HERTS SENIOR COUNTY LEAGUE PREM DIVISION
Eagles completed a comfortable double over a very physical Bushey side who finished the game with 9 players.
Eagles opened brightly and in the first few minutes Josh Coley hit a Bushey post with a curling shot and the Bushey keeper saved a shot from Charlie Thake from 25 yards at the second attempt. Thake then broke clear of the Bushey defence but was fouled before he could get a shot on target a few yards outside the Bushey penalty area. The Bushey player was lucky to only get a yellow card and the free kick failed to find its target.
The Bushey keeper was kept busy by Thake, and was forced to make a good save to tip the ball away from the top corner of his net. Thake then put Sam Gittings clear on goal but instead of shooting for goal he opted to try and walk the ball round the keeper and the chance was lost.
Bushey played the long ball and tried to break down the Eagles defence by attacks on the break. Several shots from outside the Eagles penalty area were off target and keeper Dan Goad comfortably held a direct free kick from a few yards outside the penalty area.
Gittings finally broke the deadlock with fine shot from 20 yards which curled into the top corner of the net, giving the home keeper no chance. Eagles continued to press as a long low shot from Shane Carty was held by the keeper at the foot of his post, and in a frantic goalmouth scramble no Eagles player was able to force the ball into the net from close range. Thake almost scored when he dispossessed a defender and raced clear on goal, but opted for power and shot high and wide.
After the break Eagles continued to dominate play. A Thake free kick from over 20 yards out was palmed over his crossbar by the home keeper, and then Thake turned provider with an excellent pass inside a defender to Gittings, who effortlessly shot low into the net from 10 yards. Thake then shot high and wide after receiving a pass from Coley, and headed a corner kick towards goal but was denied by a good save by the keeper, who then quickly saved a bullet header from Thake with his legs. Thake finally got his reward for a very hard working performance when he shot home from close range after receiving a pass from David Locke, following his challenging run through the Bushey defensive cover.
The home team then started to lose their self discipline, committing unnecessary fouls and disputing decisions. Yellow cards were regularly produced, and after 70 minutes they went down to 10 men for a second caution, following a bad foul on Carl Williams, followed by a red card not long after when the Bushey full back head butted Carthy, who was deemed to have responded and also received a red card.
This opened up the game and Eagles used the speed of sub Charlie Black to run at the Bushey defence and try to score a further goal. In the end it was Bushey who nearly scored when the ball was chased down the left touchline almost as far as the Eagles goal line. Goad rushed out of his goal but failed to collect the ball, which was crossed into the centre of the goal area and rolled just wide of the far post without a Bushey player being in position to apply the finishing touch.