First Team
Isthmian League Premier Division Tue 27 February Alcaline Stadium
Folkestone Invicta
Potters Bar

A goalless evening saw the points shared at the Alcaline Stadium on Tuesday evening as neither side was able to break the deadlock.

Invicta came into the match having played only once in 3 weeks with the original match and Saturday’s fixture with Concord Rangers both having been postponed, Potters Bar having also suffered postponement’s in February with their draw at Bognor Regis on the preceding Saturday being their 1st game since the original postponement.

Andy Drury was able to turn to his first choice midfield with the return of Dean Rance and Seidou Sanogo, the former having extended his loan from Scunthorpe United and the latter having served a 1 match suspension at Whitehawk. Ian Gayle was also fit enough to return to the defence but midfielder Ade Cole was unavailable with an illness.

It took 10 minutes for the first moment of note to arrive and it was the referee at the centre of it. Brandon Adams, ho scored a hat-trick in the return fixture, won a header in the middle of the pitch and fed in Ore Bello who raced with Michael Kedman but with his touch a little heavy and heading through to Invicta keeper Kai McKenzie-Lyle The Scholars number 11 hit the floor just outside the box. While Bello and Adams and those on the away bench screamed at referee Kane Dempster for a foul, and what would have almost certainly been an early dismissal for Kedman, thankfully the Mr Dempster was having none of it.

Invicta first got a sight of goal in the 17th minute as a ball was cleared from the Potters Bar box as far as Callum Davies who delivered it back in behind the defence to find David Smith who was unable to beat the keeper Finn Rushton from a tight angle with his weaker foot.

2 minutes later Rushton collected a deep free kick from Eddie Allsopp but his kick went high into the air and was returned into the box by Dean Rance, but thankfully for the 21 year old he was able to collect the bouncing ball ahead of Callum Davies.

In the 20th minute the ball was in the back of the Invicta net, McKenzie-Lyle collecting a cross from Louie Henry as he was clattered by Bello, allowing Adams to tap home but the whistle from Mr Dempster had already called a halt to proceedings, sparking more ire from the away dugout towards what appeared to be a correct decision.

Both sides continued to huff and puff until the visitors went as close as either side would go to scoring with about 10 minutes left in the half, a Shane Cojocarel ball from deep chested into the path of Adams who poked the bouncing ball against the crossbar.

Neither side would trouble the scoring before the interval, Invicta making the 1st change of the evening at the break as captain Ian Gayle was replaced by Jake Goodman.

The visitors started the 2nd half with a golden chance as Adams forced a good save from McKenzie-Lyle from a tight angle, Max Jessop following up with the whole ground holding its breath, but he volleyed his chance over the Remland Stand into the tennis courts.

Invicta responded with an effort from Allsopp after David Smith had done well to keep the ball in play, feeding it back to the midfielder who bent a cross-shot past the far post.

Allsopp tested Rushton again moments later with another ball into the box from a wide free kick that looked to be dipping under the crossbar and needed a good save to turn it away for a corner.

Louis Collins was Invicta’s second change just before the hour, replacing David Smith.

Another Allsopp delivery, this time a corner, found Goodman at the back post but the big defender was unable to test the goalkeeper with his header, Potter Bar clearing the ball and breaking quickly but Cojocarel’s effort was tame and straight at McKenzie-Lyle.

It was Seidou Sanogo who came closest for Invicta as he rose highest at the back post to head a free kick from Allsopp towards the bottom corner, only to be denied by an incredible save from Rushton who got down to his left to scoop the ball over the crossbar.

MR Dempster was thrust into the spotlight again with just under 20 minutes remaining as Potters Bar substitute Temi Babalola threw himself to ground in the vicinity of Michael Kedman inside the penalty area, the referee issuing a booking for simulation.

Quickly after the referee was into his pocket again, Potters Bar captain Leigh Rose barging into Jason Fregene as he carried the ball up the left wing, before appearing to thrust his feet at the Invicta defender as he tumbled off him. Fregene looked to have some words for his opponent and they ended up with a booking each.

One final effort, a dipping volley from Michael Kedman on the edge of the box, fell Invicta’s way in the 4 minutes of injury time but neither side looked like snatching a late winner and both sides left with a single point, with Invicta looking towards Saturday’s trip to Potters Bar’s neighbours Cheshunt.