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The Evo-Stik League South
Match Report

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Aylesbury bowed out of the Red Insure Cup at the hands of a clinical Potters Bar Town, who took their chances well to score three without reply at The ASM Stadium.

On top for the opening twenty minutes, the Ducks hit the bar and forced the visiting keeper to save, but paid the price for their wastefulness as the visitors scored having won a corner kick from essentially their first attack.

It was Lewis Osborne who struck the woodwork in the eighth minute, when Ben Goode’s punch out from a corner kick was rifled back in by the midfielder where it struck the underside of the bar before bouncing down on the line and away.

As Aylesbury’s strong start continued Bruno Brito saw a shot saved, whilst five minutes later Sonny French skewed a shot wide after a ball forwards was dummied by Tyrone Taylor.

Zaki Oualah had his first touch of the ball when comfortably fielding a Chris Doyle free kick, but it was opposite number Goode who remained the busier keeper and he was off his line quickly to save well from French running through onto Ollie Hogg’s fine through ball.

After three corners came to nothing – Taylor heading the latter wide at the near post – United suffered the blow of an injury to Osborne, Greg Williams returning from his own injury lay off to replace him.

This setback coincided with Aylesbury’s downturn in fortunes, and on the half hour mark the Scholars fashioned their first meaningful chance as a move down the left saw Luke Warner-Eely play the ball inside to Evandro Delgado who fired wide across goal.

Less than a minute later and the visitors took the lead. Aylesbury’s achilles heel of defending corners struck again as a flag kick from the right was met cleanly by Ashley Nathaniel-George, afforded a free header in the six yard area. 1-0 Potters Bar

The visitors followed this up with two long range efforts from Doyle, the first after he took a throw in and let the ball roll across him but got his bearings wrong as he snatched the shot wide, and then doing the same thing after the ball found its way to him outside the area.

Aylesbury ended the half as they had started, and French could only volley a difficult chance over the bar from Jake Bewley’s cross, but Williams might have done better when Bewley again got forward down the left to square, but the veteran could only tamely shoot straight at Goode.

Half-time: Aylesbury 0-1 Potters Bar

A half time reshuffle from manager Glyn Creaser moved Jack Wood out to right back, and he was quickly involved as his run set up a simple chance for Brito with a low ball across goal, but the Portuguese attacker ballooned over from eight-yards.

A second period punctuated by petty fouls, yellow cards, injury stoppages and substitutions did nothing to help the Ducks rediscover their rhythm, as both sides huffed and puffed their way through the freezing cold night.

It was midway through the half before United had another shot, a poor free kick from deep not beating the first man, but falling kindly for Williams who lashed a shot just wide of the target.

Some good work by the largely stifled French then allowed Lea Coulter a chance to shoot, which was blocked, and as the ball rebounded to Wood his effort was saved comfortably by the visiting custodian.

Ten minutes from time a clearly frustrated Coulter was somewhat fortunate to escape with a booking for a reckless challenge, before Bewley tried his luck with a 25-yard free kick two minutes late which was on target but easily caught by Goode.

That was to be as close as Aylesbury would come to rescuing a draw (and a ‘straight to penalties’) end to the game, and the Scholars grabbed a killer second goal with seven minutes remaining. A flighted pass over the defence picked out ex-Duck Billy Adcock who directed a superb mid-air volley across goal and just inside the far post. 2-0 Potters Bar

A third visitors’ goal nearly immediately followed as a ball into the box found Nathaniel-George with his back to goal, where a quick swivel and snapshot missed the target by inches.

With 91 minutes on the clock, there was to be a flattering third for the Scholars. Doyle’s cross from the left looped goalwards off Jack Wood and was kept out by an excellent save from Oualah, but the ball came straight to substitute Jerry Maja who bundled it into the net. 3-0 Potters Bar

It the end a somewhat harsh and comprehensive end to a Red Insure Cup game that has seen some of Aylesbury’s best results and performances this season.

The Ducks can now solely concentrate on Southern League survival as they embark on their final fifteen games of the season.