Ducks follow famous cup comeback with late league defeat

Lea Coulter celebrates his equaliser. Picture by Mike Snell
Lea Coulter celebrates his equaliser. Picture by Mike Snell
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Aylesbury United were unable to follow last week’s memorable cup win over Banbury with another victory on Saturday, losing out 3-2 in a league encounter at Chalfont St Peter.

Taking on Premier Division side and hot favourites Banbury United last Wednesday, the Ducks found themselves 2-0 down and heading out of the League Cup at half-time.

But once Bruno Brito and Lea Coulter had entered the fray, things began to change.

Firstly, Brito started and finished a move by acrobatically volleying home Jake Bewley’s cross, and the Portuguese then turned provider when he played Coulter into space to thump home an absolute rocket and level the match on 80 minutes.

The game looked destined for penalties, but that man Brito had other ideas and saved his best for last. In the 90th minute, with his back to goal, he hooked an outrageous 20-yard shot that sailed in over the visiting keeper and into the net to win the tie and complete a famous comeback.

United were in action again three days later in another game that witnessed late drama, only this time it was the opposition who benefitted.

Mill Meadow has been an unhappy hunting ground for United of late, and when they fell behind after just eight minutes through Jake Cass’ composed finish, things looked unlikely to improve.

But Aylesbury more than held their own in an entertaining affair as Brito twice went close and Greg Williams volleyed over, while Chalfont also threatened as they maintained their slender lead going into half-time.

United tried to impose themselves more as the second-half started, and a succession of corners led to pressure on goal which culminated in Williams scooping over the crossbar from 10 yards.

Further chances went begging before Aylesbury’s pressure finally told on 72 minutes when they found a well-deserved equaliser. Jake Bewley’s inswinging corner caused a scramble in the box before the ball fell kindly to Coulter to smash into the net.

Thoughts now turned to whether United could continue their momentum and find a winner, and when French and Brito combined to set up Coulter, again he could only shoot straight at Dennison.

Back came Chalfont again when Tyrone Pink’s low shot from the edge of the box was comfortably held by Zaki Oualah, who saved again from the same man moments later.

Pink made amends for his missed chances when the same player re-established Chalfont’s lead with seven minutes remaining. As Aylesbury failed to clear their lines, the ball was cut back to the unmarked Saints substitute who produced a classy finish into the top corner.

In search of another equaliser, the Ducks went back on the attack, but, having overcommitted men forward at a corner, they conceded a killer third goal. Chalfont were able to break quickly, Luke Maguire beating Jonny Miller and Oualah to a long ball, squeezing home a low shot beyond the stranded goalkeeper from the edge of the area.

There was still time for Aylesbury to reduce the deficit to a more respectable scoreline through Alex Collard, who turned home Reece Cameron’s corner, but that was the last action of the match.

United are eighth in Division One Central and host Uxbridge this weekend.