.

 

Cards:  none

 

Goals:  Osborne (29 mins), Cullinane (33 mins), Luckie (83 mins)

 

Attendance: 226

 

Referee: Nick Cooper (Thetford)

 

 

 

John Walker