Long Crendon Football Club
Photo Credit – Wings Media

Long Crendon came out on top in a seven goal thriller with Virginia Water Development on Saturday, as they edged to a tense 4-3 victory.

Manager Ryan Davis was forced into one change, with Dino Bonwick ruled out with a foot injury, so Joe Russell came in at left back.

Crendon were out of the blocks quickly and pressing the Waters defence in their own last third, Archie Pettingell stole the ball and squared for his brother Harry to slot home the opening goal. Any thoughts that this would be an easy day for Crendon as they looked to maintain their 100% record were soon dispelled though as Waters produced a swift response.

Crendon were looking unusually hurried at the back and after needlessly giving a corner away, Waters punished them when Maciej Tajs was allowed the time to control and finish the equaliser. Then on 26 minutes a shocker for Crendon as they conceded a second goal for the first time in the league this season. Crendon found themselves pickpocketed in midfield and with the back four looking exposed, Waters released Scott Ancell and he finished clinically.

Despite this setback, Crendon gradually reasserted control and were back on top when the half time whistle stopped them in their tracks.

Half time: 2-1

A big 45 minutes were in prospect as Crendon faced the prospect of a first league defeat. However, Crendon started brightly and Oli Lethbridge thought he had equalised but was harshly adjudged offside. No matter, two minutes later Tom Lethbridge came forward from the back and clipped a ball to Archie Pettingell, who cleverly chested the ball beyond the last defender and finished in typical style. On the hour, Davis made a double change, bringing on Scott Hardy and Scott Chappell and switching to three at the back. The switch paid almost instant dividends as Oli Lethbridge found James Hawkes, now playing alongside him, and he produced a drilled left foot finish to put Crendon back in front.

With ten minutes left it looked like Crendon had put the icing on the cake. Archie Pettingell released Chappell, and he capped his impressive substitute appearance with a sublime chipped finish to make it 4-2. That would have been the end of it but a long Waters ball found Tajs clear of a hesitant Crendon defence and he reduced arrears. A nervy finale followed with Waters flooding players forward but despite a couple of dangerous crosses, Crendon resolutely held on for a massive three points.

Final score: 3-4

Team: Collingwood, B Sykes, Russell (Hardy), T Lethbridge, A Farley (c), Brownsword, A Pettingell, H Pettingell, Hawkes, T Sykes (Chappell), O Lethbridge.

Goals: H Pettingell, A Pettingell, Hawkes, Chappell.

This week Crendon take a break from league action as they make the long trip to play Lydney Town of the Premier Division in a Supplementary Cup clash (3pm kick off).

Match Report – Virginia Water Development 3 – 4 Long Crendon FC