I made a late decision not to travel for this one though would have loved to have been part of the 230+ throng that gathered on the Screwfix terrace and wherever else in Huish Park.
The Shots had signed Myles Anderson on a two-month loan as defensive cover and with Tinkler missing, he made his debut. The name Myles seemed to have got stuck in a groove too, judging by this quote from Somerset Live:
Manager Darren Sarll changed things up and sent on Chris Dagnall and Courtney Duffus from the substitutes’ bench – and it was Duffus who made the telling contribution when he was fouled in the area. Murphy stepped up and buried it in the bottom corner, despite Myles Walker guessing the right way.
I wasn’t expecting us to return with even a point, irrespective of our win over Notts County but like most, am happy that we not only gained a point, but put in a display that showed other teams that we are dealing with the soft underbelly and may not be such a pushover in the near future.
I followed the ShotsWeb link and tuned into radio commentary, unfortunately though it was BBC Somerset crammed with biased opinion from Mr Whoever-It-Was; things like…
“2500, yes I thought it might be something like that – clearly not many here from Aldershot”
I heard a fair few of our regular chants though while the vocal effort seemed to match Yeovil’s, I was surprised and pleased just how many Shots fans turned up for a midweek affair. In fact, Brian Bloomfield, writing on ShotsWeb, reckoned it was around a hundred more. I thought the same at the home fixture I remember and having to accept that official gates are reasonably just that.
But still, taking 200 or more pretty much anywhere we go speaks volumes for the loyalty and passion that survives our football club and it’s another big pat on the back for all of you who went last night. Our away following is among the best in the National League for sure.
There will be debate about the second penalty (where is VAR when you need it) with Whittingham going down theatrically and earning a yellow card, though in a brief spell of impartiality, I can tell you that commentator and co-commentator on Radio Somerset thought it was a definite penalty.
Strangely the official Shots match report does not mention the incident. From that piece, it describes the Chislett penalty kick that saw us take the lead.
It wasn’t until the 27th minute when the deadlock was broken and it needed a penalty to do so. Jack Powell worked his way into an opening on the right-hand-side inside the area before knocking the ball past one more man and getting tripped in the process. Aldershot had missed their last three penalties, but it was Chislett who stepped up on this occasion and made no mistake, dispatching the ball into the bottom left corner while sending the keeper the wrong way.
The commentary mentioned how tired we looked towards the end of the game on that muddy field, but hang on sternly we did and returned to Hampshire with a well-earned share of the spoils, thanks to Jack Powell’s swerving free-kick.
Onto Saturday and important to note that Chesterfield shipped five goals at home to Hartlepool. Nick Loughlin of the Northern Echo reports:
After scoring four times in his first away game in charge, Dave Challinor saw his Hartlepool United side go one better last night. Pools won 4-1 at Yeovil in the FA Cup two weeks earlier, but last night triumphed 5-1 at Chesterfield in the National League. Gime Toure and Gus Mafuta both scored twice with Luke James getting the other. Mafuta netted on 27 minutes and James then broke away to crack home two minutes later. Peter Kioso, later stretchered off with a head injury and taken to hospital as a precaution, nodded an own goal at the end of the first-half, bur Pools came out firing again. Toure, back in the starting line-up, smashed home number three, before he set up Mafuta for his second. Toure completed the rout thanks to fine work from James. Challinor told BBC Tees: “It’s a great result, a brilliant performance and a really good three points – it makes Saturday a better point now.
Liam Norcliffe of the Derbyshire Times writes about derision from home fans, a similar reaction vocally to us up at Dagenham:
Peter Kioso’s own goal gave Chesterfield a lifeline before half-time but Hartlepool added a third on 48 minutes through top scorer Gime Toure. It got worse for the Blues on 55 minutes when Mafuta got his second to wrap up the points and some Chesterfield fans headed for the exit. Toure added a fifth with 20 minutes still to play to round off an embarrassing night for the Spireites which was their sixth defeat at the Proact already this season.Town drop into National League relegation zone and have now conceded 11 goals in three matches. There were boos at several points during the game from the home fans and chants of ‘you’re not fit to wear the shirt’ and ‘this is embarrassing’.
Let’s hope we can gain three more points on Saturday. We all know that we ought to have won at Saltergate aka Proact Stadium but somehow came away with nothing.
Let’s also hope that those same fans that showed for the visit of Notts County return again to cheer us on to victory.
Elsewhere in the National League last night, it was goals galore with only Wrexham failing to find the net.
Solihull Moors cast aside their unconvincing away form to grab a fantastic 4-1 win at Stockport County, a result which takes them one point off the summit.
Paul McCallum’s brace, one from Jimmy Ball and another via Jamey Osborne completed a perfect night for Tim Flowers’ team.
That’s because of issues for the clubs around them.
Leaders Barrow performed a fantastic comeback to draw 2-2 with Chorley after going two goals behind early on.
Second place Bromley threw away their advantage – going down 2-1 at Woking as top scorer Jake Hyde scored the winner. Dave Tarpey’s sixth goal of the season drew the Cards level.
In a night full of goals, it also ended 2-2 at Notts County.
Neal Ardley couldn’t quite get the victory he craved despite a strong second half at home to Boreham Wood. The Magpies remain ninth.
AFC Fylde claimed a crucial three points at Wrexham – Danny Philliskirk’s winner silenced the Racecourse.
Ben Strevens’ Eastleigh survived a sterling Torquay fightback to hold on to a 3-2 win.
There was another epic encounter in Kent as Maidenhead United went home with all three points from Dover.
Jake Cassidy was at the double to secure a 4-3 triumph – and a big win for Alan Devonshire’s team.
Sutton United needed a win as well. Matt Gray’s side have now taken six points from nine after their 2-1 win at Dagenham was sealed by Tommy Wright.
Barnet’s season needed the kiss of life too – they stunned Ebbsfleet United 5-2.
Sim Akinola’s brilliant hat-trick was a real lift for Darren Currie after a poor run of form for the Bees.