Preview: Essex Senior League (Fri 28th/Sat 29th Sept) [ESL 28.9.18]

Written by Scott W & Peter D

Hello and welcome to another of our Preview articles looking at the weekend’s Essex Senior League action. What’s your views on our thoughts?


Friday 28th September

Redbridge   v  Woodford Town  | Oakside

Pete: These two sit in mid table with nine points each so a tight affair is expected, and with goals expected too.  The Motormen won their last league game at Southend Manor after going two goals down, whilst Woodford recorded a four goal win at Sporting Bengal to end their run of four straight defeats.  Fancy a home win here.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 2

Scott: Redbridge welcome Woodford to Oakside with both sides having slightly mixed weeks. Redbridge fought back well to win at Southend Manor last weekend though they also exited the London Senior Cup at Cockfosters in midweek. Woodford lost at Hoddesdon last weekend though recovered in midweek with a 4 – 0 win at Sporting Bengal, in which they welcomed back influential winger Ola Ogunwamide, presumably on dual-registration terms with Barking.

Last season, Woodford played well but lost out in this fixture though if they can maintain their discipline, their rapid forward line will cause problems. Going to head for a draw here.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2


Saturday 29th September

Hullbridge Sports v Enfield 1893  | Lower Road

Pete: The hosts are riding high, two points clear at the top and with two wins over Takeley in a matter of days too.  Enfield themselves were on a decent run until that was ended by West Essex during the week, but Enfield are in the top ten and will be hard to beat no doubt.  Still feel a home win here though.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 1

Scott: Pace-setters ‘Bridge look to maintain their season at home to Enfield. Darren Manning’s side have had a good week with two wins over Takeley in ESL and Essex Senior Cup action respectively. Consistency is what they continue to strive for and Enfield’s week hasn’t quite been that. Last weekend, the E’s thumped Leyton Ath though in midweek they were edged out at home to West Essex. Matt Hanning’s side certainly carry a threat though the hosts’ belief may seem them home here. Home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1


Ilford  v  Hoddesdon Town  | Cricklefield

Pete: The Foxes have surprised many so far this season and had gone into second place before a defeat at home in midweek saw them drop to fourth.  Hoddesdon are just one point behind Ilford in fifth so this proves to be another tight affair in the division at the weekend.  Fancy an away win in this one.

Pete’s Prediction: 1 – 2

Scott: The Foxes entertain Hoddesdon at Cricklefield. Martin Haywood’s side have had a good start to the campaign and won well at St Margaretsbury last weekend before losing out narrowly at home to Southend Manor in midweek. Town have had a inspiring week with two home wins over Woodford Town and Stanway Rovers respectively, scoring seven goals in the process. The hosts have only lost one of their last five league outings, which was that loss to Manor. They may recover here though Hoddesdon are a very decent side who made just edge this contest.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2


Sawbridgeworth Town  v  Clapton  | Crofters End

Pete: The Robins continue to be inconsistent this season although they did beat Barkingside last time out, whilst Clapton have started the season solidly themselves which sees them in sixth spot thus far.  Can the tenth-placed hosts find some more magic this weekend, I feel not as an away win looks the likely outcome for me.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 3


Scott: Clapton travel to Crofters End to face a Sawbo side who have continued to have mixed fortunes recently. A loss at Walthamstow last weekend was levelled up with a narrow win over strugglers Barkingside in midweek though John Watters’ young side may take some time to develop. The Tons have started well with two defeats in seven league matches now and recently have won at Woodford and Barkingside plus the likes of Cobblah and Reed may well carry them to a good day here.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 3


Stansted  v  Sporting Bengal Utd  | Hargrave Park

Pete: The Airportmen are literally flying right now and sit second behind leaders Hullbridge after a decent start to the season.  Their latest win made it five from seven in the division and they welcome a Sporting side who saw their unbeaten league start to the season fall spectacular in midweek to Woodford.  Narrow home win for me in this one.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 1

Scott: Stansted welcome Bengal to Hargrave Park on the back of a good week with wins over West Essex and St Margaretsbury, with conceding a goal. The recent signing of vastly experienced ex-Sawbridgeworth defender Matt Frew may have something to do with that and Paul Pittuck & Marc Benterman’s side have also won four in-a–row in the league. By contrast, Bengal were heavily beaten at home to Woodford in midweek and this is far from an easy game to rebuild their confidence. Home win for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


Stanway Rovers  v  Barkingside   |  the Hawthorns

Pete: Rovers mini-revival was ended by Hoddesdon Town in midweek, but they will fancy their chances against a Barkingside outfit who have only scored in one of their eight league outings thus far.  And with both sides in the bottom three it’s an early six pointer in every sense of the word.  Fancy a home win here.

Pete’s Prediction: 1 – 0

Scott: This fascinating battle of these two out-of-form sides happens at the Hawthorns. Stanway’s over league win thus far came at home and with their opponents still searching for their first win of the campaign, this is no easy place to grab it. Rovers suffered defeat in midweek to Hoddesdon while Barkingside were well-beaten by Clapton last weekend though did challenge Sawbridgeworth better before narrowly losing out in midweek. ‘Side haven’t scored in their last four league matches now and that could well be their biggest problem for a while yet. Have to say home win here.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1


Takeley  v   St Margaretsbury   |  Station Road

Pete: How will Takeley respond after two defeats against Hullbridge, both at home as well.  They welcome a St Margaretsbury side who were well-beaten by Ilford at home last time out, although prior to that they did hold Walthamstow to a draw.  Takeley though have now fallen to seventh and five points off top spot after this blip, so feel it’s a game they will feel they need to win.

Pete’s Prediction 2 – 0

Scott: St Margs travel to Station Road to take on a Takeley outfit who unusually shown ‘chinks in the armour’ recently. They narrowly lost out last weekend to Hullbridge in the league before exiting the Essex Senior Cup to the same opponents on spot-kicks in mid-week.

What perhaps is slightly more surprising is that they haven’t scored in their last two league matches, given their firepower in attack. That said, the ‘Bury had a harsher week with two heavy home defeats to Ilford and Stansted respectively, which sadly led to the resignation of boss John Barker after three years in charge. Max Mitchell takes up the reins and what a first game for him this…  Home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


Tower Hamlets  v   Southend Manor  | Mile End Stadium

Pete: Hamlets are bottom and without a win this season and welcome a Manor side who battled to a fantastic win at Ilford last time out, so it will be another difficult task for the hosts.  Got a feeling the visitors will grab the win here

Pete’s Prediction: 0 – 2

Scott: Manor are on the road again, this time to face winless Tower Hamlets. Last weekend was a chastening experience with a heavy loss to Saffron Walden Town. They face another tough side in Adam Peek’s men who after succumbing to defeat to Redbridge last weekend, they edged Ilford at Cricklefield in midweek. Manor know they have to be more clinical in terms of taking chances and they will need to do so here to avoid a scrappy affair I feel. Hard to go against saying away win here though.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 3


Walthamstow  v  Leyton Athletic   | Kitchener Road

Pete: It is the Stow derby at Kitchener Road on Saturday as Stow meet Athletic, and the hosts currently sit in eighth spot with just one defeat in seven league games, whilst Athletic are fourth bottom having only won one of their seven.  No doubt this will be a well contested derby match though but feel one that Stow will win.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 1

Scott: Finally in League action on Saturday, there is the the ‘Kitchener Road’ Derby. ‘Stow powered to a good victory over Sawbridgeworth last weekend for their first win in three league matches. Leyton have had an unforgiving week to say the least with heavy defeats at Enfield and at home to Saffron Walden. Forward Dwade James is absolutely a threat for the ‘visitors’ here though they ended that Saffron Walden match with nine men after giving their opponents some frightful moments earlier in that match. Back to this one though and if the hosts are fired-up then they should take the points here.

Scott’s Prediction: 4 – 1

That’s all for this week. Cheers for now.


Author: survivor16b

I'm a Mental Health survivor (been surviving for years) & campaigner. I also like Music & Sport. This blog is centred on all things Non-League Football, mainly Match Reports of matches I've seen (mainly Essex Senior League (ESL) but also other Leagues) though it also houses the regular round-up's of the ESL action plus the Essex Olympian League divisions regularly. It also has the odd post about the scary world that we're all in, talking from a Mental Health perspective. Thank you for reading.

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