Ardley United manager Kevin Brock has been left with much to ponder after his side’s miserable season continued with a 3-0 reverse at fellow strugglers Brackley Town Saints in Monday’s UHLSport Hellenic League derby.
Ardley were outplayed by a young, well drilled Saints side in the premier division contest at Saints James Park where Logan Kelling bagged a brace.
Neither side took immediate control but as the half wore on Saints had the better of the play and carved out some chances. Ryan Hunt and Kelling had openings that were either saved by keeper Jack Goode or off target, while the visitors were reduced to few opportunities against a well marshalled Saints’ defence.
The only goal of the half came six minutes before the break when Kelling danced his way across the edge of the area before launching an unstoppable shot past Goode. A couple of minutes later, Henry Jackson drew a flying save from Goode while Ardley’s best effort came when Chris Jackson’s shot was blocked following a corner.
Before most spectators had emerged from the clubhouse at the start of the second half, Saints had doubled their advantage as Kelling lobbed Goode from the edge of the box to put Ardley firmly on the back foot.
It got even worse for the visitors five minutes later when an offside-looking Jackson was played through and he ran on to beat Goode. The introduction of Josh Bowden pepped up the Ardley attack but, in spite of creating a few chances, they could not pierce the home defence.
Their afternoon was pretty much summed up when keeper Dan Farrell pulled off a double save from Steve Howkins and then Bowden in quick succession. The home side continued to enjoy superiority over their more experienced opponents and went on to register their first win of the season.