Pitching In Northern Premier League Midlands Division
Monday 30th August 2021


The Red Roses of Histon took on the Tulips of Spalding United in this Battle of the Blooms in the horticultural heartland of South Lincolnshire but it was the Tulips who came out smelling the sweeter.

The Stutes travelled to Spalding with several first-choice players absent and only three survivors from last year’s squad, but it meant there was a starting role for Luke Lindsay and Lewis Mair was again available to slot in at left back. However, it was a youthful looking side that took the field against opposition that included plenty of experience at a higher level.

The home side wasted very little time in taking control of the game and Sam Roach in the Histon goal found himself under constant pressure. It was a bombardment he dealt with admirably and frustrated the Spalding front line with a string of saves. The Stutes were struggling to find a foothold in the game and the pressure finally told midway through the half when a corner was only half cleared and the rebound struck hard and low past the over-worked ‘keeper. The ball was spending most of the opening 45 minutes in the Histon half of the field and it was not until the 37th minute that the home ‘keeper was called into action when Ed Rolph looked to latch onto a ball played over the Spalding rearguard. At the break, the hosts were made to feel aggrieved that their domination of the ball had yielded so little, due in no small part to the commitment shown by the visiting back line and the excellence of Sam Roach in goal.

The Stutes started the second half looking re-energized and while the home side’s lead stood at just one goal, Histon were not out of the game. Second half substitute Kai Nicholls was proving to be a handful for the Spalding defence to deal with despite his diminutive size. But the service to Ed Rolph up front for Histon was limited and often inaccurate, giving our captain too much to do if an equaliser was to come.

Histon’s stubborn second half resistance finally came to an end with just 15 minutes remaining on the clock. Perhaps the physical strain of playing two matches in three days and having to chase the opposition for much of the afternoon finally caught up with side. A well-worked goal put Spalding two up and the introduction from the bench of Marcus Maddison with all his Football League experience ended any hope of a fight-back. The former Charlton Athletic and Peterborough United man made it 3-0 with ten minutes remaining, which still left time for Sam Roach to round off an excellent personal performance on the day.

Histon: Sam Roach, Ediz Greengrass, Lewis Mair, Josh Dawkin, Sam Collison (Josh Francis 85), Victor Garcia, Ed Rolph, Finley Wilkinson (Marcus Cole 48), Ulijah Gordon-Douglas, Bahador Chizari, Luke Lindsay (Kai Nicholls 48).

Histon sub not used: Bubba Camara.

Histon yellow cards: None.

Attendance: 327.