Vipond delighted by Comrades fightback

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MANAGER Mick Vipond praised the togetherness of his Berkhamsted side as they came from behind to record a vital 2-1 win at Welwyn Garden City.

Two second-half Tony Burnett goals - including a late penalty - secured the win for Berko who remain four points clear of second-placed Kings Langley with two games in hand.

With the dismal state of the Welwyn pitch causing problems for Vipond’s side throughout, the Comrades could have been forgiven for slipping up against their lowly opponents, but Burnett ensured this was not the case.

“The togetherness of our players was, without doubt, the most pleasing part of the win,” Vipond said.

Berkhamsted created the best of the chances in the early exchanges - with James Armstrong, Simon Carmichael and Matt Wardle coming close opening the scoring - but it was the hosts who struck first through Ade Osubu.

Carmichael almost netted an immediate response for the Comrades but his header rattled back off the post as Welywn held on for a narrow half-time advantage.

It looked as though it could prove a frustrating day for Vipond’s side, as chances went begging, but Burnett bagged the equaliser on the hour mark.

Berko continued to press and were rewarded with the equaliser shortly before full-time as Burnett coolly dispatched his penalty kick after a hand-ball in the area.

Welwyn contested the decision to award the spot-kick, but it was to no avail and the Comrades went away with the crucial win.

“It was a hard-fought but valuable three points,” said Vipond.

“The pitch was absolutely awful and we had to change our style. We just had to get the ball forward as quickly as we could.

“We were 1-0 down at half-time but came back well. They worked hard but we created chance after chance.”

And Vipond believes his side are well-placed to continue their push for the league title, saying: “We’ve got one or two players getting a bit fitter now.

“It’s all about getting the results now, it doesn’t matter how good the performance is.”

At the time the Gazette went to press, Berko were set for an away match at Cranfield United.

On Saturday, all eyes will be on Broadwater for the top-of-the table clash with Kings Langley.

The Comrades then face Hemel Town in the St Marys Cup on Tuesday.