Klein scores double as Crows sink Tigers
Kingsbury London Tigers 1-4 Royston Town
ROYSTON TOWN have been decimated by injuries and suspensions since the turn of the year and for the second time in a week manager Paul Attfield only had 13 fit players to select from for Saturday’s 4-1 win over Kingsbury London Tigers.
But a run of impressive performances and sheer dogged determination has seen them lose just one of 15 league outings giving them a chance of finishing runners up in only their second season back in the Premier Division.
Paul Klein continued his fine run of form in front of goal with his fourth and fifth strikes in four games along with first half goals from Ricky Young and Matt Standen to give the Crows a four-goal lead.
Terence Cariba pulled one back for tigers five minutes before half time but Royston ran out comfortable winners in the end.
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In the stifling heat the first half was always going to be crucial as the players had to adapt to an unfamiliar weather pattern. From Royston’s point of view it was job done as all the goals were scored in the opening 40 minutes meaning the visitors had little need to chase the game in the second half.
On Tuesday night at Hanwell Town, Klein needed two minutes to open the scoring but he needed a minute more in this game with a third-minute opener. Ryan Lockett’s fine diagonal ball found the winger on the left of Kingsbury’s area and after cutting inside the full-back he unleashed an awesome drive high above the keeper’s arms and into the top corner from a tight angle.
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The visitors kept a good defensive line and frequently hit their hosts on the counter attack when moves broke down. On 10 minutes a neat move ended with Klein crossing for Lockett who headed straight at the ‘keeper from 10 yards.
The confidence in Royston’s passing game in the difficult conditions began to wear Kingsbury down and the lead was doubled just before the half-hour mark when Matt Standen’s well-weighted through ball found the equally well timed run of Young who slotted under the advancing ‘keeper.
The team went for the jugular and had the game all but wrapped up by 37 minutes. Ross Collins produced another excellent through ball for Klein to beat the ‘keeper at his near post on 35 minutes before Matt Standen scored his first senior goal since his move from Hatfield Town two minutes later.
Danny Apostolos hit a sublime 35-yard ball from defence that released Standen who controlled a placed an angled shot under the ‘keeper.
Tigers pulled a goal back just before half time after a quick break had caught Royston napping at the back.
Despite being well down at the interval, the home side made a much better fist of it in the second half committing more players in attack. This opened up the game nicely and despite their being no more goals, both teams had chances to add to the scorline. Gibson made a smart one-on-one block and a forward had another effort crash onto the crossbar from 16 yards as well as another couple of more presentable close-range chances which were blazed high over the bar for the hosts.
At the other end Matt Standen hit a post with a close-range volley as well as miskicking wide at full stretch from close range.
John McGrandles had a close-range header from a corner directed straight at the ‘keeper and Klein had a superb chance to complete a hat-trick but volleyed Lewis Endacott’s cross over from eight yards.
Collins and Lockett both shot over from good positions but on the balance of play the Crows were worthy winners.
The game at Chalfont is crucial in terms of Royston having the chance of finishing in second place with just four games of the season remaining.
Royston Town: Gibson, Endacott, Apostolos, McGrandles, Cain, Collins, Edwards Matt Standen (Malins), Young, Lockett, Klein.