Boro’ battle for three points.
The first game of 2017 had been long awaited following the unfortunate postponement of our Boxing Day fixture at Fleet Town and the long lay-off showed in the opening minutes of the game with possession being lost and passing none too slick.
However Boro’ had a couple of early chances stemming from crosses by Sam Pearce and Dennis Oli, but couldn’t make them count.
Ashford Town, when in possession, were moving quickly and passing neatly. When Boro’ regained the ball they were given little time as the visitors were soon snapping at their heels.
Having just gone close from a corner, the visitors almost conceded when a poor back pass went beyond their keeper and John Oyenuga was hauled back when trying to skip round him approach the open goal. The foul was right on the edge of the area and must have been close to a Penalty. Will Boye was shown a straight red for the foul.
Following the free kick, Boro’ had several attempts blocked before Tyler Tobin gathered a header from Huggins.
Ashford Town, despite being reduced to ten men, took the lead just before the half hour when Kameron English volleyed home. Farnborough 0-1 Ashford Town.
Boro’ were searching for an equaliser and a decent cross from Nic Ciardini was well taken by the keeper and a free kick by Sam Pearce was caught by Tobin just under his bar.
John Oyenuga was injured just before the break and continued after lengthy treatment.
HALF TIME: Farnborough 0-1 Ashford Town
The second half began at 4:06pm with Boro’ straight on the offensive but Oli was fouled just outside the area on the left side. Mark Bitmead went to ground and made a meal of it to get a free-kick.
Ashford Town came close to a second when Pearce lost possession and the attempt on goal was only just too high.
Boro’s equaliser came following sustained pressure on the left featuring Perry Coles and Dennis Oli.
Opinions differ on the goal scorer with yours truly convinced that it was Dennis Oli, the announcer stating Perry Coles and other sources saying it was an own goal. Whatever, it was 1-1 after 54 minutes. Farnborough 1-1 Ashford Town.
Boro’ went all out for a winner and when Pearce put Oli through it was a good block from Tobin which kept the scores level. The keeper was injured in the process.
The visitors had seemed happy to waste time from early on and missed no opportunity to slow things down. Several niggling fouls saw both sides receive cards.
John Oyenuga was just too high with an effort from close in and Perry Coles crashed a shot against the post after a good run in from the left.
Sam Shaban replaced Jack Barton for Farnborough on 67 minutes.
On 70 minutes, Herbert replaced Fleming for Ashford Town.
With a shade under twenty minutes left another Boro’ attack saw Nic Ciardini head firmly home after Dennis Oli’s effort was blocked. Farnborough 2-1 Ashford Town.
Curtis Osano replaced CJ Fearn who had received a knock on 77 minutes.
Boro’ dominated much of the remaining time as Ashford Town continued to waste time despite being behind.
Mummery and Brunton were replaced by Herdman and Weight for Ashford Town.
Nic Ciardini’s free-kick in added time saw Tobin keep out a header from Osano and right near the end Sam Shaban was through and shot just wide of the far post.
Aaron Bufton was booked for time-wasting which was somewhat ironic given Ashford Town’s tactics throughout.
FULL TIME: Farnborough 2-1 Ashford Town
Although not operating at their best, Boro’ battled well to claim the points and stay in the hunt.
It was good to see the return to action of Curtis Osano and Eddie Smith named on the bench. Both have been missed in recent weeks.
Come on you Yelloowsaa!!
Happy New Year to all.
Match Report by Tony Duff.
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