Yateley United 2 – AFC Cubo 3

Date: Sat 10th October 2015

Venue: Sean Devereux Park

Starting line-up: Gaz Stewart, Alan Clarke, Brad Wilkie, Ralph Wensley, Pete Woodhead, Elliot Connolly, Chris Pyke, Ben McGeown, Joe Coffey, Martin Ansell, Ian Clarke

Sub: Jonny Patterson

View from the opposition: Yateley United Match Report

Cubo made the longest away trip of the season to face fellow strugglers Yateley United at a ground they know well following two visits last season.  Unfortunately this familiarity did not extend to remembering how to get there for Club Clown Jonny Patterson who managed to get lost on route, turning up just minutes before kick off and holding up kick off whilst he did his shoe-laces up (which, to his credit, he managed all by himself).

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Club Clown Jonny Patterson

Both of those previous trips produced victories for the Cubans so they had reason to be optimistic, though once again absences meant numerous changes in the starting line-up not least up front where Clarkey was forced into a striking role and Joe Coffey was promoted from the 2’s.

Cubo made a shaky start, rushing their passes to gift possession to the home side who were making good use of the pitch to stretch the Cubo defensive line.  Despite the dodgy start Cubo found themselves in front when Ben McGeown found himself in space 25 yards from goal and took one touch before cracking a finish past the Yateley keeper.  An undeserved lead for the Cubans who had been second best up to that point.  Yateley’s shape continued to cause Cubo problems, who were grateful to Ralph Wensley on more than one occasion for some fantastic defending when it looked like the home side were in on goal.  However the Cubans did eventually pay the price for their cavalier approach when a long ball over the top was latched on to by Yateley’s big striker and he finished well past Gaz Stewart.  Chances came at both ends with Joe Coffey missing the best of the bunch just before the half time whistle having been played clean through by Martin, the new boy making a great run from left to right but he dragged his finish past the post.

At half time the game was there for the taking for either side but it was Cubo who took first blood.  Good pressing high up the pitch saw the Yateley centre half mis-control the ball and Clarkey latched on to the loose ball before executing an inch-perfect lob to make it 2-1 Cubo.

The goal took the stuffing out of Yateley and Cubo began to dominate possession allowing the full backs to get forward down both flanks.  Had they shown a more clinical edge Cubo could have put the game to bed at this point but on more than one occasion the final ball was lacking the necessary quality and the closest they came was a looping header from Alan Clarke which was cleared from the line.

Cubo’s inability to make the most of their advantage came back to haunt them when they failed to clear a ball to the back post and the Yateley number 7 controlled the ball well before smashing his finish into the roof of the net from an acute angle.

With the home side’s tails up it could have been a tough final fifteen minutes for the Cubans but they showed a sense of belief that has been missing thus far this season and pushed on for the win.  First Martin found himself in space in the box but despite a lovely first touch was unable enough purchase on his volley to trouble the keeper before the winner came from an unlikely source.

Having made a late arrival to the game J-Pat arrived late once more, this time at the back stick where he timed his run to perfection before deceiving the keeper and the covering defence with his first touch, leaving him an open goal in which to rifle home the winner.  3-2 Cubo.

With time running out Yateley pushed forward but could not break down the Cubo defence, and the away side held on to secure a hard fought 3 points.

Goals – Ben McGeown, Ian Clarke, Jonny Patterson

MOTM – Ralph Wensley