St Albans City claim the Christmas number one spot after win over Tonbridge Angels
- Credit: Archant
St Albans City roared to the top of National League South with a come from behind 3-1 success against Tonbridge Angels.
It was the first game this season to be played in front of fans at Clarence Park and there may have been a few worries when the visiting Kent side took the lead on six minutes.
But they needn’t have worried as first Mitchell Weiss equalised before goals in the final 20 minutes, the first an own goal and the second a Shaun Jeffers penalty, sent the still unbeaten Saints to the top of the tree.
The start though saw City concede on six minutes, the first goal against them since Braintree Town scored on November 10.
There have been five clean sheets since but a cross from Ben Greenhalgh was side-footed home by Luke Turner to break that sequence.
The advantage was short-lived though, just 11 minutes. Luke Warner-Eley half-volleyed a drop ball into the area where Weiss was waiting and his header found the bottom corner for his fifth of the season.
From that right up until the interval, City started to control more of the game. They created a few chances, most notably a header from Solomon Nwabuokei, but that and the others were dealt with by Tonbridge goalkeeper Jonny Henly.
- 1 Armed police seize machete from Sandpit Lane in St Albans
- 2 Council confirms first monkeypox case in Hertfordshire
- 3 Police probe into death of man in 20s at 'Kinky Towers' in Hertfordshire
- 4 Hertfordshire teen bullying victim given royal honour
- 5 Peregrine falcon chick hatches at St Albans Cathedral in a city first
- 6 Rapist jailed for 15 years after kidnapping teen in Hemel Hempstead
- 7 Success for Harpenden actor after National Youth Theatre audition
- 8 St Albans SustFest events aim to boost local nature
- 9 The Crossrail connections to Hertfordshire which were never built
- 10 5 things you might not have known about Herts county council's new chairman
The second half was a rather cagey affair for 15 minutes with neither side creating much in the way of openings.
Opportunities did eventually come for the home side, Henly making another great save to deny Zane Banton this time, and eventually City had the lead 20 minutes from a time.
It came from another Warner-Eley delivery who sent his free-kick to the back post where an under-pressure Sonny Miles diverted it into the net.
Seven minutes later and the contest was settled when Jeffers was brought down in the area and he duly converted the spot-kick.
There was a late injury woe for the Saints as captain Tom Bender went down with what looked to be a nasty shoulder injury. A tweet later in the night though from the player suggested it wasn’t as bad as first feared.
It meant a lengthy period of stoppage time but there was never likely to be an Angels comeback, meaning Saints are now two points clear of Dartford in second, and with a game in hand, while four points separate them and Dorking Wanderers in third.