Essex Olympian League – Premier Division
Venue: Len Forge Centre 3G
2022-23 Season: Match 20
Attendance: 35 (Est)
Saturday 1st October 2022 – 2pm KO
Catholic Utd: Green & White Shirts, Black Shorts, Green & White Socks
Hutton: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks
Clinical finishing sees Hutton continue unbeaten streak with win at Utd
Catholic Utd 1 – 4 Hutton
Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]
The second match this weekend saw a return to the Essex Olympian League with this Premier Division clash between the top two as leaders Hutton visited the Len Forge Centre to face Catholic Utd. This match was certainly an early ‘six-pointer’ for both teams. Catholic Utd have added talent to their squad since the summer but the team still featured evergreen custodian Louis Godwin-Green in goal, with wing-backs Patrick Kearney & Aaron Clark & a central defensive three of Tom Elliott, Louis Robinson & Jack Leech with skipper Mike Sammut alongside Joe Burton in midfield. Liam Oliver led the attack, with support from Franklin Craik & Ben Burrows. Hutton once again had Adrian Faherty between the posts, with a central defence of Lewis Scott & captain James Gardner and full-backs Tom Stephens and John Carroll. The three in midfield were the creative Sean O’Callaghan & Stephen Judge alongside Joshua Seal. Finally, the forward line was comprised of Jude Keeling, David Johnson & Luke Ricketts.
In a match of this importance, it was perhaps predictable that both teams would look to stay firm and not play too expansively. The first half-chance of note was Catholic Utd’s Liam Oliver firing wide of the left-side post. As it happened, the opening goal did feature a little fortune for Utd. A set-piece was only half-cleared by the visiting defence allowed full-back Aaron Clark to send a well-directed cross in and Oliver’s decent header came off his marker James Gardner which wrong-footed custodian Adrian Faherty and flew into the net.
The next phase of the game was keenly-contested and with that chances were few & far between. O’Callaghan looped a header over the goal frame and Utd goalkeeper Louis Godwin-Green did well to deny Hutton’s energetic forward Jude Keeling at the far post but the tide of the game was swinging back towards Matt Singh’ team.
Sure enough, they did make it count eight minutes before the break. A good ball in breached the home defence and found the run of Keeling who then only had Godwin-Green to beat and his low drive calmly levelled the match up. The next big moment cropped up with half-time rapidly approaching, and it was another OG as another well-directed set-piece came off the unfortunate Joe Burton and flew past everyone to find the net and give Hutton a slender lead at the break.
Half-Time: Catholic Utd 1 – 2 Hutton
The second half began in a similar vein, with Tom Kearney coming on for Catholic to add some more steel in midfield. Kearney nearly gave the hosts the lead once again five minutes after coming on but his effort was cleared on the goal-line by an increasingly robust Hutton backline, led very well by Gardner and Lewis Scott, who were in no mood to give away easy chances. Even so, Simon Thomas’ team had a big chance on 52 minutes as a fine strike by forward Franklin Craik was well-denied by Faherty who got down quickly.
That chance proved even more important as a few minutes later, Hutton doubled their advantage. A good run by full-back Tom Stephens ended with a good centre, which was flicked on well by O’Callaghan which found the run of Keeling and again, he finished well as the ball found the corner of the net. Utd were starting to chase the game by this point and were indebted to centre-back Robinson and particularly Godwin-Green, who made a fine save to deny a fierce strike by Hutton forward David Johnson just shy of the hour.
Catholic Utd were still a threat going forward, but they were leaving gaps defensively and with 20 minutes or so remaining, the Reds made the most of it. Another good ball in teed up Johnson, and this time his low finish was calmly converted into the left corner. The hosts did keep on going and Tom Elliott’s header was cleared off the line again, although Utd’s appeals that it had bypassed the line were turned down by the officals.
Matt Singh’s side utilised their substitutes in the last 15 minutes to see out the game and what was not in doubt is that this was an accomplished performance from them, which deserved the points. It is a little more debatable that if Utd made more of their good spells of the game, they may have stayed in the contest for longer even if they were not at their best today. I felt Hutton did not allow them to build impetus and that should be mentioned.
Full-Time: Catholic Utd 1 – 4 Hutton
To summarise, Hutton’s high-energy game really unsettled the Utd midfield and clinical finishing enabled them to get a superb win & maintain their unbeaten streak. Catholic did create chances but couldn’t sustain the pressure on a tough visiting backline.
There were several really good performances here. For victors Hutton, forward Jude Keeling took both his goals well and showed good pace & movement throughout. Full-back Tom Stephens put in an all-action display and was always a willing runner down the right side, as well as putting in some telling crosses. Centre-back James Gardner did really well after an early setback, making several important clearances & was a force in the air as well. Finally, Joshua Seal put in a good, hard-working display in midfield which really contributed to the team’s display overall. Seal built forward moves as his side played through the thirds of the pitch with some finesse at times.
For Utd, I felt Aaron Clark had a good game from left-back, showing good energy levels and good passing as well as being decent from set-pieces. Goalkeeper Louis Godwin-Green again showed his importance to the team with several good saves to stop the opposition getting a bigger margin of victory. Lastly, centre-back Louis Robinson and forward Liam Oliver put in decent displays, with Robinson being the anchor at the back for Simon Thomas’ side. Oliver worked hard but didn’t have the chances he would’ve liked.
With this win, Hutton remain a point clear at the summit while Catholic drop to third spot. My thanks to Catholic Utd boss Simon Thomas and Hutton boss Matt Singh for their assistance pre-match.
Catholic Utd | Manager: Simon Thomas | Assistant: Tom Harding
Starting XI: 1 Louis Godwin-Green (GK), 2 Patrick Kearney, 3 Aaron Clark, 5 Louis Robinson, 6 Jack Leech, 8 Michael Sammut (Capt), 16 Tom Elliott, 15 Joe Burton, 10 Ben Burrows, 17 Liam Oliver, 11 Franklin Craik
Goal-scorer: OG [Gardner 9′]
Subs On (Time): 7 Tom Kearney [46′, replaced Leech], 19 Aaron Baldwin [54′, replaced P Kearney], 4 Matt Wilson [66′, replaced Burrows], 9 James Warder [66′, replaced Clark], 14 Dan Regan [75′, replaced Burton]
Booked: None | Subs Not Used: None
Hutton | Manager: Matt Singh | Assistant: Robert Lorkins
Starting XI: 1 Adrian Faherty (GK), 2 Tom Stephens, 3 John Carroll, 5 James Gardner (Capt), 4 Lewis Scott, 8 Joshua Seal, 14 Sean O’Callaghan, 7 Luke Ricketts, 9 Jude Keeling, 10 David Johnson, 11 Luke Ricketts
Goal-scorers: Jude Keeling [36′ & 55′], OG [Burton 44′], David Johnson [69′]
Subs On (Time): 17 Brad Freeman [70′, replaced Johnson], 16 George Nash [76′, replaced Carroll], 18 Kyle Linzell [82′, replaced O’Callaghan], 19 Will Marlowe [84′, replaced Keeling], 6 Jonathon Hilliard [85′, replaced Ricketts]
Booked: None | Sub Not Used: None
Referee: Kevin Nicholson
Assistants: Simon Brickwood & Adam Hatcliff