Ryman Div One North
VCD Athletic 3 v 1 Aveley
By Scott Hately
Report courtesy of www.pitchero.com/aveley
Filmed interview courtesy of www.youtube.com/AveleyFCTV
AVELEY suffered their first defeat of the season as they succumbed to a deserved 3-1 defeat away at new-boys VCD Athletic.
Sammy Knott’s goal seven minutes from time was the only bright spot in what was an afternoon to forget for the Millers who were 3-0 down within 17 minutes thanks to a brace from Tyrus Gordon-Young either side of a goal from James Duckworth.
Justin Gardner’s side knew it wasn’t going to be their day when Michael Begg had his penalty saved by Nick Blue midway through the second half, before Billy Holland saw red on his first appearance of the season for a second yellow card late on.
Following the last gasp victory away at Redbridge on Tuesday night Justin Gardner admitted that his side hadn’t been playing as well as his sides opening two league results may have portrayed.
Having beaten Wroxham 6-1 on the opening day of the day season before beating Redbridge 2-1 in the week, Aveley were sitting top of the league on alphabetical order only from today’s opponents VCD Athletic.
VCD won promotion from the Kent Premier League last season and had started the season brilliantly, beating Waltham Forest 5-0 before winning their first home game back in the Ryman League 3-2 against Tilbury.
The Kent side couldn’t have dreamt of a better start to their season and they were certainly in dreamland when within the opening 10 minutes they found themselves two goals to the good.
Some may remember Tyrus Gordon-Young from last season after he scored an injury time equaliser against Aveley for Thamesmead Town, and he was at it again in the fourth minute as he opened the scoring for his new side looping a half volley over a stranded Jack Giddens.
Four minutes later and the home side had doubled their lead through James Duckworth. Gordon-Young this time was the provider as he whipped in a dangerous cross into the area which found the feet of Duckworth, who clinically put the ball past Giddens.
Gordon-Young was proving too hot to handle and forced Giddens into a brilliant save low to his left after he got a flick on from a free kick, and with just 17 minutes on the clock the VCD number nine grabbed his second and his sides third to all but kill the game.
A long ball from the back from Lee Craig found Ola Radiu the wrong side of Teddy Nesbitt. The winger’s effort was well saved by Giddens but the ball rebounded kindly for Gordon-Young to stroke home the rebound.
It was a half to forget for Gardner and his Millers side with VCD goalkeeper Nick Blue far from tested, with Ross Wall’s daisy cutter late in the half the only shot on target for the away side.
Gardner would have wanted his side to show a little more passion in the second half having been second best in almost every department in the first 45 minutes. But they very nearly found themselves further behind when Karl Dent hit the woodwork from a corner.
But with just under half an hour remaining Aveley were given a lifeline when Sos Yao was brought down in the box by VCD captain Ben Payne, with the referee awarding a penalty.
Michael Begg stepped up to take it but his effort was well saved by Blue, diving to his right, as the Millers’ day went from bad to worse.
As the clocked ticked towards the final whistle making any sort of Aveley fight back even more unlikely, Sammy Knott did manage to grab a consolation goal for the Millers in the 83rd minute, latching onto a Begg through ball before slotting past Blue to reduce the arrears to two.
But it just wasn’t to be for Gardner’s side and they were fortunate the score remained at three for the home side when Stephen Okah had a goal ruled out for offside before inexplicably missing the target with the goal gaping moments later.
In the final minute of added on time Aveley’s misery was compounded when captain Billy Holland received his second bookable offence. Having been booked in the first half, Holland thought the ball was still in play when he kicked the ball into Blue’s net whilst he was setting up for a goal kick, leaving the referee no choice but the send the Millers captain off.
After the game a disconsolate Gardner said “I don’t say things for the sake of it. People think I’m miserable and don’t look at the positives but we won two games before today and I didn’t think we played well.”
“I said to them today you’re playing against the team that’s joint top with us and if you play like you did the last two games you’ll get punished and we got punished.”
In the wake of the defeat, Gardner expects to ring the changes in 48 hours’ time when his side hosts Chatham Town at Mill Field.
“Even though we’ve won two games I didn’t think we were playing well and it come back and bit us today. Glad it’s happened early and glad we can bounce back Monday because now it forces my hand to play players that may not be as good as the players that are playing but will do the right things and want it more” said Gardner.
Aveley: Jack Giddens, Michael Begg, Teddy Nesbitt, Luke Wilson, Bradley Thomas, Sammy Knott, Ross Wall (Brian Okwera 59’), Billy Holland, Anton Stephenson (Aaron Gayle 67’), Sosthene Yao, Marlon Boateng (Eku Deen 59’)