HERTS SENIOR COUNTY LEAGUE
Eagles completed their league programme for 2016 with a comfortable win over Evergreen on a damp and foggy day. Eagles played some excellent flowing football and only 2 contentious decisions by the match referee gave Evergreen an opportunity to keep the scores level until the latter part of the game, having barely got a shot on target during the whole game.
Eagles opened brightly and were ahead after 15 minutes when Jamie Farrar headed a cross from Iggy Thorne a past static defence from near the penalty spot. Soon after it was 2-0 to the visitors when a great cross field pass by Sam Day found Sam Gittings, who made no mistake with a low shot from just inside the penalty area into the corner of the net. Day then headed on a cross from Thorne to Gittings who was just unable to make contact with the ball from a few yards out, facing an open goal. A header by Costas Tragoustis was heading for the top corner of the Evergreen net before a defender managed to head the ball over his own crossbar, and Day almost forced the ball into the net after another flowing passing move by the Eagles just before half time.
Eagles were caught cold in a 15 minute period after half time. First Farrar was judged to have fouled his opponent near the penalty spot despite vociferous protests by Eagles defenders who claimed that he had made clear contact with the ball, and the penalty was neatly dispatched into the Eagles net. Then as a high corner swirled over a group of players in the Eagles goal area keeper Paul McGennity was pushed backwards as he tried to punch clear, and the ball was scrambled into the Eagles net for the equaliser. Again the referee was unmoved by the protests of Eagles players.
This stung the Eagles into action and on 70 minutes Lee Pateman scored with a fine volley from the edge of the penalty area after a free kick had been headed out by a defender. Carl Williams shot just wide of a post from the edge of the penalty area after dribbling past several Evergreen defenders, but then sub Jamie Platt scored with a delicate lob over the advancing keeper after being put clear by Thorne.
Eagles piled on the pressure with the home keeper saving well from Tragoustis, and then just managing to deflect the ball wide after Platt intercepted a poor back pass and tried to loft the ball over him. As Eagles pressed forward gaps were left at the back, and they were fortunate not to be punished when David Locke slipped and it was only a timely intervention and tackle by Liam Huckle that prevented a likely goal. A few minutes from the end sub Kadeem Gutzmore side footed a cross by Williams into the side netting from close range as Eagles finished the stronger team.