Wealdstone 1- 0 Staines Town
1 - 0
Wealdstone moved up two places in the Vanarama Conference South table after this crucially important bottom of the table clash at The Vale on Saturday. After a reasonably lively first half in which Stones took an early lead and largely dominated possession and goal scoring chances a drab second period burst into controversy as two Staines players were sent off, followed swiftly by their Manager.
Chris M’Boungou was sent packing for a second bookable offence and then substitute Bajram Pashaj kicked out at Stones keeper Jonathan North and was shown a straight red. An incensed Marcus Gayle was also sent from the dugout by Referee Michael George presumably for dissent. Staines intends to appeal at least one of the dismissals to the FA.
Stones great start was rewarded with a Daniel Brown goal, the midfielder stretching superbly from a cross on 6 minutes and he could have doubled the lead a minute later after clever work from Scott McGleish in the box. But the Swans gradually composed themselves and started to pose a threat with several corners and good breaks up the slope. Substitute Pashaj for Staines was causing problems for Stones backline and went very close mid half. Johnny Wright almost found room to move in on goal but his eventual strike flew wide as Stones attacks wilted on the increasingly greasy and bobbly surface. Shaun Lucien in particular was unable to get going in against some effective defending down the right. Joe Turner was Stones most effective outlet on the day with some great runs but Stones couldn’t deliver when it mattered as Swans looked to increase the pressure to force their way back into a palpably tenser contest.
But it all suddenly unravelled for the away side in the second period as two players were sent off and their discipline went. For all of that Staines never gave up and could have embarrassed Wealdstone at the death with some good possession and several free kicks in dangerous positions, the best chance already having fallen to Joe Aribo who shot just wide when well-placed just after the re-start. Stones found themselves frustratingly unable to retain possession and hanging on against an aggrieved and determined nine men but finally managed to grab all three points.
After the match a relieved Wealdstone Manager said: ‘There is winning ugly and winning really ugly but today we abused the privilege. In the end the result was always going to be more important that the performance and it was a crucial win for us’
Wealdstone: North, Hammond Watts Parker, Hamblin, Godfrey, Lucien, Brown, McGleish, Wright, Turner. Subs used: O’Nien, Ball, Jolly. N/u: Martin, Carter (GK)
William Hill MoM: Joe Turner
Steve Foster pics HERE