Eynesbury Rovers 2 N ton Sileby Rangers 1 EYNESBURY boss Dean Shipp was a happy man after his side got their United Counties League Division One season off to a flying start on Saturday. New captain Craig Smith netted twice in the second half to ensure vi
Eynesbury Rovers 2 N'ton Sileby Rangers 1
EYNESBURY boss Dean Shipp was a happy man after his side got their United Counties League Division One season off to a flying start on Saturday.
New captain Craig Smith netted twice in the second half to ensure victory for Rovers, despite a Sileby fightback.
The first half was a lively affair with some good football from both sides but neither team could create a clear-cut opening.
The game opened up after the break with chances at both ends.
Rovers' Kirk Kidd headed Ricky Taylor's cross against the crossbar seven minutes into the second half but it wasn't long before Eynesbury took the lead.
A superb crossfield ball from Neil Morris found Smith on the left edge of the penalty area. The midfielder burst his way through two defenders before burying a low shot past Alex Naylor in the Sileby goal.
Eight minutes later it looked as though Rovers would concede a penalty after Paul Morris brought down Marc Ross but the referee adjudged that the foul was outside the box. Sileby's Lee Bradley drove the resulting free kick into the defensive wall before heading over from close range a few minutes later.
On 73 minutes Smith scored his and Eynesbury's second of the match with a fine solo goal. The captain dispossessed Sileby's Nicky Daniels in midfield before racing to the edge of the box and drilling home a low drive.
Three minutes later the visitors pulled a goal back thanks to a close-range header from Gareth Errington, who then missed a good opportunity to level from six yards out.
Peter Collins had a good chance to make the game safe for Rovers in the final minute but his shot went wide of the post.
Manager Shipp said: "You can't ask for much more than three points from your opening fixture.
"It was a little bit nailbiting towards the end but we're very satisfied with the performance. Sileby are a good side, they've improved since last season and they'll definitely pick up points soon.
"We played with a brand new back four and that made it very pleasing that Ben Housego (Rovers' goalkeeper) didn't have a save to make until the last 15 minutes."
Rovers' next fixture is against Bugbrooke St Michael at Hall Road on Saturday.