Fairford Town v VWFC
02/04/2019 Fairford Town 2-1 Virginia Water
Hellenic Premier Division
Report by Ceri Jones
Waters' captain Steve Williams
Virginia Water’s decision to rearrange this fixture to midweek and assist Fairford Town backfired in a cruel manner, as a late controversial goal denied a severely depleted Waters side of a deserved draw. Before focussing on the game itself, Waters do hope the officials reflect and gauge opinion on how a poor decision allowed a late winner.
The visitors undertook a gruelling trek to their excellent hosts, with eight first team regulars absent, and losing another centre back en-route due to a family member being taken ill – we wish him well with this.
This said, Waters competed well, and although had some excellent Matt Jones saves to thank in keeping them in the game in the early stages. Waters did grow in confidence as the match progressed, and as alluded to earlier, more than deserved a point!
The home side took probably a deserved lead toward the half hour mark, when Waters failed to clear from a free kick, and Ben Saunders slotted home. Virginia Water had chances at the other end with Adam McNamara, Maciej Tajs and Jake Baker all going close. At 1-0 down at the break given the circumstances, Waters did not feel it was that bad at all, and they remained confident of getting something from the match. The visitors had the better of the second half despite, bizarrely, barely getting a decision in their favour – so they felt at least!
Waters’ football improved, and on the hour, deservedly equalised with a great goal by Eddie Lazarcuk, who side footed home after patient build up play, and a defence-splitting pass by the excellent Steve Williams.
Both sides tried for the win, but a draw looked inevitable. However, in the final 15 minutes or so, the referee gave the home side a free kick in their own half, which they took quickly with a clearly visible rolling ball. The receiving player was at least 3 yards offside, and he played in Danny Gudger to finish well – all of which was missed or overruled by the officials, leaving Waters bemused.
This said, manager Ceri Jones was not going to take anything away from Fairford, and wished them well. But sadly the match will be remembered by Waters at least, for a poor and controversial decision, rather than the spirit it was played in by both sides, in front of a large crowd on a cold and wet night in the Cotswolds
Steve Williams (c)