Southern League: Harrow Borough 3 Hendon 1
PUBLISHED: 18:30 26 December 2018 | UPDATED: 22:13 26 December 2018
There were many reasons for the Harrow faithful to feel thoroughly happy after their Boxing Day derby win against the Greens.
Regaining fourth spot; a first home win on December 26 since 1985; a sixth home league win on the trot; 13 points from six games in December; a third successive points collection having conceded the first goal.
Mark McLeod was away, as he always is at Christmas, and Frank Keita’s injury on Saturday kept him out. But George Fenton had served his suspension after his dismissal at Taunton and returned at centre-back.
New signing Nathaniel Oseni was alongside him and Shaun Preddie as Steve Baker reverted to a back-three for the first time in recent weeks. Jordan Ireland moved forward to start for the first time in his preferred position in midfield.
On a very mild December lunchtime, Preddie was caught dawdling on the ball in the sixth minute as former Harrow man Shaun Lucien robbed him and motored into the area.
Preddie bundled him over and German slotted home the resulting penalty to give the visitors a sixth-minute lead.
But Harrow took just eight minutes to equalise, as Ryan Moss rose above the visiting defence to power home a header from Michael Bryan’s corner.
Preddie then had a header deflect onto the post, though referee Ellsmore had blown for an infringement, and Ireland hooked the ball high and wide when he was first to Boness’s punch clear of another Bryan corner.
At the other end Josh Andrew cleared off the line when Murphy-McVey was highest to a right-wing corner and German put a header wide for Hendon, with Bryan curling a free-kick over at the other end.
Preddie’s header from Bryan’s free-kick was held by Boness, before a slick Harrow move ended with Kearney turning to shoot over.
Bryan then sent Kearney in for a low drive from the edge of the box that Boness dived and held. But Hendon ended the half with some pressure, Olomowewe heading wide from Chappell’s corner, Mbengui shooting over, and Oseni ending a good debut half with some calm work in his own area to clear up a dangerous situation.
Hendon continued in the ascendancy as the second period began and Hafed Al-Droubi saved at the feet of Hippolyte-Patrick after German got past Preddie, who then made a fine tackle on German.
Al-Droubi then came off his line very quickly to save with his feet from Hippolyte-Patrick. However, it was Harrow who took the lead in the 61st minute.
Hendon will not have been happy that Harrow were able to take a quick free-kick while it seemed that referee Ellsmore was ticking-off Locke, the offender.
But take it they did, with Bryan the quick-thinker, and he sent Ryan Haugh away on the left. His squared cross was met by the incoming Jordan Ireland who rammed home his first goal for Harrow from about six yards out.
The goal sent confidence flowing through Harrow. Kearney got into the box on the left, turned inside but saw his shot blocked, while Boness made a fine punch clear from Andrew’s cross under heavy pressure. Bryan’s shot was charged down and Lewis Cole, having yet another outstanding game, drove over.
A Cole free-kick was deflected wide and Andrew’s 20-yarder with the outside of his foot flew narrowly over.
It was 3-1 after 78 minutes, though, as Moss cushioned a header into Kearney’s path and he turned a defender and placed the ball past Boness’s left hand from 15 yards.
Both the Harrow striking duo are now on 11 league goals for the campaign and Kearney has got there in only 14 appearances.
Al-Droubi made another quick run from his goal to clear, a Bryan shot went wide after great work by Cole and Andrew, while Moss had a header saved from Haugh’s cross and Hendon substitute Crichlow cut in from the left but blazed over.
Harrow sub Anthony O’Connor, also back from suspension, created the final opportunity of the afternoon as he raced up the right and put in a low cross that Moss met at the same time as Boness, the ball going wide of the far post and both players needing treatment afterwards.
Up to fourth, Harrow go again at The Rogers Family Stadium on Saturday, when the visitors are a Kings Langley side who have been in good recent form but who came a cropper by 3-0 today at Chesham United.
Hendon, now down to eighth, return to action on New Year’s Day when they host Chesham United.
Harrow: Al-Droubi, Andrew, Haugh, Preddie, Fenton, Oseni, Kearney (O’Connor 88), Ireland, Moss, Bryan (Pearce 90), Cole. Unused subs: Ismajli, Elsahib.
Hendon: Boness, Alexander-Greenaway, Chappell, Murphy-McVey (Hunte 74), Olomowewe, Locke, Mbengui (Brown 73), Harriott, German, Hippolyte-Patrick, Lucien (Crichlow 68). Unused subs: Abrahams, McGleish.