MATCH REPORT: Aldershot Town 0 Eastleigh FC 2 (H)

Aldershot Town’s difficult run of form continued with a 2-0 home defeat that saw both keepers Ethan Ross and Mitch Walker forced off with injuries.

The Shots made two changes to the side that were narrowly defeated 1-0 against Altrincham FC last weekend.

Corey Jordan returned to the starting line-up, along with forward Mo Bettamer as his name-sake Mo Sylla took his place on the substitute’s bench. Harrison Panayiotou was out of contention through an injury picked up at the J Davidson Stadium last Saturday.

Fresh from International duty with Grenada, Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong also returned to the match-day squad and took his place on the bench at the start of the game.

Aldershot Town started the game brightly with an early corner cleared by Eastleigh before an effort from distance from captain Lewis Kinsella was wide of the near post in the ninth minute.

The game evened out for the next 10 minutes before a major stoppage in play with Shots’ keeper Ethan Ross requiring 23 minutes of treatment that forced the goalkeeper off the pitch with emergency services brought onto escort him off.

This passage of play also saw Eastleigh open the scoring with a long free-kick from Jake Hesketh seeing Giles Phillips and Ethan Ross colliding with each other before the ball fell kindly to full-back Brennan Camp to score from inside the penalty area in the 22nd minute.

The health & safety of Ethan Ross was of course given the priority before play eventually resumed and left Aldershot Town with work to do in the first-half as they looked to respond.

However in the ninth minute of added time, Eastleigh doubled their lead through captain Tyrone Barnett with a lobbed finish over recent substitute Mitch Walker.

Barnett’s strike partner Danny Whitehall flicked the ball onto the Spirities’ skipper before Barnett showed a lot of composure to lob the ball over an onrushing Walker, leaving Aldershot Town two goals behind at the break.

Aldershot Town started the second-half well and a direct free-kick from captain Kinsella was tipped over his bar well by McDonnell in the 52nd minute.

However, Aldershot Town’s day went from bad to worse with a second keeper change needed as Mitch Walker was forced off through injury in the 59th minute, leaving forward Mo Bettamer to spend the final 30 minutes of the match in goal.

Following this, The Shots were able to create a number of half-chances for the remainder of the game but nothing too clear-cut, with several long-range efforts from Tommy Willard and Jayden Harris narrowly missing the target or blocked by an Eastleigh defender.

Neither side were able to create too many chances for the remainder of the second-half, leaving Aldershot Town looking for much-needed improvements in their next game in the Vanarama National League.

Aldershot Town are next in action next Saturday when they host Boreham Wood on April 9th.

Aldershot Town FC: 24 E Ross (G/K) (Walker 22′ (Bettamer 65′), 3 L Kinsella (C), 5 K Lokko (Harris 45′), 6 K Lyons-Foster, 7 A Whittingham, 9 M Bettamer, 14 R Glover, 16 C Jordan, 22 G Phillips, 26 A Saunders, 27 T Willard

Unused Subs: 12 C Oxlade-Chamberlain, 18 M Sylla

Eastleigh FC: 1 J McDonnell (G/K), 2 B Camp, 4 C Miley, 5 T Broadbent, 6 A Boyce, 7 S Smart,8 H Pritchard (Hollands 75′), 10 T Barnett (C) (Smith 87′),12 J Hesketh, 17 D Whitehall (Pitman 65′), 26 V Harper

Unused Subs: 3 M Kelly, 20 R Silva