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Sutton United 1 Maidstone United 3 match report

By Craig Tucker

Three goals in 15 minutes saw Maidstone topple National League leaders Sutton.

Stones trailed to a Tommy Wright strike at the break and had barely been in the game before Magnus Okuonghae levelled midway through the second half.

It triggered a superb turnaround as substitute Jack Paxman fired United in front with a lovely strike, then Joe Pigott’s classy chip made it three.

Maidstone United manager Jay Saunders Picture Andy Payton

Maidstone United manager Jay Saunders Picture: Andy Payton

Sutton, top of the table after four wins from five, were well on top in the first half.

As has been the norm over the past few years, they were good out wide and put a steady supply of crosses into the Stones box.

Maidstone weren’t in the game as an attacking force and when they did finally get some joy, earning a corner, Sutton broke away and scored.

Jamie Collins headed wide and had a free-kick blocked, with Kenny Davis wasting the follow-up, then Wright hit the side-netting after Lee Worgan misjudged a through ball from Davis.

Sutton should have led midway through the half when Josh Taylor squared to the unmarked Davis but he sidefooted wide, then Worgan got down well to save from Craig Eastmond after a nice move.

The opener arrived in the 35th minute as Kevin Amankwaah led a break from a Stones corner before Taylor played in Wright who finished neatly.

The U’s went close to an outrageous second three minutes later when Eastmond, standing just a few yards outside his own area, saw Worgan off his line and launched the ball high into the sky.

It was travelling at a fair old pace and had Worgan scrambling before landing on the roof of the net.

Maidstone’s first chance of the match came soon after when Josh Hare headed wide, while Pigott’s injury-time free-kick was kept out low by Jamie Butler.

With Sutton still on top after the break, Jay Saunders waited less than 10 minutes to change things, introducing Zavon Hines for Tom Wraight, and Paxman replaced Reece Prestedge soon after.

Hines gave the U’s defence something to think about with his pace and skill, although it was his set-piece delivery which led to the equaliser.

The goal came in the 67th minute with Hines’ lovely floated corner powered home by the head of Okuonghae.

Hines was involved again as Maidstone took the lead seven minutes later.

This time he worked his magic on the edge of the box before a touch from Pigott teed up Paxman, who bent a superb strike into the top corner.

It was quite a comeback and it got even better when Pigott made it 3-1 in the 82nd minute.

This had class written all over it as the former Charlton man ran on to a flick from Delano Sam-Yorke up the right and chipped keeper Richards from the corner of the area.

Maidstone: Worgan, Hare, Anderson, Okuonghae, Wynter, Reason, Lewis, Prestedge (Paxman 58mins), Sam-Yorke, Pigott, Wraight (Hines 54mins). Subs not used: Twumasi, Willard, Richards.

Attendance: 2,312.

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