Despite more possession compared to their opponents, Croydon are out of the FA Vase.
Lordswood’s first goal came after seven minutes when Artem Kuchkov went past Croydon’s defenders and passed to Callum Peck to put Wood a goal up. Croydon almost equalised a minute later when Sammy Morgan was taken down and Croydon got a free kick. Harvey Morton’s free kick hit the bottom off the post, and off the rebound Lauris Chin missed the target.
There were passes between Morgan, James Fray, and then Freddie Merrett whose shot was caught by opposition keeper Tom Crump. Then Morgan running down the wing managed to cross to Uli Fischer, whose shot towards the top corner of the net was again stopped by Crump. Later, David Green played the ball to Chin, which hit the far post.
Croydon got a couple of free kicks which were saved by Crump. Luckily for Croydon, a Lordswood shot went over the crossbar. A ball from the right back reached Morton, but he was unlucky that his volley didn’t go inside the net. At the other end, Tiwa Fujamade tipped a ball out, but was unlucky when after a corner, he couldn’t stop a header from David Falako who doubled the lead.
Morgan was taken down, and Morton took another free kick that was headed out for a corner. With three minutes of stoppage time added, and despite the resistance of Lordswood’s defenders, Jordan Anderson managed to get the ball past Crump to reduce the deficit.
In the second half, following a Croydon corner, Tristan Noel crossed to Fischer, only for Crump to save his attempt. There was also a chance from Chin after a pass from Morgan, with Chin getting nothing more than a shoulder charge from Crump. A Croydon free kick was going towards Fischer, but was headed out by a Lordswood defender for a Croydon throw in and a chance punched out by Crump. Another chance came from Morton only for his shot to go wide of the post.
Another Croydon corner went too deep, and Merrett tried to keep the ball in play in vain. Croydon got a free kick, however, as Crump was making a save, Anderson collided with an opponent, and Lordswood got a free kick. Two minutes later, Croydon got a free kick, but both Anderson’s and Ayedine’s headers went over the bar. Springer’s free kick went straight into the wall, and was cleared.
However, after 80 minutes, Lordswood extended their lead thanks to James Jeffrey. With four minutes to go, Croydon tried to reduce the deficit when they got another corner but Anderson’s delivery went wide. With ninety minutes gone, there was still time for Fujamade to make two saves from short range. But it was third time lucky for Lordswood as after a corner, a ball came off Fujamade and Jack Peters scored. In fact, Lordswood had time for one last chance, but it went wide of the post.
Croydon are away to Staplehurst Monarchs on Saturday and away to Bridon Ropes in midweek. Croydon’s Under 23’s are also in action on Wednesday night, home to AFC Whyteleafe. The under 18’s are also through to the next round of the FA Youth Cup and will be away to Sutton Common
Croydon: Fujamade, Noel, Morgan, Anderson (C), Fray, Morton, Green (Springer 63), Merrett, White, Fischer, Chin (Ayedine 56).
Sub (not used): McGovern, Sene-Richardson, Thompson, Giles, Obanokho
Match Report: Suniel Bhardwaj
Pictures: Steve O’Sullivan