MOLTEN SPARTAN SOUTH MIDLANDS LEAGUE DIVISION ONE
WELWYN GARDEN CITY 0 LONDON LIONS 3
London Lions started the new league season off with an impressive 3-0 win away at Welwyn Garden City.
Following on from Saturday’s FA Cup win, Lions dominated large periods of a game played on a bumpy and uneven pitch.
Manager Tony Gold made one change to the starting line up from Saturday with club Captain Dean Nyman back from suspension replacing the injured Josh Kennet. Danny Berg and TJ Keterman were the other new inclusions making up a strong Lions bench.
Welwyn who on Saturday recorded a goalless 0-0 draw at Harpenden Town were rumoured to be fast starters, but it was the visitors who flew out the blocks taking a lead as early as the third minute. Great work by Sam Sloma in the home sides box saw his shot well saved only for the rebound to fall to Ben Ellis who didn’t need a second invitation to score his second goal in as many games.
The goal settled Lions down and for the next 25 minutes it was the visitors who had 85% of the possession. Even on a difficult playing surface Lions still managed to somehow play some intricate football.
Ten minutes before half time Sam Sloma doubled Lions lead with another instinctive finish this time following good work by Nyman and Daniel Stanton.
The next goal was all important as the teams emerged for the second-half. The home side huffed and puffed but lacked the penetration to break down a well organised Lions back four.
As the game continued to draw to a close it got scrappier and scrappier. Some of the Lions players started to look tired and with 20 minutes remaining Stanton, Sloma and Engleman were replaced by Berg, Keterman and Bentwood.
Within five minutes Keterman went on a run and set up Aron Barnes who rifled home another unstoppable shot to put Lions 3-0 up and lead the hot shots table with four goals in three games.
A great start to the new league campaign and many positives to take from it. Lions move on to Saturday’s game against Stony Stratford at Rowley Lane.
Following another good win an a second clean sheet Lions manager Tony Gold summed up his sides performance by saying “It was crucial that the players understood the importance of tonight. Saturday was a fantastic day for the club and a great occasion but realistically we are not going to win the FA Cup”.
“To win any league it is vital to come to places like this midweek where the pitch isn’t great and grind out the result. We did that tonight and fully deserved the three points. It was a great way to start off the new season, what is important now is that we build on it Saturday against Stony Stratford.”
Lions: Mario Cenolli, Ricky Engleman (sub: Danny Berg), Michael Sacks, Guy Morris (capt), Jake Gottlieb, Andy Glynne, Daniel Stanton (sub: Kyle Bentwood), Sam Sloma (TJ Keterman), Aron Barnes, Dean Nyman, Ben Ellis
Man-of-the-match: Ben Ellis