Football round-up: Margate seal late win over Magpies despite Barratt whirlwind
Margate 3, Maidenhead United 2
A whirlwind second half display from half-time substitute Sam Barratt very nearly rescued a bleak situation for the Magpies at Margate, but his contributions proved insufficient as Alan Devonshire’s men lost for the second league match in succession.
The Magpies, beaten 3-2 at home by Hemel Hempstead in their last outing just after Christmas, once again gave themselves a mountain to climb, going 2-0 down before the break and seeing skipper Alan Massey red-carded early in the second period for two bookable offences.
With the wind at their backs, and the impish former Magpie Danny Green in their line-up, Margate pressed in the opening stages and took the lead when Sean Shields drilled a free-kick through a ruck of Magpies’ bodies and past Carl Pentney to make it 1-0.
United rallied with a shot from Ryan Upward that produced a fine save from Chris Lewington in the Blues’ goal while Dave Tarpey thought he should have been awarded a penalty after appearing to be pushed over in the box.
Inveitably, Green played his part and almost scored with a dipping shot that Pentney scrambled over the cross bar, but the writing appeared on the wall for the Magpies when Matt Johnson doubled Margate’s lead after more good work from Shields five minutes before half-time.
Devonshire rang the changes at half-time, replacing Upward, Josh Huggins and Ben Wright with Kyran Wiltshire, Jake Reid and Barratt, and the latter played perhaps his best and most influential 45 minutes in a black-and-white shirt.
In a whirlwind the Magpies were level when Barratt bicycle kicked home Tarpey’s cross before curling a delicious inswinging corner past everyone – including Lewington – to make it 2-2 moments later.
The Magpies were back in the ascendency but momentum swung back to the home side when Massey was given his marching orders for a second bookable offence minutes later.
It left the Magpies to battle on for 40 minutes with only 10 men, but despite being a man down they continued to dominate and might have won the match. Barratt’s free-kick was pushed out by Lewington in the 66th minute. Harry Pritchard, so often a match winner in the first half of the season, struck the crossbar and he drew another fine save from Lewington as the visitors swept forward.
However, the rub of the green continues to go against the Magpies at present, and with four minutes to play substitute Christian Jolley won the match with a looping, deflected effort that left Pentney stranded.
There was still time for Barratt to rattle the woodwork for the Magpies in the closing moments but again they came away empty handed and have registered just two points from their last five league matches.
United, with just one league win to their name since October, are 10th in National League South with 31 points from 22 matches.
Margate: Lewington, Wilson, Green D (90 Moore), Johnson M, Goodman, Johnson B (64 Jolley), Wills (68 Taylor J), Taylor L, Ladapo, Green N, Shields. Unused subs: Rents, Stuart
Maidenhead United: Pentney, Peters, Pritchard, Upward (HT Wiltshire), Massey, Nisbet, Tarpey, Huggins (HT Barratt), Wright (HT Reid), Smith, Mulley. Unused sub: James.
AFC Totton 2, Marlow 2
Marlow boss Mark Bartley has blamed the incompetence of the officials for the Blues failure to come away from AFC Totton with all three points on Saturday.
The Blues levelled twice in an entertaining 90 minutes, with defender Adam Richards grabbing a 94th minute equaliser from Jordace Holder-Spooner’s cross to make it 2-2.
But afterwards Bartley let rip at the officials, saying on Twitter: “Conceded two offside goals today, down to incompetent officials. The response from my side was admirable. One point should have been three.”
Sam Bangura might have put the Blues in front with a shot that sailed just wide of the Totton post in the opening stages and Richie Whittingham may have done better with a snap-shot that the hosts’ keeper Steve Mowthorpe saved.
Nathanial Sherbone lifted a rare chance past Simon Grant’s post, but the direction of traffic was mostly Marlow’s way as Whittingham saw another effort saved by Mowthorpe before the keeper denied Jordan Brown after he was played through by Holder-Spooner.
Perhaps inevitably, given their dominance, Marlow then fell behind when Dylan Knight’s run failed to be flagged offside despite appeals and he slipped the ball coolly past Grant on 23 minutes.
Marlow remained the better of the two sides and responded with a attempt from Allen Bossman before Jay Welch wrong-footed Mowthorpe with a shot from 25 yards to level the scores in the 38th minute.
Bossman was thwarted again when his shot was hacked off the line at the start of the second half and Grant saved well twice at the other end, with Patrick Wilson stretching to lift the ball over the Blues’ bar.
Knight looked to have scored the winner when he turned the ball home at the far post in the 87th minute – another goal that looked suspiciously offside – but the visitors refused to accept defeat and Richards deservedly levelled from Holder-Spooner’s cross in injury time to lessen Bartley’s frustration a little.
Windsor 0, Colliers Wood United 1
A goal on the stroke of half-time from Jimmy Harding gave Colliers Wood United a narrow 1-0 win over Windsor at Stag Meadow on Saturday.
The Royalists drop to ninth in the Combined Counties Premier Division table following the result.
The league and cup matches involving Slough, Burnham, Flackwell Heath and Holyport were all postponed due to waterlogged pitches following inspections.