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Match Report

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Aylesbury’s first ever visit to Godalming Town turned out to be another damp squib of an away day and an absolute contrast from the elation of winning at high-flying Rugby Town just a week earlier. Whilst the heavy defeat wasn’t quite a Valentine’s Day massacre, and United have played worse this season, there was little to love for the travelling Ducks’ supporters.

Tony Joyce was forced into one change from the Rugby game, with winger Zack Reynolds trying his luck with new club Hampton & Richmond Borough. League leading goalscorer Lewis Putman wasn’t too shoddy a replacement as he returned from suspension, but although it was his stunning free-kick which brought Aylesbury back into the game shortly before half-time, he endured a frustrating afternoon in attack.

The opening exchanges saw Paul Edgeworth’s free kick straight at Richard Ossai in the Gs goal, whilst Tahj Bell was called into early action when Darren Wheeler’s inswinging free kick had to be turned over, although the offside flag was raised in any case.

Jason Blackett, who later limped out of the game as United lost three players to injury, should have opened the scoring on eight minutes when he got between defenders to reach Stacey Field’s cross from the right, but headed wide.

Strike partner Putman then had a chance of his own, set up by Blackett’s lay off, but with four defenders in attendance he could only clear the bar having created an inch of room to shoot.

Wheeler, as he was last season for Slough against Aylesbury, was always a threat, but he should have done better when he found himself played clean through but slotted the ball wide of the target with only Bell on opposition.

Three minutes later and the number ten had redemption, making no mistake from the spot after United conceded a soft penalty for a mistimed challenge in an area of the penalty box of no real threat, Wheeler rolling home the kick with consummate ease. 1-0 Godalming

A further three minutes on and Aylesbury were reeling as they found themselves two-goals behind. Another swift counter attack was superbly worked by the hosts, three passes cutting apart the Ducks rearguard before Liam Roberts cut inside Bewley and clinically dispatched the ball into the bottom corner. 2-0 Godalming

Jack Wood had a chance to pull a goal back when he connected with Edgeworth’s corner, but, leaning back, he was only able to head over, and as time went on Aylesbury’s attacking was becoming ever more desperate with Blackett off target with a scuffed effort, and then Shaun Owens and Field both hitting wayward audacious long shots.

Three minutes before the break and the Ducks did have a route back into the game when Putman stepped up and struck a belter of a 30-yard free-kick straight into the top corner. 1-2

Half-time: Godalming 2-1 Aylesbury

Aylesbury’s second half started with the loss of Jesse Waites to an apparent hamstring injury, Joey Acheampong his replacement, and things soon got even worse as the hosts added a third goal.

Wheeler turned provider with a tremendous ball to the far post where another ex-Slough player, Adam Cornell, headed firmly into the net. 3-1 Godalming

Blackett then became the next player to limp from proceedings, twisting awkwardly as he landed on the difficult surface, but before Greg Williams was able to come on to replace him, the Ducks had conceded again.

That man Wheeler was on the mark again, receiving a square ball across the box after Bell had come from his line to try and narrow the angle, and he fired high into the net with the goal at his mercy. 4-1 Godalming

Will Hutton went for a fifth with a swerving shot which ended up being straight at Bell, before Aylesbury tried to get a goal back for themselves when Edgeworth picked out Field in the area who turned smartly but shot over.

Godalming hit the bar when Steve Brown met Wheeler’s corner kick delivery with a towering header, before Jake Bewley became the third Aylesbury player leaving the pitch injured after he was clattered into by substitute Graeme Purdy, Tinashe Chabata entering the fray.

United retained an attacking threat with a flicked on free kick headed wide by Field, but the bigger talking point was the dismissal of Purdy after less than ten minutes on the pitch. Having already been booked moments ago, the substitute striker dived into a sliding tackle and was shown his second yellow card.

The hosts were then further depleted and forced to play the closing stages with nine men when a home defender limped out of the action.

Even against nine Aylesbury’s struggles in front of goal continued, a far cry from the incisiveness and clinicism their opponents had shown. Putman’s corner kick was spooned over by Shane Wood, and there were twice blocks on the line as Musgrove kept out Putman’s shot and Assai managed to prevent a Jack Wood header crossing at the very last moment. It just wasn’t to be for the Ducks.