Manu 38, 61(p)
Wingate & Finchley were 2-0 victors at home for the second Saturday running, this time securing a league win over Carshalton Athletic at the Maurice Rebak Stadium. A brace from summer signing, David Manu was enough to seal all three points, but the Blues were faced with bumps on the road to victory.
The first quarter of an hour was relatively quiet, with neither side able to register a shot on target and playing into each other’s hands with overhit through balls and mishit crosses. The first notable chance for Glen Little’s side came courtesy of the day’s skipper, Ahmet Rifat - but his free-kick sailed harmlessly over the crossbar.
It took 38 minutes for the deadlock to be broken in a very quiet first half, but Manu’s solo effort was worth the wait. The winger exchanged passes with Carl Stewart on the right wing before bursting through a crowd of defenders and finishing well at the near post to put the Blues ahead. Minutes later, Shane Gore was forced into a great save to keep his side ahead after Bobby Price had charged forward from right back into the box - but was prevented by Gore’s legs.
Another Gore save kicked off proceedings in the second half, this time diving across to his right to save Danny Dudley’s header from nestling in the top corner of his net.
Just after the hour mark, Wingate assured themselves of the three points. Rob Laney made a fantastic burst into the penalty area, jinking his way past two defenders before being brought down. Manu stepped up confidently and sent Patrick Ohman the wrong way from the spot to double his - and Wingate’s - tally.
The last chance of the game fell to the visitors, who had struggled to convert good possession into chances of note, and Michael Dixon struggled to find the target with his effort from inside the area.
In stoppage time, Jordan Cheadle was shown a straight red card for a late trip on Laney, who was in on goal, as the last man in defence.
Wingate travel to rivals, Enfield Town on Wednesday for a 1pm kick-off - where they will be greeted by former skipper, Marc Weatherstone.
Report by Nikhil Saglani