Canvey Island 4-1 VCD Athletic
Gulls Record First Pre-Season Win
Canvey Island put in an encouraging performance at The Frost Hire Stadium on Tuesday night, beating Bostik South East side VCD Athletic 4-1.
The first action of the match came on eight minutes when Dominic Odusanya played a ball through the Canvey defence for Alex Gaggin. The forward bent his run to stay onside, shooting across goal from the left and flicking the outside of the post.
Canvey took the lead three minutes later when a long ball forwards from Jake Pitty in the right back position wasn’t dealt with by defender Temi Eweka. Martin Tuohy capitalised, turning Eweka inside out before firing home from 18 yards.
It was 2-0 on 14 minutes when Jordan Cox played a pass from a central position 20 yards from goal which released Martin Tuohy inside the area. This time the forward fired across the keeper and into the back of the net to double his and Canvey’s tally.
It was Canvey’s turn to hit the woodwork on 22 minutes when Jordan Brown set off on a determined run down the left wing. Having made it to the edge of the box he squared for Jordan Cox, but the pass was slightly behind the forward. It did however sit up perfectly for Ryan Melaugh to strike, but his effort across goal from the left struck the base of the post.
Martin Tuohy had a chance to score his hattrick on 37 minutes, albeit a difficult one. Jordan Brown found Tuohy at the back post with a deep cross from the left which the forward connected with on the volley. However, his effort went back across the face of goal and was cleared by Ricardo Joseph before Jordan Cox could score a tap in.
VCD had been the better side in the second quarter of the match and nearly scored on 39 minutes when Alex Gaggin was played in down the right. He opted to try and chip Harry Palmer, but the keeper read the situation well and stood up to pluck the shot out of the air.
The goal did eventually come a minute later with Gaggin involved again. This time his low cross from the right caused panic in the Canvey box with Moses Ashikodi in acres of space six yards from goal. Josh Hutchinson slid in to prevent the former-Glasgow Rangers man from scoring a certain goal, but in doing so sent the ball into his own net.
With Canvey holding a slender lead at half time, manager Danny Heale made four changes for the second half. Off came Harry Palmer, Sam Collins, Jordan Cox and Ryan Melaugh, with Conor Gough, George Sykes, Mitchell Gilbey and Marlon Agyakwa entering the match.
Canvey’s new look attacking line up were playing some intricate football in the final third without managing to seriously test goalkeeper Joe Mant.
They were nearly made to pay for this on 62 minutes when VCD left back Jude Adebayo unleashed a speculative curling effort from 30 yards which had Conor Gough beaten diving to his left. However, the ball clipped the top of the post to deny Adebayo what would have been a sensational goal.
The Gulls edged further ahead three minutes later when George Sykes latched onto a through ball and got his head down towards goal. Sykes was under pressure from a defender and it looked as though the chance had gone, but the forward slid in to poke the ball past the advancing Joe Mant and over the line via the inside of the post.
The victory was sealed on 73 minutes when Mitchell Gilbey was fouled on the edge of the penalty area. James White stepped up and struck a left-footed effort which the keeper got a hand to but was unable to prevent nestling into the top corner.
The visitors had the better of the remainder of the match and had some good chances to score without managing to take one. The closest they came was with eight minutes to play when a strike from distance by substitute Jack Steventon was saved by Conor Gough diving to his right.
Listen: Danny Heale post-match interview