Aveley 2 Ware 3
Ware show their resilience after going two goals behind.
When Murat Karagul slid home the 85th minute winning goal there was a sense of relief and maybe a little belated justice in the cheers of the travelling support. Ware's fortunes were changing at last. After a missed penalty had denied the Blues a win at Tilbury seven days earlier, a second spot kick failure in a first half they had just about shaded was quickly followed by an Aveley goal. It had seemed that Ware were to be condemned to more frustration.
Not that the home side will see things in quite the same way. They suffered their own frustration with the winning goal as Karagul stood in an offside position but not involved in play when the ball came through to the onside Sean Johnson. The two players then had only 'keeper James Marrable between them and the goal as both advanced on it. He came out to block Johnson's view of the net but the number 7 slipped the ball to his team mate who scored though not without the suggestion that he might once again be offside.
The excitement of the second half in which four goals were scored seemed unlikely in a first half that was a dull and scrappy affair. The wind tended to dominate, passes went astray and the fact that Ware again gave chances to academy players suggested that this might be more of a training exercise than a search for league points.
To be fair as the half wore on Ware did seem to start creating a few chances though neither goal keeper was seriously troubled. But it only sprung to life after Aveley broke forward and a fierce shot clanged against Tom Coulton's right post. Just as suddenly the game was at the other end of the pitch and Abobaker Eisa's fine run ended with him being brought down in the area.
Johnson readied himself for a long run up but chose to place the ball rather than blast it. His placement was all wrong however and the ball rolled wide of Marrable's own right post. Almost immediately play switched to the other end and Sammy Knott was on hand to hit the ball through a crowded area to give Aveley the lead.
When the home side doubled their advantage shortly after half time through Petrit Elbi's penalty Ware might have given up the game as a lost cause with the weather hinting of a relaxing summer to come. That they didn't is to their credit and that of the management who moved Karagul up front to try get something out of the game.
It paid off after 66 minutes when he was on hand to reduce the arrears after Eisa had opened up the opportunity for him. Even so further chances were missed and it looked as though Ware would get nothing more from the game. That was until ten minutes to go when another opportunity seemed to go begging before the ball fell to Khale Dacosta on the edge of the area. He kept his nerve to drive the equaliser into the top of the net.
The match wasn't over however and even after Karagul's second goal a game that had started with such an end of season feel to it closed in excitement with both sides still looking for chances.
Ware: Tom Coulton, Khale Dacosta, Murat Karagul, Ryan Hervel, Ross Bourke, Kieron Street, Sean Johnson, Josh Oyibo, Abobaker Eisa, Tyler Christian-Law (Jack Fowler 50mins), Lorenzo Correia (James Manlove 55mins). Unused subs: Marco Tuzzeo, Gavin Hinds-Cadette