AFC Sudbury match preview - Batch won’t let complacency creep in

MAGIC TOUCH: Steve Spriggs, pictured  in the 4-2 win over Barkingside, was on the scoresheet in Tuesday's pleasing 4-1 win at Burnham Ramblers
MAGIC TOUCH: Steve Spriggs, pictured in the 4-2 win over Barkingside, was on the scoresheet in Tuesday's pleasing 4-1 win at Burnham Ramblers

AFC Sudbury will welcome Brentwood Town on Saturday (3pm) with David Batch warning against complacency.

The Yellows are just five points adrift of the play-off places after Tuesday’s 4-1 win, which came after Saturday’s trip to Heybridge Swifts was postponed.

AFC have only lost one league game since the 2-0 defeat at Dereham Town on August 24 and are now unbeaten in 11.

“Brentwood have had a bit of a resurgence of late, although they lost on Tuesday,” said Batch.

“But one thing I know in this league is you don’t get an easy game, maybe you might after 60 minutes, but you have to earn that and it will be the same position on Saturday.”

Batch takes his side to Harlow Town for a league cup quarter-final on Tuesday (7.45pm) when they will have to quickly adjust to playing a competitive game on an artificial 3G surface.

DIVISION ONE NORTH

Burnham Ramblers 1

AFC Sudbury 4

A brace of goals in each half helped AFC Sudbury defeat the Essex side for the fourth time — two coming in cup games — this season .

It was the third time on their own ground, with Tuesday’s win sealed as a reuslt of a fine all-round team performance to extend AFC’s unbeaten league run to 11 games.

The Suffolk visitors started brightly and only a goalline clearance stopped them taking the lead after 10 minutes.

But two minutes later the pressure paid off when James Baker rose highest at the far post to head home Jack Cawley’s left-wing cross.

Burnham came close to equalising after 16 minutes when Neil Richmond broke down the right and AFC keeper Alex Archer rushed out of his area only to be chipped by the Burnham striker and was relieved to see the ball drop on to the roof of the empty net.

Other than that the home side were on the backfoot for long periods and AFC deservedly doubled their lead after 27 minutes with a well-worked goal.

Cawley’s throw-in on the left found Ollie Hughes who broke and crossed for Steve Spriggs to tap home at the far post.

There were other AFC near misses before the break but no further goals until seven minutes into the second half when Steve Spriggs cut in from the right and his shot deflected off a defender and Baker pounced on to the loose ball.

Chances came and went at both ends with defences dominating. But just when it looked as if AFC would keep a welcome cleansheet, Burnham scored a consolation goal in the final minute, as Richmond tucked away a penalty after he was illegally felled prior to a fine save by Archer.

In an action-packed finish AFC sealed their first league double of the season with a fourth goal deep into stoppage time when substitute Ben Thompson broke down the right and beat the home keeper with an angled shot.

AFC: Archer, Lewis, Cawley, Mitchell (Swatman 62) Crane, Henshaw, S Spriggs (Forshaw 82), Clarke, Baker, Hughes (Thompson 70), Daniels. Unused subs: R Spriggs,Cowley.

Free Press man of the match: There are several contenders but striker JAMES BAKER gets the honours for his two goals and general work-rate throughout.

AFC bookings: Scott Mitchell (dissent).

Attendance: 77.