Welwyn given fighting chance to survive with battling point

PUBLISHED: 13:32 08 April 2019 | UPDATED: 13:32 08 April 2019

Matty Campbell-Mhlope made it two goals in two games for Welwyn Garden City. Picture: DANNY LOO

Matty Campbell-Mhlope made it two goals in two games for Welwyn Garden City. Picture: DANNY LOO

©2019 Archant

Welwyn Garden City’s future looks slightly rosier after clinching a point in an incredible 3-3 draw at North Leigh.

With Aylesbury taking forced relegation due to problems with the size of the referee’s changing rooms, only one other team will drop out of the Southern League Division One Central.

That spot is currently occupied by Welwyn’s Oxfordshire hosts who are now seven points behind the Citizens with just four games to go.

But it could have been oh so different if the wheel of fortune had landed on any of the other potential outcomes that flashed up during the Eynsham Park clash.

After taking an early lead WGC had to twice battle back from a goal down in a contest that saw both teams finish with 10 men.

The draw also ended a run of seven straight defeats that has plunged them deep into relegation trouble.

Therefore the early headed goal by Eoin McKeown, his first for the club since joining on loan from Colchester United, was greeted with huge cheers from the travelling City fans.

But the lead lasted just a minute as Andy Gunn was left similarly unattended from a free-kick.

And six minutes later the home side were in front as Henry Landers fired a ferocious effort beyond keeper Lewis Todd.

The nearest Welwyn came to getting back on terms before the interval saw McKeown put a shot narrowly wide.

It only took WGC 10 minutes after returning to the field to get the equaliser though as Charlie Pattison, taking on the playmaker role in Dave Keenleyside’s absence, crossed for Eusebio Da Silva emerged to strike a low effort past Eddie Cavanagh.

Pattison also hit the post shortly after but just as Welwyn looked to be on top Landers scored his second with an outstanding free-kick into the top corner.

However, for the second time in the game, the lead lasted just one minute.

A free-kick of their own from Da Silva set up Campbell-Mhlope, whose lofted effort took a deflection on its way in.

Dylan Ebengo made a miraculous clearance off the line to deny George Seacole but two bookings ended his day with nine minutes to go.

But in keeping with the game, the numerical disadvantage was just three minutes long as Harry Grant was given a straight red for a foul on Da Silva.

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