AFC Sudbury 3
MET Police 0
AFC Sudbury’s players gave their manager the perfect birthday present on Tuesday — a first-class performance and three points to alleviate the previously growing concerns about their shrinking gap to the relegation places.
There could not have been a more timely return to collecting three points either, with their five-match winless run halted against a side in Metropolitan Police who had been just three points from AFC in the highest relegation spot.
The Yellows, who boss Jamie Godbold later revealed turned down the chance to postpone the game to give them more time to prepare for Saturday’s FA Trophy visit of Macclesfield Town, started the match with a head of steam, and were soon steam rollering their opposition into submission.
With new signing Danny Crow on the bench but captain Sam Clarke and defender Ryan Henshaw back in the starting XI after suspensions, their early domination was soon rewarded when Baker laid off into the path of the on-running Jack Wilkinson and his 25-yard rocket cannoned off James Harper and in.
MET Police were unable to test Marcus Garnham at the other end before it was 2-0.
Rob Eagle’s looping 19th minute back post corner catching out goalkeeper Billy Bishop, whose back it went in off after coming off the post.
Bishop turned an effort from Sam Bantick over shortly after before pushing a Baker header round his post, while the visitors went into the break with just a weak effort from Roman Michael-Percil to show for their efforts.
Right-back Tyler French, who has been trialling with Ipswich Town, continued his barn-storming display in front of four scouts, representing clubs including Ipswich and Sheffield Wednesday.
Garnham continued to go untroubled, despite the visitors’ possession increasing, and after substitute Crow forced Bishop into a diving save with his first touch, the result was put beyond any doubt in the 80th minute with Henshaw’s excellent header from Bantick’s cross.
Afterwards, new signing Crow said he is not going to take his chance at AFC lightly.
“I am very privileged to be here, given I am someone who hasn’t been involved for six months, probably over that.
“I am going to work my hardest here.”
AFC: Garnham, French, Wilkinson, Williams (Crow, 75), Henshaw, Tann, Bantick (Wales, 82), Clarke (c), Baker (Blackman, 75), Parker, Eagle. Unsued subs: Austin, Godbold.
Free Press Man of The Match: Tyler French.
n AFC Gold week 37 winners: 1st £100 (204) J Brooks, Essex Ave, Sudbury; 2nd £10 (256) Miss E Squirrell, Observer Way, Kelvedon; £10 (151) G Fearn, Cordell Rd, Long Melford.