A commanding performance from Hitchin Town was enough to earn them all three points on a freezing night at Top Field, leaving Hayes and Yeading United's new look team with plenty of food for thought for the on coming busy winter fixture list.
United managers Ritchie Hanlon and Paul Hughes brought in three more new signings for this one and all three played in defence with Josh Chamberlain and the impressive Connor Toomey joining from their old club, King's Langley, and Priestley Farquharson making his debut in senior football. Aside from this, it was good to see a familiar face return to the bench in Adam Everitt, following a spell out with injury.
Hitchin had the most of the opening exchanges without seriously threatening the United goal, although the positive, pacy approach play of the United front three meant that they didn't have it all their own way. It was the 17th minute before their first attempt got on target and it produced a goal as Liam Brooks pounced on some hesitant defending and bundled the ball into the bottom corner.
The home side continued to enjoy the lion's share of possession after the goal and twice Kane Smith got a lot of space in the right channel only to be denied by goal line blocks by United debutant Connor Toomey, the second on the volley. The same player then completed a goal saving challenge on Brooks leaping in to charge down his goalbound effort.
Play was suspended for a short while when some animal waste was found on the pitch and this stoppage broke the flow as the first half, which was a disappointing spectacle beforehand, ended without any further noteworthy incident.
The second half began with another Canaries' effort bravely blocked, this time by Manny Adebowale but then Mahlondo Martin teed up substitute Adam Everitt for United's first shot at goal, a long shot which cleared the cross bar. Play quickly switched to the other end, culminating in a curling effort from Will Wright which went across goal and ended up just clearing the angle of post and bar.
On the hour, United went their closest yet as Everitt centred for Mitchell Weiss whose shot from just outside the area passed the foot of the post by a matter of inches. However, their cause became harder seven minutes later when Robbie Burns applied a simple finish after charging down Adebowale's clearance.
With just a quarter of an hour to play, it went to 3-0 as Josh Bickerstaff thumped in a header from a corner. Two late corners for United almost brought a consolation but first, Martin's shot was deflected wide and then Weiss retrieved the ball and centred for Terence Carter who kiskicked the ball into Liam Gooch's grateful arms with the goal at his mercy. This just about capped a bad night for United, who will be hoping for better in their next fixture at St Neots Town.
Report by Nick Bell.
United Man of the Match: Connor Toomey.