Gordon Brasted Memorial Trophy Final
Venue: Leslie Field (Burnham Ramblers FC)
2018-19 Season – Match 73
Monday 22nd April 2019 – 3.15pm KO
Stansted: Royal Blue Shirt, Royal Blue Shorts, Blue Socks
St Margaretsbury: Red & Black Hooped Shirts, Black Shorts, Red & Black Socks
Stansted emerge with the Gordon Brasted Trophy after a hard-fought win over ‘Bury
Report & Photos by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)
On a glorious day weather-wise at Burnham Ramblers’ Leslie Field, this year’s Gordon Brasted Trophy Final pitted high-flyers Stansted against mid-table St Margaretsbury in the first season in the Essex Senior League. There was a sub-plot for both sides as the Airportmen still have a chance of promotion on the last day of the season while ‘Bury have had a mass squad turnover to contend with and thus looked rather more inexperienced compared to the squad that got them to this Final. Stansted named this season;s leading Clean Sheet holder Charlie Turner in goal, with left-back Billy Coyne as skipper and a front four of Callum Ibe, Jack West, Jordan Palmer and Jack Mitchell. Carl Mullings and midfielder Moses Carvalho were among the substitutes.
St Margs are under the caretaker management of Tony Wild and their full-backs were Tom Hayden and Taylor Wild with Daniel Palmer and Chris Cordana-Soanes at the centre of defence, Mason Todd led the line with skipper Tom Cowell in support along with Enzo Periera and Evvan Brown on the flanks. Kane Garwood and Jayden Mitchell-Brown were among their bench.
The match was delayed by 15 minutes due to a bad accident en route to Burnham but in the opening minutes of the contest it was the Airportmen who had the first sighter of goal with anchor midfielder Paul Clayton knocking a lobbed effort wide of the far post. Paul Pittuck & Marc Benterman’s side broke the deadlock on six minutes as full-back Billy Coyne’s corner curled dangerously into the area, evading everyone in a congested penalty box before nestling into the far corner. St Margaretsbury’s first sight of goal came from skipper Tom Cowell’s 35 yard pot-shot which sailed harmlessly wide.
Stansted winger Callum Ibe was again a good outlet for his team, stretching the ‘Bury defence with his pace and trickery. Right on the quarter-hour mark, attacking midfielder Ollie Bell’s pass found Ibe who lobbed over opposition goalkeeper Cameron Bailey and the woodwork, though he was straining to meet the ball. Tony Wild’s team didn’t have much in the way of forays forward though midfielder Glenn Nightingale’s drive kept Stansted stopper Charlie Turner alert. The ‘Bury defence were finding it hard to handle the Airportmen’s combined physicality and pace and thus conceded more chances through a few errors.
Seven minutes before the interval, Coyne send a lofted ball into the danger area, and forward Jack West headed against the crossbar from close range, though the assistant’s flag spared him any grief for not finding the target. With the break approaching, the ‘Blue Brazil’ had a goal chalked off for off-side as another telling Coyne set-piece was parried by Bailey though Clayton was first in to stroke the ball in. So, with only one goal seperating the sides, St Margs had a sniff at goal a minute before half-time as tricky winger Enzo Periera’s free-kick angled in to the six-yard line where Turner gathered under pressure.
Half-Time: Stansted 1 – 0 St Margaretsbury
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the Airportmen started the second period with renewed vigour. Winger Jack Mitchell and forward Jack West had efforts which couldn’t find the target, before a Coyne cross from the left was punched away well by Bailey, who had found crosses awkward at times earlier on. Ibe continued to pose problems down the right as he and forward West had efforts denied by Bailey, the former of those two a good effort by Ibe from the edge of the penallty area. St Margs right-back Tom Hayden made a few crucial interceptions, denying Ibe another shot at goal just shy of the hour before Mitchell skewed a drive wide.
As we made our way into the last twenty minutes, ‘Bury substitute Kane Garwood turned well on the edge of the box before drawing a save out of Stansted ‘keeper Turner. The Airportmen were straining to put the match to bed, though forward Jordan Palmer struck straight at Bailey when well-placed to at least test the St Margaretsbury custodian. After arguably their best period of play going forward in the match, in which we saw shades of how St Margs ping the ball around, led by the energetic Periera and Nightingale in central midfield, Stansted squandered more oppurtunities as first, good build-up play by substitutes Moses Carvalho and Carl Mullings ended up with the latter’s ball in which Ibe headed down though Bailey saved again, this time with his feet.
After Cowell had miraculously cleared a stray header from a team-mate off the goal-line, Ibe showed his talents again dribbling his way past two defenders before scuffing a shot wide with only Bailey to bypass. In added time with the nerves rising, Carvalho sent a decent free-kick just over for Stansted while moments later a set-piece from deep by Nightingale found substitute Jayden Mitchell-Brown who could only head over the woodwork.
And with that chance, referee Paul Stratton blew up for time with the boys in blue celebrating a hard-earned victory.
Full-time: Stansted 1 – 0 St Margaretsbury
So, the statistics will read that Stansted are the victors and they had more than enough chances to seal a much more comprehensive success here. Credit though has to go to this youthful ‘Bury side who kept things as tight as they could and showed some enterprise going forward as well at times, although their final ball wasn’t quite there to create a number of stonewall chances that they needed. Nonetheless, both sides will be proud of their efforts in a match which perhaps promised more than it actually delivered.
In a really commendable gesture post-match but prior to the Trophy presentation, the Stansted players & managers donned a shirt in memory of co-manager Paul Pittuck’s father Keith who sadly died ten years ago today. Some synergy there on what will undoubtedly be an emotional day for a manager that has more than played his part in Stansted’s revival this term. You have to feel happy for Stansted’s hard-working committee as well who will savour this triumph. They will have a shot at a cup double in the Errington Cup Final against West Essex at Bishop’s Stortford FC on Monday May 6th.
Stansted | Co-Managers: Paul Pittuck & Marc Benterman
Charlie Turner (GK), Jamie Bennett, Billy Coyne (Capt), Sam West, Joe Clark (Carl Mullings 70′), Paul Clayton, Callum Ibe, Ollie Bell (Moses Carvalho 73′), Jack West, Jordan Palmer, Jack Mitchell (James Turvey 85′)
Goal-scorer: Billy Coyne [6′]
Booked: Clark | Subs Not Used: Tyrell, Buffin
St Margaretsbury | Caretaker Manager: Tony Wild
Cameron Bailey (GK), Tom Hayden (Archie Roberts 84′), Taylor Wild, Reece Vicary (Jayden Mitchell-Brown 74′), Daniel Palmer, Chris Cordana-Soanes, Enzo Periera, Glenn Nightingale, Mason Todd, Tom Cowell (Capt), Evvan Brown (Kane Garwood 63′)
Booked: Hayden | Subs Not Used: Shaves, Read
Referee: Paul Stratton
Assistant Referees: Nicholas Hodges & Callum Dorling
Fourth Official: Steve Marr