|01/11/2022||19:45||Cherry Red Records Premier Challenge Cup||2022-2023|
FIVE STAR ASCOT ADVANCE IN LEAGUE CUP
Yellamen show depth of talent with 5-1 victory
Much-changed Premier Division Ascot United made it six wins on the trot with a 5-1 win over Division One outfit Deportivo Galicia in the league cup on Tuesday, despite finishing with nine men. In doing so, The Yellamen came from behind to win for the tenth time this season, despite the dismissal of Louis Bouwers and injury to Dan Price with no substitutes remaining.
This was the fourth time Ascot had faced a step-six side this season, and the hosts – playing on Bedfont Sports’ 3G pitch – promised a close encounter with their past six matches all level after ninety minutes.
Deportivo, formed in 1968 through the Spanish Galician migrant community in West London, were quickly on the front foot and took a fifth minute lead. And, they had a good shout for penalty for a hand-ball in the thirteenth minute when Naim Mejdoubi’s powerful shot was blocked after he was played in by Juan Devia; the officials ultimately unconvinced.
However, as has become customary, The Yellamen came from behind once again and their recovery started when Keaton August volleyed into the top left corner after Marcus Mealing had flicked the ball back into his path; 22 minutes played.
Usman Lalustani, making his 50th appearance, then raced through a static home defence and confidently slotted home four minutes later to make it 2-1, before The Yellamen struck a sucker third on the stroke of half-time. This time, debutant ‘keeper Luke Edgecombe’s booming clearance for Ascot caught the home defence napping, and although Mealing reacted quickest his first tough allowed home ‘keeper Toby Perkin to gather – and then inexplicably lose control of the ball – Mealing gleefully tapping home for his side’s third.
Early in the second half, Bryan Venuezia should have cut the deficit only to fire wide at the far post for the hosts, before Lalustani and August combined at the other end for Price to slot home number four; August’s beautifully cushioned header into the box well anticipated by Price who flicked home with the outside of a boot.
Mealing’s left-wing industry and cross teed up substitute Ollie Harris who clipped home first-time for a fifth in the 66th minute, but Bouwers would see red with a quarter of an hour to play following a studs-up challenge.
Shortly after Harris had fired over a chance to make it six, Price limped off in the 83rd minute to make it nine men, and with defender Josh Masters having already been positionally switched with Lalustani as the former hobbled around, it was a credit to the virtual eight-and-a-half men remaining that they still dominated; Brendan Matthew somehow striking a post with a minute of normal time remaining.
Ascot comfortably saw out the match with young defender Toby Thompson gaining a valuable 90 minutes in front of an equally solid Edgecombe; the latter not out of place playing two steps higher than usual.
Ascot will now focus on Saturday’s table-topping clash with Burnham.
Ascot United: Edgecombe, Thompson, Masters, Ajanlekoko (Matthew), Bouwers (sent off), Gallimore (Lock), August (Harris), Grant (Mercadel), Mealing, Price, Lalustani.