FC Clacton suffered their first defeat in five games as they welcomed Godmanchester Rovers to the Austin Arena on what was a surprisingly sunny day. Goals from Tom Spark, Mike Hyem and Austen Diaper helped the visitors to a 3-2 win after a five-goal thriller.
The visitors almost had the perfect start when James Hall ran onto a ball crossed by Austen Diaper but he could only guide it over from close range before the home side had a penalty shout waved away when Mekhi McKenzie was dragged down. Godmanchester dominated as they pressured the Clacton goal but good defending from the home side kept the score level.
It was the hosts who took the lead against the run of play when Mekhi McKenzie guided the ball into the net from a corner. FC Clacton didn’t dominate and poor final passes meant the visitors chances were limited. Both Charlie Bowen’s header from a corner and Jacob Partridge’s guided header from a long throw was just wide and either of Clacton’s Harry McDonald effort which saw him denied by the foot of Niall Conroy. The teams went into the break with Clacton leading.
Clacton started the second half on the front foot but Jordan Lartey’s effort was parried away by the goalkeeper. By the 5th minute, the visitors had equalised through Tom Spark as he passed it under the keeper. Somehow Clacton hadn’t regained the lead when two efforts rebounded off the post and crossbar before going out for a goalkick.
It didn’t take the visitors long to take lead when Mike Hyem cut in and slotted it past the goalkeeper. Godmanchester had turned the game around and almost had a third when Mike Hyem heading towards goal but could only get in onto the roof of the net.
The game really opened up when a goal each for both sides put the score at 3-2. Clacton equalised when Charlie Thompson headed the ball in from close range before Godmanchester Rovers regained the lead 2 minutes later when Austen Diaper headed in from a free-kick – a controversial one at that.
As the game reached the last 10, the home side pushed for an equaliser. A header was tipped over before Callum Griffith fired a shot over from a tight angle after being played through. Despite a couple of chances from both sides, the game finished 3-2 creating a 4 point gap between both sides.