Boreham Wood 0-0 Fleet

The Fleet are staying up! The point needed was secured in a 0-0 draw at Meadow Park this afternoon to keep Danny Searle’s side in the National League!

The Fleet boss made two changes with Dominic Poleon and Billy Clifford back in the starting lineup, while Dominic Samuel and Luke O’Neill also returned to the squad after spells on the sideline. Luke Garrard named an unchanged home side that included three former Fleet players in Nathan Ashmore, Chris Bush and skipper Jack Payne for his final match in charge at Boreham Wood.

With a record attendance packed in, Boreham Wood claimed the first real chance of the game. A long throw-in from Bush was swung into the area which led to a goalmouth scramble that Declan Skura sent out for a corner off Jack Payne’s shot. Successive set pieces for the Wood could have been a threat but the Fleet cleared without too much concern.

First sight of goal for the Fleet came in the 11th minute. A cross down the right from Ben Chapman floated by the face of goal across Nathan Ashmore and Bryant Bilongo. Dominic Poleon picked up the pieces but couldn’t keep his shot down. The Fleet continued to push for the opener, Poleon opting for a low shot from distance that Ashmore managed to grab. A series of corners then came Fleet’s way that promised more but Boreham Wood were able to clear their lines.

Ashmore was called into action again on 27 minutes when Bingham managed a shot at the back post and moments later Chapman sent a ball into the area in attempt to find Tommy Fogarty but the goalkeeper claimed the ball again.

Boreham Wood pressed forward again and part of their gameplan appeared to be to hoist high balls dropping behind the Fleet defence but the visitors did their defensive work. Searle’s side were dealt an early blow, however, when Skura was forced off with an injury to be replaced by O’Neill.

But the goal the Wood needed never quite seemed on the cards in an even enough affair in the opening 45 minutes to leave the game finely balanced.

Bilongo was out of the blocks quickly with a shot at goal after the break which Ashmore struggled to keep hold of and he fumbled that out for a corner. Boreham Wood began to enjoy much of the possession and they thought they’d found the opener on the hour mark but a foul on Mark Cousins during the build-up to a shot over the line and that kept the scores level.

Fleet pulled out all the stops as the hurried Wood kept coming, their time running out quickly. The hosts claimed a penalty suggesting Billy Clifford had handled the ball but the referee was having none of those appeals.

Cousins brought off an excellent save from Angelo Balanta before Josh Wright brought down Kabonogo Tshimanga on the edge of the box. Substitute and another ex-Fleet man Tyrone Marsh forced Cousins into a diving save.

The white shirts were celebrating prematurely once again six minutes from time when Tshimanga latched on to the ball and sent a shot the other side of Cousins’ dive but the flag was swiftly raised for offside.

Back at the other end, Fleet began to create more and a quick run from Toby Edser linked him to Chapman who saw the goal open up but he misjudged his shot from a few yards out and sliced it wide. Clifford then played a perfect ball into the path of Samuel but he mistimed his run and out went the ball for a goal kick.

Samuel was then one on one with Ashmore and he took his run into the area and struck but Ashmore forced it wide.

Fleet did a good job of stemming the Wood’s waves of attack in the final 10 minutes and after the disallowed second goal, the home side never quite produced the threat

EUFC: Cousins, Kenlock, Fogarty, Skura (O’Neill 30), Bilongo, Wright, Clifford, Chapma, Edser, Bingham (Coulthirst 90), Poleon (Samuel 71). Subs: Tanner, Domi
BWFC: Ashmore, Ilesanmi, Payne (Marsh 77), Bush, Sagaf (Balanta 56), Ndlovu, Agbontohoma, Tshimanga, Sousa, Sass-Davies (Appiah 84), Robinson. Subs: Coxe, Fyfield
Attendance: 3,011 (670 EUFC)

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