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Match Report



For not the first time this season Aylesbury's inability to convert chances into goals cost them dearly. At first glance this comprehensive scoreline suggests an easy win for Rothwell Town, yet that was not the case with United dominating the opening half-hour but somehow failing to find the net.

The first action of the game resulted in a penalty appeal being waved away by the referee. Julian Old's lofted ball was timidly palmed away by goalkeeper Tom Smith to Enzo Silvestri, whose shot crashed into a defender from point-blank range and to rule handball would have been more than harsh.

Silvestri was in the thick of things five minutes later, his free-kick from the corner of the penalty area easily held by Smith. Then on the quarter-hour mark United's captain connected with Liam Smyth's low free kick but turned the ball just wide at the near-post.

Smith was called into what turned out to be his only testing save of the game on eighteen minutes. Pringle played the ball short to Luke Melisi, who looked up and picked his spot, only to see Smith turn his well directed effort over the bar.

A minute later Smyth volleyed well wide after a throw-in dropped to him, and Silvestri tried an ambitious lob having seen Tom Smith off his line but the necessary pace was lacking and Rothwell's custodian caught the ball easily.

With finishing touches currently being put to the end of season presentation night, Silvestri popped up to nominate himself for "Miss Of The Season". Daniel Mead combined with Kevin Mealor on the left flank, the latter finding Silvestri 6-yards out but he sliced his effort well wide with the goal gaping.

Rothwell then had their first attempt at goal when Michael Boyle-Chong won the ball in midfield, his early shot going narrowly wide of the post.

A good passing move from Aylesbury nearly resulted in a goal, Stevens swinging the ball into the path of Mealor, and as he got free in the box he attempted to pick out the unmarked Pringle, but his chipped cross was cut out and headed behind by Paul Rice.

The Bones finally sprang into life inside the final fifteen minutes of the first half and Vincent was called into action for the first time, making a good save to tip Ricky Miller's effort wide. The resulting corner eventually found its way to the grateful keeper's arms after a shot took two deflections.

Once they started playing the ball around Rothwell were a real threat and they opened the scoring with a fine example of quick, incisive passing which tore Aylesbury apart. The ball was eventually worked to the byline and cut back to Danny Nicholls (nephew of his namesake, the former United manager) who steered the ball home. 1-0 Rothwell

Melisi was unlucky not to find the net five minutes later when he ran at the Rothwell defence before placing an effort low to Smith's left, but he watched in agony as the ball rebounded off the foot of the post.

Instead, it was Rothwell who doubled their lead and who else but former United striker (in more ways than one) Darren Lynch to do what he does best and head home a deep free-kick. 2-0 Rothwell

The goal was cruel on the Ducks, and Silvestri let his frustration show with a verbal tirade at the linesman, followed by an over-enthusiastic challenge for which he was booked, as Aylesbury, having dominated most of the half, somehow left the field for half-time with a mountain to climb.

Half-time: Rothwell 2-0 Aylesbury

Aylesbury had the first chance of the second half when Silvestri's shot was blocked in the area, but Rothwell proceeded to kill the game off with a third goal just three minutes in. A deep free kick caused confusion in the box, and with United's defence having been drawn to the ball at the far post Lynch headed back for Adam Sturgess to fire in unopposed. 3-0 Rothwell

The Ducks kept fighting though, and they hit the woodwork again on 55 minutes. Daniel Mead, on his 150th Aylesbury appearance, struck the post with one of his curling free-kicks after Smith had carried the ball out of the area.

Matt Butler entered the fray as United threw caution to the wind and looked for a way back into the game, and although the chances were still coming they never reached quite the same level of dominance of the first period.

Liam Smyth had a low shot easily held by Tom Smith, and Pringle nearly produced a moment of magic with a quick control and shot on the turn which flashed wide, as Aylesbury tried in vain to find a goal.

Silvestri continued his disappointing afternoon in front of goal with another shot off target, having taken the ball on his chest. Smyth received a booking for a poor challenge, and Mark Wiltshire came on for his debut replacing Nick Leach in defence as the minutes ticked by and most spectators began suffering frostbite in the bitter conditions.

Aylesbury's final chance fell to the hard working Ben Stevens, who showed great persistence to get past Neil Lazarus and go for goal, but his low effort was comfortably dealt with by Smith.

At the other end Rothwell could have increased their scoring in the dying seconds when Nicholls launched himself at a corner kick with a flying header which rattled the same upright that Melisi had hit in what seemed an eternity ago. Lynch fired the rebound over.

At full time Aylesbury were left to reflect on a frustrating afternoon; their performance had shown a marked improvement from the dour draw against Rushall the previous week and they deserved at least a point. But they once again let down by their failure to take their chances and a lack of confidence in front of goal.