A world-class strike from Billy Healey was enough to secure the three points for Wingate & Finchley at Earlsmead against Harrow Borough, however the Blues were cagey from the opening minutes.
Ryman League Premier Division:
Harrow Borough 0 Wingate & Finchley 1
Tuesday, 20 September, 2016
Ibrahim Meite first charged through the middle before letting a swerving effort go which forced a diving save from Shane Gore to his right. The goalkeeper was needed again just minutes later to deny the same player, who worked his way inside left testing Gore at his near-post.
Meite forced a last-ditch challenge from Sean Cronin who prevented the hosts from taking the lead. The Blues soon found their momentum continually recycling position well, as Billy Healey played in Reece Beckles with a perfectly weighted pass, but the latter could only curl his attempt over the bar.
Majestic midfielder Tommy Tejan-Sie could count himself as unlucky not to find the net. First Steve Wales’ cross allowed him a chance from outside the box, but saw Shaun Preddie deflect his effort wide. Then Preddie and Meite worked together to clear away Wales’ corner, though only as far as Tejan-Sie whose dipper fell inches past the post.
Francis Babalola worked his way into the box at the other end looking for the bottom corner, only to see Gore again in stubborn form making a vital stop. After the restart, Ahmet Rifat’s quick taken free-kick found Tanasheh Abrahams out on the left whose first-time cross arrived towards Healey, who placed an attempt agonizingly past the past with Luke Williams left flat-footed.
Healey then had the ball in the back of the net finishing off a cushioned cross from Wales, only to see the linesman quickly raise his flag for offside. Harrow’s Steve Brown was sent off for dragging down Beckles who was through on goal, though the resulting free-kick saw Abrahams fire wide.
Wingate finally broke the deadlock through Healey. Abrahams and Beckles combined finding the striker who emphatically finished into the top corner from outside the area, sending the away fans into jubilant celebrations.
Rob Laney came close to assisting Healey for his second after bursting down the left on a counter, only to find his cross cleared away at the last second by Preddie.
Luke Williams, Lewis Ochoa, Josh Webb, Shaun Preddie, Steve Brown, George Nicholas, Michael Bryan, Joshua Webb (Ryan Hope 75), Marc Charles-Smith (David Taylor 67), Ibraham Meite, Francis Babalola (Lewis Driver 71)
Unused Subs: Harry Newman, Max Holland
Wingate & Finchley:
Shane Gore, Ola Williams, Ryan Sellers, John Mbamarah (Tanasheh Abrahams 45), Sean Cronin, Ahmet Rifat, Steve Wales, Freddy Moncur, Billy Healey (Rob Ogleby 85), Tommy Tejan-Sie, Reece Beckels-Richards (Rob Laney 81)
Unused Subs: Rob Hastings, Luke Ifil
WingateTV: Sean Cronin and Billy Healey Post Harrow Borough: