Preview: Essex Senior League & FA Vase R3 (Fri 7th/Sat 8th Dec) [ESL 7.12.18]

Written by Scott W  [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello & welcome to this week’s preview at the Essex Senior League action, with Scott and Peter which includes the re-set FA Vase R3 ties which failed to make it due to adverse weather last Saturday.


The FA Vase Round Three – Sat 8th Dec


Hullbridge Sports  v  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 four, 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. Their visitors pretty much score as many as they concede when it comes to the league side of things though suffered lost at home narrowly to top-six side Oadby Town in midweek. Sports narrowly lost out to Bostik North side Coggeshall Town in midweek. Have to go home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


Redbridge   v   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. 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


Essex Senior League  – Friday 7th December


Woodford Town  v  Stanway Rovers   | Harlow Arena

Pete: The hosts are flying right now and will be going for six wins in a row when they welcome Stanway Rovers to The Harlow Arena.  A win for the hosts would see them climb into third and go only two points behind the leaders before the weekend’s fixtures, but they face a Stanway side who beat Sawbridgeworth Town last time out and are a tough nut to crack under Terry Spillane’s stewardship.  Despite this I feel the hosts will win this one.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 1

Scott: The action this weekend gets underway with in-form Woodford taking on Stanway at the Harlow Arena. Town have had a good week with away wins at Leyton Athletic and Ilford. Stanway lost at Takeley last weekend though recovered to defeat Sawbridgeworth at home in midweek. Dee Safer’s side have won their last five in-a-row and I wouldn’t be surprised if they make that six here.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


Saturday 8th December

Enfield    v   Tower Hamlets   | Harlow Arena

Peter: Both these sides have won two of their last six although Enfield come into this one after a defeat whilst Hamlets destroyed Clapton at Mile End last time out, so the team’s mindset coming into this one could be different.  Enfield won a recent meeting between these two at Mile End but I feel this one may end all square.

Pete’s Prediction: 1 – 1

Scott: The Harlow Arena also hosts Enfield’s clash with Hamlets on Saturday. Matt Hanning’s side have been out of action for the last two weeks, mainly due to postponements that are out of their control. Their last two games saw them win at Hamlets in mid-November before being defeated by Woodford in the ‘derby’. Hamlets’ form is up and down as well though a big win over Clapton last weekend means they cannot be taken lightly. Despite going out of the London Senior Cup at Barking in midweek, they may pull off a surprise here. Will plump for a draw here.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2


Hoddesdon Town  v   West Essex   |  Lowfield

Peter: Hoddy are unbeaten in two games and last time out were on their way to victory until they were pegged back by Walthamstow.  West have lost five of their last six including three straight losses so this immediately points to a home win, and I feel that will be the case here.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 0

Scott: An out-of-sorts West Essex travel to Hoddesdon on the back of one win in their last six. In an entertaining match played in difficult conditions, Kwame Kwateng’s side lost out at Sawbridgeworth last weekend. Hoddy are up on a mini-upturn after holding Walthamstow to a draw last weekend though it remains to be seen what impact a heavy loss to Royston Town in the Herts Senior Cup in midweek will have on this match. Both sides tend to concede goals though have to go for a home win here.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


Saffron Walden Town  v  Ilford   |  Catons Lane

Peter: Walden could go just a point off the top with a win here, and with only one defeat in their last six games they are still in solid form.  Ilford on the other hand are on a three-game losing run although they can cause problems to anyone on their day, but I feel the hosts will have too much in the end.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 1

Scott: The Foxes have their third league match in a week here at Catons Lane. Martin Haywood’s side gave Stansted a test before ultimately succumbing last weekend in a match I attended. Midweek was rather a different story though as Woodford overpowered them at Cricklefield. The Bloods have already beaten Ilford twice this season in League & Cup. Factor in that Walden had a weekend off last time out & a heavy loss to a strong Billericay Town side in the Essex Senior Cup in midweek and you suspect Jason Maher’s team will want to get back into contention for the ESL title here. I don’t believe it will be an easy match for the hosts though they could well come away with the points.

Scott’s Prediction: 4 – 2


Southend Manor   v   Takeley   |  Southchurch Park

Peter: Takeley come to the Essex coast in fine form having won five of their last six games and could go joint top with a win here, whilst Manor themselves have won their last two games against the bottom two to give themselves some much needed confidence.  Feel this will be a tough one for Takeley but one they will win.

Pete’s Prediction: 1 – 2

Scott: Takeley travel to Southchurch Park to take on a Manor side that are showing signs of recovery with league wins over Barkingside and Leyton Athletic recently. Marc Das’ side are in superb form however, with a victory over Stanway last weekend further cementing the award of ESL ‘Manager of the Month’ for the boss this week. That run has carried Takeley to third spot, only three points adrift of the leaders in Stansted & Hullbridge. Pitch in Manor’s home record so far this term and have to say it’s a away win for me in what could be a battle.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2


Sporting Bengal Utd   v   Leyton Athletic   | Mile End Stadium

Peter: Sporting come into this one having not won in two league games whilst Leyton haven’t won in their last six games.  These two were supposed to meet last week but the game fell foul of the weather, however despite the visitor’s lowly position in the table this will be a hard game for the home side.  It’s one they will win though.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 0

Scott: Bengal welcome Leyton to Mile End as they seek to climb back into the top six. Imrul Gazi’s side have had a week off due to two postponements, one of which was ironically the reverse of this fixture. Leyton need to stop a run of ten matches without a win soon while their hosts have only lost three of 17 matches so far this term. Home win for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


St Margaretsbury   v   Clapton   |  The Recreation Ground

Peter: The hosts have only lost one of their last six games although they have only one won of their last three, so take that however you want to.  Clapton have lost their last two games and four of their last five, including a thumping at Mile End last Friday night, so are not in the best of form.  Expecting Dash and co to win this one.

Pete’s Prediction: 3 – 1

Scott: St Margs entertain the Tons in this intriguing contest at the Rec. The hosts have been among those with games called off due to adverse weather of late while Clapton suffered losses at Tower Hamlets last weekend and at home to Walthamstow in midweek. Incredibly, five of their six wins this season have come away from the Old Spotted Dog. Max Mitchell’s side have only lost one of their last seven outings and because of that, I’ll go for a home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1


Stansted   v   Sawbridgeworth Town    |  Hargrave Park

Peter: The Airportmen ended a run of three games without a win with a battling win over Ilford last time out to go top on goal difference, and they now face another battle against local rivals Sawbridgeworth Town whose form is mixed to say the least, with three wins, a draw and two defeats in their last six, so hard to know what Robins side turns up.  No doubt a tough one in this fixture but I feel the hosts will edge this one, like they did in the FA Cup earlier in the campaign.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 1

Scott: These two lock horns for another round of their feisty ‘derby’ at Hargrave Park. Both sides won last weekend and the form book somewhat ‘went out the door’ the last time the sides met just ten days ago, that encounter ended in a draw. John Watters’ team fell to defeat at Stanway in midweek though I can see this one being another bruising encounter. Narrow home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

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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