Hale Leys United kept their 100 per cent record intact with a scrappy and nerve-jangling 2-1 win over Grendon Rangers in South Midlands League Division Two on Saturday.
Leys travelled without centre-back Marcus Hussey and midfielder Riccardo Whittle due to injury as manager Paul Alleyne was forced into making changes to his starting line-up.
The early exchanges saw a disjointed Hale side struggle for any rhythm and they were almost punished by Grendon, who went close to opening the scoring, but the visitors soon settled and began to get on top before Alex Woodfine broke the deadlock from the penalty spot.
Grendon struck back within minutes after Hale failed to clear their lines, but Hale quickly regained the initiative and the visitors took a lead into half-time through Daniel Parsons’ cleverly-placed shot as he curled the ball around the home goalkeeper.
The second half continued in the same vein with Grendon putting Hale under pressure but defenders Steven Garbutt and Roni Joe showed their experience to keep the home side out and ensure United came away with all three points.
A disappointed Paul Alleyne said afterwards: “I’m not happy with what happened today - we didn’t turn up, we didn’t start and we didn’t play. I couldn’t tell you what they were doing out there today but it wasn’t football.
“We haven’t trained as the facility has been closed for Christmas so I think that had a little to do with the performance today, but we won the game due to some individual performances. It definitely was not a team effort and this will be addressed before next week’s game.
“I would like to thank those who came and supported us as it was a very cold day and a very poor show.”
Hale welcome Totternhoe to the Fairford Leys ground this Saturday for a 2pm kick-off.