Gritty Away Performance
Three More Points gained
AFC went to Scraley Road, a ground that has not been a happy hunting ground of late, and came away with all three points in a much grittier performance that of the previous game.
Still without suspended central defender, AFC’s injury woes were added to when Lawrence Yiga was declared unfit with an achilles injury, meaning young Stefano Mallardo partnered James Baker at the heart of the defence.
Also missing from the team-sheet was striker Jake Reed.
It took AFC only ten minutes to get in front. Ayrton Coley playing up front, got down the right wing receiving a ball from Mallardo and whipped in a cross that found the head of Ryan Hervel. (pictured) The new signing headed the ball down and wide of keeper Sambridge to score his first goal for the club.
Seven minutes later AFC looked as though they would go two up, Kris Newby collected a long ball into the Heybridge penalty area and with only Sambridge to beat flicked the ball over the advancing keeper, who however managed to get fingertips to it and it went wide.
The home side did attack but were generally well marshalled, with Mallardo getting a good block midway through the half. Coley continued to use his pace and went through but fired well over the home bar. Baker had to be alive from a Heybridge corner and got up well to head away.
Payton Swatman from the right back position got forward and put in deep cross that at the far post that Jack Wilkinson could not quite get his head to. Newby and the Heybridge skipper Springett tangled and were booked with thirty minutes gone.
The hosts Morgan was also put into the referee’s book a few minutes later. Coley then found Newby whose shot was weak, before Heybridge levelled. A long ball down the middle eluded Baker and went to Richmond who fired home past the diving Archer.
Ex-AFC man Fitzgibbon received a booking for a foul on Wilkinson, and then AFC took the lead for the second time. Newby had a shot well saved by Sambridge the ball coming out to Swatman who crossed and there was Coley with his back to goal to stick out a foot and flick the ball home.
Half – Time; Heybridge Swifts 1 AFC Sudbury 2
AFC made a change at the start of the half with Wilkinson being replaced by new signing Correy Davidson who saw early action with a flying run down the left flank.
Lopes for the home side had a poor header that Archer was able to save easily, before on fifty-four minutes AFC went further in front. Following a left side corner another was forthcoming and Michael Shinn returning to a former stomping ground, delivered a great cross, and there rising majestically was James Baker to head powerfully into the back of the net. It was his first goal of the season.
Some poor officiating saw AFC Captain Sam Clarke booked when it seemed all he did wad try to head the ball. From the free-kick Springett struck the ball and it clipped the frame of the AFC goal.
Heybridge did however get the ball between the posts on fifty-eight minutes. Swatman lost out on the right side and Hunt crossed, the ball struck the chest of Lee Flynn and fell invitingly to the foot of Richmond who accepted the chance and fired home.
Davidson had a great run down the left and cross that Sambridge blocked but Newby could not capitalise. AFC then had the chance to put the game out of sight. Two Heybridge defenders collided going for the same ball and Coley was away, keeper Sambridge came out and the ball was fed to Newby but somehow he put the ball wide of what seemed and open goal.
Swatman went off and Jack Guyton took over at right back and was soon getting down the flank and crossing. Heybridge were having more of the ball at this point and from fully thirty yards Morgan blasted a shot that shook the frame of the AFC goal.
Ex-Swifts man Ryan Maxwell came on for AFC taking over from Hervel before Baker was booked, again it seemed very trivial. From the free kick again Springett fired over.
Both sides traded chances in the final ten minutes but AFC saw out the time to win their third away game in succession.
A much better team effort and something to build on.