On Saturday, it was back to the Unwin after a few weeks off watching Ely City. The opponents were Felixstowe & Walton, who have been a solid mid-table team in the league since I have been following Eastern Counties football. At the moment though they are riding high in 5th place and with a couple of key signings from Needham Market, it's probably going to be one of their best seasons. On the other hand, I've already documented Ely's short comings this season and the players that they have brought into the first team look like they are there to be utilised in Division 1, if as seems to be likely, the Robins are relegated.
Ely started the brighter of the two teams and in the opening encounters Claydon came close to giving the side the lead on 6 minutes and an impressive volley by Diaper on 21 minutes was unlucky not to find the target. Bad luck is really following Ely around lately though and inevitably Felixstowe took the lead on 27 minutes. This came just after Ely were denied a gilt-edged penalty when Claydon was brought down in the box, but the referee was George Sprague, who doesn't seem to like Ely at the best of times. Ely also had another decent penalty shout before the half ended, but again Sprague wasn't interested. On 40 minutes Felixstowe crossed the ball optimistically into the box and the ball alluded everyone and ended up in the back of the net. The bad luck just keeps coming.
It's a credit to the team that after going 2-0 down they came out in the second half firing on all cylinders and on 49 minutes they got their just reward when Adam Murray fired home a header. As always though every silver lining has a cloud when it comes to Ely this season and just 4 minutes later Pacey made a mess of a back pass, failed to clear it and it was 3-1 to the Seasiders. It was a shame as Ely were playing better football now and kept the pressure on their opponents. They finally pulled one back on 78 minutes when Claydon scored (we think he got the last touch) after a goal line scramble. Unfortunately, it was too late for an equaliser though and although Ely threw the kitchen sink at it for the last 10 minutes, time ran out and the visitors went back home with the 3 points.