First Team
National League South Mon 1 April Gallagher Stadium
Maidstone Utd
Welling Utd

Welling United fought to yet another vital point on the road with a 1-1 draw at Maidstone United on Easter Monday.

After weathering a first-half storm and going into the break with a single-goal deficit, the Wings excelled after the restart and deservedly equalised via a fine strike from Jack Munns on his debut.

It wasn’t an ideal start for the Wings who came under some early pressure from their hosts who took the lead with just four minutes on the clock.

The goal came from a corner following an outstanding save from Reice Charles-Cook who tipped Matt Rush’s effort onto the post after the Stones’ forward had got through one-on-one.

But with the corner delivered to the back post, Goerge Fowler popped up to send a downwards header into the net to give Welling an uphill struggle to climb early on.

In truth, it would be a fairly dominant first-half display by the home side who forced Charles-Cook into another good save one-on-one after Lamar Reynolds had been slipped into the right-hand side of the box, before Sam Corne saw his follow-up roll inches wide of the post.

On 25 minutes, Rod Stringer shuffled his pack, introducing David Amoo for Joe Ellul to introduce some impetus in the final third.

It took until just after the half-hour mark for the Wings to have their first foray in the hosts’ box when Amoo crossed for Gene Kennedy, whose header was blocked, while Antony Papadopoulos tried his luck with an effort from 25 yards which sailed wide.

Charles-Cook was at it again, saving well from Matt Bentley when he got down well to keep out the effort with an outstretched foot.

Meanwhile, the Wings’ first shot on target came on 39 minutes when Reece Grant turned well before being denied by Stones stopper Lucas Covolan.

Welling settled down somewhat after the break as they got a better grip on proceedings.

Papadopoulos saw a shot blocked in the box as the visitors looked to push for an equaliser which did eventually come with 18 minutes remaining, courtesy of substitute Munns.

The ball fell to the former Charlton Athletic youngster 22 yards from goal and he hit one sweetly which found the bottom left-hand corner, sending the 208 travelling fans behind the goal wild.

From there, the Wings more than held their own and probably shaded matters in the latter half of the game as they prevented the Stones from creating anything at the other end.

Come the final whistle, it was another vital point towards Welling’s goal for safety. They know find themselves eight points clear of the bottom four with just four games left to play.

Next up is a visit of Torquay United to DA16 on Saturday.

Maidstone United: Covolan, Ezennolim, Greenidge, Fowler, Corne, Bentley (Adu-Poku 74), Reynolds, Bone, Tanga, Gurung, Rush.

Subs (not used): Brown, Earle, Appiah.

Goal: Fowler 4

Welling United: Charles-Cook, Johnson, Byrd, Ellul (Amoo 25), Di Trolio, Green, A Grant (Munns 63), Kennedy, Adigun, Papadopoulos, R Grant (Roscrow 70).

Subs (not used): Lema, Burchell.

Booked: Green 90 (foul), Munns 90 (dissent)

Goal: Munns 72

Referee: Daniel Baines

Att: 2,757 (208 from Welling)


(Photo: Dave Budden)