Concord Rangers 1 (Cawley 6mins(pen))
Whitehawk 2 (Robinson 41mins, Mills 75mins)
Under late summer sunshine, Concord entertained high flying Whitehawk and despite a much improved performance by Rangers it was the visitors who pinched all three points writes Chris Clark.
Concord came flying out of the traps at the start of the first half and Steve Cawley volleyed over the bar after 30 seconds, this showed great intent from the boys. The lads continued the fast start and Bertie Brayley squared the ball to Taaffe in the Whitehawk box after six minutes… Lewis pulled the trigger on his shot, but the back tracking centre half dived in and blocked the shot with his hand…PENALTY! Rose the culprit was booked. Steve Cawley stepped up and fired the penalty into the back of the net. A superb start.
Concord were playing some lovely football going forward and the front two Cawley and Taaffe linked up, Lewis pinged the ball across the face of goal and Joe Gardner on-rushing missed the cross by inches. So close to 2-0.
Whitehawk’s opening twenty minutes was almost as shocking as their kit. A horrendous pink effort. However as the half wore on Whitehawk began to get a stranglehold in the game, with Sergio Torres playing deep in midfield pulling the strings.
After thirty-three minutes a Whitehawk free kick was headed powerfully at goal by Rose, but McNamara in the Concord goal did well to parry away. The pressure increased by Whitehawk as the half came to a close and they equalised after forty-two minutes. From a corner the ball fell to Torres outside the box and he drove into the Concord penalty area, as he approached the byline he span and crossed the ball. There was Jake Robinson eight yards out to head home.
From kick off Concord immediately attacked and Steve Cawley was found in the penalty area, and only a combination of a miraculous save and the cross bar denied Concord taking the lead back immediately. Hats off to Ross in the Whitehawk goal, it was magnificent goalkeeping.
CONCORD 1 WHITEHAWK 1
The second half was hard fought, it was intense and tight in midfield. Chances were hard earnt and in-frequent. Concord had good claims for a penalty on fifty-five minutes, as Torres clambered over the back of Lewis Taaffe in the box…you’ve certainly seen them given, but the referee waved away Concord players appeals. Whitehawk then threatened when the dangerous Robinson headed over the bar. Both sides looked to the bench to find the winning goal, as Concord called on Stokes and Greenhalgh, the visitors brought on Mendy and Mills. It was the Whitehawk subs who linked up and scored what was the decisive goal on seventy five minutes. Mendy sped down the right hand side and his cross across the six yard box was slid in by Mills at the far post.
Concord didn’t wallow in the misery of conceding the goal, they were determined to strike back. With ten minutes to go, Greenhalgh swung in a corner and Steve King rose at the back post but his downward header was scrambled away by the Whitehawk defence. Concord continued to press for the equaliser as Greenhalgh lashed a volley from twenty yards wide on eighty-eight minutes.
Deep into injury time, and Concord created their best chance…White and Doyle linked up well in midfield, Stokesy was free in the box…Tony tried to go past the advancing Whitehawk keeper, but he just couldn’t sort his feet at the vital moment, and the chance passed by.
Concord were much improved on recent performances and they will play worse this season and win games, but it was Whitehawk who were delighted to take three points from the Aspect Arena this afternoon.
CONCORD RANGERS 1 WHITEHAWK 2
McNamara, Hammond, Stephen, King, Bailey-Dennis; White (captain), Cornhill (off 83mins), Gardner, Brayley (off 68mins); Cawley, Taaffe (off 68mins)
Subs – Greenhalgh on 68mins, Stokes on 68mins, Doyle on 83mins
Not used – Walker, Lee