DERES' TOP 100 GAMES - No 86

Posted by Mickey Cooper on 29 September 2019

Erith & Belvedere   2          Deane 36, Smith 89

Ashford Town         0                     

FA Cup preliminary round, 31 August 2007

 

Continuing the series counting down the 100 most memorable games in our history.  Today, a famous Cup giant-killing and a worldie strike from a Deres favourite.

 

2007-08 started very impressively for Deres, with a 4-2 opening day win at Holmesdale followed by a 6-1 pasting of Slade Green with a Nick Smith hat-trick.  On the same evening ex-Dere Chris Dickson made his first-team debut for Charlton in a League Cup tie at Swindon.  At the end of August it was Cup time with a preliminary round tie brought forward to the Friday evening, which attracted a healthy crowd of 216 to PVR to witness the Deres’ first giant-killing in 15 years and probably one of their greatest cup wins ever.

 

A 2-0 win over the big spending Nuts n’ Bolts would have been a major upset had the Deres had 11 men, but bearing in mind that the home side were down to ten men for 80 minutes the Deres’ win was remarkable.

 

As expected Ashford came out of the blocks fast and were the better side in the opening ten minutes.

 

Things appeared to be turning Town’s way even more when Mark Nougher was dismissed on 11 minutes for throwing a punch at Ashford’s Tony Browne.  It looked like Nougher had been stamped on by Browne prior to throwing the punch, but the fact remained that the Deres were down to 10 men and would face an uphill struggle to avoid defeat.

 

It was now going to be a case of whether or not Erith could hold on for a 0-0 draw and a replay at the Homelands on Tuesday.

 

However, this wasn’t to be the case as the Deres took a shock lead after a moment of brilliance from an inspired Adrian Deane.  Lee Benavente was brought down 30 yards out from the Ashford goal and it gave the Deres their first opportunity in 36 first half minutes to test Ashford keeper Jake Whincup.  Deane rifled his free-kick past a helpless Whincup to provoke ecstatic scenes amongst the Deres contingent and leave the travelling Ashford fans shell-shocked.  Deane was excellent in midfield all evening and his goal capped it all off

 

A few minutes later though, the Deres lost influential midfielder Drew Watkins to a bad injury.  The ex-Cray Wanderers midfielder had to be stretchered off and was replaced by Marlon Button.

 

Despite dominating the game territorially, as you would expect of a higher league team playing against lower league opposition with ten men, Ashford failed to create a clear-cut chance and the closest they came was through a couple of goalmouth scrambles and corner-kicks.

 

The icing on the cake for the home side came in the last minute as Matt Johnson played Nick Smith in on goal.  Whincup charged out, but Smith just reached the ball first.  Smith poked the ball at Whincup.  The ball rebounded off Whincup and hit Smith’s shin before trickling into the bottom corner of the net to seal a famous victory for Chris Cosgrove’s side.

 

Erith & Belvedere: Grant Wallis; Mitch Crawley, Matt Bedford, Matt Johnson, Tom Maycock, Paul Gross, Drew Watkins (Marlon Button 41), Adrian Deane, Lee Benavente (Mike McKenna 81), Nick Smith, Mark Nougher.

Ashford Town: Jake Whincup, Tony Browne, Aron Freeman, Danny Lye, Rob Gillman, Nick Humphrey, Barry Gardner (Joby Thorogood 67), Lee Spiller, Rob Denness, Steve Sodje (Walid Matata 56), Nick Barnes.

 

The following day, before Welling United’s Conference South fixture against Bath City, came a landmark in the Deres’ history.  Chairman John McFadden joined Welling United's Secretary Barrie Hobbins in securing both clubs’ future at Park View Road.

On the tenth anniversary of the fire that destroyed the Deres former headquarters at Park View, Belvedere, Cllr Ian Clement, leader of Bexley Council, signed a new 50 year lease.  "It’s quite ironic really," said John McFadden.  "Exactly 10 years after the fire at Park View, when we wondered if the club would still be around at the end of 1997, here we are ensuring that the club will be at Park View Road at least until 2057!  We can look forward now, knowing that our new 'home' is secure for the long term future."

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