First Aylesbury derby scheduled for August as Moles suffer friendly defeat

Striker Matt Cruse, pictured playing for Ardley last season, was in action for FC on Saturday
Striker Matt Cruse, pictured playing for Ardley last season, was in action for FC on Saturday

Aylesbury FC played their second pre-season friendly on Saturday when they were beaten 1-0 by South Midlands League outfit Winslow United.

After the previous week’s encouraging display in defeat against MK Dons, this loss will give manager Davis Haule plenty food for thought ahead of next month’s opener.

The fixtures for the new season were released last week and with the extension of the league sponsor, there has been a renaming of the three divisions. They will now be titled the Evo-Stik League South Premier, South League East and South League West.

FC will compete in the East Division alongside local neighbours Aylesbury United, with the first big derby of the season scheduled for August 28 at Haywood Way.

The Moles will open their account at Hayes & Yeading on August 12, followed by a first home game against Cambridge City three days later.

But before that Haule’s team have several pre-season friendlies, the latest of which ended in defeat to Winslow.

Missing important first-teamers Jeanmal Prosper, Jonny Montgomery and Ben Stevens, this contest gave several trialists and fringe players the opportunity to impress. A goal as early as the fifth minute settled this contest but as is usual it was the performance more so than the result that was important.

Winslow grabbed the only goal when they attacked a sleeping FC defence early on and shot beyond goalkeeper James Weatherill and into the bottom corner of the net.

Aston Goss’ strike on five minutes was blocked by a defender before a cross-shot from the Winslow right saw Weatherill touch it to safety.

Davis and Brian Haule combined to challenge the away keeper on 40 minutes, and in the final action of the half, FC’s Azeez Alabi tried a speculative overhead kick, which came to nothing.

The second-half witnessed wholesale changes, as is often the case in friendlies. Almost from the restart, Harry Scott had a far post effort tipped away by the Winslow keeper, closely followed by a low Brian Haule shot which the keeper blocked with his feet.

Jordan Jenkins planted a header just wide of the post as FC gained a firm grip on the match. Another headed attempt by Matt Cruse flew over the bar while a rare Winslow attack saw second-half keeper Ashley Jenkins do enough.

Ben Bateman’s looping cross on 77 minutes was the nearest that FC came to scoring. It looked to be crossing the line but a last ditch clearance by Kevin Mealor kept the scoreline intact and despite a couple of half chances, it was the visitors who held on.

The Moles take on Bedfont Sports this weekend.