Peter Tonge’s full verdict on Northwich Victoria’s 4-1 defeat at Highgate United on Saturday…

A MATCH which Highgate deserved to win, but the 4-1 scoreline flattered them as Vics more than matched them for long periods of the game

The first half was even with both teams having their moments before Highgate went ahead a minute before half time as Ryan Harkin escaped down the right into the box and laid the ball across goal, where Joe Camozzi could only turn the ball into his own net.

The half had started with Highgate on the front foot, with Vics fortunate not to go a goal down in the first minute as Frazer Cookson slipped, allowing Harkin to nip in on goal but he placed his shot just wide of the post.

Adam Reid then produced a double save to deny United the opener in the sixth minute as Highgate threatened to overwhelm the visitors.

However, Vics fought their way back into what was becoming a very entertaining match as both teams created chances.

Sam Ogondate was inches away from turning in a Dylan Switters cross at the back post whilst Sam Lynch was close with an effort before Harkin got that vital first goal.

If the first goal was slightly fortunate, then the second just a minute into the half was sheer class from Aaron Williams as he rocketed a shot in off the crossbar from 25 yards out, giving Reid no chance.

Vics were rocked by this and a further two goals from Harkin gave Highgate a convincing lead.

However, Vics were spirited, kept battling and playing good football and were rewarded with a goal in the 72nd minute as a Switters cross found its way through to Eli Fisher all on his own at the back post and he slotted the ball into the net for his first goal for Vics.

Vics then had two great chances to score as firstly Camozzi laid the ball back to Matty Clarke, who fired over from 10 yards out.

Two minutes later, it was Camozzi himself who could only head over the bar when well-placed after some great play by Vics as United eased through to record the victory.

Vics: Reid, Camozzi (Pritchard), Cookson, Ogondare, Hurst, Perry, Smith (McWilliams), Clarke, Lynch (Fisher), Lloyd, Switters. Subs not used: Parker, Crellin