150 NOT OUT!-Double from the “Machine Read” and a Piece of “Dadson Magic” leaves the Hawks three points off Play off’s

Football / Wed 25th Jan 2017 at 12:50pm

Harlow Town vs Met Police- Match Report

By Luke Henry

Harlow Town welcomed Met Police to the Harlow Arena, looking to build on their first win of the new year after a 1-0 victory against Tonbridge Angels. Met Police arrived in indifferent form at the start of the year, looking to move away from the bottom end of the table.

The game started at a ferocious pace with the first chance arriving after 30 seconds, with tricky winger Roman Michael- Percil curled a shot straight into the arms of keeper David Hughes, aided by a deflection by Referee Stuart Cheek. Junior Dadson then blazed one over the bar after two minutes. The fast start was awarded with a goal, and it didn’t take long for Alex Read to hit his 150th goal in Harlow colours. A fizzing low cross from Junior Dadson found Leon Antoine who flicked it towards goal, finding the prolific Read who buried it from close range, It had been a good start from the Hawks, who had been neat and tidy in possession. However, the counter attack from the visitors was looking lively in the opening stages, and they nearly drew level after seven minutes. A deep surging run from midfielder Tom Hickey laid it off to Michael- Percil, weaving himself in and out of the defenders around the area, before pulling it back to the unmarked Ola Sogbanmu who struck at goal. Craig Pope was there at the right place at the right time to clear. The first ten minutes had been a blistering encounter, with the game already an end to end affair already with the pace of both teams creating a high intensity. A rasping drive from the heavily involved Junior Dadson called keeper Billy Bishop into action, as the ball nearly whistled into the top corner, before skipper Craig Pope blazed one high and wide after crisp build up play from Alex Read and Mario Noto. Harlow were starting to dominate proceedings pushing the visitors further back, who still did look dangerous on the counter attack with no chances to show so far. Lloyd Macklin was enduring a frustrating evening, playing as the lone striker and struggling against the centre back pairing of Ibrahima Sonko and Lawrence Yiga, who were marshalling him well. Harlow were still on the frontfoot, however the tempo had dropped as we approached the 30th minute. It was now the visitors turn to have a good spell of possession with nothing to show for it however. Both wingers in Orlando Smith and Roman Michael- Percil were the dangermen for the away side, with their pace, power and strength looking like the key men to unlock the Harlow Backline at any moment. Alex Read went close on 37 minutes with a speculative effort that was parried out by Keeper Bishop, before Orlando Smith chanced his arm. Shot was always rising. Harlow ended the half the stronger, with Leon Antoine nearly beating the keeper with an acrobatic effort following a clipped corner from Mario Noto. A blistering counter attack and one- two between Read and Dadson saw the latter bearing down on goal. Bishop was alert to the task, spreading himself and smothering the opportunity. Both teams had asserted themselves well in this match, looking sharp within possession. Alex Read’s 150th goal the difference. All to play for in the second half.

The opening stages of the second half saw Harlow settling and starting the quicker and it wasn’t long before the Hawks doubled their advantage on 51 minutes. Corner from Mario Noto was flicked on by Leon Antoine, and found Alex Read, who turned and swiveled and volleyed into the bottom corner for 151st for Harlow and 2-0 to the Hawks on the evening, breathing space from the home side. Harlow were now going for the kill, Pope again with another strike on goal, a sweetly struck effort straight at the arms of the keeper. Heads of the visitors had somewhat dropped and the attacking was lacking, even more so with the surprise substitution of Orlando Smith being replaced by Luke Robertson. The winger had been a bright spark throughout the match, and can count himself unlucky to have been replaced. Great chance on the hour mark for Met Police. Hesitation from centre half Lawrence Yiga allowed Lloyd Macklin to burst through, one one one dragging a left footed shot wide of the target, a massive chance gone. However, they didn’t dwell on it as they pulled one back after 65 minutes. A glorious defence splitting ball from John Nurse, found Macklin who cut it back to the diminutive winger Michael- Percil, who had been quieter in this second half, rounded Hughes and showed composure to smash home past Lawrence Yiga on the line. The goal didn’t disrupt the flow of Harlow and they threatened again. Dadson again involved, utilising his pace before flashing a cross that came too quick for Read to adjust his feet and couldn’t direct his shot goal bound. The game was finally settled by a moment of “ Dadson Magic” who had been terrific all evening. Jared Small’s cross was parried out by the keeper Billy Bishop only to the path of Junior Dadson, who took one touch out of his feet before curling the ball into the far corner of the goal from the edge of the area, leaving the keeper unmoved. A fantastic goal alongside a fantastic performance. Harlow were seeing this one out with the away time lacking the same intent that they had during the first and were a shadow of themselves this half. The scoreline could’ve shown more gloss if Mario Noto converted the two chances presented to him at the end. A counter attack involving Charlie Dickens ended with Jared Small picking out the unmarked Noto in the box, however the midfielder miscued his volley from close range when a goal look certain. He had the chance to redeem himself moments later, but he couldn’t capitalise on the chance after good work between Khale Da Costa and Bamba Ngamb resulted in the midfielder putting one past the post.

Full time and a 3-1 win to Harlow means they are now three points off the play- offs. An Inspired performance from Junior Dadson was an factor in the comfortable victory. But it’s Alex Read’s brace that will be remembered, notching his 150th and 151st in the process. Harlow now have 11 home wins this season, while Met Police woeful away record continues. Next up for Harlow is another home game against Worthing, while the visitors entertain Harrow Borough.

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