MATCH REPORT: Ebbsfleet United (H)

Aldershot Town blew Ebbsfleet United away with a 4-1 win, despite falling behind. A Lorent Tolaj double and goals from James Daly and Ryan Glover ensured three points despite being reduced to 10 men with Haji Mnoga shown a red card.

Ebbsfleet took an early lead in the fourth minute when former Shot Toby Edser fired in a low and powerful effort from close-range past Jordi van Stappershoef and a couple of Shots defenders on the line.

It was a difficult opening period for Aldershot who struggled to keep the ball and advance into their opponent’s half and van Stappershoef had to get down very well to his left to deny Ben Chapman in the ninth minute.

A few more half-chances went the way of the visitors, but in the 20th minute, the Shots had their first sight of goal. Ryan Glover and Ollie Harfield linked up well down the left and Harfield was able to deliver a trademark, beautiful cross that James Daly couldn’t head on target as he was running away from goal.

Another chance was fashioned down Aldershot’s left just minutes later, again courtesy of a lovely cross from Harfield, but this time no one could get close to his inviting ball into the centre.

Aldershot had the ball in the back of the net in the 26th minute when Lorent Tolaj and Josh Stokes linked up superbly for Tolaj to square the ball to Stokes to tap into an open net, but the Assistant Referee’s flag was raised to rightly rule Tolaj offside in the build-up.

Ben Chapman saw a shot from outside the area deflect on the bar in a warning sign that Ebbsfleet were still very much in the game in the 29th minute, but just four minutes later, Aldershot were level.

A short corner drew groans from around the EBB Stadium but those groans quickly turned into cheers when Tolaj turned in Tyler Frost’s centre at the back post to draw his side level after brilliant work from Josh Stokes, Ryan Glover and Frost.

Tolaj was hungry for goals after missing a penalty on Saturday and was pressing high in the hunt for a second. He won the ball back deep into Ebbsfleet territory in the 40th minute and turned his man, but his right-footed effort was straight into Mark Cousins’ clutch.

But the Swiss striker got his second in added time of the first-half from another short corner routine. Stokes saw a darting run into the box by Glover, who dummied the ball to see it fall straight to Tolaj’s feet and subsequently into the back of the net.


Ebbsfleet scored in the first four minuts of the first-half, but Aldershot scored in the first four minutes of the second-half! A superb move started with Lorent Tolaj switching the play superbly out to Tyler Frost with acres of space down the right, he raced towards goal and had his first goal in front of the East Bank at his fingertips but unselfishly squared the ball to James Daly to finish via the post.

Stuart O’Keefe was close to getting his first Shots goal in Saturday’s win, and was close again tonight as he powered a shot towards goal that was blocked. Appeals of handball followed which were perhaps more out of optimism.

Aldershot were looking fairly comfortable but their task was made harder in the 59th minute when they were reduced to 10 men. Haji Mnoga was being pulled and pushed by Dominic Poleon and seemingly turned and kicked out at the Ebbsfleet striker and despite looking as though he made minimal contact – if any at all – he was shown a straight red card.

But eight minutes later, Ryan Glover produced some individual brilliance to increase their lead further with their fourth of the evening. James Daly slipped the wing back in down the left and Glover stormed forward before cutting onto his right foot and firing a powerful, low effort into the bottom corner.

Though numerically disadvantaged, Aldershot didn’t rest on their laurels and instead continued to push forward and dominate possession. Dylan Kadji was pushed back from midfield to form the right side of the back three alongside Cian Harries and Ollie Harfield and barely put a foot wrong.

The Shots left nothing on the field and though there may be aching legs in the morning, there will be high spirits and winning momentum to carry them through to the visit to York on Saturday.

Shots lineup: 1. Jordi van Stappershoef, 2. Haji Mnoga, 3. Ollie Harfield, 4. Cian Harries, 7. Stuart O’Keefe (C) (6. Theo Widdrington 88′), 8. Tyler Frost, 9. Lorent Tolaj (39. Kwame Thomas 69′), 10. Josh Stokes, 11. Ryan Glover, 26. James Daly (23. Hady Ghandour 80′), 28. Dylan Kadji.

Subs not used: 18. Olly Scott, 20. Josh Barrett.