AFC SudburyMatch Report
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Saturday, March 10th, 2012 | Attendance 358
AFC Sudbury 1 - 0 Brentwood Town
This match was sponsored by AFC Sudbury Grassroots
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|7||Daniel Emmanuel||Off 90 +1|
|14||Dave Wareham||On 90+1|
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A.F.C. Sudbury welcomed Brentwood Town to the MEL Group Stadium knowing that a victory over the Essex club would see them leap-frog them in the league table.
Brentwood Town kicked off the match, starting brightly with Neil Cousins caught offside inside the second minute. Sudbury responded and within a minute Jamie Griffiths, making his home debut, sent a fine ball for Danny Emmanuel to chase through the centre, but Brentwood’s goalkeeper Elliot Justham was quickly out to gather the ball. The roller-coaster start continued with Cousins on the break for the visitors, but his weak shot was easily gathered by Danny Gay. Robbie Martin then tackled well to win the ball with Brentwood on the break, his ball reaching James Baker who crucially just lost control on the edge of the area at the vital moment.
On ten minutes Russell Pond rose well to head clear a Brentwood corner kick and at the other end the frenetic pace continued with Richard Howell’s right wing cross hit on the drop by James Baker. Justham saved at the second attempt to keep the scores level. It was Brentwood Town who had the next chance, Ryan Edgar blazing over the crossbar from seven yards in the visitor’s best chance of the match. There was a long delay when Lauris Coggin took a heavy blow to the head and was replaced by Martin Stokes. Sudbury forced a couple of quick free-kicks, delivered by Jamie Griffith, but these were gathered by Justham in the visitor’s goal with a measure of comfort.
The early impetus of the game faded with neither side able to keep possession and both defences in mean mood. Nathan Clarke ensured that there was little that Brentwood Town could throw at the Sudbury defence which had any impact and was in imperious form. Ably assisted by Adam Dalby, Russell Pond, Robbie Martin and James Smith, the side rarely looked troubled at the back. Martin’s left wing cross on twenty-seven minutes was punched clear by Justham with James Baker winded as he battled for the ball. Sam Clarke sent a thirty-fifth minute shot just over the crossbar from a Jamie Griffith right wing corner. Sudbury’s growing superiority in possession was marked, and Danny Emmanuel’s run saw him send in a curling cross at pace across the six-yard area which Justham did very well to gather.
On forty-minutes Sudbury wrested the lead and the advantage in the game.
Jamie Griffith managing to get his head to the ball at the far post beating a despairing dive from Justham. Within a minute a superb run by Danny Emmanuel saw him send the ball inside for Richard Howell whose stinging volley just went the wrong side of the post. Russell Pond seemed to have tackled Darren Blewitt brilliantly in injury-time, but the Brentwood man won a free-kick on the edge of the home penalty area. The ball was well delivered into the Sudbury penalty area and Danny Gay made the save at the second attempt.
The half began with Sudbury in possession, the home side stringing together twenty-five passes before James Baker struck high over the Brentwood area. Sudbury started the half purposefully with Russell Pond’s fifty-fourth minute corner kick punched clear by Justham. On fifty-eight minutes James Smith rose high to head clear Darren Blewitt’s right wing corner as both sides traded blows with few chances being created by either.
On sixty-nine minutes Nathan Clarke headed to safety from another Brentwood break, as the Sudbury defence continued in its mean form. On seventy-five minutes Robbie Martin found Richard Howell in the Brentwood area and his shot was blocked as the visitors rushed up the park on the break. Substitute Dean Green found just enough space to get a rare shot away for Brentwood, but this was straight at a well-positioned Danny Gay for whom the save was straight forward. Robbie Martin then snuffed out a further Brentwood break with Danny Gay able to clear the ball deep into the visitor’s half.
Brentwood tried to apply the pressure, but Sudbury’s defence was to prove immovable. Ryan Edgar’s promising run was snuffed out as Sudbury worked out the final minutes of pressure with their sleeves well and truly rolled up. Jamie Griffiths’ right wing corner was delivered deep towards the far post and Nathan Clarke rose to flash a header just wide of the left hand upright. A knock to Danny Emmanuel saw David Wareham take to the park in the first minute of injury time and the substitute was to enjoy a busy cameo appearance. Brentwood pressed their hosts hard, but Sudbury rarely looked troubled and took all three points from a game in which their sheer hard work deserved the reward which the final whistle duly delivered.