Match Report: Redbridge 2 – 2 Enfield (Tues 19 Feb) [ESL 20.2.19]

Essex Senior League

Venue: Oakside

Attendance: TBC

2018-19 Season – Match 51

Tuesday 19th February 2019  – 7.45pm KO

Redbridge: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

Enfield: Green Shirts, Green Shorts, Green Socks


Enfield deny Redbridge a morale-boosting win with dramatic leveller at Oakside

Report by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14) with photo by Peter D (Twitter: @ped1980)

The middle of the midweek action saw us travel to Oakside for another fascinating battle between two sides who have shown ‘shoots of recovery’ recently in Redbridge and Enfield. The hosts have made a number of new signings of late and fielded Michael Gooch between the sticks with winger Kai Heather and Paul Peston supporting a front two of Daniel Gilchrist and Taylor Tombides, with experienced pair Connor Okus and Petrit Elbi on the bench. Enfield also named a strong side with Joe Johnson, Stephen Ellery and skipper Ben Bradbury in midfield with support forward Ernold Haxhiu and Jimmy Cox in attack.

The match certain began as it meant to go on with both sides dukeing it out in an open, attacking way with winger Kai Heather and proflic forward Daniel Gilchrist both having early sighters of goal that failed to duly stress E’s custodian Jamie Merralls. Enfield’s defence has shown a renewed sense of determination of late as this was centre-back Jacob Dixon was in the right place at the right time to deny Gilchrist’s ball that was heading for the back stick. Enfield did have the odd foray forward and most of it was set up through creative midfielder Ben Bradbury though the home defence was certainly alert to the danger. Forward Jimmy Cox and midfielder Stephen Ellery had efforts which kept home stopper Michael Gooch honest though lacked power.

Redbridge responded in the last ten minutes or so of the half as a super deep cross in from full-back Jon Watson was well punched out by Merralls before fellow full-back Billy Willis inadvertently denied his side the opener as he got the final touch, tapping home whilst in an off-side position. As is so often the case, that moment was a flash point as with five minutes to go until the break, Ernold Haxhiu had the freedom of the penalty area to round Gooch twice before unselfishly finding Cox who blasted home from close range. The hosts hit back at the other end though Gilchrist fired over before Heather’s free-kick was parried well by Merralls and centre-back Joe Maskell then blazed over.

Half-Time: Redbridge  0 – 1  Enfield

Midfield battle… (Image: Peter D)

Moments after the re-start, hesitant defending from the hosts nearly resulted in an OG. As it happened, the Motormen levelled two minutes into the half as Tombides’ well-directed header across into the far corner evaded Merralls’ grasp. Near the hour mark, a surging run by Tombides ended by neatly playing in strike partner Gilchrist though Merralls again did well to deny the former May & Baker man. Moments later, substitute Mark Frostick fired over the woodwork from a Bradbury corner and it was the visitors turn to suffer the consequences. With 63 minutes on the watch, Gilchrist cooly slotted low into the corner of the net to give Micky Wetherall’s men the impetus they so wanted.

The hosts piled forward seeking to ‘create daylight’ and secure the points though a combination of resolute defending and wasteful finishing meant they didn’t get the resounding lead they could’ve had at that point. E’s centre-back Lleweyn-Reid made two vital interceptions as well as substitutes Petrit Elbi and Connor Okus and Gilchrist all having chances but failed to beat Merrells, who had a good evening in the Es goal. With minutes to go of normal time, the visitors roared back as the home nerves intensified. Full-back Josh Flynn’s clever cut-back found substitute Akwasi Marfo who fired over.

That was a signal of the drama to follow as substitute Jordan William’s low strike found the corner to break the Motormen’s resolve in added-time. Due to players of both sides suffering knocks earlier, the added-time was substantial and both sides had chances to win it. Heather blazed wide when well-placed for the home side before William headed a good opening wide with almost the last action of the game.

All in all, it was a cracker of a match for the neutral (as to report on) though it was almost one of those games that will provoke diverse opinion. Redbridge certainly had enough chances to score at least four or five here though you know the adage about “If you don’t take your chances…..” and Enfield may have had a degree of fortune in that sense though in another they still contributed to a end-to-end battle as they were lively at times on the counter.

As far as ‘stand-outs’ go, in my view at least – the front two of Tombides and Gilchrist were a handful for the Motormen with tricky winger Kai Heather and playmaker Liam Burgess also showing how important they could be in their side’s progression in the coming months. For the E’s, centre-back Komal Lleweyn-Reid had a strong game with Ben Bradbury and ‘keeper Jamie Merrells also having a good influence on the game with their respective performances.

Finally, I’d like to say thank you to Redbridge for their hospitality and wish both sides well for the remainder of the season. Also, we have post-match Interviews with both managers on this week’s Grassroots Football Show on Thurs night. This match was yet another example (as if one were needed) that the division is getting tougher….

Full-Time: Redbridge 2 – 2 Enfield


Redbridge   | Manager: Micky Weatherall

Michael Gooch (GK), Jon Watson, Billy Willis, Joe Maskell, Dean Hall, Daniel Smith, Kai Heather, Liam Burgess (Capt), Daniel Gilchrist, Taylor Tombides, Paul Preston

Goal-scorers: Taylor Tombides [47′], Daniel Gilchrist [63′]

Booked: Willis, Okus | Subs Not Used: Miller, Asare

Enfield  | Manager: Matt Hanning

Jamie Merralls (GK), Josh Flynn, Tyler Fowles, Jacob Dixon, Komal Llewelyn-Reid, Joe Johnson, Amin Benyoucef (Akwasi Marfo 65′), Stephen Ellery, Jimmy Cox (Jordan William 76′), Ernold Haxhiu (Mark Frostick 56′), Ben Bradbury (Capt)

Goal-scorers: Jimmy Cox [40′], Jordan William [90′ +3]

Booked: Haxhiu, Dixon, William, Llewelyn-Reid  | Subs Not Used: Gormley, Thoma

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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