Citizens see off injury-hit Green

PUBLISHED: 13:00 28 March 2017

WGC's Josh Bronti (right) missed a penalty against Leverstock Green (pic Kevin Lines)

WGC's Josh Bronti (right) missed a penalty against Leverstock Green (pic Kevin Lines)


Welwyn GC 2 Leverstock Green 0

WGC made hard work of beating injury-hit Leverstock Green 2-0 at Herns Lane on Saturday.

The visitors were forced to play midfield Luke Preedy in goal and he was picking the ball out of his net after only 33 seconds.

But WGC had to wait until the last minute of normal time to double their lead, after missing a penalty on the hour on a frustrating day.

The Citizens included 16-year-old Will McClelland in place of Taishan Griffith at right-back, with new signing Lewis Croucher on the bench, and raced out of the blocks as Ashley Kersey’s header from Ben Long’s huge throw-in was pushed out by Preedy for Sean Brettell to lash home.

Josh Bronti volleyed over from another long throw, while Kersey shot wide as the hosts dominated, before Long was on the wrong end of a bad tackle by Green’s Zac Howells, who had been booked earlier but escaped a second yellow card.

Citizens substitute Craig Arnott was cautioned for dissent and the home side came under pressure in the lead up to half time, with Curtis Donaldson flicking a header from a free-kick past the far post and Jonathan Lacey denied by the legs of Jack Metcalfe.

Lacey sent another chance over the crossbar and the two sides missed further chances after the restart, with Bronti shooting too high and Marcus Campbell losing control at the vital moment.

Brima Johnson and Donaldson both missed the target for Green, before McClelland’s shot was handled by Kendall Allen and referee Joseph Gray pointed to the spot.

Bronti’s well-struck spot-kick was turned over the crossbar by Preedy, though, and WGC needed Metcalfe to produce an excellent save to deny Donaldson at the other end 12 minutes from time, before Davis fired the loose ball over.

Metcalfe was booked for his protests, believing the Green player had been offside, and was fortunate to escape further censure for kicking the ball away.

But frustrated Citizens made sure in the 90th minute when substitute Arnott’s clever pass found Kersey and he worked his way into the box and fired high into the net from close range.

WGC: Metcalfe, McClelland, Morris, Brinkman (Croucher 90), Boodhoo, Payne, Bronti (Arnott 82), Long, Campbell (Robins 64), Kersey, Brettell.

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