The first thing I noticed, once the game had started, was the colour clash between Bedford and the referee. Bedford play in black and white striped shirts, black shorts and black socks. However, the back of their shirts is solid black. The referee, in his all black kit, looked remarkably like a Bedford player from the back. This didn't seem to bother either team or the officials.
For the first 30 minutes or so, the match was very evenly balanced. Neither side could get a grip on the game, or the ball. The conditions were certainly not helping and the pitch immediately cut up enough to make passes along the ground unpredictable. It was the home side, on a pretty bad run of form, who came the closest in this period, hitting the bar with a close range header that looped over the keeper after 14 minutes. The rest of the half was fairly unremarkable except for the fact that the longer it went on, the more that Bedford began to get on top.
The second half began as the first had ended, with Bedford just about edging possession and looking the more likely to break the deadlock. Sure enough, just 8 minutes into the half, they took the lead when a break down the left lead to a very neat finish past the keepers left hand. 1-0 to the away team and, just about, deserved.
To be fair to Buckingham, going a goal down didn't deflate them and they continued to battle away, trying to get a foothold on the game. Too many times good moves broke down when a pass went astray. The most likely source of a Buckingham equaliser looked like an attack down their right where the tricky little winger showed, once or twice, that he could beat his man, However, there was never really the end product from any of these moves and the away keeper was not stretched at all as far as I can remember. When they did managed to fashion an opportunity for a shot the Bedford right-back, who was having a pretty good game IMO, threw himself in front of the shot and got a good block in.
Inevitably, with the home side trying to find an equaliser, they were caught out at the other end. With about 5 minutes left on the clock a rash challenge lead to a Bedford free-kick about 25 yards out. The kick was smashed against the keepers left hand post and rebounded across the face of the goal to give the alert, onrushing Bedford forward a simple tap in. The free-kick stood out as a moment of quality in what had been a decent, but 'industrious' game of football which had no doubt been affected by the conditions.
Bedford climb to third place in the Spartan South Midland Division 1 table while Athletic continue to look over their shoulders with just 4 points separating them from second-bottom Amersham Town.
Buckingham Athletic - @buckinghamath
Bedford FC - @Bedford_fc