AFC Sudbury slump continues with a third straight loss

LEAGUE DEBUT: Alex Archer, pictured playing for Peterborough Youth team, took over from Fred Howe on Saturday.
LEAGUE DEBUT: Alex Archer, pictured playing for Peterborough Youth team, took over from Fred Howe on Saturday.
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Heybridge Swifts 4 AFC Sudbury 2

DIVISION ONE NORTH

Heybridge Swifts 4 AFC Sudbury 2

by Pat Arbon at Scraley Road

AFC Sudbury’s poor league form continued on Saturday with a third consecutive defeat after conceding three first half goals without reply.

Manager Chris Tracey made changes which included keeper Alex Archer making his second start at the expense of Fred Howe while defender James Smith returned to replace the unavailable Bradley Thomas, and up front Peter Maina came in for the injured Leon Antoine.

AFC were hoping to avenge a 4-1 FA Cup defeat at Heybridge earlier in the season. But that was soon cut short when the hosts opened the scoring after two minutes when Michael Cheek converted from the penalty spot after Russell Malton had been fouled.

Nine minutes later Heybridge doubled their lead when Archer collided with Adam Dalby, who had to be substituted, as he came out to punch away Malton’s right wing cross and the loose ball was side-footed home by Luke Callender.

The home side went three goals ahead after 28 minutes when James Smith slipped while trying to clear a right wing cross and Callender latched on to the loose ball to score his second of the game.

Danny Shipton replaced Stuart Fergus at the start of the second half and AFC went on to have more of the game but Heybridge still looked dangerous going forward and only a flying save by Archer kept out a header from Malton.

But the AFC keeper had no chance when Malton rifled home a loose ball to put his side 4-0 ahead with 20 minutes remaining.

To their credit AFC kept going and they added respectability to the score line with two late goals.

Peter Maina was prominent on the right with dangerous crosses, and from one, substitute Danny Charge headed home at the far post.

Then Lee Boylan scored from the penalty spot after a handball.

AFC Sudbury: Archer, Dalby (Webb 17), Fergus (Shipton 46), Shnn, Smith, Sinfield, Cowley (Charge 70), Pond, Martin, Boylan, Maina. Unused sub: Webb.

Free Press man of the match: Skipper Michael Shinn.

AFC bookings: James Smith (foul), Peter Maina (foul).

Attendance: 132