Craig Faulconbridge will be feeling content this weekend after Aylesbury FC continued their recent revival with a thumping 5-0 win over fellow early season strugglers Ashford Town.
Three goals before half-time and two in the second half were an adequate reflection of the dominance FC enjoyed as they strode to a fourth win on the bounce, writes Jools Thomas.
FC welcomed back centre back Ben Stevens and midfield playmaker Sonny French back to the starting eleven in a reshuffle from the team which won on penalties at Marlow on Tuesday. Matt Hall moved to midfield and Lee Grant slotted in at full back.
The first five minutes of the game saw FC quick out of the blocks. Matt Hall and then Ollie Hogg had mid-range efforts that certainly made the visitors sit up and take notice. On 6 minutes Sonny French opened the scoring. After decent work on the right wing, the ball was played to Sonny and the team’s current Player of the Year swept a graceful shot past Ashford keeper Paul McCarthy’s outstretched left hand. Ollie Hogg then found himself in a similar position just five minutes later. Ollie opted to strike his shot to the keeper’s right this time and it must be said with more venom. Still, the result was the same as the ball hit the back of the net allowing Ollie to celebrate putting his side 2-0 up.
On 21 minutes Jerome Federico blazed a shot over the bar and then on 27 minutes the same man was upended in the box by an away defender. A penalty was awarded and, after a short discussion, Kwasi Frempong stepped forward to guide the ball low into the back of the net for 3-0. The away team’s first chance of the game occurred on 33 minutes. Ex Mole Jamie Connor broke the home team’s offside trap but his shot did not trouble FC keeper Rhys Marshall. Kofi Lockhart Adams was the next Ashford man to try to bring his side back into the game but his header, from a cross, cleared the bar.
On 40 minutes Gareth Price guided a 30 yard free kick over the away bar and shortly afterwards he was fouled on the half way line by what the referee deemed was a straight red. Scott Weight was the Ashford player who received his marching orders. On the very stroke of half time, Price was again in the thick of action. He broke the away offside trap but his powerful shot cannoned off the post and to safety.
The second half was just eight minutes old when the next incident of note occurred. FC striker Price rose to challenge the keeper for a teasing cross. Keeper McCarthy pushed Gareth to gain an advantage but the referee deemed no foul had been committed. Revenge is a dish best served cold or so they say and Gareth was able to grab a goal soon afterwards. From a terrific through ball, he beat the keeper in a one and one and after a second delay walloped the ball into a deserted net to make the score 4-0.
Jerome Federico played in Sonny French, as FC enjoyed the freedom of Haywood Way, but Sonny was unable to get enough purchase on the ball and keeper McCarthy was able to gather. Ollie Hogg was the next FC man to try his luck after quality work from Lamar Simpson. His shot had the power but unfortunately not the accuracy and his strike fizzed over the bar. Another goal seemed inevitable and so it proved on 78 minutes. Jerome Federico bore down on goal. Jerome had a perfect right to shoot himself but instead unselfishly passed to unmarked teammate Sonny French who tapped the ball home from a couple of feet for 5-0. Young substitute Alex Kedzierski could have grabbed a 6th late on but he failed to maintain control and then Matt Hall smacked a chance over the bar but as the referee blew his whistle, FC could still look back on a polished performance with every member of the team, management and supporters playing their part.