Five goals but St Albans City end up on the wrong side as Wealdstone leave with the win
PUBLISHED: 21:51 03 September 2019 | UPDATED: 21:51 03 September 2019
St Albans City breached top of the league Wealdstone's defence twice but it wasn't enough as the visitors left Clarence Park with the 3-2 win.
A five-goal thriller it wasn't but Saints may think there was an opportunity to claim a valuable point against a Stones side who weren't as dynamic and all-conquering as their league position suggests.
Albert Adu got his first goal for the club to leave the sides level at half-time but two second-half goals killed the game off, leaving Rhys Murrell-Williamson's strike as a mere consolation at most.
Wealdstone had arrived at Clarence Park undefeated and with only a draw to blemish the perfect record and they started with the confidence that brings.
Mind you they didn't really offer too much of a threat with goal attempts and Saints were content to allow them to have the ball while holding a strong back line.
Dean Snedker had to field a couple of long-range efforts that were straight down his throat but with James Kaloczi snapping into tackles, he wasn't tested that often.
There was a couple of shouts for the defence to get tighter so there will be a modicum of disappointment with the way City defended the goal when it arrived.
Jerome Okimo lofted a ball in from the left side which Ross Lafayette, despite having Kaloczi behind him, was able to chest it into the path of Jacob Mendy who despatched it low to Snedker's left.
There were a couple of other chances for the visitors but again they were few and far between and didn't cause too many concerns.
City's attacking ventures found Joe Iaciofano trying his hardest to find gaps in the Stones' back four but more often than not falling foul of the offside flag.
He did get in once but the gap was far too narrow to cause any bother and Aston Oxborough was able to save.
It was surprise when City did equalise.
Sprague lofted a fine ball over from the left which dropped perfectly over the leaping defender, straight onto Adu's head and he guided the ball wide of the keeper.
The message at half-time from the home management would have been to keep it tight, not do anything silly and maybe hit them on the break.
If that was the case it was ignored or forgotten quite quickly.
Bobson Bawling gave it away as he was coming out of defence and Green was giving space and way too much time to line up his shot and launch it over Snedker.
There was still a sense that Saints were looking for the breakaway to bring them back in and when Iaciofano won the ball back deep in the away half, it fell to Dave Diedhiou, on for the injured Joe Howe, who drilled it low but at the keeper.
The substitute would play a huge part in the killer third goal for Wealdstone.
A ball over the top bounced and hit the former Hendon man, the referee said on the hand although the defender pleaded the case for his armpit.
Lafayette didn't mind and he stroked the kick to Snedker's left with the Saints stopper going the other way.
The home side had to do something and Ian Allinson threw on Sam Merson and Murrell-Williamson.
And it had an effect. Merson nodded a cross flush off the crossbar before his fellow sub got on the end of a flowing move involving Adu and Iaciofano.
The winger almost cut in on his favoured left foot but the shot was blocked and then Kaloczi fired over the bar from a long way out,
That was the nearest they got to a dramatic equaliser and the large travelling support loudly acclaimed their players at the final whistle.
St Albans City: Snedker, Howe (Diedhiou 60), Bender, Longe-King, Kaloczi, Bawling (Merson 75), Iaciofano, Noble, Adu, Nwabuokei, Sprague (Murrell-Williamson 75).
Subs (not used): Foxley, Banton.
Goals: Adu 40, Murrell-Williamson 88
Booked: Longe-King 90+2
Wealdstone: Oxborough, Arnold, Efete, Clifford, Stevens, Okimo, Phillips, Mendy (Sheppard 77), Lafeyette (Roberts 87), Green, Lewis (Coker 90+1).
Subs (not used): North, Watt.
Goals: Mendy 27, Green 52, Lafayette (pen) 69
HT: St Albans City 1 Wealdstone 1
Referee: Callum Walchester (Lowestoft)