Christie goal gives Bedworth vital victory..reports Ben Bradshaw
The Greenbacks turned in a workmanlike performance to finish 2018 and enter 2019 on a winning note, by defeating St Neots Town by a single goal they recorded their first league win. Second-half substitute Isyeden Christie was the home side's hero scoring the only goal of the game deep into stoppage time after a game of only few clear cut chances to ensure a first win. Following on from Boxing Day’s encouraging performance against Kettering, Stuart Storer stayed with the same side but there was one enforced change as Ricardo Dudley came in for Bradley Maslen-Jones at right back who had limped off at half time on Wednesday. With both sides needing all three points to ease their relegation fears, it was a conservative start to the game with little to choose between the two sides. The games first chance came after Gibson was bundled to the floor 25 yards out after producing a sharp turn past St Neots skipper Knight. Up stepped Alex Troke, the resulting free kick hit sweetly towards the visitor's keepers left which forced Iron into a great one-handed save and the resulting corner was cleared. Parrott’s long throw caused confusion in the St Neots defence who struggled to deal with Albrighton’s flick on, the ball going to Hancocks who’s shot appeared to be handled by a defender, it was clear to see that an offence was commited , but the referee waved away appeals despite the vocal protests from the Bedworth players and supporters. Storer’s side continued their onslaught on the visitors goal and created their best chance of the half when Troke and Parrott combined brilliantly down the left, Parrott continued his run to the byline and flashed a driven ball across the box but the sea of the green shirts waiting failed to finish. Fitzharris was the first name in the book when the referee adjudged the midfielder had raised his foot illegally when going in for a 50/50 challenge. With five minutes remaining of the first half, The Saints could have taken the lead against the run of play when front-man Wharton strode forward, with good pace Wharton skipped past Dudley’s challenge to win the ball and found himself one on one with Harrison in the home goal, but the young goalkeeper made himself big, he closed down the angle and denied the attacker with a good save, so it was level at the break. HALF TIME: Bedworth United 0-0 St Neots Town Harrison was called into action early in the second-period when he saved well from Miles’ low shot and followed that up with an equally impressive save from Daldy’s header as the away side stepped up the pace. Fitzharris was replaced by Christie on 65 minutes as Bedworth changed their shape with Gibson now being partnered by the substitute upfront. A fantastic turn by Hancocks saw him slip his marker, he lofted a nice ball down the right channel to Gibson who found himself in tons of space wide of the box cutting in the forward got his shot away but perhaps didn’t get a true solid contact and Iron saved with his feet. That was Gibson’s last involvement as Story came on to replace him with 10 minutes remaining. Albrighton and St Neots skipper Knight went into the book after a skirmish near halfway line as tensions raised with points pivotal to both sides season still to play for. As the game went on it looked like it would end goalless which wouldn’t suit either side at this stage of the season and the perilous situations they find themselves in, up popped Christie in injury time who smashed the ball home from inside the box after good work from Troke,the goal sparking joyous scenes from players, coaching staff and supporters alike. Bedworth had secured their first league win! It wasn’t pretty but after the season The Greenbacks have endured so far and numerous times luck has gone against them it was no less than what they really deserved. The hope now is that this FIRST wasn’t just a flash in the pan but a genuine springboard for an unlikely looking survival. GOAL: Bedworth United 1-0 St Neots Town United start 2019 with New Years Day fixture at Coalville Town...*Note KO IS 12.30pm HNY 19 to everyone!