Pitching In Northern Premier League Midlands Division
Tuesday 24th August 2021


Histon collected their first Northern Premier League points of the season on Tuesday evening in a hard-fought encounter with Cambridgeshire rivals Wisbech Town. Second half goals from Ed Rolph and Finley Wilkinson on his first start for the club put the Stutes in control of the game before Wisbech Town pulled a goal back through a late penalty.

Lance made several changes to the side that surrendered so meekly at Newport Pagnell the previous weekend, recalling Victor Garcia in defence and Bahador Chizari in attack as well as adding Histon youth products Lewis Mair and Finley Wilkinson to the starting line-up for the first time this season. The improvement to the balance of the side was evident from the start as the Stutes more than matched their opponents in every department.

The early stages were bereft of any goal threat at either end as both sides fought for domination of the midfield, but as the game progressed, it was the visitors who were showing the greater desire to win this particular battle. The first opening of the game fell to Finley Wilkinson whose shot was well saved by the home ’keeper following a fine passing move by the Stutes. In response, the Fenmen were finding difficulty in penetrating the Histon defence and were unable to seriously test Sam Roach, who comfortably dealt with the few half-chances they could muster.

With the Stutes starting to look more dangerous going forward, Ed Rolph thought he had given his side the lead with a well-taken angled shot but was denied by an offside flag. Shortly after, Histon had the ball in the net again as Rolph caused panic in the home defence and Wilkinson showed the greater determination to be the first to get to a loose ball but was judged to have done so illegally. Home supporters were feeling fortunate to still be in the game and at the break, it was the visitors who returned to the dressing feeling they had more of the game than the goalless scoreline suggested.

Histon started the second half with a level of confidence not previously seen in their previous three matches this season and it took just ten minutes after the restart for them to snatch the lead. Bahador Chizari, playing in a wider role than in previous appearances, closed down the Wisbech fullback just outside his own penalty area and nudged the ball to the supporting Ed Rolph to present the captain with a clear shot on goal. The Stutes front man was never likely to miss such an opportunity and duly fired the ball into the net, giving the keeper little chance of stopping it.

Histon were clearly buoyed by the goal and only had to wait another six minutes before doubling their advantage. Bernat Burguera collected the ball wide on the left and appeared to have nowhere to go, but somehow found the time and space to deliver a delicious cross into the box. The man in the right place at the right time was Finley Wilkinson who met Burguera’s cross with a side-footed volley into the net.

The Fenmen tried all they knew to retrieve the situation but the determination to win every tackle that defined this performance from the Stutes remained with them until the end. Only when a mis-timed tackle from the hard-working Bubba Camara resulted in a penalty did the home side look like they might snatch something from the game, but it was not to be.

The Histon fans in the crowd of 176 left the ground with a far higher level of optimism for the season ahead than when they entered it. The team proved on the night that they have what it takes to win matches and that that our graduates from the youth setup are ready to compete for places in the first team. With three points in the bag, the season has finally taken off.

Histon: Sam Roach, Andy Ballester, Lewis Mair, Josh Dawkin, Evan Key, Victor Garcia, Ed Rolph, Bubba Camara, Bahador Chizari (Marcus Cole 74), Finley Wilkinson (Sam Collison 88), Bernat Burguera.

Histon subs not used: Kai Nicholls, Ediz Greengrass.

Histon yellow cards: None.

Histon goal scorers: Ed Rolph (56), Finley Wilkinson (62).

Attendance: 176.