Chatham Town 1-2 AFC Croydon
Chatham Town 1-2 AFC Croydon

It was a day for the underdogs to celebrate at The Bauvill Stadium on Saturday as Croydon beat a poor performing Chatham.

Report by Alfie Hill and Ethan Fergusson

This loss could prove fatal for Chatham’s title chance as they were only three points behind Corinthian in 1st but with Corinthian beating K Sports 4-3, Chatham are now slipping away!

Chatham got the game underway and almost scored straight away after some good play earned them a corner on the 1st minute. The corner was played in and flew straight into Paul Vines who jumped up to reach the ball first, but his headed effort was comfortably saved by Danny Carpanini in goal. Chatham’s good start was then destroyed when Croydon went up the other end.

A lovely ball in towards the front post proved too hot to handle for Henry Newcombe who couldn’t get his hands on the ball! The ball was heading towards goal and it was down to Danny Grant to stop the ball from going in, but he didn’t get the connection he wanted as it ended up hitting the roof of his net on the 4th minute!

Chatham then rushed to get an equalizer which they looked like they were going to get on the 8th minute when the ball fell to Matt Bodkin who went for the spectacular as he hit the ball on a scissor kick volley, but his effort was kept out by Carpanini. However, it was almost two and almost another own goal on the 10th minute as a back pass towards Newcombe was over hit and rolled straight past Newcombe! Luckily, the ball hit the post which was a delight to Chatham fans!

Chatham continued to push for an equalizer as Harrison Carnegie broke through the defense and crossed it in towards Vines, but Vines’ header was deflected over on the 14th minute. However, it looked like it was all over after a terrible mistake from Grant led to another Croydon goal!

Grant received the ball on the right side of the pitch and got into a bit of trouble as he was being closed down. This forced Grant to play it across goal, but he didn’t realise that Bankole Koroma was lurking in this area! Koroma easily intercepted the pass and ran straight in on goal and coolly slotted it past Newcombe on the 15th minute.

Croydon were looking to put Chatham away and on the 25th minute they almost did after a good touch from Koroma set him up for a powerful shot but Newcombe made a comfortable save to keep Chatham in with a chance. The half then settled down with both teams fighting for the ball in midfield and not creating anymore chances.

Richard Joss then blew his whistle to end what had been a very poor performance from a title contending Chatham, but fans were still hopeful as The Chats still had the second half to steal a point.

The second half got underway very quickly and it looked like James Collins encouraged his Chatham team as on the 48th minute Carnegie had the perfect chance to get one back, but his effort rattled off the crossbar! However, Chatham went back to their poor display from the first half as they struggled to create any clear-cut chances.

However, Richard Avery nearly made it 2-1 after a splendid volley but his shot was matched by an equally splendid save by Carpanini on the 64th minute. Croydon were quick to respond but they recreated what had happened up the other end after a powerful shot from Nahum Green was met by a great save from Newcombe who put his whole body on the line to keep Chatham in the game.  

Chatham then finally got the goal they so deserved on the 88th minute after a lovely header from Avery lifted the ball over Carpanini and got one back for Chatham who now believed that they could get the equalizer and they thought they did on 90th minute! A corner into the box caused a lot of danger for Croydon as they couldn’t clear the ball out of the box. The ball then rolled towards Byron Walker who took his chance and fired it straight into the net! However, the equalizer was disallowed by the linesman for offside!

Joss then blew his whistle to bring the game to an end. Chatham really should’ve won this game, but Croydon proved too good for them today. Chatham will now be looking to bounce back from this performance and earn all three points against Beckenham Town on Wednesday night.

Chatham Town: Henry Newcombe, Danny Grant, Matt Parsons, Michael Jenner, Richard Avery, Marcus Evans, Harrison Carnegie, Reece Butler, Paul Vines (Captain), Byron Walker, Matt Bodkin.

Subs: Jon Pilbeam for Danny Grant (69th Minute).

Subs not used: James Fray, Zak Henry, Tom Fitzgerald, Michael Hagan.

Yellow Cards: Paul Vines (63rd Minute), Marcus Evans (73rd Minute) and Matt Parsons (90th Minute).

Red Cards: N/A

AFC Croydon: Danny Carpanini, Kazeem Richards, Dammy Bada, Jamie Thoroughgood (Captain), Liam Coates, Jordan Knight, Bankole Koroma, Abbas Agoro, Dominic Ogun, Junior Kaffo, Nahum Green.

Subs: Abbas Oduncu for Abbas Agoro (58th Minute).

Subs not used: Joe Hill, Jonathan Paoluccio, Jermaine Green, Adnar Ali.

Yellow Cards: Jamie Thoroughgood (33rd Minute) and Nahum Green (39th Minute).

Red Cards: N/A

Referee: Richard Joss.

 

Assistants: Harry Graham and Graham Scott.

 

Attendance: 202.

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