National League South Tue 18 April Farnborough Football Club
  • Pearce (4')

After three consecutive home wins, the trip to Farnborough was the first of four away fixtures in seven days for the Rebels, who are looking to cement a place in the playoff places in the Vanarama National League South.

Their hosts, and fellow playoff contenders, Farnborough came into the contest off the back of three straight defeats which saw Boro drop to 10th in the league standings.

Adam Hinshelwood was forced into one change from the eleven that started against Braintree on Saturday as Joel Colbran missed out with an injury. The defender was replaced with Joe Rye.

At the Easy-As-HGV Stadium, it was easy as you like for the Rebels to open the scoring. Josh Chambers fed through Pearce who was in acres of space in the fourth minute. He advanced forward, taking his time before rolling the ball past Jack Turner and into the back of the net.

Ten minutes later, Ibby Akanbi missed the chance to double the lead after Pearce won the ball back high and squared to his strike partner. With his left foot, Akanbi dragged it agonisingly wide of the upright.

The hosts seemed to gain a foothold back in the contest after a dominant first 20 minutes by the Rebels. There were chances for Harry Parsons and Selim Saied either side of the half hour mark, but Harrison Male comfortably saved on both occasions.

On 37 minutes, Pearce saw a chance cleared off the line. His chance came after Reece Meekums drove forward, feeding Davide Rodari on the left, who crossed into the path of Pearce at the far post.

After a lengthy period of added time was played, the Rebels maintained their one-goal lead into the break.

Chambers was denied a huge chance to double the advantage shortly after the interval. It was Akanbi who beat his man with a neat bit of skill down the left before crossing low to Chambers, but the ball was hooked away before the midfielder could get there.

It was a cagey and largely uneventful second half with the home side’s physical game drawing the Rebels into a scrappy affair.

On 67 minutes, Hinshelwood turned to his benched and replaced forwards, Akanbi and Pearce with Suk-Jae Lee and Mo Dabre for fresh legs.

Ten minutes later, Dan Thompson swapped with Meekums for the Rebels’ final change.

The hosts began to build pressure with just over ten minutes left in the contest. First, Rye was called into action as he headed off the line from a Boro corner.

Next came the big opportunity for the home side to get back on level terms. Saied cut back to Parsons who found room in the box, but the forward blazed his shot high and wide.

The Reds remained firm in defence to pick up a vital three points in their battle for the playoffs.

Next up for Hinshelwood’s men is a trip to Taunton Town on Saturday afternoon.