Care­less Staines con­spire to throw away ad­van­tage

Surrey Advertiser - - Front Page - Bostik League Mo Bet­tamer scored for Staines on Satur­day

PREMIER Di­vi­sion Staines Town twice squan­dered leads in a dis­ap­point­ing week. The Swans let a 2-0 lead slip as base­ment side Wor­thing FC fought back to claim a point on Satur­day. From the whis­tle the Swans pressed for­ward with El­liot Buchanan drag­ging a shot wide early on. On 18 min­utes, Mo Bet­tamer cut in­side and fired home for 1-0, and he al­most helped dou­ble the lead im­me­di­ately af­ter but Bay­ley Brown couldn’t fin­ish the move. Lewis Driver had a header saved be­fore mak­ing it 2-0 af­ter a neat swivel to send the Swans in com­fort­able lead­ers at half time. Town looked set fair for three points un­til the last 20 min­utes when they were given a shock by the young Wor­thing squad as the vis­i­tors turned the game on its head, dom­i­nat­ing pos­ses­sion and scor­ing on 74 min­utes.

And with eight min­utes re­main­ing, Rian O’Sul­li­van net­ted to bring his side level.

Wor­thing sur­vived a late scare when Bet­tamer fired a free-kick over as the Swans trav­elled home pon­der­ing how they’d let three points dis­ap­pear.

And on Tues­day night, Staines wel­comed Premier Di­vi­sion bed­fel­lows Dul­wich Ham­let to Wheat­sheaf Park in the first round of the Ve­loc­ity Tro­phy.

Again the Swans took the lead in the first half, through Jonathan Hip­polyte, but Dul­wich lev­elled af­ter the break to force a penalty shootout. The Swans’ dis­ap­point­ing night was com­pleted when the vis­i­tors won 4-2 from the spot.

Bostik South side Mole­sey re­turned to Kent for the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive Satur­day to face Green­wich Bor­ough, and re­turned home back with­out any points. Three changes for the Moles saw James King, Dre Grob­ler and Ato Okai start and, opt­ing to sit deep, the vis­i­tors al­lowed Green­wich to hog pos­ses­sion in the early stages though the chances the hosts did cre­ate were eas­ily dealt with by vis­it­ing goal­keeper Liam Allen.

It was a de­fen­sive er­ror that gifted Green­wich the open­ing goal when a poor clear­ance al­lowed an un­marked Bor­ough player to slam home past Allen in the 14th minute.

When Mole­sey cen­tre­back Rhys Paul was in­jured on the half-hour mark, a sec­ond mix-up in the vis­i­tors’ de­fence al­lowed Travis Gre­gory to eas­ily tap in for 2-0.

The Moles strug­gled with the slope but did force a good save out of the home keeper when Manny Quarshie tried to pull one back be­fore half time.

Man­ager Pete Lel­liott in­tro­duced Olu Akin­sanya at the start of the sec­ond half in a bid to in­ject some cre­ativ­ity but a cross drilled into the box was scooped into his own net by the crocked Paul at the near post to give the Kent side a 3-0 lead.

De­spite en­joy­ing more pos­ses­sion in the later stages, the Moles’ fi­nal ball con­tin­ued to let them down. Craig Lew­ing­ton was try­ing to rally the team and must have felt re­warded when Ash­ley Lodge wrig­gled past two de­fend­ers and fired in hard and low in 79th minute to make it 3-1.

Mole­sey’s hopes of a come­back were dashed, how­ever, when Green­wich latched onto yet another de­fen­sive er­ror to nod home into an empty net for a fourth goal, in the 84th minute.

“As far as we are con­cerned, we must stop mak­ing stupid un­forced er­rors as teams seem to al­ways cap­i­talise on them, and [we must] start putting away chances, which has been our fail­ing in the last few games and is very frus­trat­ing to say the least,” said Moles boss Pete Lel­liott.

“If we look at the goals con­ceded to­day, Green­wich didn’t have to work hard to score.

“The first goal was a worldy strike, the other three were all down to our de­fen­sive mis­takes, which you can­not leg­is­late for but which need to be quickly erad­i­cated.”

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