Soham Town Rangers 2 Brentwood Town 2

ALEX Read snatched a point for Brentwood at Soham on Saturday with a penalty, three minutes into stoppage time.

Read had been brought down by Soham’s Neil Andrews and his equaliser completed a comeback that looked unlikely when Luke Stanley fired the home side into a 2-0 lead in the 59th minute.

Brentwood included goalkeeper Richard Wray, with their other new signing, forward Ross Wall, on the bench, but it was not a good start to the afternoon with left back Ted Llewellyn being injured in the opening minutes and having to be replaced by Martyn Stokes.

Early on, Brentwood enjoyed more possession but when Soham settled into the game their front two of Robbie Mason and Luke Stanley began to trouble the visiting defence.

Stanley struck a good effort wide of the Brentwood goal before Soham skipper Michael Simpson put his team ahead in the 20th minute prodding in a Buster Harradine pass from close range.

Brentwood threatened to wipe out the lead when a speculative long range effort from Steve Butterworth was turned over the crossbar by Soham keeper Dan Bircham and from the resulting corner, Stokes’ header was blocked by a home defender and Greg Cohen’s shot was deflected away for another corner.

Both teams looked as though they could score early in the second half with Mason flashing a shot across the face of goal as Soham nearly caught Brentwood on the break in the 48th minute.

Almost on the hour, Stanley produced a good finish, shooting into the corner from the edge of the area and it looked as though Soham were on their way to the three points.

Brentwood introduced Wall and Sam Bantick as they looked to increase their support for Read up front and they pulled a goal back in the 79th minute when Wall set up Read for a chance that was well saved by Bircham only for Abs Thompson to net the loose ball.

Read had a great chance to make it 2-2 in the 86th minute but his header from a Butterworth cross from the left flew agonisingly over the bar.

Brentwood had beaten Soham 6-3 in the first league meeting this season in December with Read and Mason sharing seven of the nine goals in that game but it looked as though neither would be on the score sheet this time until that late penalty drama saw Read net his 28th goal of the season.

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