Aylesbury United – 2
Mildenhall Town – 3
Aylesbury United bowed out of the FA Trophy at the first hurdle on Sunday as they were beaten at home by Mildenhall Town of the Bostik Isthmian League Northern Division by the odd goal in five. The visitor’s arrived with just two league wins under their belt this season and were behind after just eight minutes when Aaron Berry netted from close range, however a quick equaliser and two goals in the final eleven minutes of the first half saw the hosts shell shocked going into the interval; a goal back with over half an hour of the tie remaining saw United dominate the remainder but they could not break down a resilient Town backline, and left Aylesbury manager Ben Williams bemoaning complacency at the end of the game.
Berry was causing the away defence problems early on, a long ball down the right channel saw him peel off the shoulder of his marker but as he threatened to connect, out raced the Mildenhall keeper Gary Malone to smoother, but moments later a great run down the left from Benjamin Aghadiuno saw him fire the ball across the six-yard box where Malone got down to his left to save but he couldn’t hold on leaving Berry the simple task of tapping home. United continued to press and a deep cross from Ben Seaton found Max Hercules unmarked at the back of the box where he volleyed wide, and at this stage it looked comfortable for the hosts in the pouring rain.
The game changed on thirteen minutes when a throw to the away side was worked through to Abouhadje Kouassi between the Ducks defence and he drove at goal before despatching into the bottom right hand corner. The goal gave the visitors belief and a cross that wasn’t dealt with caused panic in the green ranks, eventually headed away by skipper Jack Wood but waiting outside the area striker Thomas Debenham volleyed towards the bottom corner where Ducks keeper Archie Davis had to throw himself away to his right to push away one handed.
At the other end another United attack saw a half clearance out to Sonny French who thumped past the left hand upright, Town missed a glorious chance in front of goal when Jarid Robson cleared the bar from six yards and Hercules blazed over from a cross as the chances swayed from one end to the other. Kouassi tore into the Aylesbury defence down the left again, leaving his marker behind his shot across goal took a deflection away from the target, then on thirty-four minutes they took the lead with a simple routine, a free kick inside the centre circle saw a flick on and unattended Robson had the easy task of powering his header into the bottom corner.
Mildenhall sensed more and attacked at will, another cross right into the goal saw Debenham go up against Matt Peake-Pijnen on the line and despite the height difference the defender managed to head clear, Davis then kept the scoreline intact when Town sprung the Ducks offside trap and Debenham was in on goal, as he went to chip past Davis he stuck out a hand and got enough contact to push the ball away from goal. With two minutes of the half left Peake-Pijnen got forward for the home side and drove a fierce shot past the post, but just a minute later Debenham found Robson in front of goal who lifted into the roof of the net to send the travelling support delirious going into the break. H/T: 1-3
The home side came out from the break and immediately demonstrated their intentions of getting back into the game, Hercules got away down the right and crossed into Aghadiuno whose looping header easily cleared the bar, before Ollie Hogg fed the winger who sent a fierce drive sailing over the top. On fifty-eight minutes they got the goal their played merited, when Peake-Pijnen sent a long pass downfield to French who drifted slightly away from goal before brilliantly driving low past Malone and inside the near post. Game on again!
Almost immediately after the goal the scores should have been level when Hercules found space to exploit on the left but could only slice wide of the target, and Aylesbury dominated from here but without much threat to the Mildenhall goal frame. A Hogg corner was flicked on and at the back French thumped wide, before Hercules fed Aghadiuno who controlled on his chest and held up well ahead of laying off to Hogg who drove straight into the waiting gloves of Malone.
As time ran out a Jeanmal Prosper cross out on the right bounced across the area, Wood playing the perfect dummy stepped over leaving a clear shot for Berry who flashed the ball a couple of feet over the woodwork, the last chance feel to Aghadiuno when Hogg found him just inside the box, his angled drive again over the bar and away to safety for the visitors who progress in the competition. F/T: 2-3
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