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Welling 0-1 Eastleigh
EASTLEIGH’S 1-0 victory at play-off assured Welling United gave them the honour of becoming the only club to record the double over their North West Kent hosts.
Wings supporters were disappointed by the meek manner in which their club surrendered their unbeaten home record and also with their run of five clean sheets coming to an end.
Jamie Day took the opportunity to tinker with his side playing Jack Parkinson in the centre of defence, flanked by Anthony Acheampong and Ben Martin.
Loui Fazakerley and Connor McLaren took up the wing back positions and Jack Obersteller was rested.
Luis Cumbers returned from injury but received little service in a game of few real openings.
Welling started in lively fashion and Harry Baker’s corner was flicked on by Martin but Parkinson did not have time to do any more than an instinctive header that went wide.
Loick Pires struck well from distance but Jack Dovey, on loan from Southampton, was equal to the task and pushed the ball over the bar.
Baker crossed again and found Scott Kinch just beyond the far post but he was unable to hit the target from a tight angle.
Another Baker centre, from a free kick, again evaded the Eastleigh defence but once more, Parkinson was unable to trouble Dovey.
The game then went quiet until Danny Smith gave Welling a warning by heading wide when well placed.
Smith put the Spitfires ahead in the 39th minute with their only shot on target after Welling failed to clear their lines.
Injury to Sam Wilson, just before half time, resulted in the introduction to former Manchester City player Lee Peacock and he had an opportunity to make his mark early in the second half. but hooked over following a goalmouth scramble.
McLaren did well to pull back a Baker cross into the path of Kinch but the midfield man’s shot was saved by a diving Dovey.
Dean Cracknell and Kinch then combined to find Pires in space but his powerful effort fizzed narrowly wide with Dovey beaten.
Tom Jordan was lucky to escape a yellow card for a cynical block on Pires as he looked to forge his way into the Eastleigh penalty area.
Daryl McMahon found space to get a shot in but fired over Craig Holloway’s goal.
Day made a double substitution after 62 minutes as Ben Greenhalgh and Joe Healy replaced Cumbers and Kinch.
Wilson’s foul on Acheampong resulted in referee Nigel Lugg showing him a yellow card before Greenhalgh ignored Healy’s run and shot wide from 40 yards.
McMahon became the second Eastleigh player to be booked but Welling failed to show the urgency required to save their home record and only a late Pires free kick, easily claimed by Dovey, caused the visitors any concern.
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Welling United: Holloway, Fazakerley, McLaren, Kinch (Healy 62), Acheampong, Martin, Parkinson, Cracknell, Cumbers (Greenhalgh 62), Baker, Pires. Subs not used: Turner, Obersteller, Flack.