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Thamesmead Town 3-2 Phoenix Sports
Thamesmead Town 3-2 Phoenix Sports

The first ever competitive meeting between these near neighbours was settled by a thunderous strike from Tyrus Gordon-Young just three minutes after the break.

Thamesmead v Phoenix

But the game was truly won for the Mead courtesy of a world class reflex save at the death by keeper Andy Walker to deny Harrison Carnegis’ close range flick – somehow the Mead number one got down to brilliantly turn aside the Phoenix man’s tremendous flick from a super right wing cross!

For Terry Spillane’s side, its now just one defeat in their last ten at home – and that was an unfortunate reverse to long time league leaders Cray Wanderers.

For the neutral, this was a truly scintillating contest to start 2016, and had an explosive start! The game was less than a minute old when Gordon-Young gave the home side the dream start as he raced in behind the Phoenix defence to lift the ball over keeper Brown and into the net.

It was though a short lived lead as Gorden stooped low to head unmarked and the visitors were level.

The Mead though were back in front moments later as Lee Prescott unleashed an unstoppable drive into the top corner from 25 yards for his first goal for the club.

Sadly for the home side, that lead lasted less than the first one as again Gorden capitalised on some slack defending to play a “one-two” off keeper Walker to level the scores up again at 2-2! All this inside the first 16 minutes!

The game ebbed and flowed from end to end although it was the visitors who enjoyed the best chances of the half.

Firstly Carnegie did brilliantly down the left, before feeding the ball into Stone, who picked his spot only to shoot wide. Then as the half closed, Walker didn’t get the purchase that he would have wanted on a clearing punch, and as the ball dropped to Bedford, his teasing lob was brilliantly cleared off the line by a back pedalling Marc Gorbell.

Thamesmead v Phoenix2

The second half began with Gordon-Young getting on the end of a Paul Vines flick to smash the ball home from the angle, before Richard Butler then went agonisingly close to extending the lead – only a great Brown save denied the Mead man from scoring a fourth with a great header.

The home side were then enjoying their best spell and twice Theo Fairweather Johnson went close – firstly shooting straight at the keeper from Michael Aziaya’s cross, before the same player blazed high and wide following Gordon-Young’s fine step over.

The closing ten minutes was as open as the game had been, with Walker’s stunning save from Carnegie the undoubted highlight.

But Prescott also pulled the very best out of Brown, with the Phoenix keeper making a fine low save to keep out a skidding drive, whilst at the other end central defender Chris Hill prodded wide when the majority of the travelling fans were convinced that he’d flicked the ball home at the near post.

At the final whistle, both sides were applauded off but it’s the home side that have the bragging rights – at least until the reverse fixture on Easter Monday!

THAMESMEAD – Walker, Glasgow (Aziaya), Porter, Butler, Hallam, Gorbell (Mitchell), Prescott, Duncan, Gordon-Young, Fairweather-Johnson, Vines (Tomms)

Subs not used – Spillane, O’Connor

PHOENIX SPORTS – Brown, Andrews, Springett, Bedford, Whibley (Mingle), Hill, Carnegie, Goodchild, Stone (Ramaden), Fakinos (Mascall), Gorden

Subs not used – Orome, Hamill

Pictures supplied by Richard Brooks Photography.