Head scratcher for Welwyn as they return pointless from North Leigh trip
PUBLISHED: 16:46 11 December 2019 | UPDATED: 10:37 17 December 2019
There would have been plenty of time on the long journey back from North Leigh to reflect on just how Welwyn Garden City had ended up losing 1-0 in their Southern League clash.
The Citizens played some of their best, most fluent football of the campaign so far and created close to 10 good openings in the first half.
However, much like their trip to Aylesbury United a few weeks earlier, they took none of them and unlike that visit to the Buckinghamshire club, this time a goal 20 minutes from time left them with a defeat.
Manager Nick Ironton gave a debut to striker Jack Vasey, signed two days before from Bedford Town, and he had a chance in the very first minute which he put over the top.
George Ironton then shot wide after skipper Jesse Walklin's fine tackle and a Romelle Alomenu cross and that set the tone for the remainder of the half.
Alomenu blazed over and Dave Keenleyside missed the chance for a second successive hat-trick by hitting two shots too close to keeper Freddie Lapworth and curling another one wide.
The North Leigh man also denied Walklin and Jay Rolfe, that one a spectacular tip over the bar, while Vasey put another opportunity over.
The hosts had barely threatened Ryan Schmid in the WGC goal until the dying moments of the half when Henry Landers went close.
But it lifted their hopes and they were a different animal after the break.
Boss Ironton put on Greg Adinna for an ineffective Alomenu and then replaced Callum Stead, who also had one of his poorer nights, with Ollie Carey, but still Welwyn couldn't find any of the style and creativity of the opening half-hour.
Then with 20 minutes left, skipper Walklin played an ill-advised back pass to Lee Close who got caught on the ball.
Once dispossessed a delighted Noah Alabi gleefully drove a low effort beyond Schmid for the game's only goal.
City's best and really only chance of an equaliser saw Jack Bradshaw, their best player on an ultimately disappointing night, pick out Adinna coming in on the back post.
But the young winger crashed the chance into the side netting, leaving the Citizens with nothing but a long bus ride home.
WGC: Schmid, Bradshaw, Close, Rolfe, Taylor, Walklin, Keenleyside, Ironton, Stead (Carey 70), Vasey, Alomenu (Adinna 62).