Late Hendon penalty sends Angels home pointless
Taste of Greens not to Angels liking
The Angels were cruelly denied a point at the Silver Jubilee Stadium by a disputed penalty award in the 90th minute for a foul by Sonny Miles on substitute Daniel Uchechi.
The game had looked as if a draw was probably going to be a fair result as both teams particularly in the second half had served up an end to end affair with both sides creating chances.
In the first 45 minutes Hendon used the flanks to good effect while Tonbridge used the hold up play of Nathan Elder combined with the pace of Alex Akrofi to worry the host’s defence.
On 19 minutes a succession of Tonbridge crosses culminated in another from Luke Blewden that found the head of Nathan Elder unmarked but the striker’s effort was just off target. It was however the runs of left midfielder Joe Turner that was starting to provide the Angels most productive outlet.
For their part Hendon were doing plenty of attacking without creating too many outright chances. In the 23rd minute Angels keeper Jonny Henly cut out a dangerous cross from Josh Walker and three minutes later Jake Eggleton was through on goal but again Henly was equal to the task.
The 42nd minute saw Sonny Miles’ header from Craig Stones’ angled cross drift just wide of the post, but it was simply the prelude to what was to take place next. There appeared to be a foul on Liam Smith who went down injured, but the referee allowed play to continue with the ball running to a Hendon forward who was then tripped in the area by Callum Adonis-Taylor. There was a long delay while Smith received treatment in the meantime the referee awarding a penalty to Hendon. Eventually up stepped Ashley Nathaniel-George to convert but the effort was weak and meant a comparatively easy save for Henly.
It didn’t take long for second half to take off. On 52 minutes good hold up play by Elder allowed the ball to be fed back to Alex Akrofi who in turn kept possession well and found substitute Chris Kinnear whose pile driver had goal written all over it long before the net bulged to put the visitors a goal to the good.
Just three minutes later Hendon drew Level when Eggleton’s glorious cross gave Michael Corcoran the opportunity to draw the team’s level which he gratefully accepted. With everything to play for both teams went for that elusive winner with chances falling Niko Muir and Mat Ball while for the Angels a combined Kinnear and Jack Parter move down the left created havoc in the Hendon defence and an Elder shot on the turn was just wide of Hendon’s left hand post.
The teams could not be separated and it seemed the game was destined for a draw until the intervention of referee Conor Farrell in the 90th minute. Even Hendon officials on seeing the match video had to accept the award was ‘soft‘ but despite that having missed one already that afternoon the hosts were not to be denied again and Muir made no mistake sending Henly the wrong way.
Afterwards, Angels boss Steve McKimm said : “This was hard to take as over the ninety minutes we had done enough to justify the draw. That said we conceded far too quickly after going ahead and with an inconsistent referee you always run the risk.”