Match Report | Cards blunt against tenacious Stones
9:41pm, Tue 26th Sep 2023
Wealdstone 1-0 Woking
Vanarama National League
26th September 2023
Woking made the trip to North West London to take on a Wealdstone side experiencing a similar injury problem to the Cards. Darren Sarll made several changes to the side defeated against York City on Saturday, with Timi Odusina, Greg Taylor, Tunji Akinola and new signing Alfie Pavey starting instead of Luke Wilkinson, Jermaine Anderson, Ricky Korboa and Matt Robinson, with Wilkinson and Robinson taking places on the bench.
For the hosts, a relatively busy ex-Woking cohort was reduced to just Jack Cook, with former Card Max Kretzschmar sidelined; whilst Tarryn Allarakhia took a place on the bench. It was quite a hectic start at Grosvenor Vale, with busy play from both sides forcing each opposition keeper into some action; Scott Cuthbert’s header from a Josh Casey free kick took a deflection and looped into the grateful hands of Jed Ward.
Wealdstone took the lead after 17 minutes when a long throw wasn’t cleared, and the ball fell to Sam Bowen just inside the box. His low strike was drilled into the bottom corner, past the outstretched dive of Will Jaaskelainen.
The Stones continued to dominate after scoring, and after Bowen’s curler sailed over the bar, a low drive from the tenacious Abdul Abdulmalik flew into the side netting, with Jaaskelainen hardly troubled.
Woking’s first real chance came when a low drive from Jim Kellermann was well saved by Ward down to his right, and a first real glimpse of Pavey came on 40 minutes when Dan Moss’s left footed cross was well met by the new striker’s head, but just crept wide of the far post.
Half time followed with Wealdstone deserving of their lead; the Cards with serious work to do in the second half.
Half-time: Wealdstone 1-0 Woking
As Woking continued their hunt for an equaliser, space began to open up in behind the Cards’ defence, and Abdulmalik fired a shot straight into the palms of Jaaskelainen, but ten minutes into the second half, a Casey corner was met by Akinola, but Ward made a good low save, before parrying away Pavey’s follow up from a tight angle.
The Cards began to dominate the ball, but their back five, despite pushing high, were finding opportunities hard to come by, with Wealdstone defending well.
In the 73rd minute, a big chance for Wealdstone to double their advantage went begging when a ball over the top found Corie Andrews in on goal, but he was well denied by the outstretched Jaaskelainen.
Wealdstone managed the game well, defending deep when needed and using their outlets on the break to create. They saw out the remaining four minutes of injury time without a fuss, meaning it's back to back defeats for Woking. This time, not much was created, and it was a relatively clean sheet for the home side.
Woking: Will Jaaskelainen, Dan Moss, Josh Casey, Timi Odusina, Scott Cuthbert (Willmott 67’), Padraig Amond, Greg Taylor, Tunji Akinola, Alfie Pavey (Dickson-Peters 74’), Jim Kellermann (Robinson 67’), Zak Bradshaw.
Unused subs: Andre, Wilkinson
Wealdstone: Jed Ward, Jack Cook, Ashley Charles (Dyer 83’), Mason Barrett, Micah Obiero, Kyle Smith, Charles Clayden, Abdul Abdulmalik (Olomola 54’), Sam Bowen, Jaydn Mundle-Smith, Sean Adarkwa (Andrews 63’)
Unused subs: Allarakhia, Ferguson
Goals: Bowen 17’
Bookings: Barrett 21’, Smith 84’
Man of the Match: Timi Odusina had a good game in the heart of defence, providing good recovery pace and winning plenty of duals.