Aylesbury FC snatched a late derby victory in a match in which they were largely outplayed by their rivals Aylesbury United, as the town’s two football clubs went head-to-head on Boxing Day.
After the Ducks took an early lead through Connor Furlong, the Moles levelled through Ty Deacon before a late winner from Brian Haule to give the visitors victory at a wet Meadows ground in Chesham.
The first goal was a belated Christmas present for Aylesbury United as FC keeper Ashley Jenkins inexplicably passed the ball straight to Ducks striker Furlong who had an easy finish into the net - 1-0.
The hosts had a good chance to double their lead five minutes later but United striker Horatio Hirst miskicked his effort from about 15 yards out after FC keeper Jenkins failed to gather the ball cleanly.
Against the run of play, the Moles levelled on 21 minutes after a long ball forward was controlled inside the area by Deacon, who finished left-footed into the net to make it 1-1.
Five minutes later the visitors came close to taking the lead after Brian Haule showed real improvisation to flick the ball towards goal while he had his back to the net. The ball cannoned off the right hand post with the keeper beaten before the follow-up shot from Deacon went wide.
Just before the break United had the chance to retake the lead when a free-kick from the left was headed towards goal by Jeanmal Prosper, however the ball was cleared away from in front of the goal-line by a Moles player.
The Ducks dominance of the match continued after the restart and they had another good chance on 48 minutes when number nine Tre Mitford produced a driving run forward before a fierce shot which struck the right hand post before bouncing away to safety.
Just before the hour mark the Ducks did manage to get the ball into the net but the effort was chalked off by the assistant referee. A shot from the left hand side of the box was parried by FC keeper Jenkins and although Mitford put the rebound into the net he was judged offside.
The Ducks were almost made to pay for their host of missed opportunities on 86 minutes when a shot from the edge of the box from Brian Haule cleared the bar by just a few yards.
This proved a warning that wasn’t heeded, and the same player punished the Ducks wastefulness just two minutes later. A cross from the left by Goss was headed in powerfully at the near post by Haule to make it 2-1 to the Moles.
Speaking after the match United caretaker manager Ben Williams said: “We should have been out of sight after ten minutes. We had four or five really good chances that we didn’t score.
“We dipped and allowed them back into the game and in the second half we dominated again and got done by a sucker punch at the end. We conceded two rubbish goals and missed enough chances to win five or six games. “The manner of the loss is extremely frustrating. People keep saying ‘it was a good performance’ but the fact is we lost.
“We are in a relegation battle, there is no doubt about that. We need to get wins on the board soon.”
On the managerial situation, Williams said he believed that the board were talking to a few prospective candidates and that interviews for the post were planned in the New Year.
Aylesbury FC player-manager Davis Haule said: “It was a good game - the last time we played a derby on a Bank Holiday there wasn’t enough passion and grit but today was what I expected in terms of a good competitive performance.
“Although the football was not as crisp as it should have been, we dug in as a team and managed to nick one at the end which put a smile on everyone’s faces.
“We had a few games at the start of the season when we didn’t click and we were looking around thinking we needed to get some wins. We have won four of our last five games so our form has improved, we are scoring goals and defending well.”
Aylesbury United: Sillitoe, Hinds-Cadette (Stanbridge 18), Bewley, Wood (capt), Gurtees, Prosper, Hogg (French 73), Williams, Mitford, Hirst (Jones 63), Furlong.
Subs not used: Seaton, Couch.
Goal: Furlong 3.
Aylesbury FC: A Jenkins, Barima, Jones, D Haule, J Jenkins (capt), Feyi, Deacon, Lataille (Scott 67), B Haule, Pobbe (Ball 51), Goss.
Subs not used: Fitzgerald, Barnet, Bounyafe.
Booked: D Haule 12, Jones 55, J Jenkins 74, B Haule 88.
Goals: Deacon 21, B Haule 88.