Puritans get back on track after seven-goal thriller

Banbury United striker Jefferson Louis popped up with another goal at Kings Langley
Banbury United striker Jefferson Louis popped up with another goal at Kings Langley

Banbury United got back to winning ways in the Evo-Stik Southern League, this time coming out on top in a seven-goal thriller.

The Puritans won 4-3 in Saturday’s premier division clash at Kings Langley to end a run of two successive defeats.

Manager Mike Ford was without skipper Ricky Johnson, who was ill, and the unavailable Darren Pond but new signing Tom Price was on the bench after joining from Leamington in midweek.

Kings Langley began the better of the two sides and twice went close early on. A far post cross was headed straight at Jack Harding by Kieran Turner and Jack Waldren’s shot was hacked off the line by Jack Westbrook.

But Kings Langley broke the deadlock in the 12th minute when Mitchell Weiss broke through down the left before striking the ball low across Harding into the far corner of the net.

United struggled to threaten the home side’s goal although a cross from Tom Winters brushed the top of the bar. Conor McDonagh broke through into the area but his shot was well saved by Ross Hampton with his legs as he came out to narrow the angle.

Despite a better last quarter of an hour for United, the home side went close to doubling their lead just before the break when a cross from Gareth Price was headed just over at the near post by Turner.

But United came out fired up for the second half and dominated the opening stages. A George Nash shot from the edge of the area was well blocked by a defender and Ravi Shamsi shot over the bar from 20 yards.

The heavy pressure finally told though in the 55th minute when McDonagh did well to turn and make room for a shot from 15 yards out, striking the ball low into the bottom corner of the net.

Two minutes later Kings Langley should have restored their lead but Price’s header went wide when it looked easier to score. United went in front when a 54th minute corner from Winters was headed home at the far post by Luke Carnell.

The home side drew level on the hour mark when a corner was pumped into the area, Price’s shot hit the bar before the rebound was knocked in by Jorrell Johnson.

United regained the lead two minutes later when a low cross from McDonagh was knocked home from close range by Jefferson Louis. United increased their lead in the 66th minute when Shamsi crossed low into the edge of the six yard box and Jack Self was on hand to knock the ball home.

The goal feast continued in the 70th minute when Dean Hitchcox converted a penalty after Weiss was bundled over just inside the area.

Kings Langley pushed for the equaliser late on. Weiss shot just wide from the edge of the area and Louis Bircham headed a cross from the right straight at Harding who then kept out Hitchcox’s 25 yard drive. But United held on to take all three points.