The Non-League Football Paper


- By Kelly Gilchrist STAR MAN: Ashley Nathaniel-George (Maidenhead) ATT: 1,559 ENTERTAINM­ENT: ★★★★★ REFEREE: Ben Wyatt

ASHLEY Nathaniel-George was the Maidenhead hero as his early goal proved enough for victory in this rather dour affair at The Shay.

The pacey winger struck from long-range after just nine minutes to ensure the Magpies leapfrogge­d FC Halifax Town in the battle to avoid getting sucked into the relegation picture.

On the back on Tuesday night’s crucial 2-0 win over Yeovil, Alan Devonshire’s men started fast and were soon rewarded when Town lost the ball in midfield, Reece Smith laid off into the path of Nathaniel-George off and he showed great composure and fired into the roof of the net past Sam Johnson.

Town looked to find an equaliser straight away as Milli Alli and Angelo Cappello combined down the left, the ball into the box was played back to Harvey Gilmour on the edge of the box but his first-time shot was blasted over the bar.

Maidenhead looked to double their lead with a throw on the far side which was cleared to Smith, and he fired over the bar from a tight angle.

Halifax, though, still piled forward with Gilmour pulling the strings. His ball found Cappello, whose cross was headed into the path of Tylor Golden but his shot from inside the box flew over the bar.

Stout Maidenhead defending prevented Adam Senior from latching onto another Capello cross, while Max Wright’s impressive­ly overhead kick from

Jesse Debrah’s throw-in on the near side just drifted wide of the target.

FC Halifax remained on the front foot at the start of the second half and a cross from the right was met by the head of top scorer Mani Dieseruvwe but straight at the goalkeeper, Alexis Andre.

Maidenhead won the first corner of the game in the 54th minute and they tested Johnson too with Sam Barrett’s ball in finding Charlee Adams but the keeper saved low to his left-hand side.

FC Halifax were denied strong penalty claims by referee Ben Wyatt when Dieseruvwe’s effort was blocked, but still Halifax kept coming.

Andre Jnr completed missed Golden’s free-kick into the box but Jamie Stott hooked the ball just wide, before Stott again saw an effort saved by Andre on the line.

Rob Harker curled a 35-yard free-kick over the bar before fellow substitute Fidel O’Rourke could only shoot tamely at Andre.

It meant Halifax surrendere­d the three points to boos ringing around The Shay at the final whistle.

Dejected Shaymen boss Chris Millington said: “It was flat and disappoint­ing, and they have had two shots on target, and we concede one.

“For all the possession we just can’t put the ball in the net.” ★★★★★

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