Pitching In Northern Premier League Midlands Division
Saturday 14th August 2021


Histon returned from Derbyshire with nothing to show from their first ever Northern Premier League Midlands Division match after slipping to a 2-1 defeat at Belper Town. After conceding just before the interval, the Stutes levelled the scores with a debut goal from 17-year-old Alex Stevens-Lee on71 minutes, only for the home side to retake the lead just 90 seconds later and hold on to the advantage for the remainder of the game.

It was an unfamiliar Histon side that took to the field. Five of the starting line-up were making their debut for the club and a further three would later do so from the bench. Despite the number of newcomers in the squad the Stutes made a lively start to the match but as the first half progressed it became clear both sides had mislaid their shooting boots during the nine-month lay-off. Ed Rolph was proving to be a handful for the home defence and Bahador Chizari tried several shots on goal but none seriously troubling the home ‘keeper.

At the other end, it was Belper who were guilty of missing the best opportunities. The dangerous Margetts placed the ball wide when one-on-one with Sam Roach and later missed a penalty after Victor Garcia was adjudged to have pulled his man down in the box.

The deadlock was finally broken on 43 minutes when Margetts curled in a free kick from wide out on the right which eluded Roach in the Histon goal and crept in off the far post. Despite falling behind, Histon had done enough in the first half to suggest that they were not out of the match and the game was far from over with the second half yet to come.

Just after the hour mark Lance Key made a double substitution, throwing on Bernat Burguera and Alex Stevens-Lee as the Stutes went looking for the equaliser, and it took Stevens-Lee just 10 minutes to register his first goal for the club. A neat passing move down the right was rounded off by the Histon U18s graduate who guided his shot beyond the despairing ‘keeper to level the scores.

But straight from the restart Belper won a corner which the visitors could only half clear and Nathan Curtis squeezed the ball between the post and a defender on the goal line.

Chances came and went at both ends but The Nailers were not prepared to relinquish their lead for a second time and the game finished with a home victory.

Despite the loss there was a lot of promise in the performance of the away side with Bubba Camara and Josh Dawkin looking solid in midfield and the team showing they could offer a threat going forward but for Stevens-Lee, the day will be remembered for his instant impact from the bench and the prospect of a place in the starting line-up in the very near future.

Histon: Sam Roach, Josh Francis, Sam Collison, Bubba Camara, Evan Key (Luke Lindsay 77), Victor Garcia, Ed Rolph, Tobi Lawal (Alex Stevens-Lee 62), Bahador Chizari (Bernat Burguera 62), Josh Dawkin, Andy Ballester.

Histon subs not used: Ediz Greengrass, Marcus Cole.

Histon yellow cards: Victor Garcia.

Histon goal scorer: Alex Stevens-Lee (71).

Attendance: 380.