Bar squander two-goal lead to East London as place at league summit disappears

PUBLISHED: 07:30 23 January 2018

Mark Turpin scored for Potters Bar but they were pegged back by East London. Picture: KEVIN LINES

Mark Turpin scored for Potters Bar but they were pegged back by East London. Picture: KEVIN LINES

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After two excellent wins so far in 2018 and a place on top of the East League Division Two South table, Potters Bar came into this home match with bottom club East London 2nds full of confidence.

But after goals from Mark Turpin and Tom Clarke had put them two-up early in the second half, the Lee Valley-based side battled back to earn a 2-2 draw.

It was hard to argue that the disciplined and hard-working East London didn’t deserve their point but Bar were left hugely frustrated at their inability, not for the first time this season, to hold onto a lead.

There was little in the way of real quality or goal-scoring chances for either team early on but Bar could have gone ahead after 15 minutes when quick thinking from a long corner saw Graham Abrey deliver the ball into the D but, despite being well positioned at the back post, Ajay Patel couldn’t supply the final touch.

They had another chance soon afterwards when a misjudged clearance fell kindly to Ed Whybrow but despite being in acres of space at the top of the D, he miscontrolled and the chance was lost.

He made amends in the last minute of the half though, dispossessing a defender and giving Turpin the chance to lift it over the onrushing ‘keeper with a delightful reverse stick effort.

They doubled their lead on the other side of the break, an excellent deflection from their first corner of the game by Clarke doing the damage.

A third almost came when Turpin and Miles Tomkins combined but from there the hosts’ performance started to deteriorate.

The backline led by Josh Edge were typically excellent but Bar’s passing game wasn’t as slick as usual and the ball kept being turned over.

A quick counter attack saw the ball swept home, giving Ben Balmforth no chance, and the equaliser came from a late short corner.

And they could have even won the game right from another set-piece.

Fortunately Balmforth was able to deal with the resulting shot and the final whistle went soon afterwards.

Crostyx have jumped over Bar, leaving the Dame Alice Owens-based club second, and they will hope to return to winning ways against West Herts on Saturday.

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