Match Report: BUFC 0-1 Leverstock Green
By Leon Waite – @leonwaite98
United’s unbeaten run was halted on Saturday as Leverstock Green- aided by the first half dismissal of Liam Andrews- came away with a 1-0 win from Second Meadow, representing Jimmy Martin’s first defeat on home turf since taking up the managerial reigns in the summer.
The visitors controlled the early stages of the match and tested Dean Bull’s reflexes five minutes in when Alex Condon met a free-kick from the left with a firm header that the goalkeeper was equal to before Chris Blunden eventually turned the loose ball wide.
Struggling to assert themselves on the contest, United mustered a reasonable effort as Dylan Logan struck from range but Arvydas Kacinkevicius collected it pretty comfortably.
Logan saw his appeal for a penalty waved away and soon the home side were behind as the Green broke swiftly through midfield after dispossessing Dave Parkinson before Charlie Briggs’ failed intervention afforded Jonathan Lacey the chance to fire low into the corner to give his side the lead.
Kane Farrell tried to offer a response with a free-kick bent towards the top, right corner that goalkeeper claimed easily.
However, the first time United had their opponents truly under threat perhaps was when Andrews accelerated into the offensive half and picked out Sam Holmes in the right-hand channel, who fired wide of the near post via the frame of the goal.
Ahead of the interval, the hosts task became far more difficult as they were reduced to ten men following a red card to Andrews for a high challenge.
Despite their numerical disadvantage, United didn’t yield in the second period and arguably began to threaten more with Kane Farrell’s expertly struck volley forcing the keeper into a sharp save at his near post.
Rafe Goodman helped sustain the pressure with a low, drilled effort from distance that the keeper reacted to well as he diverted it wide for a corner.
United’s bravery was admirable in the second half as they committed men forward in pursuit of an equaliser leaving the away side to counter-attack dangerously but neither team could add to the scoreline- Tariq Andrews’ free-kick sailed just wide at the death.
A disappointing loss amidst a good period of progress and we will never know what an additional body could have added to United’s second-half performance; they go again at Hadley next Saturday, KO 3pm.