Braintree 1-0 Gateshead
Saturday 7th March 2015
Gateshead’s play-off hopes were dealt a hammer blow as a second-half penalty from Kenny Davis secured a valuable victory for Braintree Town at a sun-drenched Cressing Road. The Tynesiders face a mammoth task if they are to realise their promotion ambitions with games running out. This leaves Tuesday night’s game at home to Welling a must win game.
All afternoon-long, both teams cancelled each other out, with chances few and far between for either side.
Half chances from Lynden Gooch and Alex Rodman were the highlight of Gateshead’s first 45 minutes, with nothing clear cut being created.
Braintree didn’t register any shots on target and the teams went in at half time 0-0.
Braintree came out in the second half with a more attacking approach with Akinola playing a neat one-two with Mensah before smashing a right-footed effort against the crossbar.
The game’s defining moment came just in the 69th minute, as the lively Mensah was chopped down by left-back Matty Pattison. It was a momentary lapse for Pattison, who was one of Gateshead’s best performers on the day.
Davis stepped up to score the penalty, sending Adam Bartlett the wrong way.
Gary Mills then made a triple substitution, bringing on Kevin Sainte-Luce, Adam Campbell and Jon Shaw, but the heed struggled again to create any chances, relying on long balls into the box in the hope of the strikers getting onto the knockdowns.
Braintree deserved their win in the end, pretty much cementing their Conference status for another season, whilst Gateshead will hope other teams around them start to slip up, otherwise their promotion hopes will fade quickly.