Match Report: Barkingside 0 – 4 Saffron Walden Town (Fri 15 Feb) [ECC 16.2.19]

Errington Challenge Cup 2018 – 19: Quarter-Final

2018-19 Season: Match 47

Friday 15th February 2019 – 8pm KO

Venue: Cricklefield

Attendance: 115

Barkingside: Purple Shirts, Purple Shorts, Purple Socks

Saffron Walden: Red & Black Striped Shirts, Black Shorts, Black Socks



Walden outclass ‘Side to reach the last four of the Errington Challenge Cup


Report & Photo by Scott W  [Twitter: ScottMHC14]

The opening match of this weekend saw Barkingside welcome Saffron Walden in this Errington Challenge Cup Quarter-Final on Friday night, attended by a hefty posse of Ground-hoppers and ESL luminaries. The hosts fielded a front two of Max Bolton and Isaac Marfo with Jamie Marsh and Derek O’Halem in central defence and Ryan Karrer continuing in goal. Walden showed their intentions before kick-off as new signing Scott Pethers joining Ryan Fleming in defence, Jack Isherwood in central midfield and just the small matter of Daniel Trendall, (& former Sky Blues) Charlie Portway and Lewis Francis in attack.


Alex Goldstone being presented with his MOTM award (Image: Adam R)

Before the match, on behalf of the GFS team, I presented ‘Side boss Alex Goldstone with the ESL ‘Manager of the Month’ award for January.

The match had barely begun when Bloods forward Charlie Portway found himself eight yards out though his strike cannoned off a post. On the quarter-hour, strike partner Daniel Trendall unselfishly played in Portway though his strike was this time saved by home custodian Ryan Karrer. Two minutes later, Lewis Francis did round Karrer though he didn’t bank on centre-back Derek O’Halem’s good positioning as he blocked Francis’ effort on the goal-line. To be fair to the hosts, they held firm despite Walden building momentum & pressure, showing the guts they will need you feel in their present League predictament.

The hosts had a little of the ball going forward but in all honesty, they got little change out of the Walden back-line who were certainly up for the challenge. In the latter stages of the half, Walden struck twice to put themselves in a good position. First, livewire Daniel Trendall was well played in and he made no error, slotting home confidently past Karrer. And then right on the stroke of half-time, The Bloods were awarded a spot-kick, which Portway stepped up to take. Despite seeing him uncharacteristically missing one recently, you still had the feeling he’d strike and shock, horror – Portway made no mistake to double his side’s advantage.

Half-Time: Barkingside  0 – 2  Saffron Walden

Jason Maher’s side hardly took their ‘foot off the gas’ as less than a minute into the second half, they were three goals up. Portway continued his unquenchable thrust for goals as he broke free of the ‘Side defence, before rounding Karrer and slotting home calmly. Walden saved the best goal for last though as only four minutes later, centre-back Scott Pethers’ stunning over-head kick flew past Karrer and into the roof of the net. After a sedate passage of play which highlighted where the result was going, Walden did keep going with substitute James Crane driving down the right flank and Francis continuing to strive to create oppurtunities as well on the opposite flank. Late on, substitute Ronnie Ledwith made a good darting run through the middle before his strike was saved by Karrer’s legs. ‘Side will have better evenings going forward though in Max Bolton, they had a quick striker who kept the Walden defence alert at times here.

At the end of the evening, there was no doubt who deserved the win though ‘Side will have to re-focus quickly as they entertain Walthamstow on Monday night. Saffron Walden go on to the semi-finals and they will take some stopping.

Full-Time: Barkingside  0 – 4   Saffron Walden


Barkingside   | Manager: Alex Goldstone

Ryan Karrer (GK), Abdul Musah, Edward Lang (Shaquain Maisara 60′), Harry Matthews (Capt), Jamie Marsh, Derek O’Halem, Dan Jones, Joe Oates, Max Bolton, Isaac Marfo, Darnell Goather-Braithwaite

Subs Not Used: Nascimento, Woodward | Booked: Lang, Marsh, O’Halem, Matthews


Saffron Walden Town   |   Manager: Jason Maher

Nicholas Eyre (GK), Spike Bell, Jack Mead, Ryan Fleming (Capt), Scott Pethers, Karolis Atutis (Ronnie Ledwith 55′), Craig Calver, Jack Isherwood (Tony Da Silva 49′), Daniel Trendall (James Crane 61′), Charlie Portway, Lewis Francis

Goal-scorers: Dan Trendall [38′], Charlie Portway [pen 45′ & 46′], Scott Pethers [50′]

Subs Not Used: Crowther, Maher


Round-up: Essex Olympian League (Sat 9 Feb) [EOFL 10.2.19]

Written by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)


Hello & welcome to another of my round-up pieces, this time looking at the Essex Olympian League action on Saturday 9th February, with an in-depth look at the action in the Premier Division, all the way to Senior Division Four plus this week, the remaining Essex Premier Cup Quarter-Finals.

EOFL Premier Division

Two matches survived in the Premier with ramifications mostly for the bottom five. Manford Way edged to a 1 – 0 triumph over mid-table Leigh Ramblers with Lee Lashley coming up trumps again to send Manford off the bottom. Also, Sungate won 2 – 1 at Canning Town. James Smith and Jake Clarke strikes outdone Sulaiman Massaquoi’s goal for the hosts as Sungate closed the gap to Old Southendian in tenth to three points.

Essex Premier Cup

The Essex Premier Cup Semi-Finals will be comprised entirely of EOFL sides this term, as Catholic Utd defeated Essex & Suffolk Border League side Tiptree Heath 2 – 0 with Aaron Baldwin and Tom Hollingsworth goals sending the 2017 winners through.

Hutton joined them in the last four only after a titanic battle with fellow Premier side Rayleigh Town. It finished 4 – 4 after extra time with Brad Freeman, Lewis Smith, Tom Stephens & an OG providing their goals. Town battled back through George Dansie’s brace plus goals from Paul Morris and Bailey Moss to send it to the dreaded spot-kicks. Hutton won the shoot-out 6 – 5 as they advanced to the Semis. Kelvedon Hatch came from behind to win 2 – 1 at Senior One side Galleywood, Harry Bond put the hosts ahead though strikes by ex-Barking FC pair Theo Ola and Steve Willis turned the tables and sent Hatch through.

EOFL Senior One

Now heading into Senior One, Basildon Town got the win of the day as they won 6 – 0 away at bottom side May & Baker Ressies. All the goals came in the second-half as braces from Alfie Phillips and substitute Levi Harbour were added to by strikes from Alex Smith and Keith King. Town have several games in hand on the top three and rise to 4th spot. It’s looking very likely now that M & B Ressies will finish the season at the foot of the table, still winless in 16 games.

It wasn’t a good day for two of the said top three. Herongate Athletic won 3 – 0 at home to Snaresbrook as a brace from Glen Jordan and one from Jack Wilson-Jones saw them fortify sixth spot. ‘Brook stay second as strugglers Old Chelmsfordians beat Ramsden Scotia 2 – 1 through strikes by Martin Mixture and George Williams. Ryan Leddra got the Scotia goal though the promotion race could well go on until May in this division. OC’s rise to tenth spot, with Rayleigh Town Res replacing them in the bottom-two.

Frenford Res were held 3 – 3 by FC Hamlets in what was remarkably their penultimate league game of the season. If they succumb to defeat next week to rivals Old Chelmsfordians, then they may well face the drop due to OCs & Rayleigh Ressies having at least seven games more to play.


EOFL Senior Two

In Division Two, Shoebury Town roared back into title contention with an 8 – 1 triumph at Rochford Town. Dominic Binns struck four goals to take his tally for the season to 35 goals, while Scott Clark nabbed a hat-trick and substitute Omar Mahmood rounded out the scoring for Shoebury who go back up to fourth spot.

Meanwhile, Chingford Athletic continued their fine form with a 5 – 0 success at home to Lakeside. Will Gleeson led the way with a brace here though Eric Kelly, Alex Gordon and Louis Ballard all also netted as Ath rise to 2nd on goals difference and crucially have three matches in hand on Toby, who lead the division by three points. Lakeside drop to 6th.

Finally, Ryan picked up their fourth win of the season with a 3 – 1 success over mid-table Beacon Hill Rovers to rise above Rochford to 8th place.


EOFL Senior Three

In Division Three, only a single match was able to be played. Hutton Reserves defeated Roydon 3 – 2 to give their hosts their third straight home loss. Ben Rose, Noah Tye and Harry Lane all struck for the visitors to overcome home goals from Charlie Rider and Micky Copping. Hutton go above their opponents into 8th spot.


EOFL Senior Four

Finally for this week, three matches survived the weather in Senior Division Four. First at the Len Forge Centre, Leigh Ramblers Reserves defeated Catholic Utd  Ressies 2 – 1, thanks to strikes by Seb Allen and Max Richards. The Rams extende the gap over bottom side Old Barkabbeyans to five points with this win. Utd stay 9th.

Epping Town continued their good campaign with a 5 – 0 triumph over Shenfield AFC Res at Stonards Hill. Alex Paraskeva got another brace here while Daniel Garfinkle, Harrison Grant and Eamon Payne were also on the score-sheet here. Billy Cove’s side remain third though are four points adrift of leaders Corinthians with both teams having seven matches left to play.

Lakeside Ressies also were among the victors this weekend with a 2 – 1 home win over Dagenham Utd. Jacob Dingli’s 30th goal of the season wasn’t enough for Utd as goals from Brandon Booty and Carl Prendergast saw the hosts to victory and up to fourth spot. Utd’s chances of the title look slim as they are two points behind with only three matches remaining.

Round-up: Essex Senior League (Sat 9 Feb) [10.2.19]

Written by Scott W  (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

Hello & welcome to my round-up of Essex Senior League action this weekend as six matches evaded the worst of the weather and we had some ‘upsets’ this weekend to say the least. Thanks for reading.


Saturday 9th February

Ilford  3 – 2  Sawbridgeworth Town   | Cricklefield  | Att: 55

Ilford edged this battle at Cricklefield. Sawbo took the lead though in this one after only two minutes thanks to the prolific Joe Wright. The Foxes only took six minutes to equalise as their own marksman Yemi Adelani struck. Lamarr Douglas gave Martin Haywood’s side the lead on 25 minutes. While that lead held until half-time, Sawbridgeworth levelled through Ollie Fortune on the hour mark.

The topsy-turvy nature of the game continued though Adelani grabbed his second of the afternoon [64’] as Sawbo continue their struggles defensively this term. Foxes ‘keeper Hugo Rossetti saved a late penalty to deny John Watters’ side a point. Ilford’s third win in their last four matches sees them up to 11th spot, above Sawbo on goal difference. Town drop to 13th after their fourth loss in their last six.


Southend Manor  0 – 3  Stanway Rovers   | Southchurch Park  | Att: 71

Fortune wasn’t smiling Manor’s way as after a decent showing in the opening 45, Stanway’s goal-blitz after the hour ensured they left with Southchurch Park with the points. Jay Nash broke the deadlock on 61 minutes, before further strikes by Scott Kemp ten minutes later and Fionn O’Reilly [82’] ended a good afternoon’s work for Terry Spillane’s side. Stanway’s fourth success in their last six sees them leap up to tenth place in the standings. Manor’s winless run extends to 11 matches now as they drop to third-bottom, six points clear of the bottom two.



Sporting Bengal Utd  2 – 4  Tower Hamlets| Mile End ‘derby’

These two rivals ‘locked horns’ again and Hamlets emerged with a fine victory to finally end a ten-match winless run. Club stalwarts Wale Odedoyin and Luke With starred here as Odedoyin got a brace while With added a penalty and Flavio Jumo added the other strike. Bengal couldn’t deal with the enterprising play of AJ Ashinike’s side though Charles Gregory’s penalty at the start of the 2nd half and a late Kamarl Duncan header gave them something to shout about.

Hamlets were ‘more than chuffed’ with this win as they showed post-match. Anyway, Hamlets rise to 17th after a vital win while Bengal stay 7th though only sit above St Margaretsbury on goal difference.


St Margaretsbury  3  – 1 Leyton Athletic    | The Rec | Att: 34

St Margs swept aside Leyton at the Rec to claim another three points. Dag & Red loanee Lanre Balogun got the opener for player-boss Max Mitchell’s side and Luke Marshall and Connor Scully got the other goals to outweigh Okwute Izuchukwu’s goal for Leyton who fell to their third straight defeat. The Bury’s fourth win in their last six sees them remain 8th, four points clear of Hoddesdon just below them.


Takeley  0 – 1  Enfield  | Station Road | Att: 81

I attended this match, here’s my report:


Walthamstow  1 – 0  Stansted   |Wadham Lodge Stadium| Att: 73

‘Stow defied the odds to secure to a vital victory to keep their fledgling title hopes alive. Despite seeing Leon McKenzie dismissed early on for severe dissent, Ryan Maxwell’s team kept the free-scoring Airportmen at bay in a tight encounter before Marcus Bowers got the only goal seven minutes from time. Their fifth win in their last seven sees them remain 5th but they have cut the gap to Takeley in 4th to eight points. Stansted’s 15-match league unbeaten run ended here though they remain top, four points clear of Hullbridge although the latter have two matches in hand on the leaders.


Games OFF due to adverse weather this weekend:

Clapton  P – P Woodford Town | Hullbridge P – P Saffron Walden Town
Redbridge  P – P Hoddesdon Town  | West Essex P – P Barkingside


Thank you for reading, we’ll be back next week.

2018/19 Season Review: Essex Senior Lge in Feb 2019 (Part 1)

The 2018/19 ESL Season So Far (part 1 of 2)

Written by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14) – ESL Writer & Grassroots Football Show Contributor

Avid readers of this bulletin may recall I did an article earlier in the season about how all twenty clubs in the Essex Senior League Premier Division (ESL) started the campaign. As we are now approaching the end-of-season ‘run-in’ – this is the first of a two-part piece, looking at the bottom half of the table ahead of the action on Saturday February 9th.

This article was written primarily for the Essex Snr Lge’s news bulletin CentreSpot this week.


So we start with the battle at the foot of the table.  At time of writing, there are four sides who are most ‘in danger’ of facing the dreaded drop to the Eastern Senior League South division (Step 6), even if the powers that be (ie. The FA) are yet to absolutely mention how many relegation spots there will be this term. Leyton Athletic currently sit bottom with 15 points from 25 matches, after a winless run that sits at 11 matches. I can only describe their season thus far as ‘chaotic’ with player-boss Eli Benoit recently announcing his departure, meaning they will have had four managers this term. In my view, two things have hurt the club the most and that is 1) defensively they can be over-run in the latter third of a match and 2) struggling to find the net consistently.

Barkingside are second-bottom, having had somewhat of a renaissance under interim boss Alex Goldstone. All three of their league wins have come in their last seven matches, two of those victories coming at Cricklefield. They have eleven matches remaining to get themselves out of the danger zone. A few months ago it looked perilous for them and with some canny signings now they’ve given themselves a decent shot at evading the drop.

The other two sides in that scrap are Tower Hamlets (18th – 22pts from 26 matches) & Southend Manor (17th – 22pts from 25 games). Both sides are finding wins very hard to come by in what perhaps is a sign of an ever-tougher division this term with more sides being tough opponents ‘on their day’. Hamlets have won three of their last 13 matches though to their credit, were resolute in holding Hullbridge at Mile End recently. Even so, Hamlets need a few wins to both get themselves out of danger and draw other sides closer to the bottom four. Manor are in the same ‘ball-park’ with three wins from their last 11 matches. Scoring goals is their main deficiency (they are the second lowest scorers in the division), though with an inexperienced squad you can certainly understand why it’s been a hard season for them. One other interesting note is that they’ve conceded the least amount of goals (38) of all the sides in the bottom half (at time of writing).

Redbridge (16th – 27pts in 26 games) and Enfield (15th – 28pts from 24 games) are two sides that are still peering over the cocoon that houses the bottom four. New boss Micky Wetherall has started to make an impact with two crucial wins in recent weeks, assisted by a raft of new signings including proven goal-scorers Jay Knight and Daniel Gilchrist. Defensively they still have concerns though that may well take some time to rectify. The goals are coming as well though and you suspect they are a few wins from being out of relegation contention entirely. Enfield’s form has tailed off somewhat, though despite being useful going forward, it is defensively where they need to ‘baton down the hatches’ somewhat. Other than that, three wins may be enough to eradicate any worries of going down.

The three sides above them are Clapton (14th – 32pts from 27 matches), Ilford (32pts from 27 games) and Stanway Rovers (12th – 33pts from 27 games) all embody traits of one word – inconsistency. They’ve also scored around 40 goals each so far this term. The Tons and the Foxes have struggled to win matches at home thus far this term, while 70% of Stanway’s wins at come at the Hawthorns so far. Recent results do indicate that the Foxes and Rovers are getting a little stronger, as the Cricklefield-based side have welcomed back the likes of Yemi Adelani and Terry Spillane’s team have settled down after a heavy squad turnover earlier in the campaign. All three sides can still break into the top ten and further congest an already tight mid-table.

Two points above Stanway sees Sawbridgeworth (11th – 35pts from 27 games) and West Essex (10th – 35pts from 29 games). Both teams have won four of their last ten matches and although they concede a few, they are both dangerous opposition as Sawbo showed in their recent win at home to Sporting Bengal and the Stags showed in their wins over Enfield and Saffron Walden in recent weeks. They are both only eight points adrift of Sporting in 7th spot so a top-ten spot may not elude them come the end of April. Regardless, they have both had decent seasons already, with respect to how they have played in a more competitive division.


This article was written on Thursday 7th February.


Match Report: Takeley 0 – 1 Enfield (Sat 9 Feb) [ESL 9.2.19]

Essex Senior League

Venue: Station Road

Attendance:  81

2018-19 Season – Match 46

Saturday 9th February 2019  – 3pm KO

Takeley: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

Enfield: Green Shirts, Green Shorts, Green Socks

Inspired Enfield battle to victory over Takeley at Station Road

Report & Photos by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

This weekend’s Essex Senior League action took us to Station Road to see promotion-chasing Takeley take on Enfield, who were looking nervously over their shoulders at the bottom four, after a poor run. Marc Das’ side were missing the likes of George Wappett and Will Green though did field Andre Humphrey at left-back, skipper Matt Hurley and George Powell in central defence, with forward Mosepe Oguntuga being supported by Jason Todd and Coby Miles in attack.

Enfield rung the changes somewhat themselves with Tyler Fowles joining Jacob Dixon in the heart of the defence as well as Joe Johnson and Nathan Cook in central midfield. Jimmy Cox, signed from Hullbridge this week, was supported by Ernold Haxhiu in their froward line.

The E’s started the match a little nervily as an errant back-header presented the hosts with an early corner, though midfielder Alex Martin’s delivery narrowly evaded his team-mates in the area. Matt Hanning’s side responded in kind on four minutes as creative midfielder Ben Bradbury’s cross found midfielder Nathan Cook in space, thoug after a turn his effort on goal lacked the power needed to beat home custodian Ronnie Yates, who gathered comfortably. Both sides traded half-chances in the early stages of the game though the visitors suffered a blow as recent signing & goalkeeper Lewis Hawley had to be assisted off the field after only 13 minutes, due to a quad injury. We wish him well in his recovery.

The visitors gradually pushed their way into proceedings in the mid-way point of the half. Stephen Ellery’s free-kick was met by centre-back Tyler Fowles’ header, which Yates punched half-clear before the rebound was fired over the woodwork. Yates was called into action again soon after as after a good passing move, Ellery’s right-wing cross found forward Jimmy Cox, whose looping header was denied by the ever-dependable Takeley ‘stopper. Attacking midfielder Ernold Haxhiu’s fierce drive stung the fingers of Yates before it dribbled out of play with five minutes left before the break.

The home side nearly profited from hesitant defending at the end of the first-half as Coby Miles’ sweet ball in from the left caused indecision from both the defence and substitute ‘keeper Jayden Hocking-Rising before it was cleared. All in all though, the home side didn’t quite ‘find their feet’ in the first half and some of that was due to the unrelenting nature of the Enfield midfield.

Half-Time: Takeley  0 – 0 Enfield


The decisive goal came four minutes into the second-half as a good ball into the area found Cook, who flicked it on to debutant Cox,  who lashed home past Yates from about eight yards out. The visitors had another half-chance just past the hour as another Ellery free-kick honed in on the six-yard line was met by Bradbury’s header which forced another good save by Yates.

To be fair to Takeley, they did ‘move up the gears’ with regards to tempo in the last twenty minutes or so, as substitute Ben Smith’s strike hit a post, in a move involving fellow substitute Mitchell Das. The E’s responded again though as another Ellery set-piece from 20 yards out was well-tipped over by Yates. Marc Das’ side poured forward in the latter stages of the match as their approach play was decent though they got very little change out of a energised Enfield defence, who continued to close them down effectively.

All in all, the effort in that latter part of the game from the hosts came to nothing, who will be disappointed by the intensity of their performance here I suspect. They will have better days though take nothing away from Enfield, who really put in a resolute display and deserved the victory. Led by the hard-working midfield of Nathan Cook (whose work rate was outstanding) and Joe Johnson, the E’s defence were in no mood to concede sloppy goals here. Ernold Haxhiu also had a good game, as did fellow midfielders Stephen Ellery and skipper Ben Bradbury.

For Takeley, goalkeeper Ronnie Yates shone again to keep them in the match, while midfield anchor Alex Martin put in a good shift as well.

Full-Time: Takeley  0 – 1  Enfield

Takeley   | Manager: Marc Das

Ronnie Yates (GK), Mike La Ronda, Andre Humphrey, Alex Martin (Nick Barrett 71′), Matt Hurley (Capt), George Powell, Bryn Thorpe, Freddie Burrell (Ben Smith 61′), Mosepe Oguntuga  (Mitchell Das 53′), Jason Todd, Coby Miles

Booked: Powell, Smith  | Subs Not Used: J Pullen, G Pullen


Enfield  | Manager: Matt Hanning

Lewis Hawley (GK) (Jayden Hocking-Rising (GK) 13′), Luke Thomas, Kevin Bondjanga (Komal Llewelyn-Reid 71′), Joe Johnson, Tyler Fowles, Jacob Dixon, Stephen Ellery, Nathan Cook, Jimmy Cox (Michael Odoku 60′), Ernold Haxhiu, Ben Bradbury (Capt)

Goal-scorer: Jimmy Cox [49′]

Booked: Odoku   | Subs Not Used: Benjoucef, Thoma

Round-up: Essex Olympian League (Sat 2 Feb) [EOFL 3.2.19]

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]


Hello and welcome to this week’s Essex Olympian League round-up, here on my blog. The weather did have a heavy impact on the amount of matches that took place on Saturday 2nd February though as ever, we cover the top five tiers, plus the solitary Essex Premier Cup quarter-final that happened.

EOFL Premier Division

In the top-tier, with the top two of Buckhurst Hill and Kelvedon Hatch not in action, Harold Wood Athletic and Bishop’s Stortford Swifts sought to recoup some ground on them. Harold Wood won 2 – 0 at Canning Town in Beckton. Joe Stevens and Robert Whitnell got the goals as they took the points. Swifts also won 2 -0 away from home, at Manford Way. Gavin Cockman and Lee Samways strikes saw Mark Watters’ side to their third straight victory.

Old Southendian got a fine 5 -0 victory at Sungate. Nick Henesy fired a hat-trick, with former Burnham Ramblers player Scott Plom and substitute Nicolas Dubouchet also netting here as OS grabbed their first win in seven games. Springfield also nabbed a vital  2 – 1 win at fellow strugglers Great Baddow, which was only their second win in their last 11 league matches.


Essex Premier Cup –  Quarter-Finals

Arlesford Colne Rangers  3 – 4  Buckhurst Hill

Galleywood P – P Kelvedon Hatch | Hutton  P – P Rayleigh Town  |

Tiptree Heath  P – P Catholic Utd


EOFL Senior Div One

In Olympian Division One, only one match survived the elements. In a match of two high-flying sides, Shenfield AFC drew 1 – 1 with FC Hamlets. Ronnie Hobbrough struck for AFC and John Gilroy hit back for the visitors. Shenfield have lost in their last ten matches, while FC Hamlets are unbeaten in their last nine games.


EOFL Snr Div Two

In Senior Division Two, the weather was the only victor as all three matches were postponed: Beacon Hill Rovers v Chingford Athletic, May & Baker ‘A’ v Rochford Town & Toby v Runwell Sports

EOFL Snr Div Three

In Senior Three, three matches brought about 14 goals. First up, Academy Soccer continued their good season with a 4 – 0 success over White Ensign Res. Dominic Cooper, Michael Nichols, Marc Porter-Brown and Luis Ruiz were the names on the score-sheet.

Laindon Orient were also celebrating three points despite ending with ten men in their 3 – 0 triumph over Hutton Res. Ally Collins struck very early on before Tomn Read and Henry Ballard secured the points. Samuel Lake saw red for the home side though they held on for a comfortable win. In the other match that took place, Old Chelmsfordians Res consigned Roydon to a second straight home loss with OCs winning 4 – 3.
The two matches that were postponed due to the adverse weather involved leading sides. Westhamians’ trip to Old Southendian Res and Leigh Town’s home clash with Basildon Town Res will need to be played in due course.

EOFL Senior Four

In Senior Four, two of the five set games survived the incessant rain. The highlight goals-wise came at the Lakeside Sports Ground 3G as Lakeside’s Ressie side defeated Shenfield AFC Res 9 – 2. Dale Kenyon led the way with a hat-trick, with a stellar supporting cast of David Alele, Daniel Damain, Emmanuel Mattheus, George Meaney, Carl Prendergast and substitute Damilola Olusanya all also notching. Alessander Cook and Corley Ross netted for AFC’s second-string though they fell to a heavy defeat here.

Elsewhere, Leigh Ramblers Reserves edged to a fine 2 – 1 win over goal-hungry Epping Town.


That’s all for this week, thanks for reading.

Match Report: Saffron Walden 2 – 3 West Essex (Sat 2 Feb) [ESL 2.2.19]

Essex Senior League

Venue: Catons Lane

Attendance: 282

2018-19 Season – Match 45

Saturday 2nd February 2019  – 3pm KO

S Walden: Red & Black Striped Shirts, Black Shorts, Black Socks

W Essex: Yellow & Black Hooped Shirts, Black Shorts, Yellow Socks

West stand tall to record an improbable win at Catons Lane

Report & Photos by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

On a day where all but this match in the Essex Senior League was decimated by the adverse weather this week, I joined ESL President Rob Errington in travelling to Catons Lane for that intriguing clash between promotion-chasing Saffron Walden and mid-table West Essex. The hosts named a strong side with a front two of Daniel Trendall and Charlie Portway, with Craig Calver on the right flank and fellow winger Lewis Francis on the bench. West had the luxury of naming an unchanged starting XI from their win over Enfield last week, which I also covered.

Into the match itself and we’d barely got underway when the Stags silenced the huge home crowd with the opening goal. With a minute on the clock, talisman Michael Mignot bolted down the right flank, evading the home defence before playing in a good centre to strike partner Hakim Medfai who lashed home into the roof of the net from about eight yards. Walden responded with good intent with winger Craig Calver and forward Dan Trendall stretching the visiting defence with their pace and trickery respectively, though the Stags were up for the challenge of blocking their efforts towards goal.

A turning point came on 22 minutes as the hosts were awarded a spot-kick, which the prolific Charlie Portway duly struck home to level things up. The Bloods were not ‘firing on all cylinders’ at this stage though just past the half-hour they spurned a decent chance as a well-directed free-kick found centre-back Karolis Atutis who sent a header breezing just over the crossbar. The Stags roared back at the other end by once again taking the lead on 35 minutes. Energetic midfielder Callum Bloss sent a good low pass in for substitute Symeon Taylor to run onto, and the forward finished calmly past home ‘stopper Neil O’Sullivan. In fairness, Walden hadn’t created enough chances to truly test West custodian Jack Coker by the time the interval arrived.

Half-Time: Saffron Walden 1 – 2  West Essex


If there was one blemish on the visitors’ record, it was that they conceded too many niggly free-kicks on the edge of their own 18-yard area. Kwame Kwateng’s side were more than useful on the counter-attack, with their pace and fluent passing. Walden did ‘step it up a notch’ after the hour mark, with combative midfielder Jack Mead among those trying to push Jason Maher’s side on. Messrs Portway and Trendall also forced the Stags back four to be consistently alert though again, the clear-cut chances were just not coming. Indeed, the tough tackles and an increasingly tetchy atmosphere on-the-pitch were the things that did come in the latter third of the match. West captain Tom MacLeod had to be substituted with a nasty head injury midway through the half, following a heavy challenge. On 70 minutes, a free-kick for the hosts to the left of the 18-yard area was powered in by substitute Lewis Francis though Coker was watchful in tipping it over the woodwork.

Just as it was starting to look like it wasn’t the hosts’ day, the besieged West defence conceded as Portway was found in a congested penalty area and with that natural striker’s instinct – fired home past Coker to once again bring the Bloods level. If you thought the drama ended there… not by a long shot.

Walden sensed they could end the match strongly though the strong-minded Stags refused to give in while at the other end, the likes of Taylor were giving the home defence a headache or two in the last minutes of the game. With three minutes of normal time remaining, West were awarded a free-kick, just left of ‘the D’ – 20 yards out. Set-piece man Joe Lefley stepped up and struck it sweetly to curl away from O’Sullivan’s grasp (although he got fingertips to it on second look) to send the visitors into (slightly over-zealous) raptures.

Walden continued to probe at the other end for another leveller and were awarded another spot-kick after what what appeared a daft challenge by Bloss in the area. The only thing standing between Charlie Portway and a hat-trick was West goalkeeper Jack Coker. Much to our surprise given his goalscoring record, Portway’s penalty was well-saved by Coker, who kept up his impressive knack of saving spot-kicks this season. Walden kept going, to their credit in search of the equaliser though West held on to gain a hard-earned three points.

Full-Time: Saffron Walden  2 – 3  West Essex

Saffron Walden will be disappointed by the manner of their performance today, though they showed enough to tell you they will be an ever-present threat to most teams in the division. Craig Calver, Jack Mead and Daniel Trendall stood out in my opinion for them, alongside the goal-hungry Charlie Portway. Calver & Trendall with their pace and trickery, Mead for his tigerish nature in midfield and Portway, well he’s just tough to keep quiet for the whole match, it’s as simple as that.

West put in another strong display, showing their increasing belief and they do continue to play good attacking football with pace and trickery that makes it tough for the opposition. In my view, Callum Bloss’ passing shone, though in addition, full-back Emanuel Warzola was strong with his tackling in a committed back four plus Symeon Taylor and Hakim Medfai for their energy and purpose.

All in all, it was another superb advert for the Essex Senior League. For those that believe this division is a tougher one this season, compared to last then this match absolutely endorses that view. Walden stay 4th, while West rise to 10th, ahead of Sawbridgeworth on goal difference.

Updated: Match Highlights (video courtesy of WD Sportz) here:       


Saffron Walden   | Manager: Jason Maher

Neil O’Sullivan (GK), James Crane, Ronnie Ledwith, Ryan Fleming (Capt), Matt Frew, Karolis Atutis, Craig Calver (Joe Maybanks 72′), Jack Mead (Oliver Emsden 72′), Daniel Trendall, Charlie Portway, Tony Da Silva (Lewis Francis 52′)

Goal-scorers: Charlie Portway [pen 22′ & 77′]

Booked: Atutis, Mead, Frew, Maybanks  | Subs Not Used: Laird, Isherwood


West Essex  | Manager: Kwame Kwateng

Jack Coker (GK), Emanuel Warzola, Sanchez Hardy, Nick Walk, Josh French, Tom MacLeod (Capt) (Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe 68′), Greg Frederick, Callum Bloss, Joe Lefley, Michael Mignot (Symeon Taylor 23′), Hakim Medfai (Tom Woodbridge 84′)

Goal-scorers: Hakim Medfai [1′], Symeon Taylor [35′], Joe Lefley [87′]

Booked: Warzola, Medfai, Hardy, French, Bloss  | Sub Not Used: Gill