Langtoft win ugly to extend impressive run

Action from Langtoft v Sawtry at Bushfield EMN-150221-173346009

Action from Langtoft v Sawtry at Bushfield EMN-150221-173346009

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Langtoft United increased their chances of a top eight finish in their debut Peterborough Premier Division season, with a hard-fought 1-0 win away at Peterborough Sports Reserves on Saturday.

The victory was the Vikings’ sixth in seven games and completed a double over Sports, who they had beaten 4-2 in their opening fixture back in August.

After a relatively dull opening 45 minutes, the game sprung into life almost immediately after the restart. Langtoft, who had been limited to very few chances in the first half, took the lead as Sports failed to deal with a Ben Porter corner and Jacob Smitheringale was on hand to slam the loose ball home - his second goal in as many games.

Minutes later and Dan Evans looked to capitalise on some hesitant goalkeeping, stealing the ball from Sports keeper Aaron Keir, but his effort could only find the side-netting. The best chance of the half fell to Jobi Froud, who played a delightful one-two with Talal Karama to break into the box, but his effort was well smothered by the home custodian.

With only a matter of minutes left on the clock, Sports had half a chance when the ball broke to their forward inside the box, but the danger was well cut out by Nicky Butler who got across well to block.

The last real action of the game saw Rhys Ford pick the ball up just outside the Langtoft half and proceed to use his blistering pace to outrun a number of chasing Sports defenders but his final attempt was well blocked by Keir.

Langtoft manager Phil Gadsby said: “It wasn’t a pretty game today, we got pinned back at times, especially in the first half against the wind, but we defended resolutely.

“I felt if we could get in at half-time having not conceded then we’d have a good chance of going on to win the game. It was a big win for us as Sports are another newly promoted team going well this season and can overtake us if they win their games in hand, so it was important to put a bit of daylight between us.”

Meanwhile, Langtoft Reserves eeked out another point in their battle to climb off the bottom of Division One, in a 2-2 draw with Sutton Bridge.

John Armstrong put the Vikings in front on 50 minutes, turning home from a corner, and they had further chances to score before their visitors hit back with two goals in quick succession in the final quarter of the game.

Langtoft, who had keeper Nick Williams to thank for two fine saves in the second half, saw the crossbar come to their rescue as Sutton Bridge spurned a great chance to make it 3-1 in the dying minutes.

And they were made to pay in injury time when, after good work by Matt Dennis down the right, the ball found its way to Armstrong, who held off a defender and steered the ball home.