Match Report – Wealdstone 1 – 0 East Thurrock Utd
1 - 0
Wealdstone turned up the heat up on a cold and blustery afternoon at The Vale on Saturday and eventually overcame a very stubborn East Thurrock United side that had been on an impressive ten match unbeaten run.
Stones had been criticised for not creating anywhere near enough goal chances in recent matches but this was not the case in this enthralling clash with opportunity after golden opportunity being opened up in both halves.
Debutant Nick Freeman, signed on loan from League Two outfit Wycombe Wanderers in the week, made an immediate impact playing in the wide right position with pace and trickery and, not least, putting in some telling crosses. In fact all of Wealdstone’s loanees turned in excellent performances with Accrington Stanley defender Liam Goulding deservedly picking up the Man of the Match award and not least scoring another crucially important goal in consecutive games.
The home side started as they continued – on the attack – with early chances for Matty Whichelow and Johnny Wright with Freeman causing problems with his direct running at the Rocks back line.
But the away side showed why they are on such a good run with their big forward Sam Higgins looking strong and menacing. Elliot Benyon went close with two great chances within a three minute period but the out of luck forward couldn’t get his strikes away or were off target.
Stones had a let off on 28 minutes when the alert Ryheem Sheckleford cleared off the line from a Reece Harris effort.
The first period ended with sub Danny Green’s fierce effort being held by Lukas Lidakevicius.
The second half was more open with both sides attempting to gain the breakthrough. Freeman blazed just wide with a decent strike and then a Green effort was well held.
Josh Mcleod- Urquhart had a decent penalty shout turned down before Goulding made the breakthrough on 75 minutes with a scuffed strike that completely wrong footed Lidakevicius to the huge relief of the Wealdstone faithful.
The Rocks hit back with late counter attacks with sub Harry Honesty looking very lively but Stones held on for a huge home win and with a clean sheet to boot.
Wealdstone : North, Sheckleford, Urquhart, Goulding, Oshodi, Hunt, Freeman, Godfrey (Cox 68), Benyon, Wright (McGleish 65), Whichelow (Green 23) Subs not used: Wellard, Koroma.