Tonbridge Angels 2 Metropolitan Police 1
AFTER four games without a win in the Ryman Premier, Tonbridge edged a close encounter that was in the balance right up to the final whistle.
Despite being the slightly better side during the first period they found themselves behind at the break and faced a stiff task to get their play-off hopes back on track. By contrast, Met Police were desperate for points to ease their relegation worries.
Although chances had fallen to the home side through Tom Phipp, Tom Parkinson and Alex Akrofi, the Met took the lead on 39 minutes.
Following good work on the left side from Roman Michael-Percil, Lloyd Macklin was able to bundle the ball past Anthony Di Bernardo in the Angels goal.
The scoreline could have looked even better for the visitors three minutes later when Michael-Percil failed to achieve sufficient height on an attempted lob when he was through on goal.
It did not take the home side long to get back on level terms in the second half. On 51 minutes Jack Parter’s exquisite cross from the left saw Akrofi jump highest in a crowded penalty area to head home past Billy Bishop.
The home side continued to press forward and on 66 minutes a fine move involving Akrofi, Nathan Elder and finally Luke Blewden saw the Tonbridge substitute fire home what would prove to be the winner.
The visitors made a valiant effort to get back on terms but the Angels held on for three vital points.
A relieved Angels Manager Steve McKimm, who had seen his side gain only one point from their last four fixtures, praised the players for their determination to put the campaign back on track.
He said: “Despite being the better team for the first half we’ve failed to break them down and with only three chances for them, they’ve scored from one.
“Credit to my players for coming out for the second half and, for 20 to 25 minutes, playing some of the best football this season. They’ve taken the game by the scruff of the neck and established a lead.
“The Met have made a huge effort for the last 20 minutes to try and get something from the game and perhaps we haven’t always looked after the ball as well as we should. But we stuck at it and we’ve taken the three points.”