Boro’ clinch 3 points in dour tussle
Without a game at the weekend, Boro’ needed to battle with tonight’s visitors who had taken three points from their home game with Burgess Hill Town on Saturday.
Hendon sat in 19th place, three positions above Boro’ having played four more games and anything less than maximum points would have been deeply disappointing for the home side following last Tuesday’s defeat at East Thurrock.
Both sides took time to settle and the opening ten minutes saw chances at both ends with an early Vastsuk effort after a neat one, two with Jenkinson, bringing a good block from Wright in the Hendon goal.
While Robbins shot well over for the visitors, before heading in from close range after fifteen minutes only to be flagged off-side.
The half progressed with both sides losing possession too often and failing to create very much by way of real opportunities.
Boro’s two debutants combined well when Jamie White put Andrew Jenkinson through with his final effort narrowly missing the post.
Ben Pattie shot from 25 yards but Aaron Bufton saved well diving to his right, then an all too casual defensive header by Nicholas Brown gave away a needless corner which almost led to the opening goal.
The left side corner into the heart of Boro’s area looked dangerous and Bufton saved well from Hendon skipper Kezie Ibe.
Another Hendon attack saw Ibe flick the ball over Bufton towards the goal, but Gary MacDonald had time to clear though his first effort went straight to a Hendon player who’s wayward return into the area gave the Boro’ centre back a second opportunity to clear which he accepted gratefully.
Just after the half hour, Morgan shot wide for Hendon when well placed and Sprague cut in from the left and let fly a shot which was blocked then cleared by the Boro’ defence.
The final five minutes plus added time saw both sides go close. A Jack Barton free kick came in from the right and put the visitors defence under pressure with Joe Wright finally fumbling the ball out for a corner.
For Hendon, a good cross field pass from Murphy to the over lapping Soloman Hassan ended with a shot from Pattie going wide and then Morgan had a shot deflected wide of the target.
HALF TIME: Farnborough 0-0 Hendon
A fairly evenly matched half characterised by errors and missed chances on both sides, though the visitors had looked more likely to score.
Second half began at 8:50pm with Boro’ having made a change in the interval by replacing Nicholas Brown with Ryan Zidyana.
Boro’ began the second period with a little more confidence which saw a Freddie Grant cross from the left find Jenkinson, but, unfortunately, he wasn’t able to make a strong enough contact.
After Wright had saved a Lewis Collins effort, Jenkinson returned the earlier favour with a cross field pass which found Grant but his shot, hit hard into the ground rose kindly for Wright who was able to catch it and clear.
With half an hour left, Robins shot on the turn flew over the bar.
A Hendon substitution on 64 minutes saw Ben Pattie replaced by Andre Da Costa.
Morgan shot wildly over from the left corner of the box, then the visitors dominated the next few minutes without being able to capitalise on their possession.
With a little over fifteen minutes left, Boro’ cleared a Hendon attack and the ball was threaded through to Bogdan Vastsuk just short of the penalty area on the left. The Estonian showed good control to skip past two defenders before deftly slotting home low into the left corner of Wright’s goal on 74 minutes. Farnborough 1-0 Hendon.
Vastsuk came close to a second goal little more than a minute later with more neat approach work, but this time the Hendon defence scrambled the ball clear.
Andrew Jenkinson was booked on 76 minutes for a fairly innocuous foul after having been warned by Referee, Gillett a few minutes earlier.
A Farnborough substitution on 77 minutes saw Jamie White replaced by Josh Francis upfront.
With Hendon piling on the pressure in search of an equaliser, Boro’ were set for some uncomfortable moments and needed to remain vigilant in their efforts to see the game out.
In attempting to shepherd the ball out of play, CJ Fearn appeared to receive a helping hand from a Hendon player which saw him crash headfirst into the advertising hoarding to the side of the goal. Fortunately, he was able to continue after treatment.
Hendon second substitution saw Taggart replace Fonguck on 85 minutes.
The visitors were throwing everything at the Boro’ defence and Jenkinson did well to block the ball out for a corner which saw a further onslaught in which Aaron Bufton managed to keep at least two efforts out with several more being blocked by defenders with little thought for anything other than preventing a late breach of their defence.
Somehow, Boro’ broke upfield and in the 90th minute Bogdan Vastsuk got a shot away but Wright saved to set up an even more frenetic finale when a minimum of 4 added minutes were announced.
Boro’ made their last change in the added time when Vastsuk was cheered off to be replaced by Dean Joseph-Whittingham.
The substitution together with an injury to Josh Francis meant that at least six added minutes were played and it was a very relieved set of Boro’ fans (and I rather suspect players as well) when Mr Gillett at last blew for time.
FULL TIME: Farnborough 1-0 Hendon
Phew! Pretty it was not, but to the Victor’s go a hard earned precious 3 points.
With so many games being referred to as “must win games”, or “6 pointers” it’s hardly surprising that a certain nervousness gets to the players.
Having successfully scrapped for and claimed the spoils tonight, hopefully the lads can approach Saturday’s away game at Brentwood with their confidence boosted.
We CAN get that illusive away league win.
Come on you Yellooowsaaa!! (sorry Bob).
Match Report by Tony Duff.
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