Allen brace puts Boro’ on track for 3 points

Three overdue points for Farnborough as they look to turn their Season around.

Boro’ lined up minus the recalled Sam Pearce and with Aaron Bufton replacing the injured Minter. With CJ still injured, Andrew Jenkinson took the skippers armband and new arrival, Charlie Allen was given his debut.

After considerable rain during the week the pitch was pretty heavy, but playable and with Boro’ in need of three points they made a positive start against a side who started the day in 7th spot.

Vastsuk was first to test the visiting keeper with a sharp shot on target from the corner of the area. Ashlee Jones was pleased to parry the effort just under his crossbar then clasp the ball to his chest and clear up field.

Cox had an over the shoulder shot well saved by Bufton who turned the ball out for a corner.

A Ryan free-kick following a foul on Barnes-Homer by Kerslake was looking dangerous until the off-side flag was raised.

Hallahan was just wide of the post following a good move on the left involving Grant and Vastsuk.

Trotter went close for Leiston before Jones just beat Hallahan to a through ball through the centre.

Jefford was shown a yellow card for a foul on Vastsuk and the quickly taken free kick was forced out for a corner on the left.

A slick move down the Boro’ right ended with a good cross from Grant and Charlie Allen made no mistake from close in by the far post on 27 minutes. Farnborough 1-0 Leiston.

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Gallagher was next to receive a card, before a good run into the box by Vastsuk was forced out for a corner as he looked for space to cross.

Billy Clark, scorer of both Leiston’s goals in their mid-week win over Brentwood, went from hero to zero when he contrived to head over from no more than two yards out as the visitors sought to draw level.

A dodgy back pass saw keeper Jones attempt a hasty clearance as he was pressured and his mis-kick saw the loose ball run to Allen who had a fairly simple task to net his and Boro’s second of the afternoon after 37 minutes. Farnborough 2-0 Leiston.

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Two minutes later with Boro’ continuing to press, they deservedly got a third.

A Leiston defender put his foot on the ball level with the area and it was partially over the line but the assistant rightly allowed him to continue only for Boro’ pressure to win the ball and Oyenuga crossed for Hallahan to sweep home a good half volley from the edge of the 6 yard box on 39 minutes. Farnborough 3-0 Leiston.

I bet Ainsley wishes he had let the ball go out of play!!

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Boro’ continued to dominate for the remainder of the half with the visitors making a rare counter attack in the two minutes of added time only for Bufton to save from a Finch header.

HALF TIME: Farnborough 3-0 Leiston

A good half for Boro’ who played some decent football and passed the ball well on the heavy surface and restricted the visitors to the occasional counter attack.

The second period began at 4:01pm and Leiston were clearly bent on reducing the arrears.

Just five minutes in to the half, Bufton made a fine reflex save to deny Finch after the big number 10 latched on to a cross from the left.

Boro’, though not as dominant as in the first period, still created dangerous situations and Vastsuk hit a strong left foot shot which saw Jones take two bites at before finally gaining control and clearing.

Around the 67th minute a good move down the left saw Boro’ have two or three efforts blocked in quick succession with the visitors defending in numbers.

Boro’ replaced Josh Gallagher with Jack Barton on 68 mins.

A Leiston counter attack had Bufton making a good save from Winter at the expense of a corner before confidently claiming the corner and clearing the danger.

Grant put Vastsuk away on the left and Hallahan met his cross with an acrobatic attempt which was only just too high.

When Saker made ground down the right, Grant blocked his cross out for a corner and Finch wastefully blasted the corner well over the bar.

A second substitution saw Boro’ bring on Adeniji for Hallahan on 77 minutes.

With Boro’ determined to see the game out while looking for the opportunity to hit Leiston on the counter, Grant went down under a heavy tackle for the second time in a few minutes and received treatment on the pitch before finally leaving the fray.

Boro’ were restored to eleven men when Zidyana replaced Grant on 81 minutes.
Leiston continued to search for what at this stage could only be a consolation and made their only change after 86 minutes when Matt Oliver replaced Leon Ottley-Gooch.

Winter blazed a chance over from 10 yards with three minutes left and in the 90th minute Bogdan Vastsuk cut in from the left and shot well causing Jones to make the save.

The three added minutes saw Boro’ sensibly retaining possession to claim a clean sheet and three valuable points.

FULL TIME: Farnborough 3-0 Leiston

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Boro’ deservedly took the points with what was arguably their best opening 45 minutes for quite some time.
They played neat football, passed the ball well and, importantly, converted their chances.

It’s true that Leiston didn’t look like a side who had enjoyed a position of no lower than 7th for the entire season (prior to Saturday). However, take nothing from Boro’ who still had to do the business to claim their reward.

I was not aware of any official Man of the Match award and while the whole side put in a decent shift, for me, Aaron Bufton excelled with several very good saves.

In particular a fine reflex save from Finch early in the 2nd half. His confident command of his area was good to see. Well done.

With more of the same at Merstham next week, who knows, perhaps we can yet bury that unwanted away record.

Match Report by Tony Duff.


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