Woodley lead twice but end up on wrong side of 4-2 scoreline
By Chris Burnett
Penultimate match of the season ends in defeat
United headed to Didcot on Tuesday evening to face a side that picked up the win at Rivermoor when they met less than a month ago.
With heavy rain falling, Woodley made the perfect start scoring after just twelve seconds. A backpass saw the Town goalkeeper pass short to the right centre back; showing good anticipation Leon Mannion got to the ball first and squared to Max Laschok who netted from six yards.
Five minutes later the hosts levelled when a Ross MacDonald free kick from a good thirty five yards was spilled into the path of Jack Hollister who scored from close range.
The next ten minutes were devoid of chances as both teams tried to settle on a bobbly pitch. A tactical tweak was then made by United as captain Teddy Thomas swapped wings with Mannion who had started on the left.
After Laschok had a shot blocked, Woodley retook the lead on twenty four minutes from a corner. Chace Jewell’s delivery was only cleared to Jon Malone whose header from eighteen yards was nodded on by Thomas, before Laschok got his twentieth of the season heading home.
Once again, the lead only lasted five minutes as MacDonald tied the scores with a well struck free kick into the left corner from the right of the box.
Ninety seconds later Didcot went ahead when Hollister tapped in a low right wing cross from Caelan Isaac. A minute later the scoreline could have been increased further when Hollister went one on one with Tom Bryant; however, the forward was denied his third by a good save.
In a game full of errors, the Town keeper’s awful goal kick gifted possession to Mannion who ran at goal before seeing his cross flash across the six yard box. Mannion then had United’s final chance of the half when his header was saved. At the other end, Adam Barnard did well to block a fierce shot from the right.
HT Didcot Town Development 3-2 Woodley United
Woodley started the half with a good move down the left. The passage of play ended with a Freddie Barron effort well saved, the ball broke to Laschok whose follow up effort was kept out by the keeper who was still on the floor from the initial shot.
The home side were second best for the majority of the second period, though they came within inches of a fourth when Kieron Davies hit the bar following a cross from the left.
Just before the hour, Didcot keeper Simon Matthews pulled off a superb save diving to his right to keep out a Laschok strike from twenty two yards.
United made a change on sixty one minutes when Harrison Moore replaced Sam Wood in centre midfield.
The visitors kept pressing for an equaliser. Harry Hawkins just missed to the right whilst Moore was denied by Matthews after some quick intricate passes.
Woodley made a second change with a quarter of an hour to go when Thomas made way for Briggs.
Town sealed the points on seventy eight minutes when Davies followed up his first shot that was well saved by Bryant to bury the rebound.
The game ended with Bryant denying substitute Daryl Harris from the right side of the box with United appealing for offside before Mannion missed to the right from distance.
FT Didcot Town Development 4-2 Woodley United