Roberts returns to haunt City

Former Saint nets late winner for Bedford

Southern Premier Division

St Albans City 1 Bedford Town 2

THE curse of the former player haunted St Albans City on Saturday as Drew Roberts struck 10 minutes from time to hand Bedford Town all three points.

David Howell’s side looked to have done enough to secure a point when captain James Gray volleyed home with 16 minutes left on the clock but Roberts intervened turning home a right wing cross to dent Saints’ promotion push.

Saints boss Howell handed starts to new recruits Chris Seeby and Howard Newton while Chris Henry was named on the bench.

Roberts headed wide from a Max York cross before Bedford took the lead with an excellently worked goal.

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Aaron James threaded the ball through the City defence, past the attempted interception of Gray and into the path of midfielder Josh Beech who coolly lifted the ball over Nick Jupp.

City responded with Narada Bernard picking out Newton at the far post but the former Staines Town man was denied by an excellent reflex save by Bedford stopper Ian Brown.

Bernard then went close with an effort from distance but his swerving shot flew just over the crossbar.

City continued to push after the interval with Ryan Watts driving over the bar after being teed up by Simon Martin.

Jupp had to be alert to keep out Ollie Thorne’s header while Sakho Bakare shot straight at Brown.

City were rewarded for their pressure with an equaliser when Bedford failed to clear their lines adequately from Seeby’s floated free kick and Gray smashed home his second goal in as many outings.

The home side’s joy was shortlived however as Roberts ghosted into space in the penalty area and expertly guided James Hatch’s cross past Jupp for his 28th goal of the season.

The former Saint could have made things comfortable for the visitors late on when he burst clear of the City defence but he failed to find the target and City were unable to make him pay as Henry and Micah Hyde both spurned openings.

St Albans City: Jupp; Seeby, Gray �, Ngakam, Bernard (Henry 58); Newton (Lansiquot 90), Hyde, Ijaha, Watts; Bakare (Furlong 64), Martin.

Subs not used: Cutchey, McGonigle.

Bedford Town: Brown; York, Darby, Hoyte �, James; Price, Beech, Thorne, Damon (Lewis 86); Roberts, Hatch.

Subs not used: Simpson, Cooper, Ivy, Kavanagh.

Referee: Constantine Hatzidakis.

Att: 463.