Ghosts' jigsaw falling into place
WAITING for drawn games from Fakenham Town is rather like waiting for a bus.After 26 league and cup games either won or lost - mostly lost - the Ghosts have now drawn two Ridgeons First Division games on the trot, and on Tuesday night kept their first clean sheet in the league with a 0-0 result at Stowmarket.
WAITING for drawn games from Fakenham Town is rather like waiting for a bus.
After 26 league and cup games either won or lost - mostly lost - the Ghosts have now drawn two Ridgeons First Division games on the trot, and on Tuesday night kept their first clean sheet in the league with a 0-0 result at Stowmarket.
That followed Saturday's 2-2 draw at Saffron Walden.
Now games at the opposite end of the spectrum await new manager Wayne Anderson as he seeks to get his side out of the league's wooden spoon position.
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On Saturday, Fakenham entertain promotion-chasing Brantham Athletic then on Monday, Fakenham travel to Long Melford (ko 8pm), the team they must overhaul to avoid finishing bottom of the league.
Saffron Walden 2, Fakenham Town 2
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“It's a jigsaw for me at the moment,” said manager Anderson as he gets to grips with managing the Ghosts.
“There are two or three pieces missing.” he admitted. “But there is a lot of promise in there at the moment. This was a good draw against a big, physical side.”
Anderson switched himself to a front role at 2-1 down and scored the equaliser against a team which won
6-1 at Clipbush Park in early August.
It was the Ghosts' first drawn game of the season and increased hopes that they can avoid the Ridgeons League wooden spoon.
Darryl Rose gave Fakenham a first-half lead. He went past his marked with his pace and chipped the out-coming keeper. Anderson was pleased at the way his defence weathered the 10-15 minute storm that provoked from Saffron Walden.
At half-time his message was to roll the ball around the back of big opponents and get in behind their defence. But 10 minutes into the second half a mix-up over a back pass led to an own-goal equaliser.
Then Anderson admitted that he and fellow midfielders got the wrong side of a Fakenham headed clearance as a Saffron Walden midfielder crashed home a 35-yard pearler. “You don't save them!” said the Fakenham boss.
He said keeper Tom Rix kept the side in the match with some good saves then the game plan of getting the ball out wide to U18 player Ed Skinner started to pay dividends.
“I brought him in after looking at him in training,” said Anderson. “He got past his man several times on the wing and crossed.” But the chances went begging.
“We just need that composure, that cutting edge in front of goal.”
Then a reshuffle paid off as central defender Lee Hyde slipped in a through-ball for Anderson to slot home the equaliser.
“The last 10 minutes we could have walked off with a 4-2 win, their keeper made two or three good saves.”
He singled out another U18 player, Dan Savory, as his man of the match in central midfield, and had another teenager, defender Harry Felton, in the side which underlined the quality of players being produced by the youth policy.
Fakenham now have five points from 20 games to Long Melford's 16 from 24 with 16 games left to play.
Fakenham Reserves are four points adrift at the bottom of Anglian Combination Division Three after Saturday's 2-0 home defeat by Newton Flotman and Tuesday night's 3-0 reverse by Foulsham at Clipbush Park, a result which leaves Foulsham third, seven points behind league leaders Hempnall Reserves with two games in hand.
After 18 games the Ghosts are still looking for their first win, their three points so far all coming from draws.
On Saturday they visit Martham.