Walthamstow’s Reserve side faced defeat in their first-ever game in the Essex Senior League Reserve Division as they faced Aveley at Parkside. It was a difficult night for the young Stags but a good experience as they played in the league against a strong side.
Both sides tried to get off to the best possible start but Aveley looked the strongest. They thought they had scored in the 5th-minute but it was ruled out for offside. Stow were pinned back from the opening minutes as the hosts brought the ball forward. A couple of shots were blocked before a shot drilled into the ground was well held by Jordan Paul.
Walthamstow tried to play a long ball as Airon Paul made some good runs down the wing but the hosts defended well, preventing Stow from getting an opening. The first chance for Stow came in the 18th-minute when a free-kick was aimed for the near post and flicked towards goal but it was well by the Millers keeper. Aveley threatened the Stow goal but their shots were dragged wide. First their number 7 tried his luck from outside the box but dragged his shot before their 2 sent a powerful shot just wide, The deadlock was eventually broken in the 24th-minute when Aveley’s 8 turned and shot, sending his effort past Paul.
Aveley kept up the pressure following the opener but couldn’t direct their shots on target. As the game approached half-time, Roly Mampasi made a good run towards goal but he shot wide of the target. Aveley continued to knock on the door and their number 7 had a couple of shots but Jordan Paul did well to prevent a second goal. In added time, Aveley thought they had a second after the ball was chipped over the keeper but again, it was ruled out for offside.
Aveley charged out of the blocks in the second half and within less than 5-minutes, they had doubled their lead. Their 16 cut in-field and rattled a shot past Paul. Another shot was fired over from distance before Aveley had their third of the night. Their number 8 was played through and slotted low past Paul.
The Aveley keeper was forced into a save at his near post as a cross-shot almost squeezed in. Two minutes later, Aveley extended their lead after a close range finish. Stow immediately tried to respond but the hosts defended well to prevent any way back for Walthamstow. The hunger for goals was their for Aveley as they continued to push forward. The hosts’ 2 tried to deliver a cross but it was well held by Paul before a shot from the 22 was curled wide.
The pressure they applied paid off as a tired Walthamstow conceded two goals in 5 minutes. First, a through ball was slotted well past Paul into the far corner before a good corner delivery was headed in. As the game reached the final 5 minutes, Stow almost worked a ball through the Aveley defence but the gaps closed very quickly. Aveley’s final goal of the night was scored in the 86th minute when a side-footed effort was sent past Paul after the hosts had won possession in the middle.
Aveley had a chance in the final minute when their 10 found some space but his shot from distance was straight at the keeper.