Essex Olympian League – Division Two
Venue: Stambridge Memorial Ground
2020 -21 Season – Match 26
Saturday 17th April 2021 – 3.05pm KO
Corinthians: Blue & White Striped Shirts, Black Shorts, Black Socks
OS Res: Green Shirts, Black Shorts & Green Socks
Corinthians & OS Reserves both take a point in a pulsating match at Stambridge
Corinthians 3 – 3 Old Southendian Res
Match Report & Photos by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)
In my second match of the weekend, it was a return visit to Stambridge for this Essex Olympian League Division Two encounter between Corinthians and Old Southendian Reserves. The hosts fielded Ethan Lemmon in goal, with a back four of George Fulcher, Brad Smith plus centre-backs Alfie Knight and skipper Connor Summerhill. Leo Clarke and Dan Cooksley led the new-look forward line, with support from recent recruit Damian Siemienczuk and Ollie Brickwood. Among the options on the bench were forward Jake Lang, wing-back Bill Wilton and teenage midfielder Ted Turnham.
Old Southendian’s second side had George Dugdale between the posts, a three-man central defence of former boss Oliver Tatton-Bennett, Tom Adams and skipper Thomas Margerison, with Luke Stillwell and Andy Turner pulling the strings in midfield. Jack Cripps and Nico Dubouchet made up the forward pairing, with David Stubbs and Daniel Dowd options from the dugout.
Before we got underway, there was a well-observed minute’s silence marking the HRH The Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral which took place today. Right, onto the match itself then and we didn’t have to wait long for a goal. Just two minutes in, a free-kick just outside the 18-yard area was given to the hosts and midfielder Jordan Stoneham pitched up to take it, sending a good curling drive around the defensive wall and although visiting custodian George Dugdale got a hand on it, he was unable to stop it crawling over the goal-line. Home forward Leo Clarke was also already making piercing runs down the channels, which brought him some joy but more on that later. The see-saw nature of this match was evident as early as the sixth minute when the ‘Old Boys’ levelled as a fine ball in by forward Jack Cripps found strike partner Nico Dubouchet who drilled home a low strike from about ten yards out, giving home stopper Ethan Lemmon little chance.
Soon after that equaliser, it was the visitors who piled on the pressure with a number of well-directed set-pieces that gave the home defence some nervous moments. This was shown well by a free-kick just before the quarter-hour by visiting defender Oliver Tatton-Bennett which required Lemmon to claw it away from danger. That save was important though as only three minutes later, the hosts countered and a good run by winger Damian Siemienczuk to the halfway line saw him pick out another piercing run by Clarke down the opposite flank with a superb cross-field 35-yard pass and Clarke made the most of it, chipping Dugdale well to give Corinthians the lead once again. The drama was intensifying at this point, as was the pace of the match as on 23 minutes, the sheer nous of visiting experienced midfielder Luke Stillwell picked out Dubouchet with a good pass and the forward rifled home a fierce strike which left Lemmon beaten and made it two-two with the majority of the match left to play.
It was the visitors who were enjoying a decent spell at this point, and just shy of the half-hour mark, after continuing to have some joy down the channels, Dubouchet was in on goal again but the declining angle on the right-side and stopper Lemmon denied him a hat-trick. The hosts realised they needed to get a foothold in midfield and Reece Barfoot led the way there in looking to break up the flowing passing moves of the visitors. That said, Corinthians took the lead for the third time ten minutes before the break as a fine long pass found the run of Siemienczuk who controlled the ball well before firing firmly into the net past Dugdale.
Half-Time: Corinthians 3 – 2 Old Southendian Res
It was a pulsating first-half and a great example of why Intermediate or Grassroots leagues are important. But then again, the second half was no ‘damp squib’ either. Just three minutes after the restart, a powerful strike from Cripps just outside the 18-yard area cannoned off the crossbar with Lemmon again under pressure. Josh Bambury’s side kept up the pressure as moments afterward, a good run down the right by full-back Ryan Kelly needed the alertness of home centre-back Alfie Knight to clear for a corner. That set-piece by Jack Pagett was arrowed in to a congested six-yard area and centre-back Thomas Margerison stole a yard and prodded home from close range to once again level this match at three goals apiece.
The chances continued to come for the hosts as on the hour, after a move involving Ollie Brickwood and half-time replacement Jake Lang, Barfoot’s low drive needed Dugdale to make a smart reaction save. The tension was still there in the latter stages and with ten minutes remaining, a fine effort from thirty yards out by substitute Bill Wilton left Dugdale having to claw the ball away. At the other end, Dubouchet turned provider as his right-wing centre found replacement David Stubbs whose strike was gathered by home stopper Lemmon.
It was the hosts who finished the stronger and could have won as substitute Brad Read spurned two promising chances before on the stroke of the ninety minutes, the forward rounded Dugdale but perhaps being off-balance, could only skew his strike agonisingly wide of the left-side post, much to the relief of Dugdale and the visiting dugout.
After navigating a few nervy minutes of added-time, referee Billy Stevens blew the final whistle and although the home side were disappointed, there was no denying they had been involved in a superb battle and that both sides had fought hard for the point they had each earned.
Full-Time: Corinthians 3 – 3 Old Southendian Reserves
This match is difficult to sum up but I’ll give it a go. This was not a day for defences, it was a day for showing that different styles of play really do add to the intrigue of a match and it is a cliché but this was a fair result, in my opinion. The hosts showed more signs of being the youthful attacking unit that will be a headache for many a team in the top three tiers of the Olympian League, but also showed they can be got at defensively. Old Southendian’s second-side showed there is no substitute for match experience and their physical style does get results as well. That and having a good finisher (in Dubouchet) certainly helps too.
Again, it’s hard to dish out ‘stand-out’ mentions given the general quality & intensity of this match. But it is a stalwart of my reports so it has to be done. For Corinthians, Damian Siemienczuk was a livewire, with that brilliant cross-field pass to Clarke for their second goal, and getting on the score-sheet himself before half-time. The forward has played at higher levels before and hopefully gets a run of games now and will be an important part of his new team. Leo Clarke as well had a really good game, gallivanting down the flanks with ferocious energy and his chip for his goal wasn’t bad either. Reece Barfoot had a fine game in central midfield with some strong tackles and good passing, plus Bill Wilton had a good second half as well, really sprinting down the left flank well and doing his defensive duties as well.
For OS Reserves, Nico Dubouchet again showed why he’s having a good season in front of goal with two really good finishes, and generally being a nuisance to the opposition defence. Andy Turner had a good game also, showing his customary tricks & flicks as well as good energy levels and pace. Oliver Tatton-Bennett also did well as a ball-playing centre-half & a set-piece specialist and forward Jack Cripps also shone as a good foil for his strike partner Dubouchet.
Results elsewhere meant this wasn’t a bad point for Corinthians as they sit in fifth spot, just three points behind leaders Leigh Town. OS Ressies remain in seventh spot and don’t rule them out entirely for a late push into the top four.
If you’d like to check out the rest of the Essex Olympian League action, this weeknd’ round-up is available here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2021/04/18/s20-21-round-ups-essex-olympian-league-sat-17-april/
Finally, can I just thank the hosts for their continued kind welcome & I wish both sides well for the rest of the campaign.
Corinthians | Manager: Chris Stoneham
1 Ethan Lemmon (GK), 2 George Fulcher (14 Ted Turnham 64’), 3 Brad Smith (12 Bill Wilton 46’), 4 Connor Summerhill (Capt), 5 Alfie Knight, 6 Jordan Stoneham, 17 Leo Clarke, 8 Reece Barfoot, 7 Damian Siemienczuk, 9 Dan Cooksley (19 Jake Lang 46’), 11 Ollie Brickwood (20 Brad Read 81’)
Goal-scorers: Jordan Stoneham [2’], Leo Clarke [17’], Damian Siemienczuk [35’]
Booked: Smith, Knight | Subs Not Used: Ayres
Old Southendian Res | Manager: Josh Bambury
1 George Dugdale (GK), 2 Ryan Kelly (16 David Manley 80’), 3 Jack Pagett, 4 Oliver Tatton-Bennett, 5 Tom Adams (12 Kieran Judd 70’), 6 Thomas Margerison (Capt), 7 Luke Stillwell (15 Daniel Dowd 46’), 8 Andy Turner, 9 Nico Dubouchet, 10 Jack Cripps, 11 Tom Judge (17 David Stubbs 56’)
Booked: None | Sub Not Used: Bambury
Goal-scorers: Nico Dubouchet [6’ & 23’], Thomas Margerison [51’]
Referee: Billy Stevens