St Albans City survive late Concord Rangers comeback to secure three important points

Harvey Bradbury scored his first goal for St Albans City on a rare start against Concord Rangers. Pi

Harvey Bradbury scored his first goal for St Albans City on a rare start against Concord Rangers. Picture: BOB WALKLEY - Credit: Archant

Harvey Bradbury’s first goal for St Albans City set them on the way to a 2-1 win and three very important National League South points away to Concord Rangers.

Zane Banton’s deflected effort eight minutes from time confirmed the victory although they had to survive a late comeback from their Canvey Island-based hosts when Khale Da Costa pulled one back.

With a smattering of snow and ice on the pitch, and more slowly being emptied from the sky, this game had been in doubt earlier in the day.

But by the time kick-off rolled around it became obvious that the wind was probably the key element.

And it did possibly play a part in what was a simple yet effective goal.

Bender got the ball on the left and his cross into the wind hung in the air allowing Bradbury to nod home at the far post.

This was never going to be a game full of quality considering the conditions but both sides gave it a good go.

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There was still the odd bounce, or wind-affected through ball that gave the defence nightmares, but for the most part the football was decent.

Both sides had chances in an even first half.

Femi Akinwande and Andy Freeman both brought very good saves from Dean Snedker while at the other end Louis Wells was called into action to stop Shaun Lucien form a free-kick, while a corner led to a Bender effort being cleared off the line.

The opening goal arrived at a perfect time, seven minutes into the second half.

And it gave City the perfect position to capitalise on any time Concord pushed forward.

Lucien and Banton both got into good positions but failed to deliver while substitute Sam Merson forced Wells into a stop with his legs.

Banton had been guilty of taking one two many touches and the second goal saw he do it again.

However, he danced across the edge of the box before firing in off a defender.

But anyone who thought that was it was mistaken.

Concord flew back and Snedker had to make a great save from Da Costa.

Ian Allinson had screamed for his side “to see the game out properly” and he would have been furious that the former Hendon man fired beyond Snedker with a minute to go.

And Concord almost grabbed an unlikely equaliser but with Snedker on the ground, it fortunately fell to centre-half Lewis Knight and he blasted over.

That was the last chance and the roar that greeted the win from the travelling St Albans fans told the story.

St Albans: Snedker, Herd, Bender, Noble (Merson 68), Gardiner, Sendles-White, Lucien, Sambou, Bradbury (Walker 81), Monlouis, Banton

Subs: Ogunwamule, Moore-Azille, Kiangebeni

Goals: Bradbury 52, Banton 82

Concord: Wells, Girdlestone, Brown, Nasha, Knight, Roast, Da Costa, Topley, Akinwande (Cawley 63), Greenhalgh (Igorae 84), Freeman (Taafe 63)

Subs: King, Smith

Goal: Da Costa 89

HT: Concord Rangers 0 St Albans City 0

Referee: Jack Packman (Margate)