Christie snatches late win for AFC

AFC Dunstable line up to block a free kick on Saturday
AFC Dunstable line up to block a free kick on Saturday

Southern League Division East: Aylesbury FC 1 AFC Dunstable 2

AFC Dunstable remained top of the league but were fortunate to do so, during their 2-1 win at Aylesbury on Saturday.

The visitors named an unchanged starting line-up from last Saturday’s win over Marlow, but were on the back foot early on, Aylesbury playing the better football and should have taken the lead as unmarked Ben Stevens headed wide.

AFC keeper Jamie Head was called into action on 17 minutes, keeping out Jonny Montgomery’s effort, while the visitors were eventually a threat, Courtney Massay’s surging run and cross headed off target by Nathan Frater.

Aylesbury then fluffed a wonderful chance on the half hour as Anton Goss’s cross was met by Montgomery, only to see Head make a wonderful reaction save, before Kurt Morlese blasted the rebound off target from a yard out.

AFC then hit their opponents with a sucker punch as Jermaine Hall’s cross hit Stevens on the arm for a penalty that Hall converted to make it 1-0.

Early in the second period, Aylesbury were level after just four minutes when Ty Deacon’s turn and shot took a wicked deflection, leaving Head powerless to stop the ball crossing the line.

The Moles looked odds on to go on and claim victory, with Head turning Goss’s shot on to the post.

Visiting boss Heath threw on BJ Christie to give his side a three pronged attack and it started to bear fruit, Hall forcing James Weatherilll into a good stop on 77 minutes.

With AFC improving and Head having a storming game, he had a hand in AFC’s winner, sending forward a long free kick that Bill Morgan flicked on for Christie to finish.

Aylesbury had seven minutes to try and salvage a draw, but AFC held on and might have made it 3-1, Hall’s strike in added time ruled out for offside.

A mightily relieved Heath said: “Even though that was not our greatest performance of the season, on occasions like this you have to give credit to your opponents.

“I thought they were very good and how they have not won a game yet on that performance, is beyond me.

“They looked sharp and if luck was a bit more on their side, who knows what might have happened.

“On our efforts, even though we were not really at the races, when you have three proven goalscorers in your team, you always have a chance and that was the case.”

AFC: Head, Massay, Carney, R Frater (Christie 65), Morgan, Bishop, Murphy, Olaleye, Hall (Mannion 85), Close (Tavernier 74), N Frater.

Subs not used: Silford, Campbell.