Seasiders get a point on the road but late penalty miss means it could have been more
- Credit: Archant
Grays 2 Felixstowe & Walton 2
To come home from Grays Athletic with a point, yet still be disappointed, is a sign of how competitive Felixstowe & Walton are becoming and how expectation levels are growing, writes Barry Grossmith.
The first 20 minutes, however, suggested a different story.
With the home side keen to impress new boss Jim Cooper, The Seasiders looked likely to be in for a tough afternoon.
And it was that man again, Joao Carlos, already with three goals against Felixstowe this season, who opened the scoring on 10 minutes with a classy strike after a through ball from eventual man of the match Mitchel Hahn, from just inside the box.
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The game started to turn on 20 minutes with Felixstowe settling down and Jack Ainsley converting from the spot on 22 minutes after Miles Powell had been brought down.
The home side took back their lead with Aron Gordon netting four minutes later before a superb volley from Rhys Henry brought Felixstowe back level for the second time in the game.
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And there the scoring ended.
After the break, The Seasiders really started to impose themselves, Grays seemed to lose their passing game and, when Hahn was red-carded for hand ball two minutes from time, up stepped Ainsley once again but this time somehow managed to blast the ball wide of the net.
Seasiders boss Ian Watson said: “The character of the players is superb at the moment.
“We were the better side in the second half. We had great late chances and I’m chuffed with a point but disappointed at the same time.”
Assistant Boss Danny Bloomfield added: “We did struggle to get to grips in the first 20 minutes.
“They have a new manager, looked to impress and were very sharp, but twice we came back into the game showing steel and determination, something we weren’t doing at the start of the season. The subs made a difference and overall we deserved to win.”
Next up for Felixstowe is Basildon at home. A win would set things up nicely for The Suffolk Premier Cup semi-final against Stowmarket three days later.