Bedford Town smash league new boys to set the early pace in Southern League

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Hameed Ishola made an instant impact after joining from Peterborough United (Image: Bedford Town FC)

The phrase, “good things come to those who wait” is a suitable one when it comes to Bedford Town, who returned to Southern League action in style after a ten month lay off.

On paper, the Eagles have one of the strongest forward lines in the league, even before the signing of Hameed Ishola; the 18-year old joining from Peterborough United on loan before Saturday’s league opener.

He made an instant impact against league new boys Waltham Abbey on Saturday, as he came off the bench in the first half and immediately bagged a brace in what was a stunning first 45 minutes of the season.

Waltham Abbey moved across to the Southern League from the Isthmian League this season but instantly learned a footballing lesson, as the Eagles romped to a 5-0 half-time lead.

Goals from Connor Tomlinson, Joe Steele and Dan Walker inside twenty minutes all but ended the game as a contest, before Ishola came off the bench to replace the injured Tomlinson.

Ishola then scored twice within eight minutes to give Bedford Town an unassailable 5-0 lead at the half-time interval, leaving their opponents shell-shocked.

Waltham Abbey scored twice in the second half to reduce the deficit, either side of a melee on the touchline between the two dugouts that resulted in a number of bookings, but the damage was already done.

That 5-2 victory on Saturday was supplemented by a 4-0 win last night (Tuesday) against another of the league’s new boys, Harlow Town.

Harlow put up a far better fight, but the dominant attacking force of the Eagles proved to be the difference, with two second half goals from Dan Walker and Connor Tomlinson securing the victory.

This was after former Scottish international, Craig Mackail-Smith had given Gary Setchell’s side a 1-0 half time lead with a deft header from Callum Donnelly’s cross.

The nine goals in two games will leave Bedford Town with a lot of early season confidence heading into another FA Cup campaign at the weekend, when the Eagles host St Neots Town in the preliminary round.

However, the two big results still only leave Bedford Town second in the league, after Berkhamsted won 5-0 at home to Wantage Town following a 3-0 victory at Biggleswade on Saturday.

On the other side of town however, things did not go to plan on the opening weekend for Kempston Rovers who suffered two tight defeats against North Leigh and Welwyn Garden City.

A 38th minute goal from North Leigh’s Callum Crook downed Rovers on Saturday before Callum Taylor and Cyrus Babaie goals secured a 2-0 win for Welwyn at Hillgrounds last night.

It could well have been more last night but for the Walnuts keeper, Carl Knox who made a string of world-class saves to keep the score at two.

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