Ashford United made it eight games unbeaten as they came from behind to beat rivals Folkestone Invicta 2-1 in a friendly on Tuesday night.
A 90th minute winner from Theo Fairweather-Johnson ultimately proved the difference in a fiercely contested derby at Homelands Stadium.
In a first-half that had few chances, it took Invicta 12 minutes to open the scoring; Johan Ter Horst tapping in from close range after his initial shot came back off the post.
The away side then had the opportunity to double their lead as they were awarded a penalty 15 minutes into the second half, but Alfie Paxman’s shot was saved by United’s keeper, Sam Mott, who dived superbly down to his right to parry the ball to safety.
They were then made to pay immediately, as United equalised just four minutes later; a terrific run and cross by Stefan Cox was headed in by Danny Parish – his fifteenth goal of the season in all competitions.
After then dominating possession for long periods of the second half, Ashford grabbed the winner after a huge mistake by Invicta goalkeeper Nick Shaw was enough for Fairweather-Johnson to chip beautifully over the stranded keeper.
Ashford United’s assistant manager, Alex O’Brien, believes the result was even more impressive given the way the team played in their 1-1 draw with Welling Town at the weekend.
He said: “It was fantastic considering how we played on Saturday. We weren’t happy with our performance then, so to deliver what we did tonight, I thought every single player put in a performance which was brilliant.”
He continued: “It’s all about momentum, to go off the back of this, the boys are really happy and really positive and now we go off to Herne Bay next.
“They’re a tricky side but we don’t fear it, we’ve just got to keep that momentum going and that starts again on Saturday.”
While Ashford travel to Herne Bay, Folkestone will hope to return to winning ways as they host Wingate & Finchley at Fullicks Stadium, in a Bostik League Premier Division clash.
Theo Fairweather Johnson
Johan Ter Horst