Bloods hope to stay ahead of Newmarket

PUBLISHED: 10:00 23 November 2017

A Saffron Walden player fires goalwards (pic Jamie Pluck)

A Saffron Walden player fires goalwards (pic Jamie Pluck)

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Saffron Walden Town head to local rivals Newmarket for a tough Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division test this weekend.

Stuart Wardley’s men remain in fifth place despite a 2-0 defeat at Kirkley and Pakefield on Saturday, but Newmarket are just one point behind them in the table.

The Bloods were brought back down to earth, following their 2-1 midweek win over Wivenhoe, when they scored twice in the second half at Catons Lane to come back from a half-time deficit to claim the points.

The first chance of the game came in the second minute, as Walden striker Charlie Portway fired wide from close range.

However, Wivenhoe were ahead in the sixth minute as a long ball over the defence found Harry Willoughby who superbly lobbed Walden keeper Neil O’Sullivan.

The next 20 minutes were fairly quiet in terms of chances, until Ryan Fleming saw his header from a corner blocked on the line by a sharp Wivenhoe defender.

Whilst the Bloods dominated the first half in terms of possession, Wivenhoe went in at the break the happier side as their very direct style of play had caused problems for the hosts.

Wivenhoe made the first real chance of the second half as midfielder Zak Johnson dribbled his way through the defence, only to fire into the side netting.

Portway looked certain to score in the 58th minute, but headed over an open goal, before Dan Trendall found himself in acres of space on the halfway line and dribbled into the box where his initial attempt was saved, but he poked the rebound into the net.

The introduction of substitute Joseph Maybanks brought a new dimension to the game as his quick dribbling and well-timed passes gave the hosts a boost.

He drove across the face of goal on 68 minutes, before Walden grabbed their winner with 10 minutes remaining.

A corner from the right was met by Ashley Skeggs and his header found the top corner for his second goal in two games.

Wivenhoe went agonisingly close to an equaliser in the final stages when a scramble in the box eventually led to a free kick being awarded to the hosts.

Saffron Walden: O’Sullivan, Bell, Ledwith, Molloy, Skeggs, Fleming, Emsden, Portway, Simon-Parsons, Trendall, Crane Subs: Murphy, Maybanks, Gray, Moody, Grindrod.

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