Hayes & Yeading United jumped to the Club’s highest ever league position of fourth having ground out a tough win yet again demonstrating their increasing mental strength.
At a ground where just three weeks ago United were comprehensively beaten by City’s tenants, Garry Haylock’s men laid that ghost to rest against a physical direct opponent in difficult conditions.
The game started off strangely with both sides having an early goal ruled out. In the third minute Ram Marwa challenged home keeper Steve Perrin for a left wing Neil Martin cross, Perrin was unable to hold and Marwa tapped home only to see it ruled out for a foul on the home keeper. A minute later when Aaron Howe was unable to hold Martin Paul’s right wing shot Stuart Douglas was on hand to force the rebound into the roof of the net only to see that he was flagged offside when Paul originally hit his shot.
It was the hosts that settled the better into the early proceedings Howe had to be alert to save a low Lewis Hogg cross and he then made another good save from the left a minute later.
As the half progressed however it was the visitors that the took the initiative, with the defence well marshalled by the outstanding captain Tom Cadmore. Cadmore’s side were able to take a stranglehold on the game as they frustrated the hosts at the back. In the 21st minute Scott Fitzgerald seized onto a long throughball between the hosts central defenders and with just Perrin to beat the keeper made a fine save from the low drive with the rebound hitting a home defender before rolling agonisingly wide of the post
In the 25th minute a fine passing movement starting with James Mulley and involving Will Hendry and Fitzgerald saw the ball find Mulley who had continued his run and again Perrin made another fine save to keep out a low drive. Four minutes later Perrin denied Marwa and 11 minutes before the break Matt Ruby went close after excellent work from Cadmore to play his central defensive partner in following a corner.
The second half started in much the same vein as the first with the hosts anxious to control proceedings Hogg was moved in field from the left as he had on Saturday in the hosts previous game, to have more influence on proceedings and the hosts had more of the early exchanges. It was Hogg who controlled most of City’s attacking play, and he, in fact, had the first chance of the half when well placed he hit the ball into the ground which allowed Howe to easily gather. In the 52nd minute the impressive Howe made a good recovery save when he was initially unable to hold Paul’s header he then stretched to turn the ball out for a corner. Hayes and Yeading United stood firm and resolute in defence in the face of home pressure as the hosts were unable to really create any clear cut chances.
With the Reds coming more and more into the second half they were able to make one of their more limited second half chances count in the 65th minute. Cadmore’s long ball found Hendry on the inside left channel, where he beat his defender and fired a curling shot that appeared to be heading in, only to strike the post, but Fitzgerald was on hand to bundle the rebound home from close range. Five minutes later the lead was nearly doubled when Hendry again found space and his clever throughball put Marwa away, but from an acute angle he blasted just over.
United knew that they would come under extreme pressure in the game’s closing stages but with Cadmore and Ruby in such fine form at the heart of the defence they limited the hosts chances although their were a couple of scares, firstly 15 minutes from time Cadmore made a fantastic clearance of Hogg’s low dangerous cross and a minute later, with time running out came two heart in the mouth moments in the space of seconds when a Chris Holland header from a corner was headed off the line by Danny Allen Page and the rebound fell to Paul and his drive looped over the defence and bounced off the crossbar. The rest of the game was seen out relatively comfortably at a ground where last season a 2 goal lead was let slip. You could see where Garry Haylock’s men had matured as a side to earn United a Club record with a fifth consecutive victory that moved them to fourth in the table.
Report by Nick Griffith.
Website United Man of the Match: Tom Cadmore