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Football: Harlow Town edge closer to the top

Football / Sun 6th Sep 2015 at 03:14pm

Ryman Div One North

Brightlingsea Regent 0 v 1 Harlow Town

THE Hawks moved to within a point of the top of the table, after overcoming a resilient Brightlingsea Regent side. Harlow had dominated the first half without finding the net, and a resurgent home side made it difficult in the second half.

With only 10 minutes remaining, Alex Read’s glancing header beat the goalkeeper for an important three points.

Harlow had started the game brightly, and went on to control the first half. With only ten minutes on the clock, Ryan Melaugh tried his luck from the edge of the area. His chipped shot beat Andrew Plummer, but bounced off the bar.

Harlow were carving open the Brightlingsea defence, but the hosts stood firm to keep the ball out of the net. Junior Dadson’s goal-bound shot was blocked by a diving Jake Gould, before Syrus Gordon saw his first-time volley headed off the line by right-back Ricky Griggs.

In a rare sight of goal for the hosts, Lamell Howell and Gould played a neat one two to get inside the penalty box, but Junior Dadson’s covering tackle was perfectly timed and the penalty appeals were waved away.

The visitors then hit the bar for the second time. Alex Read collected a poorly cleared corner, and knocked it over the head of defender Matt Cripps to create space. Read then hit it first time, leaving the home custodian Plummer stranded on his line, but the ball careered off the bar to frustrate Harlow.

It was just before half-time when visiting ‘keeper Niklas Freund was forced into a save. Brendan Heath collected the ball on the edge of the area, but didn’t connect well and it was easily caught.

HT: Brightlinesea Regent 0-0 Harlow Town

Brightlingsea came out after the interval with a renewed purpose, and instantly looked more of a threat to the Harlow goal. Within minutes of the kick off Jake Gordon had run through on goal, and although his lob beat Freund it landed harmlessly on the roof of the net.

Ibrahima Sonko was then on hand to charge down a shot from Luke Reed, diverting the ball out for a corner. The hosts were certainly making up for their lack of chances in the first half.

The second period was end to end. Leon Antoine had a close range effort saved, while Jake Gordon was a constant threat for the home side on the right wing. His pace was causing problems, but Brightlingsea were still unable to test Freund.

The breakthrough came with just ten minutes left to play. Ryan Melaugh was fouled on the left-touchline, and Craig Pope whipped the resulting free kick into the box at pace. Alex Read’s backwards glancing header diverted the ball just enough to beat the ‘keeper.

FT: Brightlinesea Regent 0-1 Harlow Town

Harlow had controlled the first period, and they were unlucky not to go in ahead at the break. After an even second half, they would have been disappointed to come away with less than a win. It was a crucial three points that keeps them hot on the heels of the league-leaders and in the chasing pack.

The next game for Harlow is at home on Tuesday 8th September, when Barkingside visit the Harlow Arena. Kick-off is at 7:45pm.

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