About Me

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Hammersmith, London, United Kingdom
I'm a director of Maidenhead United Football Club. For ten seasons one of my roles at the club was to produce the match programme. The aim of this blog was to write football related articles for publication in the match programme. In particular I like to write about the representation of football in popular culture, specifically music, film/TV and literature. I also write about matches I attend which generally feature Maidenhead United.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Magpies storm Stortford

Reading the newspaper en route to Bishops Stortford I learned that scientists had discovered that contrary to popular myth magpies are not thieves. This new truth was reflected in Maidenhead United's win at Bishops Stortford yesterday as contrary to the away form of previous seasons when three points were stolen with some judicious counter attacking, the Magpies imposed themselves on the Blues from the kick off, dominating the first half and thoroughly deserving to travel back to Berkshire with all three points.
Despite last week's win over Sutton, manager Johnson Hippolyte opted to change a winning team, replacing Bobby Behzadi at right back with Luton loanee Brett Longden (available having completed a suspension), tinkering with the layout slightly to switch Jacob Erksine for Lanre Azeez. The latter change saw Mark Nisbet move back into the centre of defence alongside Simon Downer, with Azeez continuing in the right wing slot in which he had finished the last game.
With the home team barely getting a sniff of a chance at the United end, they instead scored the opening goal albeit in the wrong net when a vicious cross from the right by Adrian Clifton was converted at the far post by Ashley Miller in the tenth minute.
Fifteen minutes later, Clifton himself ensured Maidenhead's superiority was reinforced by heading in a Nicholls cross from the left. 
On the stroke of half time United almost sealed the points but were unable to capitalise on a goalmouth scramble which saw Eddie Hutchinson bravely throw himself into the fray in a bid to score amidst appeals for a penalty.
The interval gave Stortford manager Rod Stringer, serving a touchline ban, the chance to let his team know in no uncertain terms their first half shortcomings, and the Blues responded appropriately from the start of the second half. This saw an appeal for a penalty turned down in a frenzied attack, but once this initial burst of energy had blown itself out, the Magpies were able to comfortably manage the game to preserve their lead.
As the game drew to a close United made sure of the three points with the goal of the game. With six minutes remaining a long ball out of the hands of Elvijs Putnins was flicked on by the head of Stefan Brown into the path of substitute Reece Tison-Lacaris. The nippy attacker sprinted forward, beat the defence with a quick shimmy before beating the keeper from the edge of the are with a shot that squirreled its way into the corner.
This goal finally sparked Stortford into life, Putnins producing his best save of the game to foil Ryan Melaugh, with Nisbet tidying up on the goal line behind him before Ishmael Kamara scored a consolation goal in stoppage time.

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