Croydon Athletic 2-2 Wealdstone

CroydonCroydon Athletic
Ryman League Premier Division

2 - 2

WealdstoneWealdstone
KO: 19:45 | Wed 6th Oct ’10

Wealdstone’s dismal away form continued on Wednesday night, as they  were held to a disappointing draw by a spirited Croydon Athletic side.They were denied a much needed win ahead of Saturday’s FA Cup tie at  Metropolitan Police by a brace from Croydon striker Reggie Savage,  whose pace had caused the Wealdstone back line problems all night.
There was one change from the weekends defeat at home to Lowestoft,  with winger Danny Spendlove being handed a first start of the season  in place of Alex Dyer who dropped to the bench. Top scorer Scott  Fitzgerald was once again missing with injury, so centre back Sean  Cronin continued in his new found role upfront.

Wealdstone began the game looking confident, and could have taken the  lead as early as the third minute when Peter Dean got on the end of a  cross from Lee Chappell, however the midfielder could only fire the  ball well wide with the goalkeeper bearing down on him. Dean had  another chance five minutes later, when he fired into the side netting  from the edge of the box after being found by a clever ball from  Kieron Forbes.

Despite the early Wealdstone pressure, it was Croydon who took the  lead, somewhat against the run of play in the 15th minute. Fullback  Troy Oham-Strachan got beyond Lee Chappell on the right flank and  fired the ball into the box, where Reggie Savage was able to rise  unchallenged to head in from close range.

Wealdstone nearly levelled instantly, when Danny Spendlove jinked past two players on the edge of the Croydon penalty area, before firing in  a low shot which was well saved by Simon Locke.

It was now end to end stuff, and Croydon almost doubled their lead on  25 minutes, when defender Tom Hughes’ towering header from a corner  crashed off the crossbar.

Stones got the equaliser they were looking for two minutes later  though, when the hard working Cronin cut inside from the left and hit  a pinpoint cross for Greg Ngoyi to head home his 6th goal of the  season.

Croydon were now on the back foot, and found themselves behind on 32  minutes when Spendlove took the ball past two players before threading  the ball through to Peter Dean who finished smartly from the edge of  the box.

Central defender Wes Parker had a great chance to add a third on the  stroke of half time, when his header from a Lee Chappell corner  produced a smart save from Locke.

Croydon began the 2nd half the brighter of the two teams, with Savage  using his pace to good effect upfront, and nearly snatching an  equaliser firing just wide after he’d worked his way into a good  position.

New signing George Daly was handed his debut on 65 minutes, with the  former Wycombe Wanderers man replacing Sean Cronin upfront. He was  unable to make any real impact though, as Wealdstone’s sloppy play in  the middle of the park meant they were constantly being put under  pressure.

It looked like an equaliser had been coming, and it was no surprise  when on 78 minutes Reggie Savage notched his second of the game with  another header, after Wealdstone had failed to clear their lines from  a corner.

Stones tried desperately to get a third goal in the last ten minutes,  but Croydon defended well, and could even have stolen all three points  in injury time, but Savage failed to connect with an acrobatic effort  when well placed.

Wealdstone must now try to pick themselves up for a tough looking FA  Cup tie away at unbeaten Metropolitan Police on Saturday, before   beginning their FA Trophy campaign the following weekend.

Attendance 134

Wealdstone: North, Forbes, Chappell, Parker, Massey, Brooks (Dyer),
Dean, O’Leary, Ngoyi, Cronin (Daly), Spendlove (E’Beyer). Subs not
used: Locke, Lavers