Swans 2 Tooting & Mitcham United 1

Saturday 22 August 2015.                           Ryman League, Division One South.

Walton & Hersham 2   Tooting & Mitcham United 1.

A much improved second-half display by Swans, allied to some substitutions, gave them their second win in two home matches. During the first 45 minutes they looked slow in both speed of thought and movement and consistently lost or gave the ball away, whereas the visitors looked much sharper on a baking hot summer’s afternoon. Shaquille McIntosh was quickly brought on in the second-half, and he came up with the two goals that gave Swans the three points.

The visitors soon had a chance when Brendan Murphy-McVey blocked an attempted pass by André Scarlett to get forward, but his shot from 22 yards was wide.

Swans quickly responded with Andrew Mensah cutting in from the left to get in a shot that Tooting goalkeeper Sam Somerville beat away at the near-post. Swans had actually made a bright start, and when Aaron Watson made a clever run on the left to get the ball across, Mensah’s header resulted in a corner. From Dominic Ogun’s right-side kick Somerville could only punch the ball up in the air, but was then able to catch it.

But it was the visitors that took the lead after 10 minutes. Ashley Robinson’s long throw-ins were to be a potent weapon all match, and when he took one from the right the ball was nodded on, and Antonio Simeone was at the far-post to loop a header into the top corner.

After their promising start Swans’ play had dropped off, and after 18 minutes Billy Marshall took a free-kick for Tooting just outside the right corner of the box. The ball deflected off the wall to Tinashe Nkoma inside the left of the box, but his snap-shot was straight at home keeper Luke Badiali. Another Robinson long throw from the right led to the ball coming to Nkoma on the edge of the box, and this time his shot went over. Robinson was then the supplier with a free-kick from the right, for Simeone put a header wide at the far-post. The visitors continued to look the more likely, and when Sol Pinnock whipped over a dangerous cross from the left Regan Mendes had to clear from the six-yard box.

Swans did pose a threat in first-half stoppage-time when Watson played Scarlett down the left to get in a cross that was put behind for a corner.

Soon after the resumption Jack Battie played Myles Powponne down the right to force a corner, and with C-J Williams having replaced Shannon Wallace for the second-half, McIntosh soon came on for Mensah. Both McIntosh and Scarlett were soon just failing to make contact with Harry Mills’ cross from the left into the box, and Scarlett’s fine pass got Powponne into the box on the right to send a shot over.

Swans hade made a much better start to the second-half, and ten minutes in Watson’s clever run was ended with him being brought down by Simeone on the edge of the box. There was a good case for Simeone being regarded as the last defender, but it was keeper Somerville who ended up being booked, presumably for dissent. After several minutes delay while the referee carried out his duties Battie struck the free-kick, and the ball was destined for the bottom, right corner until Somerville got across to just keep it out. McIntosh’s first follow-up effort was blocked, but he was able to stab the ball over the line at the second attempt to equalise.

With twenty minutes remaining Swans had a let-off when Michael Salako dispossessed Williams and got to the edge of the box, but he put a clear chance over the bar.

David Koduah had replaced Powponne for Swans, and with eight minutes remaining he helped set up their winner. Watson made a run forward before finding Koduah on the right, and he crossed low to the far-post, where McIntosh slid in to steer the ball home.

With three minutes of normal-time remaining Tooting spurned another great chance. They opened up Swans on the left, and when the ball was played across it found substitute Merrick James-Lewis unmarked beyond the far-post, but he drove his shot wide. Fellow substitute and former Swan Gareth Chendlik then sent in a hanging cross from the right that Badiali had to clear from under his crossbar.

Swans played out a lengthy amount of stoppage-time to secure the three points.

Swans’ Team: Luke Badiali, John Oyenuga, Regan Mendes, Dominic Ogun, Shannon Wallace (C-J. Williams-Agunabor 45’), Harry Mills, Jack Battie, André Scarlett, Andrew Mensah (Shaquille McIntosh 50’), Myles Powponne (David Koduah 67’), Aaron Watson. Subs. not used: Omari Hibbert, Kadeem Ajeon. Scorer: McIntosh (58’ & 82’). Cautions: Ogun, McIntosh, Scarlett.

Tooting Team: Somerville, Patterson-Bohner, Treacher, Siaw, Simeone, Robinson, Murphy-McVey (James-Lewis 81’), Marshall, Salako, Pinnock, Nkoma (Chendlik 81’). Subs. not used: Simpson, Faith, J. Cheadle. Scorer: Simeone (10’). Cautions: Somerville, Simeone.