07:32PM, Saturday 22 February 2020
Danny Searle’s Shots dealt damage to Maidenhead United’s survival hopes in the National League with a crucial 2-1 win over the Magpies at York Road on Saturday.
Having gone three weeks without a competitive fixture, Maidenhead United welcomed relegation rivals Aldershot Town to York Road hoping to resume the impressive form they had maintained before the break.
But the Magpies lack of sharpness was keenly felt and it took just seven minutes for Aldershot to take the lead following a good spell of pressure. Craig Tanner’s early corner wasn’t dealt with and Alan Massey saw his attempted clearance go as far as Shots skipper Dean Rance who smashed the ball low and hard under Taye Ashby Hammond between the sticks.
The shot was struck so hard in fact that play wasn’t resumed until Ashby-Hammond’s net was tied back together by the match officials.
The next chance of note came ten minutes later when James Akintunde was sent through on the left side. The forward took strides into the Aldershot box before unleashing an effort towards Mitch Walker. The Shots keeper stood firm to parry the ball out but only as far as the onrushing James Comley who cut onto his right before hitting a tame effort wide.
The hosts were made to rue that opportunity when the Shots doubled their lead immediately after with a swift counter attack. Lewis Walker gathered the ball from outside the box and slipped in Harrison Panayiotou who was given too much space and time to slot an effort past Ashby-Hammond.
Aldershot continued to terrorise the Maidenhead defence and Tanner was at the heart of it, whipping in a series of crosses that tested the hosts’ reflexes and ability to clear their lines.
Maidenhead fought hard to assert themselves in the game and only began to apply pressure on Aldershot before half time when Remy Clerima headed just wide of the far post.
After the interval, Ryan Upward was first to register a shot but saw his long range effort just tipped away by Walker's fingertips.
Maidenhead began to get a foothold in the game and eventually found a breakthrough when Clerima thumped home a rebound after Akintunde’s shot was cleared off the line.
Aldershot responded well however and came close to restoring the two goal advantage when new signing Gyliano Van Velzen struck an effort goalbound only for Ashby-Hammond to palm it away.
Danny Whitehall was presented the last chance of the game with a free kick just outside the box to salvage the Magpies a draw. But to his frustration, Walker was on hand one final time to save his side the lead and all three points.
Maidenhead slip to 20th after the result, just one point above the bottom three. They will look to get back on winning ways when they host Ebbsfleet United on Tuesday evening.
“It was a game we need to forget about and go again. Hopefully we can bounce back onto winning ways on Tuesday.”— Joshua Browne (@JoshuaB_BM) February 22, 2020
I caught up with Ryan Upward after the game today. Here’s what he had to say on @MUFCYorkRoad’s loss against @OfficialShots. pic.twitter.com/SPjmDhEScj
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