Pico Gomez Gives K’s All The Points
Seven points outside the playoffs but merely eight above the drop, Ks fans are still not quite sure which way to look this season. A win away to Wingate and Finchley was certainly a big confidence though - both for Pico Gomez, who grabbed both goals, and for the club as a whole.
It took just three minutes for Tommy Williams' side to take the lead. Josh Casey, revelling in a midfield role with his namesake Dylan covering at left-back, burst into the box and was felled. Gomez' penalty was hardly Traynoresque, but despite goalkeeper Bobby Smith getting down to it it wriggled over his body and into the net.
For the most part, the game was a frustrating series of missed chances for Ks to extend their lead. The best of these fell to Elvis Hammond on 32 minutes after Steve Laidler got forward on the counter-attack and then Chris Henry picked him out with a low cross. With the goal at his mercy, Hammond failed to get a good contact on the ball from six yards.
Ks increased the pressure after the interval but when a long ball broke for Hammond he fired over. He had another good chance after using his strength well on 63 minutes but he toe-poked it wide of Smith's goal.
Having squandered chances, it felt inevitable that Wingate would steal the points with a sucker-punch. That sucker-punch came on 73 minutes when Rob Tolfrey could only parry out a shot from the left and ex-Ks man Ahmet Rifat, sent off at Kingsmeadow last season, was left with a simple close-range finish.
Rather than steal the points though, the equaliser just set the hosts up for fresh disappointment. Josh Casey beat Smith with a superb twenty-yarder just three minutes later, and the initial disappointment of seeing it crash back off the crossbar quickly rescinded when Gomez pounced first to head home.
The mystery of why 20 of Ks' 31 points have come away from home remains unsolved but at least Williams will feel he can start looking up the table again rather than down.
Match report by Simon Grier.