Seventh heaven for men's 1s
Seven goals and a prized clean sheet see the first XI march on
On a slightly overcast Saturday afternoon at the Bedford Town fortress, Blueharts came prepared to do battle. From the first whistle, Blueharts came out hard and fast. They had a spring in their step and Bedford knew they were facing the hardest fight of their season so far.
After a stalemate 5 minutes where both teams looked sharp and ready, Alex Drummond
stepped up to the plate to take first blood. A well-taken short corner drag flick nestled into the net and this was the moment that Bedford’s class and domination really started to take effect.
Solid and composed at the back, dynamic, strong and technically brilliant through the middle and skilled, speedy and direct up front, Bedford started to look as good as any Bedford team has looked in a decade. The quality and composure of this newly revitalized Bedford team under head coach Stefan Taylor’s well thought through and perfectly suited new system was clear to see.
Before long, Rich Evans was stepping up to the challenge of coming back for his first top flight game of the season having been plagued with injury over the pre season. He scored 2 classy goals in short succession characteristic of a man ready to bang the nails into a Bluehart coffin.
Blueharts found themselves 3-0 down and shell-shocked. They had not mentally prepared for such a clinical Bedford side with such quality to see all over the pitch. The Bedford press was superb and Stefan’s cunning plan of stealing the ball in key areas of the pitch to attack at pace and in numbers was being executed to perfection.
There was a flurry of chances from Matt Chitty charging through and shooting on his reverse, Wilson with a lob attempt and Evans firing into the bottom corner drawing a world class save from the Bluehearts keeper. Finally the 4th goal came. Dave Appleton superbly drove from the right flank, skillfully beating 3 players and shooting past the Blueharts keeper at the near post.
Into the second half and Bedford showed character in a 10 minute spell where they had dropped off their first half intensity by 10% at the same time as the Blueharts team were attempting to throw everything they had at Bedford in a last ditch effort to get something from the game. Historically, Bedford would have been at risk of letting in 2 early goals and finding themselves in a scrap for the rest of the game, but this Bedford team were calm and composed. They went back to basics- keeping the ball, playing percentage passes and staying supportive and positive with each other.
It was Evans that broke the second half deadlock and after superb skills from Master Axford, the excellent skipper Lee Hoggart and the one and only Simba Chigwada
, Evans slotted home a further 2 to make his tally 7 goals from 2 games this season.
The game continued and so did Bedford’s dominance. The Defensive combo of Rob Turner
, Nick Card
, and the classy youngster Tomas Wallis kept Blueharts forwards at bay and the away team became a battering ram for wave after wave of classy Bedford attacks. Alex Drummond
, Matt Wilson and Rob Tarrant held strong and expertly fed new boy Axford’s blinding skills, Hoggetts raw pace, Appleton’s determination and experience, and Chitty’s trickery. Richard Hamilton
also looked dangerous as ever making great off the ball runs and he even found himself with a one on one chance which drew another good save from the Bluehearts keeper. Finally it was Chigwada’s turn to expertly take the goal tally to 7.
So… the fortress stays strong. Dolan has a smile on his face and Bedford’s excellent season continues. The team will take this positive momentum into a great opportunity to send a message out to the whole league next week at St Albans.