Binfield FC 1 Rayners Lane FC 0By Adam Lee
March 03, 2009
Binfield FC manager Steve McClurg was a relieved man on Saturday after his title-chasing side narrowly beat fifth-from-bottom Rayners Lane FC by a single goal, scored with just 12 minutes left.
Despite the lack of goals, the two sides still played out an intriguing contest, which in truth, either team could have won.
However, with title rivals Ascot United winning 7-1 and Wokingham & Emmbrook 6-0, it was vitally important that Binfield, sitting nine points behind Ascot with five games in hand, kept pace.
When Binfield last met Rayners Lane, in the league cup at Harrow back in September, the Moles sealed a comfortable 4-1 win.
However, Binfield found their opponents much harder to break down this time, and McClurg was less than impressed with his team’s display.
“We made hard work of it and we didn’t play very well at all,” said the Binfield boss.
“They (Rayners Lane) were a different side to the one that we played before and they did play well, but we didn’t play particularly well on the day.
“It was pretty dour, but that’s just one of those things.
“There were some tired legs out there and I don’t know why really – we haven’t played all week.
“We knew one goal would win it and we had to make sure it was us that got it.
“It was a good finish and a good goal – the only real bit of quality in the game.
“I’m pleased with the result and to get the points.”
Binfield welcomed back both Danny Wing and Jack Tallentire after the two had endured length spells on the sidelines due to injury.
“It’s nice to see him (Wing) back on the field – he didn’t do a lot but it’s good for him to have a run out and we had Jack Tallentire back as well – he’s been out for a long time.”
Binfield had the first real chance of the game when captain Steve Nebbett hit a low drive from the edge of the area, only to see the ball sail narrowly wide.
Rayners had their chances, and had they been a little more decisive in front of goal, could have taken the lead.
Injury forced Adam Crittendon off after half an hour, being replaced by Wing, but neither side could break the deadlock in the first period.
Binfield sacrificed a defender for an extra midfielder in the second half, with the impressive James Partridge moving up, but still Binfield found chances hard to come by.
The game, however, was won with little over 10 minutes left when Tim Walsh managed to send in a low cross from the right which sub Callum Whitty deftly turned into the bottom left-hand corner.
Both sides had chances late on, but Binfield’s frugal defence, which has conceded just nine goals in the league all season, stood strong and the home side came away with the three points.