Swans 4 Fleet Town 1

Monday 18th April 2022.   Cherry Red Combined Counties League Premier Division South.

Walton & Hersham 4    Fleet Town 1.

Swans signed off their promotion winning season with another dominant performance, and they will now have to wait until the result of Beckenham Town’s final league game to see if they can finish as champions. An early lead for the visitors proved to be just a blip, a superb hat-trick by Jordan Adeyemi being the icing on the cake of another fine win.

The changes were again rung to the starting line-up, with Harry Mills joining Eddie Simon in being rested on the bench, and Alex Kelly being left out of the squad. Harry Pointing reverted to a holding midfield role, Adeyemi came back in, while Max Hustwick was able to return following suspension.

In front of a bumper Easter Monday crowd Swans started with a patient build up that ended with Adeyemi being found in the box, and he laid the ball back to Maliq Morris, whose shot was blocked by Khalid Babakir. It was Fleet who took the lead however with just over two minutes played. Swans failed to clear their lines and Rowan Sharratt played Kamden Simmons through to the edge of the box, and although he did not hit his left foot shot cleanly, it beat goalkeeper Liam Allen inside his left post. To their credit the visitors had not come to just defend, and things could have got worse for Swans, who had made a casual looking start. More slack play allowed Simmons to set up Dan Bone to get in a shot that brought a good save from Allen. Bone was able to follow in, but Allen and Hustwick combined to get the ball away for a corner on the right.

Swans threatened when Adeyemi beat Babakir to get in on the left byline, but he couldn’t find Taurean Roberts in the middle. Morris’s long ball almost got Adeyemi through, but Fleet keeper Roux Hardcastle was out to kick clear, before Swans equalised after 17 minutes. The move started with Adeyemi laying the ball back to Roberts on the halfway line. Adeyemi then took off and Roberts played an excellent ball through to him to get him into the right of the box, from where he neatly slotted low into the bottom, left corner.

Fleet had a half chance, with Billy Oram shooting over from just outside the box, before Swans took the lead after 24 minutes with a fine goal. A long ball by Hustwick found Adeyemi on the left, and he held off Meks Nwaubani to lay back to Ollie Twum. Twum then got past Nwaubani to send an excellent ball across to the far-post, where Darryl Siaw was unmarked in the right of the 6 yard-box to plant a header past Hardcastle.

It took Allen to keep his side in the lead just a minute later when the ball was given away at the back and Bone got in a shot from outside the box that the Swans’ keeper turned over the top, left corner with a terrific save. Fleet won a soft free-kick out by the left corner flag when Roberts was harshly judged to have fouled. Roberts headed away from Oram’s kick, but the Fleet player returned the ball in to the edge of the 6 yard-box, where Joe Pratley-Jones headed clear.

Swans went close to doubling their lead when Pointing played Adeyemi clear into the right of the box, but Hardcastle stuck out his right leg to block his shot. Just before the half-hour it should have been 3-1 to Swans when they had a perfectly good goal ruled out. A through ball by Dean Rule sent Twum away on the left, and when he crossed low into the edge of the 6 yard-box Adeyemi was there to slide the ball in. Amazingly the goal was disallowed for offside, although Twum had clearly been onside by several yards. Morris was fouled by Nwaubani 30 yards out from goal, but he drove the free-kick straight through to the Fleet keeper.

The visitors won a corner on the right, but when James Dinsdale played the kick short, Allen took the cross cleanly under his crossbar. Swans were fortunate when Oram found Simmons in yards of space on the right, but the Fleet player could not add to his earlier score as he shot low across goal and wide. Roberts felt he had been fouled when he beat Dinsdale on the right to get through, but the referee did not concur. Fleet were still creating the odd chance, and with five minutes left of the half a long throw from the right by Shemar Pettett led to Oram having a shot blocked in the box, and he was able to follow up with a low shot that Allen got well behind.

Swans however soon made it 3-1. Roberts played the ball through to Adeyemi, and he shrugged off the challenge of Babikir before getting into the box and clipping a left-foot shot into the bottom, left corner.

Morris played the ball forward to Siaw in the box, and he laid it off to Adeyemi on the right to get in a shot that Tom Wensley blocked behind for a corner. Morris’s kick from the right was met with a powerful header by Pratley-Jones on the left corner of the 6 yard-box that Hardcastle just got round his near-post. Morris laid the corner on the left back to Rule, and he got to the corner of the box to drive in a low shot that Hardcastle kept out by diving down to his left.to push away.

Immediately after the resumption Pratley-Jones conceded a corner on the left when Oram got into the left of the box. From Oram’s kick Pointing headed away, and then made a double block when Sharratt followed up to get in shots. A corner on the right followed that Siaw was able to get clear.

Swans again went close when Roberts played a one-two with Adeyemi on the right and got into the box, but Hardcastle saved at his feet on the edge of the 6 yard-box. Morris was in the centre-circle to head forward to Roberts, and he hooked the ball through to get Adeyemi into the box, where he was sandwiched by Babikir and Wensley, but the referee saw no offence.

At the other end Pettett took another long throw from close to the right corner-flag and Ryan Esprit shot from the right corner of the box, but Allen took the ball comfortably.

Hustwick played a long ball down the right for Adeyemi to nod on to Siaw, and he laid the ball back to Rule, who got to the edge of the box but shot over.

With an hour played Fleet’s Nwaubani made an excellent run down the right from his own half to get to the byline. He then did well to keep the ball in play, getting past Joe Hicks and playing it inside to Bone, but Hustwick forced him to shoot into the near side-netting from the corner of the 6 yard-box.

Swans replied with Pointing getting down the right and playing the ball inside to Adeyemi, but his low, left-foot shot from the right corner of the box lacked power and Hardcastle saved easily. Fleet’s Esprit then seemed fortunate to only be shown a yellow card when he appeared to stamp on Pratley-Jones in Swans’ box, and he was immediately taken off by the visitors as they made a triple substitution. Swans soon made a couple of changes, with Mills and Flynn Bolton coming on for Pointing, who had picked up an injury, and Morris. Mills was soon getting Twum to the byline on the left, and when he played the ball in to Mills, he was just closed out in the box.

Fleet substitute Luke Larner was released down the right, but his cross was too long. Pettett then took another long throw from the right, but Simmons put a header wide.

With just under ten minutes remaining Swans seemed to be denied a penalty when Twum was played into the left of the box, and after he got past Larner, Pettett came across and looked to have tripped him, but the referee gave a goal-kick. Twum made a run forward and played Rule down the left. Rule laid the ball back to Twum by the corner of the box, but his shot was straight at Hardcastle.

The Fleet keeper threw the ball out to the left, but an attempted back-pass only found Adeyemi, and he got into the box, dummied Babikir, and rifled a terrific, right-foot shot into the top of the net to complete his hat-trick.

4-1 up, Swans then made another double substitution, with Isy Nzelo and assistant manager Billy Rowley replacing Pratley-Jones and Roberts. Twum and Rule played a fine one-two on the left to get Twum away, and when he played the ball low into the box Adeyemi was just closed out by Babikir on the edge of the 6 yard-box.

Simmons, who had been Fleet’s best player throughout, forced a corner on the left off Hustwick, but Oram’s kick went harmlessly across the 6 yard-box and the ball went out of play. Allen then came out of his area to kick clear and deny Matt Pearse after the ball had been crossed from the left. Fleet’s last chance to reduce the deficit came when Pearse laid the ball in from the right to Oram, bur his shot cleared the bar by some distance.

Swans’ Team: Liam Allen, Darryl Siaw, Joe Pratley-Jones (Isy Nzelo 84’), Harry Pointing (Harry Mills 70’), Max Hustwick, Joe Hicks, Ollie Twum, Maliq Morris (Flynn Bolton 70’), Jordan Adeyemi, Taurean Roberts (Billy Rowley 84’), Dean Rule. Sub. not used: Simon. Scorers: Adeyemi (17’, 41’ & 82’), Siaw (24’).

Fleet Team: Hardcastle, Pettett, Dinsdale (Pearse 74’), Babikir, Nwaubani (Larner 64’), Wensley, Sharratt (Maunders 74’), Esprit (McLean 64’), D. Bone (Vary 64’), Oram, Simmons, Scorer; Simmons (2’). Caution: Esprit, foul (63’).