Back In ’92
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Impressive Cards Defeat Hapless Braintree
Posted on January 15, 2014
Woking 1 – Braintree Town 0
Saturday 11th January (2014)
The Cards bounced back from their dismal performance against Salisbury City on Boxing Day, to comfortably beat Braintree Town at Kingfield. A second half goal from Joe McNerney was the difference between the two sides which now moves Garry Hill’s side eight points clear of the relegation zone.
With Woking’s influential loan trio of Jack Marriott, Scott Rendell and Charles Banya back at their clubs, Gez Sole and John Goddard started for the first time this season and Mike Cestor rejoined McNerney in the centre of defence.
Without both Marriott and Rendell who together had scored 15 goals in two months, the responsibility on Sole leading the line was huge, but the local boy did not look fazed throughout the ninety minutes. The first half an hour was frantic with Woking controlling the ball for large parts of the half but failing to convert their possession into chances. Goddard’s cross-cum-shot caused trouble in the Braintree penalty area with Hamann tipping the ball onto the crossbar and minutes later Sole’ weak shot from inside the six yard area was easily saved. However it was the away side that nearly opened the scoring, Bradley Quinton spit the Woking’s defence in half, found Dan Holman but the forward dragged his shot just past the post.
On forty minutes loanee Kieran Murtagh must have thought he’d scored for his new club, the midfielder from just outside the penalty area volleyed the ball into the corner of the net but somehow Hamann finger tipped the ball over his goal.
Half Time: Woking 0 – Braintree Town 0
For the opening stages Braintree were camped in their own half, trying to resist the Cards attacking play. Minutes in Betsy lost his marker on the far side, ran towards goal and slotted the ball past the German keeper but sadly for Woking the ball hit the post and bounced out of play. Both Sole and Josh Payne forced Hamann into good saves in opening ten minutes, with many at Kingfield wondering whether they might regret not taking one any of their opportunities.
However with an hour played, a huge roar of relief went across Kingfield thanks to McNerney who scored his fifth of the season; however a lot of credit must go to Murtagh for part in the goal.
From a Goddard corner, he found the loanee whose shot crashed the post but luckily for the home side, “the Beast” reacted first and toe pocked the ball under the keeper and into the net.
Woking’s goal raised the Iron’s back into life and they went close on seventy minutes from Kenny Davis looping header, which went narrowly over the bar. Substitute Bernard Mensah shot should have caused more trouble than it did but with less than ten minutes to play, the Iron’s had the ball in the net……. James Mulley found the ball on the left hand side, crossed high into the Woking six year area where Cox headed into the goal, but there was a clear push on McNerney and the ref disallowed the goal.
As the fourth official showed three minutes of injury time, the tension across the ground grew, in the last thirty seconds Braintree could and maybe should have snatched a point. Mike Cestor who was completely unchallenged slipped on the half way line and Cox collected the ball ran towards Beasant, but with the keeper rushing off his line the forward poorly missed from no more than five yards out.
Full Time: Woking 1 – Braintree Town 0
The Cards have now won six of their last eight league matches, and have moved away from the relegation battle – for the moment. Hill’s side face play-off hopefuls Kidderminster Harriers on Saturday but crucially the following Tuesday Chester visit Kingfield in a match the Cards cannot afford to lose.
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