Bedford Town’s last game of the season in the Evo-Stik League South Division One Central, saw them travel North to Coleshill Town.
Coleshill being mid table, and Bedford safely in fourth place, together with gale force winds suggested this could be an uneventful end of season tie. In the end, it was far from it.
Bedford’s manager, Jon Taylor, with an eye firmly on Wednesday’s playoff semi-final, made a number of changes to the starting line up with Dan Olaniran, James Peters and James Hall in for Brett Longdon, Ebby Nelson-Addy and Dan Walker.
It could have been the change of personnel, the unsavoury weather conditions, or Coleshill’s 3G pitch but the visitors were slow to get going, enabling The Colemen to strike first.
The goal came in the 5th minute after a neat pass from Jordan Nadat put Stuart Hendrie through and the striker slot past Ashlee Jones (1-0, 5’).
In the 22nd minute things got worse as Bedford were exploited again as the ball was played in from the right and left back Amavir Sandhu ran in to head the ball into the net (2-0, 22’).
Bedford then began to get more into the match, but Coleshill were still getting the most chances, maybe being more used to playing on the artificial surface helped them.
The Eagles efforts finally paid off when they pulled a goal back in the last kick of the half; Jack Vasey’s low cross into the area was taken by Leon Lobjoit, and the on form striker made room to put a low shot past the keeper into the bottom right corner of the net (2-1, 45 +3’).
The second half saw immediate changes, with strikers Lobjoit and Vasey replaced with Connor Furlong and Ebby Nelson-Addy.
The changes had an immediate impact as Bedford got a corner after the two substitutes combined down the left. Furlong’s cross had to be headed away from the line by Joe Cole.
The equaliser came as Nelson-Addy got the ball in to the area, and Ben Ford’s first effort hit the post, but he was the quickest to the rebound sand fired in from close range (2-2, 63’).
Ford produced a fantastic shot 22 yards from goal that looked as though it was going in, but Coleshill’s Dom Cotter produced a top drawer save that pushed the ball over the bar.
From the resultant corner Joe Steele had a shot saved, before Mason Watkins-Clark fired over. It was to be his last action of the game as Paul Benson, playing in his last league match, replaced him.
Bedford were now getting the better chances, but still sustaining some pressure. It was Captain Callum Donnelly who then put in a teasing cross from the right where James Hall was nicely placed to control and fire past Cotter into the bottom left of the net (2-3, 86’).
The score remained 2-3, and showed just how The Eagles can switch it on when needed.
They will need all of their grit and determination on Wednesday night as they travel to third placed Corby Town for the playoff semi-final, K.O at 19.45.
- Ashlee Jones
- Lucas Kirkpatrick
- Ben Ford ⚽️
- Joe Steele
- Mason Watkins-Clark (Paul Benson 74′)
- Dan Olaniran
- James Peters
- Callum Donnelly
- Jack Vasey (Ebby Nelson-Addy 46′)
- Leon Lobjoit ⚽️ (Connor Furlong 46′)
- James Hall ⚽️
- Connor Furlong
- Ebby Nelson-Addy
- Paul Benson
- Ashton Grant
Words: Michael Jarman-Webb
Photo: Jane Jones