Leverstock Green recorded an excellent 4-1 result at SSML Premier bottom side London Tigers on Saturday despite being on the wrong end of a number of poor refereeing decisions.
Green took the lead with just six minutes gone. Zak Howells won the ball in a tackle just outside the Tigers box, and the ball was worked round to Curtis Donaldson, whose cross found Tremayne Charles, who drilled a shot into the corner.
Leverstock continued to play well, with Lewis Davis hitting a shot in the 11th minute which the keeper only gathered at the second attempt. A cross from Charles hit the bar, and a fine one-touch move ended with Danilson Vicente putting the ball over the bar from a Davis cross.
The first threat to the Leverstock goal came in the 27th minute, but keeper Mark Berg saved the shot and Jonathan Lacey cleared the rebound. Four minutes later Victor Abreu was in on goal, but a combination of Berg and George Biggadike blocked the shot.
Leverstock doubled their lead on 35 minutes from a free kick just outside the box, awarded for a blatant handball by the keeper punished with a yellow card. Donaldson’s effort was partially blocked by the wall, but Davis slid in to meet the loose ball and put it into the net.
At the start of the second half, the much more fired-up Tigers side had the Leverstock goal under siege for a few minutes, but Berg and his defence held firm. Meanwhile the Leverstock side were starting to pick up yellow cards for innocuous-looking tackles while similar fouls by the home side were going unpunished.
The rising sense of frustration against the referee came to a head just before the hour mark with the award of a bizarre penalty to the Tigers.
The ball was rolling towards the net, however Casey Linsell was scrambling back and got there ahead of an attacker to clear off the line. Linsell had played nothing but the ball but the referee awarded a penalty. Lopes Josemar scored from the spot to put the game back into the balance at 2-1.
The yellow cards continued to pile up for the Leverstock players as the side lost their heads for a few minutes. Tigers almost levelled on 74 minutes but Berg turned a shot from Joel Ramos around the post.
Another goal was definitely needed to settle the Green side down, and it arrived on 78 minutes from a quick counter-attack. Substitute Reynaldo Carbon played the ball forward to Vicente, who squared for Lacey to deliver another confident finish with a low shot into the corner of the net.
However, within two minutes of the goal the Green side was reduced to ten men. Jack Watts, who had already been booked, was adjudged to have kicked the ball away despite the whistle only having blown a split second earlier, and received a second yellow card.
The fourth goal arrived deep into stoppage time, as Leverstock broke away again and Vicente was brought down in the box when clean through. The referee awarded the penalty, although showed no card to the Tigers defender. Donaldson put the spot kick away to confirm the win and ensure that Leverstock would go into Christmas in 10th.
Levy Green visit Broxbourne Borough on Tuesday, December 27, kick off 3pm.