Wingate and Finchley match report
match report by Rupert Cane
Kingstonian started a new era in Mitcham with an entertaining draw against Wingate and Finchley on Wednesday night, fighting back from two goals down to earn a point at Imperial Fields.
With the K’s fans getting accustomed to their new surroundings off the pitch, it looked like the players were equally uneasy on it, letting their fluorescently-clad visitors seize control of the contest and find the net twice in nine first-half minutes.
Midway through the half, as another K’s attack broke down, Wingate broke at speed and a low cross from the right was turned into the net from close range by Dylan Kearney.
Having gone behind for the first time this term, K’s wilted. The Blues passed up two very presentable chances - the second fired over the crossbar by Kearney after he had taken the ball around Tolfrey - before sub Kavan Cotter did double Wingate’s lead on the half-hour. There seemed little danger when he collected the ball between the centre circle and the 18-yard box, but he took a couple of strides forward before blasting a shot into the corner with an unstoppable blend of accuracy and power. It was some goal.
Lee O’Leary’s charges rode the storm and got a foothold back in proceedings. A cross into the box was spilled by Wingate keeper Ben Goode as his centre-back Jake Eales clattered into him, and the loose ball fell to Thomas Gogo who could only prod the ball wide of the gaping goal on the bounce.
Undeterred by that missed chance as the interval approached, K’s kept going and did get a goal back before the break. Cadogan spun on the edge of the box and went for goal, the ferocity of the strike too hot for Goode to handle.
O’Leary’s first team talk at Imperial Fields clearly went well as K’s came out for the second period with their tails up. It only took a couple of minutes for the equaliser to materialise, Thomas Gogo following Cadogan in scoring his first for the club after Cadogan and Ajuchi had done well to fashion an opening a few yards from goal.
It set the tone for an excellent half of football from Kingstonian, who passed the ball with pace and purpose, utilised the wing-backs effectively, and press their opponents into the kind of mistakes we were making in the first half.
Gogo had a shot dramatically saved, Cadogan headed another teasing Collins cross over, and sub Korrey Henry, a real nuisance through the middle, watched as a Wingate defender threw their body on the line to stop his shot finding the net. There were several other moments of promise if not a glut of clear openings.
In truth Wingate barely entered our half, the Kingstonian back three with Tyrese Owen in front of them mopping everything up, but when Tolfrey did misjudge a wide cross midway through it, a mass of hooped shirts just about hacked the ball to safety.
Try as they might, there was to be no decisive fifth goal and so for the second game this season both teams had to settle for a point. Both will have left south London thinking it could have been three.
Wingate and Finchley: Ben Goode, Harvey Steel, Mathew Achuba, Sam Cornish, Jake Eales, Daniel Emovon, Antonis Vasiliou, Alkeo Bani, Dylan Kearney, Tyrique Clarke, Freddie Hinds.
Subs: Elliott Long (for Freddie Hinds, 68m), Kavan Cotter (for Matthew Achuba, 27m), Fergal Hale-Brown, Joe Dearman, Loic Hernandez (for Sam Cornish, 78m).
Photo by Simon Roe - https://www.simonroephotography.com/