Wingate & Finchley earned their first points of 2014 with a crucial win over Thamesmead Town as they ended a run of one win in ten league matches, writes Paul Lerner.
Ryman League Premier Division
Wingate & Finchley 3 Thamesmead 1
Saturday, 25 January, 2014
The win, which saw them regain a five-point buffer above the relegation zone, saw the Blues get off to aflying start when took the lead in only the fifth minute – eventual man of the match Tommy Tejan-Sie retrieved a deep cross by the left byeline, and despite losing the ball in attempting to beat his man, he forced a mistake to win the ball back. Showing great composure he bore down on goal and slotted the ball under the goalkeeper.
The wind was playing havoc with both sides in an even first half, and in the 20th minute Thamesmead levelled the scores, as a long ball was flicked on to top-scorer Tommy Whitnell in space on the right side of Wingate’s defence. He calmly sent a low volley beyond Bobby Smith from 15 yards. Whitnell should have scored again receiving a long ball, as he made space away from his marker. He created a one-on-one but pulled his shot wide.
Adam Bolle had a couple of chances but once he ran the ball out of play having rounded the goalkeeper, and the other time he was denied by the offside flag. Towards the end of the half Ahmet Rifat sent a low shot goalwards which was easily gathered by keeper. However, the wind was behind Thamesmead in this half and the dominated with territorial advantage.
Rashid Kamara showed trickery on the right wing inside of the box though narrowed the angle for himself, and as he shot he found the outside of the far post. Luke Edgar for the visitors had a shot charged down by Bobby Smith with a good chance soon after the break but Wingate took control from here.
After the break the weather deteriorated, but the wind was now behind Wingate & Finchley, who sealed a win with two goals in a four-minute spell. In the 54th minute Tejan-Sie took on half of Thamesmead’s team making his way from the halfway line to the byeline. He crossed to Bolle who had a simple header to put Wingate back in the lead. Four minutes later Rifat scored another header for the Blues as he received an Ola Williams cross and looped the stranded keeper.
There was a heavy bout of thunder and rain which forced the players off for a ten-minute spell but fortunately they were able to come back on. The rain made play difficult, but Wingate had the best chances late on as Thamesmead struggled. Tejan-Sie swung with a vicious half-volley which keeper Mott parried wide. Then from a counter attack Lewis Jones held the ball up well before playing in Bolle. He fired a swerving shot which Mott did well to acrobatically flick over the bar.
Wingate & Finchley Line-up:
Smith, Williams (Jamison 70), Wright, Sogbanmu, Weatherstone, Aisien, Jones (Read 87), McCall, Bolle, Rifat, Tejan-Sie. Subs: McGonigle, Henry, Morante.