Double joy as Henen keeps dream alive
Two goals from Trevor Henen helped Montana end their Division One campaign with a crucial win, but they will only find out on Sunday if their efforts were enough to earn them the runners-up spot.
Having held a top two position all season, Montana boss Marc Ziedman said that he “would be disappointed if his side would not make the top tier of Jewish football for the first time”, but stressed that “it is completely out of his hands”.
Ziedman watched his side edge a five-goal thriller against a Hendon team that did not let them have things all their own way. But a resilient second half display proved the springboard for three vital points against a side that is fighting for survival.
Hendon started brightly and deservedly took the lead after 10 minutes when Benjy Engelsman’s 20-yard strike flew past Montana keeper Ben Law.
Straight from the restart, Henen chipped the ball over Hornets keeper Nicky Rosenthal to level the scores. Hendon regained the advantage midway through the first half when Chaim Gothold played an exquisite pass to Gavin Noe who shrugged off his marker and slotted home from close range.
Chances were few and far for Montana but Simon Peterman had a great opportunity to level, only to shoot tamely at Rosenthal.
Henen went close again. Initially, he did everything right in rounding the keeper but lost his balance and failed to hit the target.
Montana squared things for the second time on the stoke of half-time. Henen’s free-kick was parried by Rosenthal. The rebound was headed against the bar by player-chairman Raymond Harrod but he was on hand to tap home the loose ball.
Ziedman laid into his troops at the interval and they completely dominated the second half.
Chance after chance fell to Montana but they just could not put them away. The impressive Tom Miller was finding space on the left flank but he had no support from his strikers. Harrod then had a header cleared off the line by David Atkins. Henen was denied again by Rosenthal and it looked like being one of those days for Montana until the decisive moment arrived on 75 minutes. Andrew Binstock releasedHenen with a sliderule pass. He broke the offside trap and slotted home, sparking wild celebrations on the touchline. Peterman than had a great chance to increase the lead but his 25-yard thunderbolt was tipped over acrobatically by Rosenthal.
Montana held on to take what could be a vital three points in what has been a very good season for them. Ziedman commented: “Whichever division my side is in next season, after being written off and tipped for relegation, I am extremely proud of my boys and just hope that results go our way elsewhere.”
Montana’s Tom Miller slides in on Danny Steel to thwart a Hendon attack