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Only a stoppage time penalty, confidently converted by Daniel Jones, saved Aylesbury from slipping to back to back defeats in the league as they salvaged a 1-1 draw with injury ravaged Stotfold.

The visitors had every right to feel aggrieved at full time, not by the penalty awarded for the blatant bundling over of Ivaylo Dimitrov, but for the fact that they had been the superior side for the second half’s duration without taking all three points.

Tony Joyce introduced the returning duo of Kevin Ayodele and Craig Townsend for the game, along with left-winger Marcus Sawyer, all three having varying degrees of impact upon proceedings.

Though the first half was fairly evenly matched, it was Ducks keeper Jack Sillitoe who was the busier keeper and he was picking the ball out of the net after just 7 minutes as Josh Cook headed in a right wing cross, but it was quickly ruled out for a fairly obvious push on his marker.

A minute later and a raking ball into the corridor of uncertainty from Sawyer found Ben Baines whose poked effort took a deflection and looped over the bar. Mulholland met the resulting corner with a firm header, but straight at keeper Pedrycz who was able to fist it away where it dropped for Townsend who could only scuff a weak effort well wide.

The alert Sillitoe made a good save to deny Aulsberry who had sprung the offside trap to go clean through, but the United stopper was off his line in a flash to make a good sprawling denial.

Two minutes later and another save kept out an effort from striker partner Sean Herr, who had been teed up in the area, before a headed effort was placed wide by Herr as Stotfold kept up the offensive.

Aylesbury were mostly being restricted to long range efforts as the visiting defence proved a tough nut to crack, Townsend having a ranger plucked out of the air after Baines had won the ball back determinedly, and Lewis Hallford didn’t make the most of a long dribble as his final shot was weak.

Both sides suffered injury blows as Myles Lee was forced off after a challenge with Baines, before United’s Townsend went down himself and was subsequently replaced at half time by Kyal McNulty.

As the half entered its final five minutes, Aulsberry’s shot on the turn was comfortably fielded by Sillitoe, and Stacey Field couldn’t make the most of Baines’ miss hit shot falling to him in the area as he fired wide.

Half-time: Aylesbury 0-0 Stotfold

Stotfold started the second half brightly and a great passing move put Aulsberry in for a shot which he placed wide when it should have been buried, and a dangerous dipping inswinging free-kick from Peverall had to be punched away by Sillitoe.

Aylesbury then had a couple of efforts through Baines who first received the ball after two Stotfold players crashed into each other in midfield, his effort lacking the power to cross the line. Then, he managed to finally get the ball past Pedrycz but again couldn’t force the ball over the line as it was swept away by a defender.

The brief spell of Aylesbury pressure proved to be a false dawn though, and Peverall beat Jones before hammering in a shot which was superbly beaten away by Sillitoe, but he wasn’t to be denied for long. On 62 minutes Peverall received a throw from the left wide, cut inside two defenders and buried the ball past the helpless Sillitoe from just inside the box. 1-0 Stotfold

It was a well deserved lead for the visitors, and United responded immediately with a double substitution throwing on Dimitrov and Melford Simpson for Sawyer – who had struggled to get involved in the second half – and a subdued Stacey Field.

The pattern of the game remained unaffected though, Sillitoe making another save to deny Aulsberry once more after some slick interchange with Herr had opened up Aylesbury’s defence.

The mid-point of the half saw Warren Garcia snatch a shot wide when the ball dropped to him on the edge of the box, whilst a number of corner kicks disappointingly came to nothing as the Ducks struggled for attacking inspiration again.

They did have a great chance ten minutes from the end when Dimitrov could only head wide from 6-yards out when unattended, and Jones fired in a decent effort but it was always rising just over the crossbar.

Aylesbury were presented their lifeline in the 93rd minute when the ball was moved inside for Dimitrov, who was quite clearly bundled over by a defender, leaving the referee no choice but to point to the spot. Up stepped Jones who confidently dispatched the penalty into the bottom right corner. 1-1

Whilst it rescued the point for Aylesbury, it was scarcely deserved and another rather disappointing performance will be of concern for the management team again – with a very tough trip to Haringey Borough for the team now to turn their attentions to.

Minute by Minute Updates


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Tom Barnett and Joey Acheampong both suspended for the Ducks today, so returning Ducks Kevin Ayodele are thrust into the starting lineup alongside new signing Marcus Sawyer.

And we're underway at Bell Close. Sawyer playing left-wing, Ayodele right-back and Townsend in the midfield.

7. Cook headed right-wing cross into the net but its quickly disallowed for a pretty blatant climbing offence
8. Sawyer with a cracking ball into the box, Baines effort took a deflection to loop over the bar
9. Corner kick headed goalwards by Mulholland, keeper palms it away, Townsend with a poor follow up which rolled along the byeline
13. Aulsberry springs the offside trap. Sillitoe off his line quickly to make a good save
15. Baines won the ball back from a ponderous defender, fed to Townsend whose long range attempt plucked out the air by the keeper
15. At the other end another save from Sillitoe denies Sean Herr who had been teed up in the area
20. Ball in from the right met by Herr, headed wide at the near post
29. Long run but poor final shot from Hallford
31. Lee down after a challenge with Baines
32. Ayodele good defensive pace to hold up Herr, he laid in Cook whose shot was blocked behind
33. Stotfold still down to 10 men as Lee decides if he's fit enough to continue
33. Now Townsend for Aylesbury is down on the floor, doesn't look good for him either
35. Stotfold replace the injured Lee with Ellis
40. Ball helped on for Aulsberry, early shot hooked goalwards on the turn easily fielded by Sillitoe
42. Jones excellent free-kick delivery, Baines mis-hit bicycle kick dropped to Field, shot wide on the turn
44. Crosses flash in at either end, both well dealt with by the goalkeepers

HT: Aylesbury 0-0 Stotfold: Been good in spells but nothing much to separate the teams so far. Sawyer looks promising.

HT sub for the Ducks: McNulty on for Townsend

Second half is underway...

1. Shot from Baines as the ball breaks to him flies wide
4. Great passing move from visitors, Aulsberry placed shot wide, should have buried it
6. Dipping free-kick inswinger from Peverall had to be punched away by Sillitoe
8. Awful coming together between Mitchell and Aulsberry in midfield allowed the ball to be passed forward for Baines who couldn't get enough on it to force it home
13. Baines lifted the ball over the keeper but it didn't have enough on it to cross the line and was swept away
14. Ball played out wide to Peverall who beat Jones and hammered a shot goalwards, superbly tipped over by Sillitoe
Stotfold much the better side now
16. GOAL! 1-0 Stotfold. Peverall drifted inside after a throw and fired home a well placed shot
17. Aylesbury respond with a double substitution: Simpson and Dimitrov on for Sawyer and Field
20. Sillitoe saved to deny Aulsberry Stotfold's second after slick linkup with his strike partner Herr
25. Garcia snatched a shot wide on the edge of the box
26. Successive corners for the Ducks... Came to nothing
27. Another corner for Aylesbury... Came to nothing
35. Dimitrov free header 6 yards out went wide, great chance
41. Not a bad effort from Jones, well over in the end
Disappointing lack of inspiration from Aylesbury again since going behind
45. PENALTY to AYLESBURY! Dimitrov levered down in the box...
46. GOAL! 1-1. Confidently dispatched into the corner by Jones.

FT. 1-1 draw. Point rescued at the very end; Second best for most of the second half so we'll take that!