With rumours of another COVID19 Lockdown circulating, CSKA went to Davenport Road to face NEBA. The game had initially been scheduled for the 18th of October but NEBA were forced to postpone due to several of their players receiving positive COVID tests.
Nathan Tate passed a late fitness test, whilst Liam Kennedy made his first start of the campaign at left midfield. Brad Parker, Adam King and Andy Pettitt all unavailable for this one.
CSKA started the livelier of the two side, and Dave Payne had a couple of early chances to give CSKA the lead, but on both occasions was slightly off target. But it was the home side who took the lead, an intercepted cross-field pass was neatly taken down and struck into the bottom corner to make it 1-0. And moments later the lead was doubled, this time a glorious 30yard strike left Augustus with no chance. And worse was to follow, a low cross from the left wing was missed by the defence and then a sliced clearance only fell to the onrushing attacker, who pounced to make it 3-0 after only 30 minutes.
A disastrous first half for CSKA who struggled to retain possession, and had a few questionable referee decisions against them, with many clear trips being waved away. But CSKA did end the half strong and were rewarded when Nathan Tate was able to lash home from the rebound after the NEBA keeper could only parry Danny Chapman’s effort.
CSKA’s momentum continued into the second half, Dave Payne continued to cause problems, but just couldn’t find the target. Danny Chapman eventually got himself on the scoresheet early in the second half to make it 3-2. And almost turned provider as his fizzed cross along the goal mouth was agonisely just beyond the reach of McCafferty’s stretching leg.
Hiran Mistry came on to replace Liam Kennedy on 60 minutes and made an immediate impact when the ball fell to him outside the box from a cleared corner and struck it gloriously into the top corner. What a way to mark your first CSKA goal!
The drama was far from over by this point, both teams could smell the win. Nathan Tate 30 yard strike just skimmed the top of the crossbar and then at the other end, Gareth Walker bundled into the back of the NEBA attacker bursting through and the referee pointed to the spot. But Augustus who had been pretty much untroubled in the second half rose to the occasion and guessed correctly, keeping the penalty out. Then less than a minute later at the other end Tate was similarly brought down inside the box only this time referee Calarasu was unmoved and waved away the protests claiming that he “wasn’t stupid” to fall for Tate’s theatrics!
All was forgotten in injury time, McCafferty did well to bring the ball out of defence and win a corner. And from his resulting corner, both Brice and Tate were lining up for a free header, with Brice first in the queue and putting CSKA into a remarkable 4-3 lead.
A recovery from CSKA and the first ever victory in the club’s history from a 3 goal deficit. Chris McCafferty was named man of the match.