Fleet Town 2 Marlow 0

Thanks to Moneyfields’ win at Arlesey today, the welcome three points for Fleet Town has lifted them off the bottom of the table. With the number and quality of their chances in the first half Fleet could have been out of sight instead of only two goals to the good. As early as five minutes, Fleet should have been ahead, a superbly delivered free kick from Josh Baines arced across the box and up rose Patrik Ruzicka, if anything he made too clean a contact and powered his header over the bar. But they were not to be denied for too long, just before the quarter hour, Abril and Baines combined on the right, the cross played hard across the box eluded the Fleet front line, but beyond the far post, the ball then going away from goal, a Marlow defender, under no pressure, decided to turn the ball behind for a corner, this corner was turned on and across to the far post for Lea Van Sullivan to net his first goal for Fleet Town. Fleet were dominating possession with Abril on the right and Danilo on the left wing creating openings which threatened to extend their advantage, but it always looked as if a dead ball play was going to be the way through a tight defence, so it proved as Patrik Ruzicka was jinking his way through into the box, he was uncermoniously stopped right on the edge of the box. Marlow took their time to build a wall and then the Marlow keeper took his place behind, expecting the ball to be tried to played over the wall, instead Patrik eyed up a gap to the side of the wall and fired the ball straight into the undefended quarter of the goal. Falling further behind, the visitors opened up their playing style and were finally able to get Jordace Holder-Spooner and Issac Osei-Tutu into the game, both these players got crosses into the Fleet box, only to see them collected by Liam Beach or headed clear by the defence. But after 34 minutes Issac Osei-Tutu made a long solo run into the box, found two defenders closing in on him, he drove on and was upended, to win Marlow a Penalty. The responsibility was given to Kelvin Bossman, instead of their regular Penalty taker Ovenden, a well taken kick was going towards the top right of the net, but diving that way Liam stuck up his arm to make a magnificent save and pushed the ball up and over the goal for a corner. The first half could have been ruined by a mass confrontation, late on, following another heavy challange, but the officials were able to defuse the situation.

For the second half Marlow brought on Marcus Mealing and immediately looked a different proposition, they were more competitive and pushed Fleet back into their own box for long periods, but without that little something in front of goal that may have made a difference. Although Marlow were as dominent in the second half as Fleet were in the first, it was the occasional break from Fleet that looked more dangerous, such as a fine overlapping run from James Howarth on his debut, he took the ball 30 yards into the box and went down under a challange but no foul was given by the referee. After an hour Marlow made a double change as they looked to find a way back into this game, bringing on Jahson Downes and Jordan Brown. With Marlow pressing and more bodies in the box, more contact was inevitable, as one Marlow attack was faltering, Sub Mealing was trying to keep the ball in the danger area, he went to ground and Fleet players were still trying to kick the ball away from him, then the shill blast of the whistle stopped the action, the home fans fearing another Penalty to the visitors, as the trainer was called on to attend to Mealing, only to be stunned to see Mealing being shown a Red Card, only after the game was it clear why, with the bite marks in James Smith’s leg where Mealing had bitten him.

 

After several minutes of consultation with his assistants, James Smith also got shown a Red Card. The extra space on the pitch from the 10 v 10 action, seemed to favour the visitors with both Kameron English and Jahson Downes in particular causing problems for Fleet. Into the last ten minutes, Marlow created one of the best clear chances when a cross was played back to Downes in the D, with lots of space in front of him and only Liam to beat he managed to fire his shot wide of the target. The final chances fell to Fleet in the added time for the long stoppage associated with the Red cards, fine passing and interplay between subs Bradley Wilson and Pekun got Sam Pekun in, but his shot was saved by Garnes. Danilo collected the ball in his own half and was allowed to run 50 yards with the ball before crossing the ball to Wilson, but he was closed down and the attack snuffed out. One final push from the visitors, it was Downes and English again that combined but Kameron English’s shot was again wide of the goal.

Fleet find themselves on the road for the next 3 weeks with games at Ashford, Northwood and Cambridge City before they come back to the Franki Foundations Stadium on 11th November.

Fleet Town : 1 Liam Beach, 2 James Smith, 3 James Howarth, 4 Lea Van Sullivan, 5 Bobby Dormer, 6 Ashley Lloyd, 7 Gilberto Abril, 8 Josh Baines, 9 Patrik Ruzicka, 10 Oliver Bennett, 11 Danilo Cadete.

subs ; 12 Sam Pekun (on for Abril 64 mins), 15 Bradley Wilson (on for Ruzicka 77 mins), 16 Ross Ewan (on for Bennett 75 mins)

not used – 13 Harrison Button, 14 Billy Oram.