Wealdstone 3 – 0 Tooting & Mitcham United
3 - 0
Wealdstone eased into the next round of the FA Trophy on Saturday as they ran out comfortable 3-0 winners over fellow Ryman Premier side Tooting & Mitcham United. There was only ever going to be one winner in this encounter, with Stones dominating from start to finish and in truth the score line could have been even more comprehensive had it not been for some solid goalkeeping by Tooting ‘keeper Jack Giddens.
The win comes as a vital boost to Stones, with a run in this season’s competition being made all the more important due to the club’s early exit in the FA Cup. The big team news before kick off was a return to the side for experienced striker Scott Fitzgerald who was recalled from a loan spell at Hemel Hempstead Town during the week in the hope that the former Watford forward would provide an option to assist Stones goal scoring problems.
The opening 10 minutes was a tentative affair with both sides being limited to efforts from distance, the best of these for Stones being a driven effort from Alex Dyer, which Tooting ‘keeper Jack Giddens gathered at the second attempt. Nikki Ahamed then had a decent effort on 17 minutes, cutting inside from the left and firing a powerful effort from 20 yards which Giddens did well to palm away for a corner. Just a minute later David Hicks tried his luck from 25 yards, hitting a swerving effort which dipped just over the crossbar.
As the half wore on Wealdstone were seemingly growing in confidence, and Alex Dyer came close to breaking the deadlock on 25 minutes when he burst into the box and curled the ball towards the top corner where Jack Giddens could only tip the ball round the post for a corner. It proved to be just a temporary respite for Tooting though, when from the resultant corner David Hicks’s delivery found Wes Parker who made no mistake, heading the ball home from 6 yards.
Wealdstone could have then been two goals up 5 minutes later when a clever interchange between Jake Parsons and Alan Massey resulted in the latter pulling the ball across the box to Richard Jolly. Jolly got his effort away first time but Giddens again intervened. Wealdstone did get a second on 38 minutes when Osa Obamwonyi was penalised for a handball in the penalty area, and Scott Fitzgerald made no mistake from the spot sending Giddens the wrong way. Obamwonyi made amends for his error 3 minutes later though, bravely blocking an effort from Richard Jolly.
The second half began with Wealdstone once again on top, and Jolly came within inches of adding a third one minute after the restart, sending an effort just wide of the post following a Hicks corner. The diminutive marksman did fare better just past the hour mark though when the striker added a third for Wealdstone. Alan Massey played a long ball forward which Jolly brought down before holding off the defender and slotting expertly past Giddens. Jolly then nearly grabbed his second on 70 minutes; however his lobbed effort was somehow cleared off the line by Matt Drage with Giddens well beaten.
The tie was well and truly over as a contest, and the remaining 20 minutes saw Wealdstone see the game out comfortably with some good possession football as they cruised to a morale boosting victory.
The next round of the FA Trophy will be drawn on Monday.
Wealdstone: North, Hammond (McCubbin 70), Massey, Parker, (c), Cronin, Dyer, Parsons (Chappell 58), Hicks, Fitzgerald (Miller 80), Jolly, Ahamed.
Subs not used: Brooks, O’Leary,
Man of the match: Nikki Ahamed
By Stuart Warren