Brown makes his mark as Saints make a perfect start

Lee Ndlovu, taking on FC United of Manchester's Jordan Fagbola, scored for Saints on Tuesday
Lee Ndlovu, taking on FC United of Manchester's Jordan Fagbola, scored for Saints on Tuesday

Brackley Town have made the perfect start to the Vanarama National League North campaign.

Saints won 3-1 at AFC Telford in an exciting midweek encounter at the New Bucks Head stadium. Andy Brown grabbed his second goal in as many games and Lee Ndlovu also scored as Saints made it back-to-back wins on Tuesday

Tuesday’s success came on the back of Saturday’s 2-1 opening day victory over FC United of Manchester at St James Park.

Tuesday’s game burst into life just past the half-hour mark with the visitors scoring twice in three minutes to take charge of a match in which the home side had started brightly.

The opening goal came in the 31st minute after good work by Ndlovu. The ball was not cleared, allowing Brown to drill his shot through a crowded penalty area and into the net.

The visitors doubled their advantage in the 33rd minute when Glenn Walker went past full-back Aaron Simpson and crossed low and hard where former Saint Jordan Gough could only turn the ball past keeper Jasbir Singh under pressure from Ndlovu.

Saints had chances to extend their lead before the break. Jimmy Armson’s audacious effort from 30 yards was pawed away by Singh at full stretch before only a goalmouth scramble and goal-line clearance saved Telford as Ndlovu and Brown were denied in quick succession, Saints ending the half in rampant mood.

The lead was increased within two minutes of the restart however in a move straight off the training pitch. Shane Byrne’s free-kick was headed back across goal by Gareth Dean where Ndlovu was on hand to head the ball past Singh.

Keeper Danny Lewis’s long kick had Singh back-pedalling desperately to scoop the ball out when it appeared to be over the line. Goal-line technology would have awarded the goal but in fairness to the officials neither the referee nor his assistant could be in a position to be sure.

Telford pulled a goal back in the 66th minute when Ellis Myles turned a cross past Lewis for an own goal but the final outcome was not in doubt as Saints recorded back-to-back wins.

After the game manager Kevin Wilkin reflected on a pleasing performance and away win. He said: “The work-rate was impressive. We move on to important training on Thursday and next Saturday’s trip to Ferriby.”