Wednesday, 21 March 2018

FC Titans have no answer at the Dene

HAMBLEDEN leapfrogged FC Titans in the Wycombe and District League Senior Divison table thanks to a comfortable victory against the

HAMBLEDEN leapfrogged FC Titans in the Wycombe and District League Senior Divison table thanks to a comfortable victory against the newly-promoted side at the Dene on Saturday.

From the off early pressure saw Hambleden encamped in the Titans half. In only the fifth minute Adam North’s flighted delivery caught the Titans’ defence napping and Macllenan guided the ball into the net to put the hosts in front.

Titans pressed and whilst confident on the ball in attack, struggled to find enough time and space to fashion a clear opening, Dawson, Brunning and Rodrigues denying the visitors any direct access to the Hambleden goal.

Hambleden forced Titans deeper. Chivers and Wilkins, dominant in the midfield aerial battle, allowed Matt Cook to put Dean Kemp in on goal. The striker outran his defenders but was denied by the Titans keeper Adam Lock as Kemp bore down on goal from the left hand side of the area.

On 36 minutes a move commencing with Brunning on the Hambleden left saw Kemp and North combine to flash a ball across the face of the Titans area. Reading failed to connect but pressured enough for only a part clearance, Macllenan allowing Wilkins to strike on goal from outside the edge of the area, the ball being ably assisted by a deflection before finding its way into the back of the Titans net.

Hathaway in the Hambleden goal dived at Sanashee’s feet when the Titans striker had wriggled free of Hambleden’s rear guard and then had to watch on as the same player lobbed keeper and net from distance.

After constant forward Hambleden pressure the Titans fullback conceded possession on the edge of his area to Macllenan who, after gathering at pace, regained composure and clipped a ball past the keeper to claim his second of the day.

After initial early Titans pressure at the start of the second Kemp earned a corner, Macllenan glancing over North’s delivery.

Kemp looked set to find a way through the defence after Chivers and Wilkins had once again moved the ball forward, but was pulled back by a beaten defender who was fortunate to stay out of the book.

Shaw replaced Reading and burst free from a Macllenan pass and scooted clear but saw his shot saved well, low down at the near right hand post. On 69 minutes Shaw delivered a slide rule pass to split the Titans’ defence and found the onrushing Macllenan who strode into the box and rounded a player and keeper before dispatching for his third and Hambleden’s fourth.

Later Kemp was again brought down on the edge of the area in a prominent position, the loose ball falling kindly to Brunning who cooly slotted home before the referee pulled the game back for the prior incident.

North ran a full 65 yards in possession after collecting a Chivers clearance and after passing a number of defenders, with only the keeper to beat, saw a heavy touch foil his chance. Kemp then volleyed but missed from distance after the keeper had left his goal wide open chasing down a poor back pass.

Shaw hit the side netting from close in after a Macllenan flighted cross before Tom Irving replaced Kemp who limped from battle.

In injury time Titans’ Stuart Lock outpaced the Hambleden defence and crossed for Sanashee who put the ball wide.

Hambleden: R Hathaway, O Dawson, J Rodrigues, C Brunning, M Cook, B Chivers, M Wilkins, A North, S Macllenan, P Reading, D Kemp. Subs: A Markwell, Tom Irving, Shaw.

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