SEAN SERVES UP SPECIAL AS ASCOT CHOP WOODS

#WeAreAscot.

MOM McCormack inspires Yellamen to victory

Super Sean McCormack produced a vintage performance to inspire Ascot United to victory over Northwood on Saturday. In front of a festive fun day crowd at The Racecourse, he was almost unplayable and weighed in with an assist as the home side edged out the visitors 1-0.

Impacted by rain, dear? Nope, its three cheers for three G!

This was a game that only a weather bomb could affect – many other games falling foul of the weather – and although artificial surfaces have their critics, this was a case of plastic fantastic for the ‘elfy’ number of fans who had gathered for the club’s annual festive fun day.

For Northwood, striker Dan Williams had transferred to Uxbridge 48 hours earlier leaving them looking for other options up top, whereas The Yellamen granted a rare start to Charlie Morgan whilst Alfie Grant also started again as he had done in Ascot’s win on the road a week-and-a-half earlier.

Ascot labour but eventually sleigh Northwood

In desperately windy conditions, Northwood probed in and around the Ascot box early-on, but neither Reece Cameron nor Harry Gallagher could muster a goal-bound shot when dangerously positioned. 

The home side would eventually impose themselves although Brendan Matthew’s cross was too heavy for Ollie Lahtinen-Kalsi before Ollie Harris failed to control Morgan’s through ball after he had pick-pocketed Woods’ defender Teddy Stacey.

McCormack takes turn down Quality Street

However, the one moment of quality led to the goal that would ultimately separate the sides at half time. This time, McCormack’s sublime pass over the defence and down the right wing set Matthew clear, and although the angle was against him he managed to drill a low shot into across ‘keeper Roraigh Brown and into the bottom left; 35 minutes played.

Samuel Jenkins stung Hugo Sobte’s palms in first half stoppage time following another booming long throw-in from Woods’ defender Luke Tingey, but Ascot were worth their slender half time advantage.

Hugo’s the Boss as Ascot defend resolutely

The visitors were short of quality in the final third – crosses often wastefully off target and over-hit – but when they did threaten they were thwarted by ‘keeper-cum-sweeper Sobte in the hosts’ goal; he would surely have as many touches with his feet and head as anyone else on the park.

The McCormack-Matthew partnership rekindled itself on 51 minutes, the former cutting inside beautifully before threading the latter in, although Matthew could only find the side-netting under pressure from a covering defender.

Woods’ best player – Jenkins – then dashed, danced and pranced his way through the home defence with sixteen minutes remaining, but Sobte was alert to tip his resultant effort around a post.

The Yellamen threw on three replacement wise men to mix it up – in part due to bookings granted to Balogun and Bailey – although they were frankly incensed at those; as were the home faithful.

Sobte’s sweeping would have cleared any chimney in readiness for the big man himself, none more so than his 85th minute intervention to snuff out any remaining visiting threat, ensuring he and his defence played a much needed Scrooge-role to bring home the points.

Four minutes of stoppage time were safely negotiated, although the visitors had seemingly long run out of ideas.

What’s next for Ascot?

It’s another game only the M25 can spoil as the yellow-and-blue army make another pilgrimage into Surrey on Tuesday, this time to face Reigate-based South Park on their own 3G pitch.

Ascot United: Sobte, Lahtinen-Kalsi, A. Grant, Edwards, Bailey (Ellis 77’), McCormack, Balogun (Laflin 60’), Welch, Morgan, Matthew, Harris (Lock 73’). Subs unused: Case, Lalustani.

Entertainment: 3

Reporter’s Star Man: Sean McCormack (Ascot United) (pictured, shooting-stars.co.uk)

Away fans (estimate): 15

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