Our Bank Holiday derby against locals rivals Binfield FC ended 1-1 with both teams earning a well earned point in very difficult conditions.
Both teams started brightly at Hill Farm Lane. The Citizens tested the Binfield defence, fourteen minutes in when a free kick from Matt Stockill is sent out for a corner, the corner however came to nothing. Only two minutes later city would be knocking on the door again as Matt Stockill went to help Khalid Simmo who had a binfield defender marking him on the edge of the box, Khalid did well to hold the ball up and passed it to Matt Stockill who relieved the pressure with a good ball into the box, which was by met with a good header from Fergus Burton but unfortunately it goes over the bar.
Another chance came for the citizens in the nineteenth minute when we one a throw-in, after a good ball in from Arthur Furness it fell to Khalid Simmo who delivered a good ball to Mckoy Palmer who then tries to get it into the box, however he's unable to do so.
Twenty two minutes in play was paused while Matt Stockill received treatment, a chance for both teams to take on fluids as it was a scorcher of an afternoon in Binfield and assess the first twenty minutes, play resumed and Matt Stockill was ok to continue, the game getting underway with a free-kick.
In the twenty sixth minute Charlie York was called into action, making two fantastic saves in quick succession denying our hosts the opening goal, the citizens then gave away a free kick on the edge of the box, however the shot hit the wall.
Twenty nine minutes in, play stopped again this time it was to allow a Binfield Player to receive treatment, this led to our opposition making their first change of the afternoon as Jemel Johnson came off and Callum Wright came on.
The Citizens would again find themselves in a great position to find the opening goal in the thirty second minute as Aaron De Rama beat the keeper and looked certain to score, before he has the chance, the referee blows the whistle and awards a free kick. Much to the anger of the City bench. The linesman says that Aaron tripped up the keeper but the citizens disagreed, a minute later we'd see controversy at the other end of the pitch as Binfield shouted for a penalty following a great tackle by Josh Blackwood but the referee wasn't interested and restarts play.
In the thirty eighth minute our hosts unfortunately found the opening goal after Josh Howell's shot went in off the woodwork. Minutes later Steve Lee should of found our equaliser but the Binfield keeper sends it out for a corner.
On the cusp of half time the citizens would again go looking for their equaliser, Khalid Simmo heads towards goal with some good play but unfortunately Binfield's defence were all over him, forcing him to pass the ball out onto the wing. The citizens were still searching for that equaliser up until the end of the half, but unfortunately would find themselves trailing 1-0 at the break.
The Citizens started the second half brightly as Fergus Burton forced the Binfield Keeper to dive for the ball in the forty seventh minute, leading to our opposition to counter following a goal kick, Dan Davies however broke up the play in the forty ninth minute with a great tackle, sending the ball out for a Binfield throw in.
Fifty minutes in, we witnessed some great team play from the citizens after a fantastic ball from Charlie Yorks finds Khalid Simmo out on the wing, Khalid then delivered the ball to Fergus Burton, Fergus Burton couldn't get in on goal himself so passed the ball to Aaron De Rama who was in a better position to hopefully find the equaliser, unfortunately Aaron De Rama fired the ball straight at the keeper.
A minute later City would finally score, a great ball from Dan Davies allowed Fergus Burton to go one on one with the keeper and buried the ball in to the back of the net, the city bench erupted in celebration.
With the equaliser scored it was time for us to push on and hopefully find a winner, with a strong bench to call on Simon Johnson and Sam Woodruff made their first change in the fifty third minute with Tom Browne coming on in place of Arthur Furness.
A second substitution would follow in the fifty ninth minute as Simon Johnson and Sam Woodruff changed their attacking options by bringing on Mo Davies in place of goalscorer Fergus Burton.
Sixty six minutes in play stopped for the players to take on fluids as it was a scorcher of an afternoon in Binfield, minutes after play resumed City would make their third and final substitution, again changing their attacking options, Simon Johnson and Sam Woodruff swapped Mckoy Palmer for Yashwa Romeo.
Tom browne put a great ball into the box as the clock hit seventy one minutes, however it was cleared away from danger, minutes later Yashwa Romeo would force the Binfield FC keeper to make a great save, to keep the score level at 1-1.
Matt Stockill but another great ball into the box seventy five minutes in to the game, unfortunately we were unable to turn it in to go ahead.
Binfield FC would make their second substitution in the eighty second minute as Josh Howell came off in place of Phil Veal. They would then name their third and final substitution in the eighty third minute as Sean Moore came off in place off Josh Helmore.
In the eighty seventh minute Matt Stockill would again but another great ball in the box, unfortunately the Binfield keeper jumps up for it before the citizens are able to cause any danger, that would be city's last chance to find a winner.
The referee brought proceedings to a close with the score tied at 1-, meaning both teams would earn a well deserved point to keep their perfect starts to the Hellenic Football League Premier Division going.
First Team Manager Simon Johnson had this to say:
"Tough game in tough conditions. Would’ve taken a point before the game but can’t help but feel we would’ve deserved the 3 points as well. Good luck to Roger [Herridge] and Binfield FC for the rest of the season".