Controversial penalty kick sees Kings go unrewarded
The unwelcome return of the snow failed to postpone Kings Langley's long trip to Somerset to face Frome Town on a bitterly cold day on Saturday and saw a good performance go unrewarded, mainly due to the award of a contentious second-half penalty.
With Gary Connolly unavailable, the returning Macsen Fraser took his place in the centre of defence, the versatile Arjun Jung switched to right back and Stevie Ward slotted into the number 10 role.
Frome were on the back of six consecutive losses, the last of which had done Kings no favours with a defeat against fellow basement-battlers, St Ives.
The hosts started the better and Kings’ keeper Martin Bennett pulled off a good early save, but Kings played themselves in and home keeper Kyle Phillips had to be at his best to deny Mitchell Weiss in the 35th minute.
An Ollie Knight shot was cleared off the Kings’ line shortly after, but as the clock reached 45 minutes, Town failed to clear their lines properly and Elliott Godfrey, who had been felled by Phillips, recovered to drill the loose ball into the corner from ten yards for his first goal for the club.
Frome came out for the second-half with the cold wind at their backs and on the offensive, with Bennett tipping over a George Miller shot and a couple of dangerous low crosses finding no takers.
Then two major incidents swung the game in Frome’s favour. A high ball into the box brought a coming together of Bennett and Mitchell Page and the ball rolled to the goal-line before being cleared by Jorell Johnson. Without appeal from players or supporters, the referee pointed to the spot and the resultant penalty was despatched by Millar.
Five minutes later, the solid Fraser was taken off the pitch for treatment and ten-man Kings saw a Miller free kick met by a stooping header from Joe Raynes which crossed the line via the inside of the post.
Under-18s youngster Louie Collier came on for his debut in place of Fraser and Gareth Price entered the fray alongside Weiss as Kings desperately searched for an equaliser.
The frustrations of the latter saw him receive his fifth dissent booking of the season and a Ward run was unceremoniously halted, before a fine move involving five one-touch passes ended with a good shot by Josh Coldicott-Stevens just over.
Kings fought to the end, but couldn’t find a way through to equalise.
They remain in 21st place in the standings and were due to be in action again last night (Tuesday) when entertaining 19th-ranked Biggleswade. They then host eighth-placed Tiverton Town on Saturday.