|Date||Saturday 10 March 2012|
|Match||Royston Town v London Tigers
|Competition||Molten Spartan South Midlands Football League: Premier Division
|Royston Scorers||K. Fehmi (pen), Endacott, Edwards|
|Man of Match||Lewis Endacott
An entertaining game of football ended with The Crows taking all three points and remaining two points clear at the top of the table with nine games to go. Royston's brightest spell of the match twenty minutes after half time proved to be the defining period of the game with two goals and a barrage of home pressure and some good defensive determination gained a welcome clean sheet.
There was a number of absentees for this potentially tricky looking game with Ryan Lockett and Tommy Malins both injured, Martin Standen missing with work commitments and Jason Beck starting a three match ban.
It was welcome to see an opposition try and attack at every opportunity which set up a very open game and maybe on another day that opposition would have left with a little more than London Tigers did. Royston defended well for the most part of this game but Tigers did have chances to make a game of it, mainly in the later part of second half.
The first half was pretty even with both teams trying to get at each other's defences with quick passing football. Matt Standen had The Crows' first chance when he had a free shot at goal inside the area but rushed when he had time and the ball was paced wide. Luke Robins then received a short set play and his 25 yard effort was acrobatically tipped over by the keeper.
Tigers, also neat in their build up, were well contained but looked more dangerous from set plays. Having four outfielders over six foot was an advantage and in their giant centre forward they had a formidable outlet.
The visitors did well to gain a number of first half corners, most were defended well if sometimes desperately. One header looped over the crossbar but The Crows did well. In open play the visitors had one great effort from a quick switch of play and an early twenty yard effort struck the outside of Will Norris's post and off for a goal kick.
Royston took a goal's advantage into the interval, the goal coming just before the half hour mark. A quick counter attack down the left ended with Kaan Fehmi crossing into the area where Matt Standen was clearly barged in the back. Fehmi struck home from the spot and was unlucky to have another goal bound effort blocked by a defender just before half time on the line.
The Crows came out all guns blazing after an extended half time interval due to an injury to an assistant referee. Ricky Young replaced the injured Rhys Lawrence at the interval and he and the rest of time played some sublime attacking football and remained encamped in and around the visiting penalty area for the opening period of the second half.
An early set play rewarded Royston a second goal with Lewis Endacott heading a corner into the top corner from ten yards. Minutes later it was three when another good move was picked up by Carl Edwards on the edge of the area and his firm shot was placed too well for the keeper and just inside the far post.
Edwards should really have added another when he broke into the area with only the keeper to beat but shot wide and Luke Robins twice broke clear but was denied once by the keeper and another by a last ditch tackle.
Paul Attfield made more changes with Ash Grinham and Ryan Redford replacing Jack Bradshaw and Kaan Fehmi. Redford was unlucky not to score when he headed Robin's cross just wide.
The tempo of Royston's game dropped in the last twenty minutes and probably a degree of complacency set it from an attacking point of view. This created some late pressure from the visitors with one far post header from another set play striking the angle of post and crossbar and a cross from open play finding their giant striker but he somehow fired over from eight yards when it looked easier to hit the target. Will Norris made one good one on one block also in the latter stages but The Crows had done the hard work in the opening period of the half and finished with a good score line.
Team: Norris, Clemo, Bradshaw (Grinham), McGrandles, Endacott, Collins, Edwards, Lawrence (Young), Fehmi (Redford), Matt Standen, Robins Unused: Apostolos