Gallery: Defensive slip costs WGC the points
PUBLISHED: 13:59 23 January 2008 | UPDATED: 22:18 26 October 2009
TWO defensive errors proved costly to WGC in a wet and windy league fixture as they lost 2-1 to rivals Harpenden. The NE14 East League Division Three South West game started at a frantic pace as Rob Sansom s side looked to take some points off the high-fl
TWO defensive errors proved costly to WGC in a wet and windy league fixture as they lost 2-1 to rivals Harpenden.
The NE14 East League Division Three South West game started at a frantic pace as Rob Sansom's side looked to take some points off the high-flying Harpenden team after losing to a last-second goal in the previous encounter.
It started as a midfield tussle, a feature throughout the game, yet Harpenden 2nds were the more productive team in the initial period. WGC keeper Richard Leighton was called upon several times to make key clearances.
Mark Skilbeck had a good game in central midfield for the hosts and twice made breaks into the danger area where chances were created and not taken.
However, WGC did take the lead through Doug Ashworth. A David Searle free hit from just outside the area was cleverly turned in by Ashworth to take a goal probably against the run of play.
Unfortunately, the WGC defence could not maintain the initiative as the normally reliable Mike Rayner made an unusual mistake by hitting the ball straight to the opposition centre forward.
With just Leighton in front of him, the forward made no mistake with a fine finish to take the teams into the interval all level.
Harpenden were definitely rattled though, as the tackles were going flying in and WGC finished the half playing the ball around with composure.
They almost finished a fine move when Keith Reid's diving effort was well saved by the visiting keeper.
The second half carried on in the same vein with Sansom and Skilbeck working hard to combat the midfield threat of Harpenden.
A break from Paul Kimber almost netted a goal when he turned a defender on the halfway line and broke away to leave himself in a one-on-one. However, the Harpenden keeper again made an important save to deny the veteran forward.
Then came the defensive lapse that cost WGC the points.
A messy attack from Harpenden left the WGC defence all at sea and a deflected shot made its way towards goal and crept across the line, much to Searle's disbelief as his attempts to clear it went unrewarded.
There was still plenty of time for WGC to fight back. Ashworth hit the post and Searle nearly made amends with a fine short corner that was cleared off the line.
However, a solid performance resulted in a frustratingly familiar reward of no points and luck seems to have deserted WGC this season.
Saturday sees a difficult trip for WGC as they travel to league leaders Luton.