We welcomed Tooting and Mitcham United to the Reg Madgwick stadium for what was our last game of 2023.  We played Tooting at their home ground in early November with us registering a fine 3-0 victory so were looking to see if we could do the ‘double’ over them.

We welcomed back to the club various players from last year’s promotion team who were now plying their trade with Tooting and also, we brought back Lewis Perch who also played for us last season and he took a place on the bench.  We were missing Reece Tierney through injury so see had to reform our back line once again for this visit.  Also, Jerry Antwi rejoined us and took another one of the substitutes berths.

A crowd of just over 100 turned up to watch the game and in the opening exchanges our visitors were certainly on top and we were lucky to see much of the ball in the opposition half and then nearly half way through the first half we took the lead after a great cross from Luke Miller was converted by Ethan Nelson-Roberts to make it 1-0.  The lead did not last too long as our opponents equalised when one of our players was sin binned and we were down to ten men; it got worse for us a few minutes later when Tooting took the lead again with us still with only ten men.  The half ended 2-1 to Tooting.

Just as the second half began Oli Thompson was forced off with a groin issue and Steve Springett slotted into central defence with TJ moving to midfield and Lewis Perch coming off the substitutes bench to take his place in the forward line.  The opening exchanges of the second half was played in sheeting rain falling which made conditions difficult.  Neither team were in the ascendency in the early stages of the second half and then after a superb hard cross from the left-hand side Luke Miller was on hand to fire the ball into the net to make it 2-2; it was a very well taken goal. This goal gave us some more belief and Lewis Perch up front began to cause the Tooting defence all manner of problems with his well-timed runs and with one of those he set up Jaan Stanley to register his 5th goal of the season with an excellent side foot finish.  It got better a few minutes later when another cross came in and at the back post there was Lewis Perch to slide the ball into an empty net to make it 4-2.  There were not many chances after this goal and the game finished with a fine 4-2 win for ‘The Salts” and our first ‘double’ of the season.

We now move onto another home game against Camberley Town next Saturday at the Reg Madgwick stadium with a 3pm kick off – come on down and cheer us on – your support will be very welcome.