Moles dig deep to win eventful Aylesbury derby

Aylesbury FC celebrate taking the lead against United in the first derby of the season back in August. Picture: Mark Bannister
Aylesbury FC celebrate taking the lead against United in the first derby of the season back in August. Picture: Mark Bannister

Aylesbury FC extended their unbeaten run to nine matches after a deserved victory in an incident-filled derby with rivals Aylesbury United at Haywood Way on Tuesday night.

First half goals from Jamie Rudd, Lamar Simpson and Gareth Price were enough to give the Moles all three points, although the Ducks made a good fist of the second half, scoring through a Paul Edgeworth penalty just before the break and taking advantage of the dismissal of FC midfielder Bradley Wadkins.

The hosts started the match the brighter of the two sides and created the first real opening on six minutes when Gareth Price shot over the bar from inside the box.

The opening quarter of the match was a rather scrappy affair with chances at a premium. It did allow the rival sets of fans to engage in plenty of friendly banter, with the printable chants including from United to FC fans “this is a library”, and later from FC to United fans “where’s your famous Stacey Field.”

The game burst into life on 23 minutes when FC took the lead. After Price’s shot was blocked by United ‘keeper Jack Sillitoe, Jamie Rudd followed up, albeit at the second attempt, to give the home side the lead.

The recent trend of FC scoring goals in quick succession, and United conceding them in a similar fashion, continued as the hosts doubled their advantage three minutes later.

A through ball found Lamar Simpson on the edge of the area, before the forward ran into the box and hit a low shot across the keeper and into the right corner of the net, sending the home contingent into raptures in the process.

The hosts then extended their advantage further just a minute before the break as they all but sealed the game with the crucial third goal.

A through ball from Bradley Wadkins found Price, whose right-footed shot went across the goal and into the corner of the net.

Any thoughts the home fans had of the game being over were put on hold a minute later as United were awarded a penalty.

It was given for infringement by FC defender Ollie Hogg inside the box, and was confidently dispatched into the left corner of the net by Ducks striker Paul Edgeworth to give the visitors something to build on going into the second half.

The Ducks started the second half at a higher tempo and were beginning to look more threatening, with FC ‘keeper James Weatherill forced to make a good save from a half volley from Joey Acheampong.

In a largely good-natured game, at least on the field, the first real flashpoint came on 65 minutes after what appeared to be a two-footed tackle by Wadkins in the midfield area.

The challenge led to some handbags between players from both sides before referee Ernie Moore showed Wadkins a straight red card for the challenge.

With FC a man down, United began to boss proceeding, however the hosts were always able to hold them at arms length.

Keith Williams and Steve Hatch both went close with chances but FC saw the game out to complete a double over the Ducks in front of their biggest crowd of the season at Haywood Way – 549.

Speaking after the match, FC boss Steve Bateman said: “I was delighted with our performance tonight. I thought we got ourselves into a comfortable lead, but I was disappointed that we conceded the penalty right on half-time, because that gave United hope.

“I always felt we had more goals in us and I felt Gareth Price always had the edge over their back four. Brian Haule caused problems with his physical presence so as a combination they were very effective. We dug in well in the second half and we were full value for the win over the 90 minutes.

“Regarding the red card, I didn’t have a great view. I think the noise of shinpads coming together and then the inevitable reaction from the players and the fans on the terraces gave the referee no option. We will lose Bradley for a few games which is disappointing but I am pleased at the way we went about our business after his red card.

“It is fantastic to see over 500 people coming out on a night when there is Champions League on the TV and choosing to support Aylesbury football.”

United manager Tony Joyce added: “We lost the match in the first half-hour. I thought we started well but then we made two sloppy mistakes and gave two goals away. We got a lifeline at half-time with the penalty and we had a go in the second half but the damage was already done.

“The players are disappointed and so am I, because we have let a good travelling support down. Over the last few weeks conceding sloppy goals has been our downfall but if we look at the season as a whole then I think we have over-achieved.

“It was a great atmosphere, both sets of supporters played their part and in these sorts of games it is really disappointing to lose, but we will look forward to the chance to regain the bragging rights next season.”

Aylesbury FC: Weatherill, Hogg, Baker, Bateman, Logie (capt) (Feyi 88), Stevens, Rudd, Wadkins, Haule, Price, Simpson.

Subs not used: Maclachlan, Mealor, Lowe, Copcutt.

Goals: Rudd 23, Simpson 26, Price 44.

Aylesbury Utd: Sillitoe, Grace (Wood 46), Williams, Wood (capt), Hatch, Smyth (Jones 75), Baines, Williams, Acheampong, Field, Edgeworth.

Subs not used: Grasso, Murphy, Joyce.

Goal: Edgeworth 45 pen

Referee: Ernie Moore

Attendance: 549