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16.04.2013 @ 19:45 New Eyrie Attendance : 205
Bedford Town
2 - 0
St Albans City
Referee : Paul Forrester (Luton) Evo-Stik League Southern Premier Division-Match

Goalscorers
Callum Lewis (44)
Michael Built (90 +4)
None.
Starting Line-ups
Dan Green
Ollie Wilkinson
Steve Kinniburgh
Josh Beech
Nat Peacock
Josh Green
Michael Built
Eugene Libertucci
Nick Beasant
Joel Gyasi
Callum Lewis
Nick Jupp
Layne Eadie
Joe Bruce
Ryan Wharton
Elliott Godfrey
Brad Wadkins
Richard Graham
Josh Urquhart
Darren Locke
James Comley
Greg Ngoyi
Substitutes
Jamaine Ivy
Seb Simpson
Jordan Davis
Paul Cooper
Josh Webley
Fabio Bufano
Chris Henry
Curtis Shaw
Elliott Bailey
David Keenleyside
Substitutions
None Chris Henry -> Brad Wadkins (53)
Curtis Shaw -> Richard Graham (67)
David Keenleyside -> Ryan Wharton (85)
Yellow cards
Joel Gyasi (78) None.
Red cards
None None.
Match report
Excellent goals by the Bedford Town duo of Callum Lewis and Michael Built condemned a lethargic St Albans City to a dismal 2-0 Southern League defeat at the New Eyrie on Tuesday.

The goals of Lewis and Built to one side, this was a most dispiriting encounter that did little to promote the Southern League, but for Bedford the result reignites the remote possibility of the Eagles sneaking into the play-offs.

St Albans enjoyed one lengthy spell in the first half during which they dominated the play with some decent passing football but even then never looked likely to score and one successful strike for the Eagles was always going to be sufficient to secure victory.

City made two changes from the side defeated at Chippenham on Saturday. Nick Jupp returned in goal to replace Nick Hardy, while midfielder Curtis Shaw went to the bench as Darren Locke reclaimed a starting position.

Locke joined Joe Bruce in the middle of the defence as Ryan Wharton was pushed into a defensive midfield role, something that he achieved with a degree of success.

Bedford, beaten and without a goal in their two previous outings, threatened early on with a Steve Kinniburgh free kick that caused Jupp some problems before being cleared.

A City free kick at the opposite end of the pitch saw James Comley’s flighted delivery only partly cleared to Elliott Godfrey, whose volley sailed high over the target.

Set pieces continued to provide the most likely path to goal although Jupp had little difficult in dealing with headers from Josh Green and Nat Peacock from crosses by Kinniburgh.

As the half progressed both defences retained the upper hand and it was something of a surprise when Built was put through with just Jupp to beat but shot meekly against the keeper’s legs as he darted from his goalline.

A couple of trademark surging runs down the left by Layne Eadie won two corners and from one such set piece, taken by Comley, the ball sailed over the debut making Eagles keeper Dan Green but was, somehow, lashed high back across goal to safety from close in by Locke.

The half appeared destined to finish goalless until, in the 44th minute, Bedford worked the ball across the halfway line to Kinniburgh who played it down the flank to Joel Gyasi.

The Town striker twisted and laid the ball back inside for the inrushing Lewis to collect and calmly clip, right-footed, to the left of Jupp and into the goal via the upright.

The goal was an oasis of quality amid a desert of dross.

The goal seemed to knock the stuffing out of St Albans and their play after the break became increasingly disjointed with passes going astray endlessly and the attack being merely bystanders.

Bedford were certainly no better but did have the cutting edge that City lacked.

City squandered an early chance to pull level after the interval when Josh Urquhart, receiving a short free kick from Godfrey, sent a low shot harmlessly wide.

Bedford were equally wasteful when Kinniburgh and Josh Beech combined to free Peacock but his miscued shot from the edge of the penalty area went gently through to Jupp.

Comley looked to have found a way through when bustling his way to the goal line but his cleanly struck cross was smartly collected by Green.

Still, though, the most likely route to goal was through a set piece and Eagles skipper Nick Beasant headed into the side netting from another Kinniburgh corner.

City’s best chance to salvage something from the game vanished when a completely misdirected shot by Eadie was brought under control by Godfrey only for his rushed shot to bounce tamely though to Green.

What had been a pretty genteel affair burst into bitterness on 78 minutes following a clash between Gyasi and City substitute Curtis Shaw.

Following a lengthy spat of push and shove – during which two stewards needlessly and quite stupidly walked onto the pitch – Gyasi’s name went into referee Paul Forrester’s notebook.

The undignified argument did at least inject some feeling into the play and the night finished on a high for Nick Platnauer’s side when the Eagles added a superb second goal in the fourth minute of added time.

A City attack broke down when substitute David Keenleyside’s cross was headed away.

Gyasi, from deep inside his own half, was sent thundering towards the Saints goal by Jamaine Ivy but when reaching the penalty area laid the ball inside for Built to unleash a wonderful first time effort from 25-yards with his right foot that sailed high to Jupp’s right for his sixth goal of the season.

Speaking after the game, a dejected joint-City manager James Gray said, “Over the last 3-4 weeks we’ve found that we’ve got quite a soft underbelly in this side and not enough players that want to give us enough fight. We’ve had a few words in there.”
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