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Metropolitan Police 4
Clayton (52')
1 Kingstonian
Small (12')

K’s suffer Boxing Day knockdown

After finding the net for his new club, Met Police, against his old club, Ks, Sam Clayton exclaimed on Twitter that, "We passed em off the park to be fair". And it was fair, as Ks turned in one of their worst performances of the season.

The Police claimed it to be a deserved win over their local rivals - a laughable use of the word 'rivals', but an entirely justifiable use of the word 'deserved'. Ks led 1-0 at half time despite being second best, but capitulated in the second half as their defensive woes continued.

The Met should have taken the lead in just the seventh minute after the first of many Ks defensive errors. Kieran Murphy failed to clear a cross and it landed to Allan Tait, but his shot was weak and straight at Rob Tolfrey.

On 12 minutes Ks took the lead. Aaron Goode broke down the right and played Andre McCollin in on goal. Jamie Butler did well to save McCollin's shot with his legs, but Wade Small was on hand to turn the rebound home.

The equaliser nearly came in just four minutes when Goode sent a wild backpass narrowly wide of his own post, and from the resulting corner Clayton fired narrowly wide. The Boys in Blue again threatened on 22 minutes but Dave Knight failed to connect with a Howard Newton corner.

McCollin headed wide for Ks but they spent the remainder of the half clinging on to their lead. Clayton headed wide from a corner, Tolfrey saved well from Newton and then the visitors got particularly lucky in injury-time when Matt Pattison appeared to use his arm to keep out a Tait header, only for the referee to wave play on.

The pressure continued after the break, but Newton's free kick was slowed by the wall giving Tolfrey an easy save, while the goalkeeper was also equal to Clayton's long-range effort.

Ks had their only good chance of the half on 51 minutes when Goode played Lewis Taylor in on goal. He lobbed Butler, only to see his effort bounce agonisingly wide of the post.

Two minutes later the scores were level, perhaps inevitably through Clayton. A corner was only cleared to him at the edge of the box, and he fired it back past Tolfrey with interest before wheeling off into a delighted celebration.

Once again this season, Ks conceded a second goal shortly after a first. This time Clayton was the provider, crossing for Knight to head past Tolfrey from close range.

Ks rarely looked like getting back into the game, with Met Police dominating possession and Ks making little headway.

In the final ten minutes a defeat became a rout. First, Newton beat Tolfrey from twenty yards, powering a shot inside his near post, before Knight was left with acres of space to make it 4-1. With a difficult run of fixtures ahead of them, Ks will now have to improve spectacularly to have a chance of staying in the promotion hunt.

Report: Simon Grier

Published Wednesday 12th September 2018