Ascot United 3 Fleet Town 3 (FA Vase 1st Qualifying Round) Played at Fleet Town

Well what can possibly be said about our first venture into Friday night football. We hosted Ascot United in their home tie of the 1st Qualifying Round of the Buildbase FA Vase and what a game it was.  With Ascot flying high at the top of the Combined Counties Premier League we always knew that it would be a tough game, how tough was soon to become evident.

Ascot played some very direct football in the first half of the game, and found themselves 2-0 up at half-time. The first goal came as a result of a long throw reminiscent of Rory Delap in his heyday, the ball being eventually bundled in by Ascot.  The second Ascot goal came in a similar style when a corner was bundled in at the far post. Things looked even worse when it appeared a third goal had been scored from a long throw but this time the referee disallowed the goal for a foul on Chris Harris in the Fleet goal. The best chance Fleet had of scoring was a Brad Wilson free-kick that hit the bottom of the post and the follow up save the Ascot goalkeeper made from Taylor Watts rasping shot.

The second half started in a similar vein  with Ascot directly attacking the Fleet defence and Fleet trying to move the ball around quickly. Ascot however scored a third goal and seemed to have put the match to bed when they broke down the right wing and their centre forwarded slotted calmly into the net. Although Fleet fans were disappointed with this they know by now that Fleet are never beaten and always play to the end of the game, this was never more the case on Friday evening…Aaron Redford who has been getting fitter as the season has progressed decided that tonight was the night that he was going to have a massive impact on the game. His first goal was a stunning left foot shot from twenty yards into the top corner of the net, leaving the goalkeeper with no chance. His second goal and Fleet’s third was as good when he hit a twenty five yard free kick right footed into the same top corner. In between these two great goals Enow Ojong continued his good form in front of goal when he bundled the ball in from Bradley Wilson’s cross. Aaron’s second goal led to scenes of mass celebration on the Fleet bench.

And so to extra-time and with both teams tiring there was plenty of space for both teams to operate in. Both teams had changes with Chris Harris making a number of good saves. A 3-3 draw was probably about the right result, all I ask is that Fleet would start to play with the score at 0-0 rather than when we are losing, my nerves can’t take it…so onto the replay on Tuesday night.

Fleet: 1. Chris Harris, 2. Durrell Brown, 3. Josh Burrowes, 4. Sam Williams (c), 5. Cavan Atkinson, 6. Brad Passfield, 7. Bradley Wilson, 8. Jack Howard, 9. Aaron Redford, 10. Billy Oram, 11. Taylor Watts

Subs: 12. Jake Hammond (8), 13. Aiden Upward, 14. Tom Williams, 15. Daniel Framp (2), 16. Enow Ojong (10), 17. Stuart Derry, 18. Indy Thomas

Goals: Aaron Redford (60), Enow Ojong (72), Aaron Redford (78)

Man of Match: Aaron Redford

Attendance: 174

Fleet’s next game of the season is Tuesday 3rd September when we play Ascot United at home in the FA Vase 1st Qualifying Round Replay. Kick Off is 7.45pm