Bishop's Stortford prepare to entertain Sky Bet League Two side Leyton Orient in pre-season friendly on bank holiday Monday
Bishop's Stortford were unable to mark the return of spectators with a win as Peterborough Sports triumphed 4-1 at the ProKit UK Stadium on Saturday.
The team that knocked them out of the Emirates FA Cup in the second qualifying round last season were victorious again in front of a crowd of 85 following the announcement from the Government and the FA of the phased return of fans at step three and below.
The Blues, who won 3-0 at Saffron Walden Town last night (August 25), will be hoping for better luck when they entertain Sky Bet League Two side Leyton Orient on bank holiday Monday (3pm).
Two goals in the first 10 minutes set the BetVictor Southern League, Premier Central side on their way and they went on to claim a routine success as Steve Smith's men succumbed to a third consecutive pre-season defeat.
The match had hardly kicked off when Paul Malone had the ball in the back of the net for the Turbines, heading home unmarked from a right-wing corner inside two minutes.
Josh McCammon doubled the lead four minutes later with a powerful effort into the bottom left corner past a despairing trialist in the Stortford goal.
The Blues showed good resolve to avoid capitulation and created some chances. Joe Boachie had a tap-in chance saved from a left-wing free kick and Darren Foxley dug out a teasing cross from the left, before Boachie had another chance to score but his curling effort from the edge of the box was headed off the line.
As well as the goalkeeper, the Blues had a trialist operating on the right wing and he caused a few problems for the Peterborough Sports defenders. He dribbled past the left-back but couldn't keep the ball in play, before he created some space for himself to shoot on the turn and saw his effort go wide of the left upright.
Ross Debrick couldn't find a team-mate to apply the finishing touch to his cross from the left, before an inventive free kick by Foxley went just wide of the post with the goalkeeper unsighted and rooted to the spot.
The Blues were quickly punished for not taking their chances as Cameron Johnson scored from the visitors' next attack, firing high into the left side of the goal from range. Three saves from the Blues goalkeeper prevented any more goals before the break.
Defender Sam Mvemba and two more trialists started the second half for the Blues, one of whom made an instant impact with a powerful run into the box before being tackled, but the referee waved away any penalty appeals.
Louie Johnson, who also came off the bench, gave the home fans something to cheer when he fired in a long-range free kick through the arms of the Peterborough Sports goalkeeper and into the top corner for his fourth goal of pre-season following his hat-trick against Enfield.
A heavy touch from a promising position for a Turbines forward made an easy save for the Stortford goalkeeper when he should have scored, but Jordan Macleod did find the top corner with a first-time shot from the edge of the box to net the away team's fourth.
Blues: Trialist, Robbins, Debrick, Thomas, Trialist, Marlow, Boachie, Foxley, Merrifield, Haines, Baker. Substitutes: Smith, Warman, Greene, Trialist, Mvemba, Trialist, Ibe, Johnson.
Peterborough Sports: Elsom, Jarvis, R Jones, Malone, Bucciero, Lawlor, Stevenson, Sembie-Ferris, Johnson, McCammon, Macleod. Substitutes: McGowan, Miles, Sani, Moreman, M Jones, Hilliard.