Superb performance by United as they come from behind to win at Aldermaston
By Chris Burnett
Three goals and three points sees Woodley keep alive chances of progressing in Subsidary Cup
In their fourth meeting of the season, United finally got the better of Aldermaston, in the process making it three away wins in a row.
The game however started in the worst possible way for Woodley when a couple of mistakes in defence allowed Sid Gbla to beat Callum Sangwell in the United goal just two minutes in.
Heads could have dropped after the early setback, but the reverse happened with Woodley putting in their best performance of the season. Sam Guze combined with Freddie Barron for the visitors’ first chance; the latter saw his low drive from twenty yards kept out.
Barron was heavily involved in the next attack, racing onto a nice pass from captain Teddy Thomas. With Leon Mannion waiting to turn it in, Barron’s cross was cut out, allowing the same player a second chance to pick out a yellow shirt. Barron obliged finding Guze who mishit his shot from ten yards.
United continued to press for an equaliser, Sangwell starting the move with a long throw out to Thomas. Picking up the ball ten yards inside his own half, Thomas skipped round several challenges before finding Mannion who skewed his shot wide of the left post.
Fifteen minutes in saw Ashley East in the Aldermaston goal deny Mannion with his feet whilst an even better save kept out another Mannion effort after a weak Guze shot turned into a perfect through ball.
Mannion was then desperately unfortunate to slip as a fine ball from Thomas, whipped in from the right, arrived at him unmarked at the back post.
The home side looked most dangerous when left back Kashif Chowdhary had possession. A decent run saw him evade several challenges before finding Shane Small who missed to the right.
Aldermaston had the final chance of an entertaining half; Tommy Elmore’s chip was swatted behind by Sangwell.
HT AFC Aldermaston 1-0 Woodley United
The second period began with two more Mannion opportunities. A difficult chance from a tight angle on the right failed to test East; moments later the Woodley forward headed wide a right wing corner.
On fifty five minutes a counter attack saw United heavily outnumber their opponents in the final third. Thomas found fellow wing back Pele Hagger whose cross-come-shot flashed across the six yard box.
The Woodley pressure was relentless. Chace Jewell played in Mannion who had his tame shot kept out by East before Luke Axton-Hall saw his flick from a Guze corner go narrowly over.
United made a change on sixty seven minutes when Hagger made way for Max Laschok. This saw Jewell move to left wing back with Laschok joining Mannion up top.
Jewell’s position change saw him heavily involved in the next two attacks. His shot forced a decent stop from East diving to his left before a superb cross found Laschok who fired in from eight yards on seventy one minutes. It was no less than the away side deserved.
Before Aldermaston could kick off, Woodley made a second change with Ross Blakemore replacing Ryan Alexander in central midfield.
United pressed on for a winner. A fierce Laschok shot from the right missed to the left whilst Guze shot over from twenty two yards.
With ten minutes to go Woodley went ahead from a free kick after a foul on Laschok. Guze took the set piece and found the top left corner. Great strike!
United made a final change on eighty one minutes when Reece Brown came on for Jewell.
Two minutes after going ahead Woodley had a massive let off when a low cross from the left was parried into the path of Elmore who missed an open goal from six yards. This was followed up by brave defending from Blakemore who threw himself in front of a powerful Gbla effort.
With the home side throwing men forward, United should have wrapped it up on the break. Mannion raced clear with Laschok free to his left; rounding East the two Woodley players got in each other’s way resulting in neither initially getting a shot off. Eventually Laschok found the space to shoot only to see his effort hit the inside of the right post.
United went on to seal the win with three minutes to go from the penalty spot after Laschok who made a real difference after coming on was tripped. Guze stepped up and beat East with a low shot into the right corner.
The last chances of the match fell to Mannion. Going one on one with East he was denied a deserved goal by a decent save. The ball broke to Laschok whose cross was flicked wide from close range.
FT AFC Aldermaston 1-3 Woodley United