United’s per­fect start comes to an end

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Www.kentonline.co.uk/sport -

United dropped their first South­ern Coun­ties East League points of the sea­son, against Green­wich Bor­ough at Home­lands on Satur­day.

Kieran Byrne notched his fourth goal of the campaign to put Ash­ford in front, a lead they held un­til 15 min­utes from time when Paul Vines grabbed the equaliser.

The visi­tors had been re­duced to 10 men by then, Joe Vines sent-off for two book­ings by busy ref­eree Kane Demp­ster who handed out five other cau­tions.

How­ever, the de­fender ASH­FORD UTD GREEN­WICH B might have been in trou­ble be­fore­hand, had the of­fi­cials spot­ted him land an el­bow in Byrne’s face ear­lier in the game.

But Bor­ough still earned a point, de­spite play­ing a man short for the fi­nal 20 min­utes.

In the 75th minute, Vines’ much-trav­elled younger brother, Paul, lev­elled things up with a close-range fin­ish and both sides had chances to win the game late on.

Bor­ough, who have un­der­gone a trans­for­ma­tion on and off the field, have been tipped as ti­tle favourites.

They came into Satur­day’s game off the back of a 4-0 home de­feat by Holmes­dale in mid­week.

They in­cluded Gary Bor­row­dale, who trained with Gilling­ham in pre­sea­son but for­mer Foot­ball League striker Gary Alexan­der wasn’t in­volved,

The game proved a scrappy af­fair, with both sides lack­ing a real threat in the fi­nal third.

United cre­ated the bet­ter open­ings in the first half, be­fore Byrne pounced on a route-one clear­ance from goal­keeper Joe Mant to fire past vis­it­ing goal­keeper, for­mer Mar­gate play­er­man­ager Craig Hol­loway.

Byrne then flashed an­other chance wide be­fore half-time.

Mant had a quiet first 45 min­utes, be­fore mak­ing his first sig­nif­i­cant save nine min­utes af­ter the break, keep­ing out Lewis Wood’s header. Vines’ equaliser boosted Bor­ough who gained the up­per hand in the clos­ing stages.

Chances at ei­ther end fell to Bor­ough’s Chris Saun­ders and James Everitt, the visi­tors’ Wood and Chris Saun­ders went close, while United sub­sti­tute Kee­lan Mooney couldn’t fin­ish off an­other break­away move by the home side.

Pic­ture: Paul Amos FM3368399

Ash­ford’s Gary Mickelborough goes down un­der a chal­lenge from Can­ter­bury’s Sam Ket­tle

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