Eagles pegged back as Fleet pounce late to rescue a point

Ben Farrell, pictured in action for Arlesey last season, got the goal for Bedford. Picture (c) Guy Wills
Ben Farrell, pictured in action for Arlesey last season, got the goal for Bedford. Picture (c) Guy Wills

Bedford Town started their Easter campaign with a first ever visit to Fleet Town, but a late goal from the home side denied them the win.

The playing conditions were far from ideal, with a strong wind blowing around the ground as neither team created much early on.

Midway through the half, Bedford were presented with an opportunity to take the lead, when the referee spotted a handball from James Scott.

A penalty was awarded, but the Eagles didn’t take advantage of the situation, as Ryan Pryce easily saved Kyal McNulty’s tame spot kick.

Not long afterwards, Dominic Morgan-Griffiths and Devante Stanley combined to set up Leroy Griffiths, but he was denied by Josh Harfield clearing off the line.

The Eagles relentlessly pressurised their hosts from the start of the second half, and took the lead just three minutes in. A long pass was half cleared into the path of Ben Farrell, and from 22 yards the midfielder hit a low shot that beat Pryce and nestled into the back of the net.

Morgan-Griffiths then forced a save off Pryce, before the Fleet keeper had to be alert to tip a long-range effort from Griffiths round the post.

Fleet slowly came into the game, and spotting Eagles keeper Enol Ordonez Suarez off his line, Ben White played an audacious lob that dropped onto the top of the net.

Rousell stopped another potential Bedford goal, as he cleared a Kenny Orenuga shot off the line, while at the other end, Craig Stanley tried a long-range daisy cutter, but Ordonez Suarez was able to easily pick the ball up.

Bedford weren’t so lucky in the 87th minute. A throw from the right found White, whose shot rebounded into the path of Josh Francis, who had the simplest of tasks in directing the ball into the empty net.

Ordonez Suarez saved the day with a minute of the game left, as he had to dive high to his right to save Gilbert’s free-kick to ensure a 1-1 draw.

Eagles: Enol Ordonez Suarez, Devante Stanley, Lee Hawkes, James Peters, Ollie Peters, Kyal McNulty (c), Kenny Orenuga, Ben Farrell, Leroy Griffiths (Jack Goodall 90+4), Dominic Morgan-Griffiths, Matt Clifford.

Subs not used: James Hillsdon, Ashley Harris, Chris Cordara-Soanes, Taishan Griffith.

Fleet: Ryan Pryce, James Scott, Josh Francis, Liam Gilbert, Dan Rousell, Josh Harfield, Chris Hall (Craig Stanley 64), Craig Davis, Ben White, Simba Mlambo (c), Craig Martin (Jack Howard 71).

Subs not used: Jordan Westbrook, Josh Taylor.