Stow 2-0 Clacton

Stow continued their good league form with a 2-0 win over a determined FC Clacton side. Without Tommy Spillane, Adalberto Pinto, Michael Osei and Eman Okunja due to suspension, Terry Spillane and John Mackie shuffled their pack to give league debuts to Samir Bihmoutine and Keegan Cole.

It was an even opening to the game, and although Clacton had most of the ball, they failed to create any real openings. It wasn’t a great surprise then that Stow’s first chance came on the counter. Jason Beck played a ball out of defence to Callum Ibe, whose turn and pass into the path of Connor Scully was inch perfect. Scully crossed first time to Charlie Cole who was alert to poke in the rebound after Mike Corduroy saved his first effort.

The game continued in the same vein, but Stow were beginning to create more chances of their own. Charlie Cole had a great chance to head for his second but he put his effort just wide, and then Ibe saw a one-on-one effort deflected onto the underside of the bar and clear by Corduroy. The Clacton keeper had to be alert to keep out attempts from Charlie Edwards and Tommy Fletcher, but he could do little about Stow’s second.

Keegan Cole won the ball back on the edge of the centre circle, and played it into Callum Ibe who was having one of those unstoppable games which have made him such a fans’ favourite. Cole bounced off three tackles, somehow holding onto the ball, and when through on goal, unselfishly squared to Harrison Carnegie for the easiest of tap-ins.

The second half was much like the first. Clacton had more of the ball, but opted for a tactic of aerial bombardment towards the physical threat of Richard Acheampong up front, but Fletcher and Beck were more than a match, dealing with everything thrown their way. The closest they did come to troubling Stow was when a long ball forced a coming together between Acheampong and Amarildo Cekrezi in the Stow goal, but the referee awarded the blues a free kick.

There were further chances for Stow; Charlie Cole hitting the side-netting after being put in by Ibe, and then Keegan Cole firing one just over from the edge of the box.

Ibe thought he’d got a deserved goal, nodding home from a tight angle, but he was flagged offside. There was still time for Jason Hallett to go close twice; one from the edge of the box and once from a tight angle, but in the end, Stow saw out the victory without any real danger of the clean sheet being spoiled.

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