Title hopes extinguished at Glebe
Tonbridge Angels Under-21’s faintly flickering hopes of lifting the Suburban League South title were extinguished by a Glebe side that must win their final game, a title showdown with Lingfield, and hope that the Sussex side fail to make up what would be a seven point deficit but with four games remaining to be played.
Glebe’s more direct style made greater use of the slope at Foxbury Avenue in the second half and a single goal was enough to see off the Angels’ challenge, who despite having a reasonable percentage of the possession, were lacking a clinical edge in front of goal.
The evening could not have started worse for the visitors when a defensive error allowed Glebe’s Oscar Powell a free run on goal after just 55 seconds which ended with a comfortable finish past Joe Roberts.
Tonbridge did settle into the game and, playing down the slope, created chances with Jorge Diez bringing a good save out of Mackay Foley, low to his left, followed a minute later, by another save this time to his right to deny Gideon Donkor.
The Angels finally made a breakthrough after 21 minutes when good work down the right from Donkor ended with a cross that was met by Diez but his shot was probably not goal bound when a deflection from a Glebe defender turned the ball into the net.
Both sides had chances to go into the break in front with Foley saving well at his near post following a Tonbridge corner and Roberts saving with his feet to deny Powell who had once more been sent clear. Powell was wasteful with a free header that cleared the bar before, in the final minute of the half, a strong run and cross from Alfie Sharp gave Powell a tap-in from close range to give the home side a half-time lead.
From the outset of the second half, Glebe used the know-how of their own pitch and went direct with a shoot-on-sight policy that whilst somewhat wayward left the feeling that it would eventually pay a dividend.
This it did after 62 minutes, but not quite in the manner expected when a corner from the left was turned in at the far post by Henry Pearson.
With nothing to lose, Tonbridge pressed forward and whilst Connor Watson and Carsel Hylton had attempts on goal they were consistently getting caught on the break and Roberts brilliantly turned a shot from Sharp over the bar and pushed another effort to safety.
It seems almost madness in the middle of March, a full five weeks before an albeit late Easter period that normally makes or breaks promotion or relegation issues, Tonbridge will bring down the curtain on their Suburban League season on Saturday with the visit of Sevenoaks Town to Longmead, kick off 3pm.