Last gasp Sam Newson wins it for Marketmen against nine-man Sudbury
- Credit: Su Anderson
Needham Market 1 AFC Sudbury 0
Sam Newson netted a dramatic late winner against nine-man AFC Sudbury, in the fourth minute of injury time, to keep Needham Market on top of the Ryman North table.
A full-blooded Suffolk derby, at Bloomfields this afternoon, looked destined to end goalless after managerless Sudbury had defended manfully with 10 men for virtually the whole game.
Skipper Craig Pope had been sent off after just five minutes, for a high and reckless challenge on Needham debutant Steve Holder, near the touch-line.
But, try as they might, the Marketmen could find no way past their gutsy opponents, who had seen their manager, David Batch, leave to join St Neots after Christmas.
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Caretaker boss, Danny Laws, was full of praise for the way Sudbury surmounted all of these setbacks – they also had left-back Lee Flynn sent off in the second minute of stoppage time – only for Newson to strike with a last gasp winner.
Centre-forward Newson headed home fellow front-man Michael Brothers’ cross to preserve Needham’s top spot, on goal difference from rivals Harlow Town, who won 2-1 at Waltham Abbey.
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Sudbury had ended the home match against Needham, last August, with just eight men following three red cards – centre-half Pope had been dismissed in that game as well, a 3-1 home defeat.
So in all, Sudbury picked up five red cards in the two matches against Needham – they also had four players booked yesterday – which raises concerns over the club’s discipline on the pitch.