Football: Harlow Town fall to another away defeat

Football / Sun 19th Feb 2017 at 01:13pm

Ryman Premier

Merstham 1 v 0 Harlow Town

BOTH goalkeepers had been barely more than spectators when Alex Addai hit the 62nd minute winner. His low finish settled in the corner, with the Hawks unable to mount a comeback.

The hosts started brightly with the opening chances of the game. A clever free-kick routine gave Dan Hector space to shoot, but he blazed over.

Xavier Vidal then got on the end of a chipped cross to the back post, but his side-footed volley was easily collected by Hawks stopper David Hughes.

Hector was causing problems for the Harlow Town defence, and he combined well with left-back Kristian Campbell to put the defender through on goal. David Hughes was quick off his line to dive at his feet, clearing the danger.

Harlow were probing, but a series of crosses were easily cut-out as the Hawks weren’t able to mount a sustained attack.

The visitors’ first shot at goal came on 37 minutes when Khale da Costa broke from his own half. He twisted and turned past two defenders, but he final shot was hit straight at Merstham goalkeeper Josh Smith who gathered comfortably.

David Hughes once again had an easy save to make when Dan Bennett’s snap shot from 25 yards headed straight towards the Harlow ‘keeper, before Vidal blazed over with another speculative effort from the edge of the area.

HT: Merstham 0-0 Harlow Town

If the spectators were hoping for a more impressive display of football in the second period, they were to be disappointed as once again both sides struggled to impose themselves on the opposition.

A sliced shot from Merstham’s Simon Cooper found its way to Dan Hector, but the winger put his effort high and wide.

Hawks boss Danny Chapman rang the changes, with debutant Tommy Fagg and Syrus Gordon replacing Alex Read and Mario Noto, but they were unable to change the direction of the game.

Merstham scored in the 62nd minute. A free-kick fell to Alex Addai on the corner of the penalty area, who drilled a low shot across goal and into the bottom corner.

The hosts looked most likely to score again, but in truth they could only create half-chances. Mark Okoye’s header from a corner flew over the bar before Tom Kavanagh’s 25 yard shot was caught easily by David Hughes.

Harlow Town did try to push forward in the final ten minutes of the game, but the final ball was lacking to create any clear-cut chances.

In the fourth minute of added time Syrus Gordon gathered the ball on the edge of the area, but his shot was blocked by Antoine Douglas to prevent the visitors salvaging a point.

A draw would have been unjust on a Merstham side who didn’t dominate the game, but produced a little bit more than Harlow Town on the day to deserve all three points.

FT: Merstham 1-0 Harlow Town

Harlow remain on 50 points from their 34 league games, dropping to 9th in the league table.

The Hawks next host Folkestone Invicta in the league on Tuesday 21st February. It’s a 7:45pm kick off.

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