Perfect start for Nielsen as Wingate & Finchley thump Carshalton

Wingate & Finchley enjoyed a flying start to the season in the Ryman League Premier Division on Saturday, crushing Carshalton Athletic 4-0 at home.

New head coach Daniel Nielsen had the perfect beginning to his new career, and his side contained nine of last season’s squad - the only new additions in midfield being Dean Mason and Tommy Tejan-Sie.

The pitch was in perfect condition and on this sunny day, fluid passing football was played by both sides.

Hector Mackie had an early shot heading for the bottom right corner but it was blocked away for a corner by an outstretched defender’s foot. Mackie also had a free kick tipped around the post by a diving McEntergart, but this early Blues dominance paid off when Ola Williams was hauled down inside the box in the 14th minute - and Leon Smith confidently tucked away the penalty as he continued his superb pre-season goalscoring form.

Carshalton’s only chance fell to Butterworth when he muscled his way through the defence from a long ball, but he was denied by a superb block from Bobby Smith.

Carshalton dominated the closing stages of the first half with consistent pressure, but with a lack of creativity they never came close to equalising.

Ten minutes after the restart Marc Weatherstone doubled his side’s lead. He remained upfield following an uncleared set piece, and a vicious delivery from Tommy Tejan-Sie found the defender completely unmarked, with a well-placed low header beating goalkeeper McEntegart from six yards.

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Luke Pidgen was brought on for the visitors and his first touch was shot from a wide angle on the left, which troubled Bobby Smith, but he had enough behind the ball to block the shot at the near post.

However, the second half was dominated by the confident home side. Spencer McCall played an incisive through ball which was perfectly weighted into Leon Smith’s run, and his shot rolled across goal, agonisingly wide of the far post.

The third goal sealed the game but came amid controversy as the referee overruled an assistant’s flag in the 71st minute for a foul by a Wingate defender, and the Blues broke clear up the other end.

Dean Mason was freed down the right wing and pulled the ball back to Mackie, and the winger accurately volleyed the ball into the top right corner from just inside the area to make sure of the points.

The icing on the cake came five minutes from time with two subs combining. David Laird chipped a ball over to Ahmet Rifat, who had peeled off the back of his marker, and he controlled the ball before lobbing the stranded goalkeeper.

Nielsen said: “I was very pleased with the result and the performance. We executed our game plan perfectly, although we wouldn’t ever want to get too carried away.

“In every game teams will have spells on top against us and we coped very well with that today at the end of the first half.”

Wingate & Finchley: Smith B, Williams, Wright, Tommy Tejan-Sie, Weatherstone, Webb, Mason, McCall (Laird 81), Shulton (Christian 68), Smith (Rifat 75), Mackie. Subs: Jesse Parsons, Milner.

Attendance: 165