NON-LEAGUE FOOTBALL: Home comforts at last as St Neots Town see off Redditch to climb out of the relegation zone
- Credit: Archant
St Neots Town jumped out of the Southern League Premier Division Central relegation zone last Saturday.
Matt Clements’ men came from behind to beat Redditch 3-1 at the Premier Plus Stadium thanks to a Nabil Shariff brace and a Dylan Williams effort.
It was only a second league success on home turf this season and came almost four months after the previous one – a 2-1 victory against basement side Bedworth on August 14.
“The players and staff deserve this result,” said Clements. “They have all worked so hard to try to get us out of the difficult position we’re in.
“There were glimpses of us being back to our best and some of the things I saw on Saturday really excited me.
“The attitude and the performance were exactly what we needed and everyone involved deserves credit for a very important win.”
Saints suffered an early setback when falling behind during Redditch’s first attack of note. Richard Batchelor arrived late into acres of space to put away a Shaquille Leachman-Whittingham cross.
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Clements’ men responded well as Taylor Parr headed a Johnny Herd long throw against a post and they levelled just after the half-hour as Shariff found the far corner with a precise finish from the edge of the box.
Saints then established full control of the contest in the second half and their pressure paid off on the hour when Williams nodded in another trademark Herd launch into the Redditch box.
Once ahead they were rarely troubled by a Redditch side also heavily involved in the battle to avoid relegation despite an improved run of late.
Captain Luke Knight had a goalbound shot blocked, Shariff was denied by a fine save and loan capture Jordan Norville-Williams, who is back in Saints colours for the second successive season, saw an effort deflect inches wide.
But Shariff refused to be denied and clinched victory with seven minutes to go when putting away a free-kick from Herd.
It was a third brace of the campaign for the frontman but, far more importantly, a fourth league for Saints to lift them out of the drop-zone.
They are out of action this Saturday due to opponents Biggleswade Town still being involved in the FA Trophy.
Saints’ next fixture is a Tuesday (December 18) trip to Barwell.