VCD Athletic 2 v 0 Whyteleafe
Kent League Premier Division
By Allen Kelly
Whyteleafe paid their first ever visit to the Crayford ground and found the Kent League Premier Division leaders too strong.
Leafe gave debuts to Adam Griffin and Chris Richardson and welcomed back Steve McNamara from Beckenham Town.
However, after only five minutes of his debut, Richardson took a kick on the ankle and, although he struggled on for a further seven minutes, was replaced by Sean Rivers.
Leafe came closest to breaking the deadlock when skipper Adam Broomhead saw his shot cleared off the line.
The best chance of the half fell to VCD when a fierce James Duckworth shot was parried by Paul Smith into the path of Uche Ibemere, but he was unable to take advantage.
The second half belonged almost entirely to the home side. In the opening minutes Smith had to be at his sharpest to tip a fierce Karl Dent shot over the bar.
The Leafe defence was prone to bunching, leaving spare VCD forwards far too much space. In the 54th minute Billy Shinners was presented with two successive open goals and the second one, from a
pass by Dent, he gratefully accepted, putting the home side ahead.
VCD were now dominant and only a superbly-timed tackle by Lou Clark on Ibemere prevented them doubling their lead.
But in the 62nd minute, James Duckworth finally made it 2-0.
Shinners should have made it three soon after and there were further chances for both Duckworth and Ibemere, but Smith was in fine form.
Finally Leafe rallied and young Jahmet Haywood had a chance to narrow the deficit, the VCD goalie having to be sharp off his line to intercept.
The fianl 10 minutes belonged to the visitors but they lacked penetration and it was not until the 88th minute when Rivers gave the VCD keeper his first serious shot of the half to save.
Leafe’s misery was completed in the dying moments when Lou Clark was red carded for a brutal two-footed tackle on Dent.
Leafe host Holmesdale at Church Road this weekend before going to Woodstock Sports on Saturday.