THE VICKERS ON TOP IN LOCAL DERBY
VCD ATHLETIC 3 THAMESMEAD TOWN 1
The Vickers maintained their recent resurgence in form in this derby game, and on a blisteringly hot afternoon secured a deserved win over local rivals Thamesmead Town. This match was all about taking chances, and on the day it was the hosts who came out on top with some clinical finishing, while the visitors squandered some good opportunities in the opening 20 minutes, as they kept VCD on the back foot. Thamesmead pressured from the off and kept the Vickers pegged back and a great early diagonal kick from impressive keeper Lewis Carey picked out Ellis Green, who cut inside but fired high over the bar from a good position. Then a deep corner reached the towering Scott Kinch who sent a powerful header goal-wards, only to be denied by a fine reflex save from Joe Mant. Then it was the turn of Bode Anidugbe as VCD struggled to find their rhythm, racing clear on goal, only to be denied by another fine block by Joe Mant. The best chance for Thamesmead fell to Dane Luchford who latched on to a long clearance before rounding Joe Mant, but the excellent Jeff Imudia retrieved the situation with a fine diving header to clear the ball to safety. As often happens when a side fails to take their chances they are made to pay, and out of the blue the Vickers took the lead with an impressive finish. A ball in from the left skimmed off the head of Laurent Mendy with Kemo Darboe chasing down the loose ball, before setting himself and smashing the ball powerfully home past Carey. The Vickers now began to get the upper hand with some tireless closing down as Town began to fade, with Steve Carvell breaking quickly before playing in the elusive Aymun El-Moyhalbel who tricked his way inside before laying the ball into the path of Omar Lawson, who stung Carey’s fingers with a fiercely driven shot. A minute before the break VCD took advantage again, to double their lead when Mendy slipped in going for the ball, leaving Lawson to gain possession from where he cut the ball back to Steve Carvell who, with a neat turn, slotted a left foot shot into the bottom corner beyond Carey’s reach.
With 10 minutes of the second half gone Thamesmead gave themselves a chance when a VCD goal-kick was headed powerfully back over the home defence, leaving Alex Teniola time to run on and tuck the ball into the bottom corner. It now became an interesting contest with the next goal from either side having an important bearing on the outcome of the match, but the constant heat was taking its toll despite numerous water breaks, and although necessary for the players’ safety this disrupted the flow of the game. The Vickers kept up the pressure showing impressive fitness levels in the conditions, and began to take more control of the game as the half wore on. With 15 minutes remaining and both sides wary of making a mistake the match was delicately set, but it was VCD who finished the stronger with a number of chances. The ball was stolen in midfield with Steve Carvell sending a delightful chip over the Town defence, and Kemo Darboe burst clear to send a neat header over the advancing Carey into the empty net. The Vickers then came close to making it four goals when Omar Lawson worked his way past three defenders, before sending in a rasping drive that pinged off the top of the bar. There was one final chance in the closing minutes when a deep corner picked out substitute Marc Gorbell, who rose to send a thumping header goal-wards where Carey got a fingertip to the ball, before it crashed down off the bar and was hacked to safety.
VCD Athletic: Mant, K Duncan, Lawson, Baker, Imudia, Joseph, Blackwood, D Duncan (Gordon 46), Darboe, Carvell (Gorbell 81), El-Moyhalbel (Lutaaya 76)
Subs not used: Osei, Kamara
Updated 09:03 - 30 Aug 2017 by Keith McMahon
Report by Brian Norris