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Welwyn Garden City

Home of the "Citizens" - Established 1921


Herns Way, Panshanger, Welwyn Garden City, Herts, AL7 1TA

WELWYN GC boss Adam Fisher felt his side gave their best league performance in weeks, as they finally brushed aside a potentially dangerous Hadley side at Herns Lane.


The win keeps the Citizens on the tail of leaders Berkhamsted, the division’s other unbeaten side, who head WGC by a point, having played a game more than Fisher’s side.


The Herns Lane outfit know they have beaten mostly lower table sides on their rise to the top, but Hadley, whose form had been picking up in recent weeks, had risen to ninth in the table before this game. The defeat took the Arkley-based side back out of the division’s top 10.


And although it finished as another comfortable victory for the goal- hungry Clarets, in the minutes either side of the interval, the points from this game were firmly in the balance, as Hadley pulled a goal back.


WGC made their now customary strong start and netted in their opening attack, Jon Clements’ flick finding Josh Bronti, whose shot off the far post rebounded powerfully in. But the effort was ruled offside on an assistant’s flag.


Bronti didn’t have to wait long for a goal. On seven minutes, a high ball down the middle saw the recalled Ashley Kersey rise well over Hadley skipper Anwar to head on to Bronti, scurrying through to tip his shot past visiting keeper Boateng for 1-0.


The Herns Lane side hit the visiting woodwork in the 12th minute, Dave Corran’s free-kick was headed on by Kersey for central defender John


McGrandles to meet with a header that beat Boateng and hit a post, before being cleared for a corner.


WGC doubled their lead midway through the half with an absolute gift.


Hadley defender Harry Sedgeley unwisely took the ball off his keeper and tried to trick Bronti on the edge of his own area. He was dispossessed and the winger had a simple job of crashing his second past an exposed keeper.


Jay Rolfe made an attacking run down the right and got over another tempting cross that saw Kersey come between two defenders for a fine header that was inches past a post.


But just when everthing was looking very comfortable for the home side, Hadley burst into action.


The always dangerous Ivan Machedo, playing in a surprising defensive role, burst forward past three WGC defenders and hooked over a long cross that saw McPherson stretch well and lift over WGC keeper Charlie May, to bring the visitors back into the game.


The Citizens opened the second-half with a series of corners and from one of them, Boateng foiled them with a fine close-in save as both Clements and McGrandles tried to force the ball home from close range.


Twenty minutes into the half, WGC restored their two goal cushion, when from a free-kick, Bronti played it in at the near post, where Yasin Boodhoo powered in a short range header for the vital third goal.


But Hadley were still in the clash and 13 minutes from time, from a free-kick, Lewis Francis swerved a good effort over the WGC defensive wall and against a post with keeper May stranded.


It proved a decisive moment as a minute later, WGC sealed the points with a fourth.


Fine inter-play between top scorer Clements and sub George Ironton saw them switch passes twice before Ironton played Clements into the area, for him to drive a cross-shot past Boateng into the far corner.


It was his 16th of the season and made three more vital points safe.


WGC: May, Rolfe, Boodhoo, McGrandles, Corran, Payne, Spaul, Joy (Ironton 61), Bronti, Clements (Carney 79), Kersey (Francis 73).

Welwyn Garden City FC 4 - 1 Hadley