Fulham Deaf are PROMOTED in their inaugural season
Fulham Deaf third game in forty-four hours saw them pitched against Kingston Albion III needing a single point for automatic promotion.
Ben Lampert created an early chance for Richard Jeffers in the fifth minute only for Jeffers to shoot straight to the Albion's keeper.
Fulham Deaf won a free kick just outside the right hand corner of the box away from Albion's goal and Nick Beese slammed it against the Albion's four-man wall.
A double effort by Kevin Harewood and Jeffers was somehow kept out by Kingston in dogged fashion in the twelfth minute.
Bim Ajadi and Beese combined well in midfield to create chances for Fulham Deaf but nothing would come off for Fulham Deaf. Ajadi had a chance after B. Lampert's cross was deflected into his path but his shot was again deflected wide.
Harewood made great effort in winning the ball three times to win a corner for Fulham Deaf. The corner resulted in a break away attack for Kingston Albion II which was blasted high over the bar.
Andrew Drury came to Fulham Deaf's rescue after John Docker and Oliver Westbury lost a high ball in confusion. Drury cleared the ball upfield to Harewood who slipped the ball to his right for B. Lampert to dart towards goal only for the Albion's keeper to win the 50-50 ball from B. Lampert's feet.
Richard Parker came to Fulham Deaf's rescue in a punch save and claiming the ball with a mighty leap from a deep probing cross.
Kingston almighty throw ins into the box are a real threat to Fulham Deaf's goal and Parker is called into action several times to either punch the ball out or claim it into his hands.
Jeffers' square ball to Harewood that lead to Harewood's goal is dubiously overruled for offside. Ewan McGreevy made some excellent runs down the right wing to torment the Kingston's defence.
Andrew Vorster cleared the ball to safety several times in the last fifteen minutes, which contributed, to him being awarded Fulham Deaf's man of the match.
With minutes ticking away before half time, Drury's free kick found B. Lampert whose shot rebounded back into play off the post.
Harewood is ruled considerably offside by Albion's effective offside trap before the referee blew for half-time.
The beginning of the second half Jeffers exposed the gaps in Albion's defence and his effort came off Albion's keeper's feet to safety.
A corner taken by B. Lampert is taken short to Jeffers, back to B. Lampert who crossed to Drury who is penalised by the referee for a foul with a push.
Kingston Albion III made a substitution with thirty-five minutes to go. Fulham Deaf started to play a little over cautious in the knowledge that a defeat would result in staying in Division Two next season in this last game of the season.
Harewood was put through by Jeffers from a Drury's goal kick only to be pushed down from behind by Kingston. Referee waved play on.
Kingston broke through and Parker made a fantastic save in diverting the ball over the bar from close range. Ryan Pendley came on for Ajadi with twenty-five minutes to go.
Three minutes later after Fulham Deaf's substitution, Jeffers who had worked tirelessly in moving forward at every opportunity, darted forward chasing a 50-50 ball. Albion's keeper lost to Jeffers to the ball and Jeffers' effort was cleared off the line by the retreating Albion's defender.
Vorster continued to be the calming influence at the back four. Pendley's long dipping shot from forty yards out from out wide on the left just dipped over the crossbar.
Twelve minutes left on the clock, Jeffers broke through off a Beese's back header from another Drury's goal kick. Jeffers kept going and made no mistake this time in sliding the ball home past the oncoming Albion's keeper to put Fulham Deaf 1 – 0 up.
Mark Gill came on for the worn out Jeffers and Fulham Deaf reverted to a five-man midfield to keep hold of the lead.
With four minutes left, Gill put Harewood through but Albion's keeper parried Harewood's effort for a corner.
Soon after the referee blew for full-time, The Fulham Deaf footballers raised their arms into the air celebrating promotion into Division One.
Christof Niklaus – Fulham Deaf FC Manager comments:
The lads continue to surprise me! So many tired legs out there and still they kept going right to the end looking for maximum points to keep the pressure onto Westminster Casuals. Seven points out of a possible nine is excellent for three games in three days especially when you consider two games were against the top two teams.
Obviously, some of us are disappointed at not becoming champions but Westminster Casuals are worthy champions and we are just delighted to get promoted at first attempt, which is a fantastic achievement for my lads.
We are already looking forward to play against the Casuals in Division One next season! Congratulations to the Casuals and that pint will be ordered for you, Phil soon [either on Tuesday or at the end of season presentation dinner]!
I'm not sure what other surprises the lads will have in store but I know we can enter next week both cup finals with no pressure after achieving our first priority of gaining promotion into Division One.
Division One here we come…!
Final score Kingston Albion III 0 – 1 Fulham DFC (half time 0 – 0)
Fulham Deaf FC Line up:
Parker, Vorster, Westbury, Drury, Docker, B. Lampert Beese, McGreevy, Ajadi (Pendley 65), Jeffers (Gill 80), Harewood
Fulham Deaf FC Manager