Away league match played on 09 November 2014.
Kicked off at 10:30 AM

Chequers paid a heavy price for defensive errors as Red Lion Phoenix Reserves eventually put them to the sword in an eventful match in Leighton Buzzard.

The starting XI saw Tom Trigg again retain his place between the sticks, behind a back four of Jon Onyon, Barry Wilson, Tom Tracy and Chris Fagan. Absent skipper Wayne Mardel was replaced by Rob Mardell on the right, Tim Warne moved back to his natural position on the left, and Tom Smith took the captain's armband next to Alex Dell in central midfield. Michael Ryan continued to partner Dean Hinton up front as their partnership has flourished in recent games.

Chequers had much the quicker start to the match and Dell twice tried his luck from distance, narrowly missing the target initially before sending a powerful drive straight at the Red Lion goalkeeper. Ryan was next to try his luck, but his shot from the edge of the box also flew straight into the grateful goalies' grasp. Red Lion then took the lead in classic suckerpunch fashion, as their first attack of the match saw their right winger hit a potshot from outwide that Trigg diverted across goal, but an untracked left winger stole in at the backpost to prod into the emtpy net for 1-0. Dell sent another long range attempt off target as the Purples looked for an immediate response, before Hinton struck the near post from inside the penalty area. The home side then almost added to their lead as an unmarked striker clipped the outside of the post when perhaps he should have done better from 10 yards. Warne then began to run the game, driving down the left wing time after time and beating players for fun, and the change of Chequers' pace saw them draw level five minutes before the break. Hinton sent a perfectly-weighted through ball into the path of Ryan, who drew the 'keeper out of his goal before slotting into the bottom corner for 1-1 at half time.

Chequers made one change at half time, with Towler replacing Mardell in a switch that also saw Fagan revert back to his natural position. Unfortunately for the Purples they were all at sea 10 minutes into the second period, as a long ball evaded both Wilson and Tracy leaving a Red Lion striker the simple task of rolling the ball past Trigg for 2-1. The equaliser came quickly as Ryan was bundled to the ground in the box, and Tracy stepped up from the back to stroke the penalty into the bottom left corner to register his first goal of the season and tie the score at 2-2 with half an hour to play. Sensing the game was there for the taking, head coach Sgambati withdrew defender Onyon and replaced him with striker Mickey Francois. The striker almost made the perfect introduction too, as he was on hand to poke home a mishit Ryan effort from close range only to see the linesman's flag raised to cut the Purples' celebrations short. Tempers ran high as Smith's hard challenge sparked a 22-man brawl on the wing, and perhaps it's symptomatic of Chequers' season in general that they then contrived to hand the 3 points on a plate to their opponents. First, miscommunication between Wilson and Trigg saw the defender accidentally lob his own 'keeper, leaving a Red Lion player the simplest of headers to restore his side's lead at 3-2. Roullier was introduced in attack to try and salvage a point, but some more calamitous defending put the game to bed as an unmarked Red Lion player arrived on a set piece behind a bewildered Chequers defence to seal the game at 4-2. The arrears were nearly halved late on as Ryan's volleyed crossfield pass found Francois in the box, but he was tackled before he could get his shot away and the chance, and the game, were lost.

A highly frustrating result for Chequers in a game in which they battled well to come from behind twice, but ultimately poor defending cost them dearly.

Man of the Match went to Tim Warne for an all-action performance on the left wing.

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