Biggleswade United 3 Bedford 5
Spartan South Midlands League Challenge Trophy Round 2
The cold end visited Biggleswade United's excellent Second Meadow home for the second time this season tonight and for the first half the Premier division hosts were second best against first division visitors Bedford.
It was a brilliant game full of incidents and goals galore as eight were scored with five coming in the first half. Bedford were much the better team for the first ten minutes (and the whole of the first half) with United giving too many easy passes away, All the play was inside of the Biggleswade half until they broke up the other end to hit the post which would been well against the run of play.
Bedford replied almost immediately by scoring their first goal when their player chipped the ball over the advancing keeper.
Bedford made it 2-0 shortly after when a throw in from the right hand side was headed past the Biggleswade keeper on his near post. He should of done better. A very soft goal to concede.
Bedford were all over their higher division opponents with many holes and lots of space in the Biggleswade back four. It was no surprise when after a trip in the box a penalty was awarded and Bedford made it 0-3 from the resulting spot kick. The Biggleswade keeper who was booked for the challenge which resulted in the penalty, accidently kicked the ball out from the net in frustration straight into the referee.
Biggleswade then scored the goal of the match (didn't catch it on film though!!) when near enough straight after the kick off one of the Biggleswade players volleyed the ball into the net from way outside the penalty box to make it 1-3. The goal was greeted by almost silence as the home fans present were still in shock at being 0-3 down and playing so badly.
Bedford kept plugging away and scored a fourth when a free kick was lobbed into the box and with a cry of 'KEEPER' the Biggleswade custodian juggled the ball in the goal mouth (it had been raining so his hands must of been slippery), the ball went out to just inside the edge of the box and the Bedford player had a shot which went into the net via a deflection.
Referee Mr C Campbell was having a great game with shouts of 'NO...GET ON WITH IT' 'NOT A CHANCE...COME ON BIG MAN' to both sides appeals against what they thought were fouls but were perfectly good tackles. He kept the game flowing and worked well with the players.
The half time whistle went and it was 1-4 to the visitors. The cold end ear wigged some of the home fans conversations at half-time....'WE'RE PLAYING LIKE A PUB TEAM'....'IT'S ONLY THE CHALLENGE TROPHY' were some of the comments. United were apparently missing some of their usual first team players.
The second half started and it was like a different Biggleswade team had come out. They had been second to the ball on almost every occasion but were now well drilled at the back and won everything. It was no surprise when the scoreline went 2-4.....and then 3-4 when Biggleswade's substitute scored at the far post following a cross from the left hand side.
There were still about 25 minutes left at this stage and United missed an open-goal to make it 4-4 and piled on the pressure...Their fans were certainly not saying it was just the challenge trophy now.
Biggleswade's centre back who had already been booked then appeared to use some industrial language towards the referee, He started to walk off shouting 'don't worry i'm going' back to the man in black who brandished a second yellow and then a red card. This angered the home fans and they made their feelings quite clear towards Mr Campbell. The cold end as a neutral fan present thinks the referee made the right and correct decision as foul and abusive language is a bookable offence.
Bedford scored late on to make the game safe and send the travelling fans who numbered about 15 into glorious celebration.
A very good game with loads of incidents and goals. Better than sitting gathering dust on the sofa watching the Champions League.
If Biggleswade United can fix their leaky defence they should start to climb the table soon and Bedford should do okay in the first divsion on this showing.
In the other games tonight in the SSMFL Challenge Trophy there were some other 'shocks' as Division Two Aston Clinton won 4-1 at Premier Hillingdon Boro, Divsion One sides Kings Langley and Cockfosters won at Premier Sides Chalfont and Harfield and Welwyn won at table topping local rivals Colney Heath. Buckingham Atheltic lead 1-0 at half time at St Margaretsbury but lost 7-1 and Broxbourne scored 8 versus Divsion Two Totternhoe. All the results here:
the cold end apologises for not knowing any of the player names but they were not read out over the PA when I was there and I couldn't get hold of a team sheet.