A professional performance away at Arlesey Town saw the Blues return from the New Lamb Meadow with three points, another clean sheet and sitting top of the last 6 games form guide.
While the win left the Blues still in 10th place overall, the current form guide makes for impressive reading. Played 6, Won 5, Drawn 1, Goals For 13, Goals Against 2. Points 16 (from a possible 18) Position 1st.
The Management team have assembled a cohesive and united team who have become a difficult side to break down and score against. And while the back door remains firmly locked and padlocked at one end, there is enough firepower in the boots of Joe Sellers-West and Kyle Faulkner to get the goals to get the points. And as if to emphasise the point both were on target on Saturday.
Seasoned Dunstable Town watchers have over the past couple of seasons been able to pinpoint the team’s deficiencies, an exposed underbelly, a lack of bite in midfield and not enough firepower in attack.
Always playing the game the right way and playing for the shirt were never questioned. But consistency was the Achilles heel of successive teams.
Another healthy away following were delighted by the character of the team. They dug in and fought when Arlesey got the bit between their teeth and played free flowing and expressive football when conditions and the ebb and flow of the game allowed.
J’Ardell Stirling was the Blues Man of The Match. Stirling epitomizes everything that is to be admired in the team. Prepared to drop down two divisions to play under Deeney & Durcan, the former his coach at Luton Town Cedars, his motivation is to continue to learn his trade and perfect his craft under his mentors’ guidance.
Multiply that by ten and you have a group of young men who seem to grow with confidence every game they play. Winning becomes a habit and one clearly enjoyed by fans as well as the players and coaching team.
A bright start by the Blues saw plenty of possession and any hopes Arlesey had to catch the away side cold disappeared as the game wore on.
An evenly contested middle of the first half saw both sides try to break down their opponents backline.
Benji Crilley came closest to breaking the deadlock, but his header from a corner just before the half hour was narrowly wide.
Dunstable went ahead on 39 minutes. A free kick on the Dunstable right hand side adjacent to the corner flag was delivered with precision by the cultured foot of Dan Naylor and met by the head of Joe Sellers-West, who had slipped his marker, to make it 11 goals in just 20 games.
Dunstable needed the experience of skipper Jamie Nicholls to get in the thick of things and break up Arlesey’s midfield. Liam McCrohan’s partnership with J’Ardell Stirling mopping everything up at the back, ably supported by Ethan Creary & Benji Crilley.
Wise old heads picked up on the clever off the ball running of Remell Stirling, who had made his debut the week before. A product of Borehamwood’s Academy, Remell is J’Ardell’s younger brother and destined to become a crowd favourite, with his energy, drive and commitment.
He gave his markers a busy time for the 70 minutes he played before giving way to the lightning pace of Jack Percy.
By that time the Blues had extended their lead thanks to a magnificent goal from Kyle Faulkner. Arlesey had attempted to clear their lines. Benji Crilley met the clearance and headed forward to Faulkner.
Faulkner, in space and unchallenged, looked up to see where the goalkeeper was, brought the ball down, let it bounce once and then struck the sweetest half volley over the Arlesey keeper and into the back of the net.
Cue, celebrations on the pitch and on the terraces. A goal worthy of the price of admission on its own and once certainly to ensure the points came back to Creasey Park.
A minute earlier, Arlesey had a golden opportunity to equalize but couldn’t make the most of it which left Faulkner the opportunity to put the game beyond the home side.
On Tuesday, Town travel to third place Hadley before a trip to top of the table New Salamis on Saturday. New Salamis were the last League team to defeat the Blues back on Saturday 6th November. Another healthy away following is expected to follow the Blues down the M1 and North Circular Rd to the home of Haringey Borough.
Written by Andrew Madaras