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Match Report


A replay will be required to separate Aylesbury and Potters Bar Town as the two sides held each other to a goalless stalemate at Bell Close.

The Ducks had ended the game strongly though and will feel a sense of disappointment that they couldn't make their late pressure tell, but it was nonetheless a first clean sheet of the season so a definite step in the right direction.

Aylesbury started the match again showing a number of changes to their last outing. Chris Bernard's unavailability meant a first start since the opening day for defender Matt Ansell, and with the Ducks opting for a five-man midfield Daddy Moses dropped to the bench with the return of fit again Jon Montgomery. Matt Kimani also regained his place in the starting line-up.

It was the home side who had the better of the opening quarter of the game, and in the first minute Chris Dean tested the catching abilities, but little more, of opposing keeper Jason Willis with a free-kick.

Kimani had the game's first clear cut opportunity when he fed on one of Dean Thomas' well directed through balls but could only strike his first time effort over the crossbar.

Montgomery pulled a long range effort wide, before Dean hit another free-kick which was easily fielded by Willis as Aylesbury remained on top.

But after Matt Ansell had peeled off at the back post to volley a corner wide, the balance of the game began to shift back to the visitors.

Suddenly Potters Bar were getting to grips with the superb hold-up play of Dean Thomas and were able to nullify the threat and launch their own attacks instead.

On 24 minutes they should have gone ahead when rangy striker Ellis Remy headed a golden chance over the bar from a corner kick, and a minute later they came closer still when Ashley Harrison-Baker hit a dipping volley against the crossbar.

The Scholars' pressure refused to subside as Sane Wyllie was played in only to be denied by a last ditch challenge in the area. The resulting corner was met with a flicked header which whistled over the bar.

Two minutes later Wyllie skipped around Dean but could only shoot wide of the near post as the visitors were once more wasteful in front of goal.

There was then a rare attempt at goal from the Ducks when Yoki tried a shot out of nothing, his 25-yard effort dipping wickedly and stinging the fingers of Willis who managed to collect the ball at the second attempt.

But the remainder of the half belonged to Potters Bar. Remy made a mess of another good chance and couldn't get his header anywhere near the target, before Wyllie produced a wayward shot which flew miles high and wide.

The first half was rounded off by a Yoki shot which flashed across the face of the goal after some good footwork by the ex-Northwood man, but on the whole Aylesbury found the half-time whistle a relief.

Half-time: Aylesbury 0-0 Potters Bar

Potters Bar looked intent on starting the second half like they'd ended the first. A near post corner kick was only cleared as far as Gamond Dauti who drilled a low effort back in but wide.

Remy then completed his hat-trick of misses with a third misplaced header, this time heading past the far post from a free-kick delivery.

As the half went on Aylesbury gradually began to come back into the game, and they had a few half chances, a scramble from a corner kick and a tame header from Ashleigh James the product of their efforts as the hour mark approached.

The Scholars efforts on goal were summed up on 64 minutes when O'Brien rolled a short free-kick to Denis Paratusic who blazed a shot high, wide, and well out of the stadium.

United were then mightily unlucky not to take the lead when Chris Dean stepped up for one of his special free-kicks, only to see the ball smack the top of the upright and bounce clear.

Byron Walton introduced Daddy Moses for the final quarter, and his pace had the desired effect against the tiring Potters Bar defence and now it was Aylesbury who looked the more likely to nick a win.

Some good play by Kwegyir down the right saw him run at the defence before delivery a low ball across the box. This was just the kind of chance Dean Thomas had been waiting all game for, but sadly he fluffed his lines when the moment came and couldn't make contact with the ball.

Minutes later it was Moses' turn to run at the defence, and although this time his ball in was too far behind Thomas, the pressure was building.

In the last five minutes the Ducks were camped in and around the Potters Bar box, but just couldn't find a way through. Thomas turned and struck a shot which was held by Willis, then seconds later James shot wide from the edge of the box.

There was one late scare for United when Remy smacked a well hit effort goalwards, but Sillitoe was up to the challenge of his first genuine save of an afternoon where Aylesbury had defended doggedly and deserved their clean sheet.

In the very last minute there was agony for the Aylesbury fans as it looked for all the world like Moses had won them the game. Racing onto a Kwegyir pass he got to the ball first and produced a delightful chip over the keeper but the ball dropped just wide of the post. So close.

That was that as the Ducks had run out of time, maybe had the game been five minutes longer then the increasing pressure would have yielded a result, but as it is the teams must do it all again three days later.