Preview: Essex Senior League & Fa Vase R3 (Fri 30th/Sat 1st Dec) [ESL & FAV 30.11.18]

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Written by Scott W and Peter D

Hello and welcome back to our Preview articles looking at this weekend’s Essex Senior League & FA Vase action, after a two-week hiatus. Non-League bloggers Scott and Peter give their thoughts on another high-powered weekend of ties in the Essex Senior League and FA Vase Third Round ties (involving ESL sides)

The FA Vase – Third Round Proper | Saturday 1st December

Hullbridge Sports  P – P  Newport Pagnell Town   | Lower Road

Peter: The hosts come into this one having won their last four league games, where as the visitors, who play in the United Counties League, have won two of their last three, so this proves to be a good battle at Lower Road.  Sports pedigree in the Vase is well documented but the visitors did reach the Quarter-Finals two years ago so definitely have previous in this competition too.  But am going to plump for a home win.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 1

Scott: The first of the FA Vase ties is at Lower Road as ESL leaders Hullbridge welcome United Counties League side Newport Pagnell Town, who are currently in mid-table in their division. The interesting thing for the hosts is will the postponement of their Essex Senior Cup tie vs Coggeshall Town (due to affects of adverse weather in midweek) be a help or a hinderance to them. Their visitors score as many as they concede when it comes to the league side of things though suffered a heavy loss at Harborough last weekend. Sports of course were involved in a super match in ESL last weekend with a narrow win over Sporting Bengal. Have to go home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

Redbridge   P – P  Chertsey Town    |  Oakside

Peter: The Motormen face a tough challenge against runaway leaders of the Combined Counties League in the shape of Chertsey Town at Oakside, although the visitors have drawn their last two matches, but have only suffered one league defeat all season.  Redbridge have won two of their last three but did lose last time out and will need to be on top form to get anything from this one, although their home form this season is poor.  Expecting the visitors to get the win here.

Pete’s Prediction: 0 – 2

Scott: In the other FA Vase tie, mis-firing Redbridge welcome Combined Counties League leaders Chertsey Town to Oakside. Redbridge were defeated by rivals Sawbridgeworth last weekend before succumbed to a big loss to Bowers & Pitsea in a friendly in midweek. The Vase has been by far their best achievement thus far this term and did well to overcome Peterborough Northern Star in the last round, though Chertsey will likely be a different proposition as they have only lost one of 15 league matches in their division so far this term. Have to go with the pointers and say an away win.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 4

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Essex Senior League

Friday 30th November

Tower Hamlets  v  Clapton  | Mile End Stadium

Peter: Both have just one league win in their last six outings, whilst the hosts have lost the other five although have been showing signs of competing now, and that one win for the hosts was away at Stansted.  The Tons managed to win last time out, ending a poor run of results, so this one could prove to be tight.  Going to go for a draw.

Pete’s Prediction: 1 – 1

Scott: In the ESL action this weekend, two unpredictable sides in Hamlets and Clapton meet at Mile End on Friday night. Hamlets will be looking to improve on two recent home losses, to Enfield and Walthamstow respectively. The Tons have also had a ‘mixed bag’ of late though in fairness, they did have a good away day, winning 3 – 2 at West Essex last weekend. The hosts are finding wins hard to come by right now and I’ll plump for a narrow away win.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

Saturday 1st December

Hoddesdon Town  v  Walthamstow   | Lowfield

Peter: The Lilywhites have won two of their last three including victory at Stansted last time out, whilst Stow ended a run of two straight losses with victory at Tower Hamlets last time out.  Think this one could end all-square.

Pete’s Prediction: 1 – 1

Scott: Onto the Saturday ties now and first up is an intriguing tie between two top-ten sides in Hoddy and ‘Stow. Hoddesdon picked up a fine win at Stansted last weekend while Ryan Maxwell’s side won at Tower Hamlets though defensively I feel they still have to be more consistent as they have the firepower to go on a good run. I have a feeling the visitors will take the points here in a tight contest.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

Leyton Athletic   v  Woodford Town   | Wadham Lodge/ Kitchener Road

Peter: Hosts Leyton are winless in their last six games, losing four of those, whilst Woodford are one of the in-form teams right now having won their last three.  Leyton’s last defeat came after being two goals up at home to Southend Manor, which would of hurt no doubt, whereas Woodford bagged another away win at West Essex in midweek, this after winning at Walthamstow before that. I can only see an away win here.

Pete’s Prediction: 0 – 3

Scott: This match is an important one for both sides for differing reasons. Leyton, now under the stewardship of player-boss Eli Benoit haven’t won in nine league matches now. Woodford have won their last three on-the-spin, with wins this week at Enfield and West Essex. Dee Safer’s side certainly have the goal-power in them to get the points and that is my thought as well.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 4

Sawbridgeworth Town  v   West Essex   | Crofters End

Peter: These two have been rather unpredictable lately; the hosts having won lost won drew their last four, whereas West have one win sandwiched in between four losses.  Both are on 21 points in the table too although looking at the form you would suggest the hosts are better off at the moment, so I’ll go for a home win.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 1

Scott: Sawbridgeworth have their third home match in eight days as they welcome West Essex to Crofters. John Watters’ side are on a bit of an upturn of late with one loss in their last four and won against Redbridge last weekend and held Stansted in their derby encounter in midweek. West’s inconsistency has continued recently with one win in their last five. Home losses to Clapton and Woodford this week mean they may fancy a trip away from Mayesbrook plus they cannot be taken lightly. Sawbo did win the reverse fixture in the early throngs of the campaign and they may repeat the trick here.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

Sporting Bengal Utd  P – P   St Margaretsbury   | Mile End Stadium

Peter: The hosts two month unbeaten run came to an end last weekend but their midweek draw against Takeley proves they belong amongst the elite in the division right now.  St Margaretsbury themselves have only one defeat in six and will not be an easy opponent for the Bengal side.  The hosts did put four past their opponents in the corresponding fixtures at The Rec but this will be a different game I suspect.  Fancy a draw here.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 2

Scott: This fascinating match pits Sporting against St Margs at Mile End. Bengal contributed a lot in their loss at Hullbridge last weekend though recovered in midweek to hold Takeley at home. Max Mitchell’s side have lost one of their last five outings and are steadily improving, a sign of that was their narrow home win over Stanway last weekend. I have a feeling this one will have goals in it as well though will head for a narrow home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 2

Stansted   v   Ilford     |  Hargrave Park

Peter: The Airportmen have not won in three in the league although their points tally of 40 points so far was as many as they achieved in the whole of last season, so a huge improvement despite the recent loss of form.  They still only trail leaders Hullbridge by three points so a win over Ilford would see them back on top of the pile on goal difference, and against an Ilford side who have lost four of their last five this is a possibility.  Feel Stansted will win this one.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 0

Scott: Stansted welcome Ilford to Hargrave Park in the midst of a challenging blip in form. The Airportmen did recover from last weekend’s home loss to Hoddesdon by grabbing a point at Sawbridgeworth in midweek. Reinforcements have come recently, with ex-Brentwood forward Jack Mitchell and former Manor midfielder Rob Norris being among them. Ilford have two wins from their last six matches and followed up a big derby win over Barkingside last weekend with another loss to Saffron Walden. Defensively in particular they are feeling the rigours of the ESL of late and although the hosts may be ‘feeling the heat’ (despite a superb turnaround this term compared to last season), they have enough to get the points here I believe.

Scott’s Prediction: 4 – 1

Takeley   v   Stanway Rovers    | Station Road

Peter: The Station Road side are the most in form side over the last six games, having won five and drawing one, their last one at Sporting Bengal in midweek, whilst Stanway have lost their last two in the league after four unbeaten matches prior to that.  The visitors did win here in the cup earlier in the season but this is a different Takeley outfit currently so I feel the home side will grab the win here.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 1

Scott: Finally, Takeley seek to continue their fine recent form against Stanway at Station Road. Stanway have already won here this season in Cup action though Rovers are in transition at this point with squad changes having occurred. Marc Das ‘ side are unbeaten in their last eight matches (seven of those eight being wins) as they have fairly quietly pushed up to 4th in the table.  They held Bengal in midweek after an impressive win at Saffron Walden last weekend. Stanway lost out at St Margaretsbury last weekend and have lost their last two outings. Home win in my opinion.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

That’s all for this week, check back soon to see our round-up’s of ESL action on both our respective blogs.

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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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