Bedford Town’s preseason campaign continued apace with them clocking up eight goals in their latest two outings, while only conceding one.
Bedford F.C 1 – 4 Bedford Town
Last Tuesday The Eagles emerged as comfortable winners in the most local of derby’s. They travelled 100 metres to McMullen Park, home of Bedford F.C.
Fielding several triallists and dominating for most of the match the visitors went ahead before Bedford F.C pulled one back. Town took a 2-1 lead into half time, scoring twice more in the second half.
Bedford Town 4 – 0 Hitchin Town
A closer result was expected on Saturday against Hitchin Town, who occupy a place in the Southern League Premier Division, the division above the Eagles.
As it was the Eagles dominated the Canaries and emerged as 4-0 winners in a match that despite being a preseason friendly, saw multiple bookings.
The home team started brightly and on the offensive before going ahead in the 17th minute. Scott Joseph’s goal came through determination, as his shot beat Horlock in the Hitchin goal, but rebounded off the post.
Joseph, prostrate on the ground headed towards goal and it came off the post again. A third try saw the ball stopped on the line, but the linesman flagged for a goal.
Three minutes later it was two. A Dan Walker shot from outside the area clipped the ankle of a Hitchin defender, before hitting the net via the right hand post.
Bedford should have added a third when the ball was played through for Dan Walker, who got the better of his defender, and passed a shot past Horlock.
The ball came off the inside of the right hand post, and a half clearance went to Louis Hall whose shot also came off the post.
Bedford’s Callum Donnelly and Brett Longdon were both shown yellow cards for different incidents within a few minutes of the end of the half, in what was becoming a more tetchy game.
After the break former Eagle Charlie Haywood had a chance as Hitchin had a free kick, but his shot sailed over the wall and wide of keeper Aaron Dillon before, as was becoming increasingly common in this match, coming off the post.
Connor Tomlinson’s pace gave Hitchin all sorts of problems but when a shot was set up for him by Walker he put it over the crossbar.
Bedford’s third goal came in the 62nd minute. From a goal kick, Bedford got the ball upfield, and passed to Dan Walker which resulted in the forward turning in the area, and firing in a low shot past Horlock and into the bottom left of the net.
Three minutes later a Tomlinson cross into the area hit the hand of Charlie O’Keefe, and the referee give a penalty to the home side.
The Hitchin defender didn’t deliberately handle the ball, but under new laws, the referee had no choice but award the penalty.
Walker stepped up for the penalty, putting the ball through the middle and getting his hat trick in the process.
Shortly afterwards, Tre Mitford and Jack Vasey replaced Walker and Joseph upfront, but there were to be no more goals, although the woodwork won again when a Vasey shot came off the crossbar.
The last significant event of the match was Hitchin’s Luke Ferrell being shown a red card five minutes from the end.
An encouraging performance from Bedford, who go on to face Cambridge City for the last of the preseason friendlies next Saturday at the Eyrie.
Cambridge who have moved sideways into the Isthmian League division One North, from Bedford’s division last season, will be a good final preparation game.
Match tickets at a special discounted online price are available from the Bedford Town FC website.
Bedford Town starting line up (v Hitchin)
1 Aaron Dillon
2 Cade Stephens-Abbey
3 Louis Hall
4 Damien (trialist)
5 Derek Ubah
6 Brett Longden
7 Ebby Nelson-Addy
8 Callum Donnelly
9 Scott Joseph
10 Connor Tomlinson
11 Dan Walker.
Words: Michael Jarman-Webb
Photos: Jane Jones