Alvechurch complete the double on Basford Utd FC
Church became the 2nd mid table team to do the double over Basford this season and may be had divine intervention .
A late show from the visitors saw a 1-0 united advantage become a 1-2 deficit in the last 7 min of normal time as United suffered late heart ache.
As communicated United will have to serve the next few weeks without centre half Aaron Webster who was absent. Also missing playmaker Lee Hendrie then changes were a necessity. Sam Craven coming back in at centre half and Courey Grantham starting wide left. Jahred Russell after excellent promise kept out Robson Doolan and the pace options of Lavelle White and Tyrelle Shannon joined Willis Francis, Jamie McNicholas & Robson Doolan on a powerful United bench.
Fresh from last week’s victory at Coventry, United started fast pace without asking too many searching questions early stages of the visitors keeper. Winning a succession of dead balls and corners though United put a lot of good ball into the box during the 1st period, but couldn’t take advantage of a keeper who looked a little suspect on crosses.
The visitors had the two best opportunities of the early stages as Ambalu broke clear but dragged wide from 8 yards. Next up Saul Deeney was on hand to rescue a slip by Fabian Smith that saw a decent low save by Deeney from Corner Deards.
Despite these two chances it was United who totally dominated 1st half possession and had good chances to go ahead .Edwards tipped over a Stuart Hendrie free kick, next up the keeper was nowhere from a Stuart Hendrie free kick that saw Dion Miekle beat him to the ball but head over.
The keeper was having a mixed afternoon and almost contrived to punch a corner into his own net with a visiting defender on hand to head off the line. With United putting a lot of dangerous low balls into the visitors 6 yard box, frustrating that no one was on hand to convert on numerous occasions. The game broke its stalemate right on HT. Stuart Hendrie won a clear penalty felled in the box. Striker Ruben Wiggins-Thomas converted well for a 1-0 half time advantage.
2nd period and a far more potent United start to the half as Hendrie put a dangerously placed free kick into the wall and Craven and Miekle both headed over from corners. United needed a 2nd goal and all eyes turned to the official on 55 minutes. Wiggins-Thomas was played through on goal by a fine flick from Grantham, and looked to be bearing down on goal until brought down from behind by a defender. Not sure what constitutes a last man infringement but this one looked cast iron but the defender stayed on the pitch. To rub insult to injury Hendrie put the free kick on the edge wide. Basford were still asking all the questions and missed a glorious opportunity on 66min to double the advantage. This time no stopping Wiggins-Thomas as he burst free on goal, but rarely for the inform striker fired wide when he should have scored. 1-0 is not a score line that anyone can have any comfort in, and the United faithful were very uneasy as the game entered the last 10 with such a slender lead, despite Denney being a total 2nd half spectator. Alvechurch had one dangerous option in their ranks and this proved crucial as the visitors turned the tables in the last 7 minutes. 1stly a long throw looked to have been well defended by United defenders but the resultant loose ball saw a player go down in the box & he did enough to win the penalty. Basford supporters felt a soft award and even if it was a penalty not sure why United players should risk a tackle on a player facing away from goal. No doubting the quality of the penalty though as Connor Deards sent Saul Deeney the wrong way to level on 83 minutes for an undeserving equaliser.
Moments later United again looked to the official as the keeper appeared to bring down Stuart Hendrie as he spilt a loose ball. And collided with Hendrie in the process Again from a united perspective the official was having none of the home ranks appeals for a penalty. With the game deep in stoppage time a throw conceded allowed one last long throw to come into the United box. This time the attempted clearance was miscued and the visitors sub Danny Williams couldn’t believe his luck as he couldn’t miss as he converted on 95 minutes for the winner.
Shell shocked United were just that shell shocked as the visitors had performed a well delivered smash & grab victory to come away with the points via a 2-1 victory. The visitors have contrived to defeat Basford twice this season, and on both occasions United will rue missed opportunities after leading both at the break and failing to hold out a clean sheet. We cannot use the nature of the pitch for this one as it was a very good home surface.
Whilst our spirits are understandably low after not the defeat, but the nature of such, then without question United will bounce back from this and Tuesdays home local derby against Dunkirk 7.45pm cannot come soon enough.
Despite the lapse Basford remain in control of their own destiny although the task has gotten more difficult. Credit to Alvechurch on the day a never say die attitude served them well, and other teams might well have folded as United turned the screw 2nd period but they kept going and got due rewards.
Final No comment about the twitter skirmish between the clubs, but Basford win and lose in a dignified manner. Whilst we congratulate our opponents we acknowledge there are minimal easy games in the MFL, so top teams losing games as such should not be such a shock to anyone, as the standard of MFL from top to bottom is good.
With this in mind we expect Tuesday’s league game against Dunkirk will be a tough encounter, but at least we have the chance to bounce back immediately. Pretty certain over the last months of the season there will be many instances of up and down fortunes of the title challengers, as it is a long draining season with clubs playing 55 plus games per season, but thankfully we have a very deep squad packed with talent. In America Mar is viewed as March madness in sport, and we now enter such with a rack of games when things should be a lot clearer at the end than at the start of the month.