Cup continues to provide a welcome boost for AFC’s Ayrton

ASSIST: Ayrton Coley, pictured in action during the Thurrock match, showed good vision to lay on AFC's second goal
ASSIST: Ayrton Coley, pictured in action during the Thurrock match, showed good vision to lay on AFC's second goal


Ayrton Coley has said he is not concerned about his goal output since joining AFC, as long as he continues to make an impact in a winning side.

The striker — who hit the back of the net 15 times for Waltham Abbey before his summer move — only has three in the league so far, though four in cups, from 22 appearances.

But he played his part in overcoming higher-league Leiston on Tuesday, laying on the goal for Kris Newby, which put AFC ahead in the tie after Terry Rymer had quickly equalised Danny Block’s 23rd-minute opener.

Sudbury lost to Saturday’s FA Trophy opponents Maidstone United in the final of the League Cup last season and Lawrence Yiga’s strike put their progress in towards year’s Ryman League showpiece beyond any real doubt.

Despite only getting on the scoresheet in one game since September 16, following his hat-trick in the Suffolk Premier Cup at home to Kirkley and Pakefield, Coley said he is not worried about his form.

“Today I contributed to a goal to put us 2-1 up,” he said. “Being in the side week-in-week-out is obviously what I want to do and I am always trying to make an impact.

“As long as we are winning I am happy though.”

And he felt they were well worth their place in the third round of the competition.

“I don’t think we deserved to go behind,” he said. “But I think the end result showed who wanted it more.

“We dominated the game and I did not really see any clear-cut chances they had, other than the goal.”

With recent signing Marcus Garnham cup-tied, having lined up in the tie with AFC for Bury, experienced goalkeeper Louis Johnson made his first-team debut and immediately endeared himself to the home crowd by saving smartly from Leon Ottley-Gooch from a raiding attack 13 minutes in.

But AFC did not heed the warning and were caught square as youngster Danny Block burst forward and unleashed an unstoppable shot from just outside the area.

It took Rymer only two minutes to level things up though, as from the Yellows’ first corner, he ghosted in at the far post to drive beyond Alex Rossis.

Block had a good chance to head his side back into the lead, but missed the target, while Johnson was called into action to push Tom Winter’s effort around the post.

Newby went close to giving the south Suffolk side the lead at the break, only for Rossis to tip it over the bar.

But AFC did deservedly get their noses in front 12 minutes after the restart when Coley got to the byline and did well to find Newby on the edge of the area and he drilled into the bottom corner for his eighth of the season.

A good chance went begging at the far post for Leiston to level and Block’s pot shot from range landed on the roof of Johnson’s net as the visitors looked to keep themselves in the tie.

Despite a good spell of pressure, which saw four consecutive corners, it was a goal at the other end from a flag-kick, which broke loose for Yiga to smash home, that settled things in the 76th minute.

It could have been more, with the lively Ollie Berquez drawing a good save, while Lee Flynn’s outrageous 30-yard volley with his weaker foot, almost went in, but for a diving save.

AFC: Johnson, Robinson, Flynn, Yiga, Henshaw, Baker, Newby, BERQUEZ, Rymer, Coley (Guyton 67), Davidson (Blackwell 57). Unused subs: Wilkinson, Kerridge, S Kemp. Att: 144.

AFC bookings: None.