S21-22 Match Report: DT FC 0 – 1 Rapid Chingford (Mon 23 May) [EAL Fenton Cup Final 24.5.22]

Essex Alliance League – Fenton Cup Final

Venue: Brisbane Road

Attendance: 400+

2021-22 Season: Match 87

Monday 23 May 2022 – 7.30pm KO

DT: Red Shirts, White Shorts & Red Socks

Rapid: Yellow Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts, Yellow Socks



Rapid put in hard-working defensive display to win the Fenton Cup

DT FC 0 – 1 Rapid Chingford

(Short) Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

The last week of the Non-League season began with a return visit to Brisbane Road to see an interesting Fenton Cup Final between Essex Alliance League champions DT FC (soon to be renamed Cannons Wood ahead of next term) and Rapid Chingford, who finished eighth after a mixed league campaign. Rapid were buoyed by their travelling support, who had turned up in numbers and sang throughout this match.

The match began with DT looking to assert themselves in possession and build through the thirds, showing god build-up play. Stanley Green headed wide of the woodwork in the early phase of the match, but Rapid showed they were up for this Final with some good defending and some good moments on the counter-attack as well, looking to break quickly. Rapid did have the ball in the net around the twenty minute mark as a fine header by Catalin Anghel found the left corner, but the assistant’s flag was raised.



Rapid still admirably continued to press forward after their goal was disallowed, but DT were also showing why they had got past so many defences this season on their way to the League title, and the impressive Jermaine Francis struck a good effort on goal but DT’s principal problem was their final pass could not breach the Rapid backline often enough.

Rapid were growing in confidence as well and after an adjudged push in the penalty area, forward Andrei Boga stepped up to calmly convert the resulting spot-kick into the right-side corner to give them that crucial, if slender advantage at the interval. Just before the interval, DT skipper Chris Smith’s free-kick was straight at Popescu which signified his side’s frustration and inability to test the Rapid Chingford custodian.

Half-Time: DT 0 – 1 Rapid


The second half continued in a similar vein for DT, as Rapid continued to rebuff their attacking moves with diligent defending. Rapid were also still a threat on the counter too, with Daniel Tita making good runs down the right channel as well as fizzing in some good curling loss passes to the forwards. Seven minutes into the second half, Tita’s powerful strike was only narrowly over DT goalkeeper Alex Jennings’ woodwork.

Billy Cove’s team were also a threat from set-pieces, and midway through the half an in-swinging corner need Popescu to palm the ball away from immediate danger, and Popescu also gathered well from Smith’s decent strike, following-up on the volley. DT showed no lack of effort or spirit, much to their credit but were still finding chances hard to come by. DT forward Robbie Farrell also fired a long-range effort off-target. The minutes continued to ebb away and Rapid’s firm resistance continued and after the final whistle blew, the unadulterated joy started, which would continue long after the post-match Trophy presentation was complete.

DT push forward in the second half

Full-Time:  DT FC 0 – 1 Rapid Chingford

To summarise this gritty but fairly good match, Rapid Chingford got the advantage that they needed and defended well against a DT side that couldn’t quite find their final pass into the forwards to really create too many chances on Popescu’s goal. Rapid also showed some good technical skills and were inspired by their exuberant travelling support, who really added to the occasion, waving their flags & singing their songs proudly. Popescu himself shows good handling skills in the Rapid goal and bolstered the confidence of his defence in front of him. DT showed good approach play and were decent in defence themselves, showcasing enough to suggest why they won the League title, but to use a common phrase in Sport, it just wasn’t their day here. Congratulations to Rapid Chingford on their triumph here, they did deserve their win here.

There were some good performances in this match. Beginning with victors Rapid, Andrei Boga not only converted the important penalty well but also showed good movement to keep the DT defence alert, while advanced midfielder Daniel Tita showed good technical skills, always looking up to find his forward line to start another counter-attack. Captain Bogdan Ivancia was the stalwart of the Rapid backline and typified his team’s defensive efforts, while goalkeeper Daniel Popescu also looked assured and snuffed out potential chances for the goal-hungry opposition forwards.

For DT, Jermaine Francis had a good game, breaking forward well and showing good passing and high work rate, with Stanley Green also doing well to get down the channels to set up crossing oppurtunities. Centre-back Ashley Campbell did well in defence to keep a lively Chingford forward line at bay, and skipper Chris Smith really drove his team on, particularly in the second half and show good work rate in both attack and defence.


Here are your winners, Rapid Chingford!


Teams

DT FC     |  Manager: Billy Cove  | Assistant: Nick Jennings

Starting XI: 1 Alex Jennings (GK), 2 Adam Palmer, 15 Ashley Campbell, 17 Tremayne Coley, 21 Jacob Melford, 25 Cory Ugbonah, 29 Chris Smith (Capt), 7 Stanley Green, 22 Jermaine Francis, 18 Izaih Antoine, 11 Robbie Farrell

| Substitutes: 4 Mickey Mesmin, 14 Jake Kissiedu, 31 Sebastian Barford, 33 Steve Opoku-Domfeh

Booked: Farrell, Francis, Opoku-Domfeh


Rapid Chingford  |  Player-Manager: Florin Florea | Assistants: Bobaru Mircea & Bodgan Galan

Starting XI: 99 Daniel Popescu (GK), 20 Vlad Bucur, 4 Bogdan Ivancia (Capt), 11 Florin Ivancia, 6 Catalin Manea, 7 Dragos Aenasoaie, 8 Daniel Tita, 29 Sorin Tudose, 22 Catalin Anghel, 10 Andrei Boga, 17 Darwin Romero

Goal-scorer: Andrei Boga [pen 36′]

 | Substitutes: 13 Claudiu Florea, 31 Ionut Labunt, 27 Zoltan Mihaly, 9 Bogdan Galan, 14 Federico Ardei

Booked: Tudose, Tita, Aenasoaie, Galan


Referee: Tony King
Assistants: Albert Forbes & Kyle Robertson

Fourth Official: Paul Roberts

S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 21 May) [EOFL 21/22 22.5.22]

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14] – Non-League & EOFL Writer

Hello all and welcome to the final edition of the Essex Olympian League round-up, looking at the action from Saturday 21 May, from the Premier Division & Division One. There were still big things to settle, with the identity of the clubs being relegated from the top two tiers was pretty much assured after this weekend’s action. Lead image is from Ongar Town v Catholic Utd last weekend.

Archive Image from Wakebury v Harold Hill earlier in the season

Essex Olympian League Round-up – Saturday 21 May

In the Premier Division, they key game was at the Len Forge Centre which saw Catholic Utd launch a stirring comeback from two goals behind to claim a 3 – 2 victory over Canning Town. Goals by Franklin Craik, Thomas Kearney and an OG sealed the turnaround and send Canning down with two matches left to play for them. Utd got the points in their last game of the campaign to strengthen their position in sixth, but Sungate can overhaul them if they win their last two games – both against Canning Town.

 This was club stalwart Louis Godwin-Green’s last game before retiring from playing & I’d just like to wish him well for the future and congratulate him on a super career for several clubs in the area. Fellow Non-League writer Pete Dudley was there & here is his report: pedroslocalfootiefix.blogspot.com/2022/05/catholic-united-3-canning-town-2.html 

Elsewhere in the top division, Harold Wood Athletic ended their 15 year tenure in the EOFL Premier Division with a spirited & welcome 3 – 1 victory over Old Southendian at Harold Wood Park. Tommy Harber, Oluwatomiwa Bankole and Thomas Butler got the goals for Gary Willis’ side, with the Wood gaffer standing down from over a decade of service to the club in various management roles, I’d like to wish Gary well for his future as well. Wood will compete in Division One next term after seeing their relegation confirmed several weeks ago. Finally, Bishop’s Stortford Swifts ended their season with a walkover win over Hutton, which saw the latter deducted two points but their finishing place of fourth is not affected. Swifts will finish tenth, on 30 points.

In the big game in Division One, Snaresbrook retained their status in the division with a brilliant 4 – 2 victory over Leigh Town in a match moved to Ilford Wanderers RFC, where Sungate usually play. The result leaves Snaresbrook in eighth place, having moved above their opponents here on goal difference. They finished ninth, with Herongate Athletic finishing second-bottom, which could see them relegated.

One game to Division Four to round off the EOFL articles this term, which was Springfield Res winning 2 – 0 at home to Roydon which meant they secured third spot and a possible promotion, given that Division Three is also short on clubs.


Thank you for reading this article series during the season, it’s certainly taken hours & hours to put together. Have a good summer everyone.  

S21-22 Match Report: Rainham WMC 2 – 2 Unitey* (Sat 21 May) [EAL D2 Cup Final 21.5.22)

Essex Alliance League – Division Two Cup Final

Venue: Victoria Road

Attendance: 280 (Est)

2021-22 Season: Match 86

Saturday 21 May 2022 – 2pm KO

RWMC: Claret Shirts, Claret Shorts & Socks

Unitey: Sky Blue Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts, Sky Blue Socks

Victoria Road pitch pre-match

Unitey earn the Division Two Cup on spot-kicks at Victoria Road

Rainham Working Men’s Club 2 – 2 Unitey (Unitey won 3 – 2 on penalty kicks)

(Short) Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

The ‘Cup Finals’ fortnight continued this weekend and I made a welcome return to Dagenham & Redbridge’s Victoria Road to see an interesting Essex Alliance League Division Two Cup Final. Rainham finished 2nd in the league while Unitey were not far behind them in 3rd. I was seeing both teams for the first time here but going by the league form, it was a battle between Rainham WMC’s defence and Unitey’s forward line.

The match got underway with a flourish for Paul Tormey’s Rainham team having most of the ball time, but they also couldn’t create lots of chances to test Atu Ngoy in the Unitey goal. Charlie Perry had their best opening but his effort went wide of the left-side post. Unitey sensed they had to respond and with their first big chance, they scored. Substitute Romario Christian threaded through a superb pass through the middle, finding the run of forward Ahmed Dousa who evaded his marker, before firing home past WMC custodian Owen Ryley.

Unitey launch a free-kick up field early on

It got even better for Vincent Ndodi’s team four minutes later as Dousa was again causing problems for the Rainham backline, turning well from the far side of the penalty area, got past his marker and got his strike on target – unfortunately Ryley couldn’t keep hold of the ball and it trickled into the corner of the net, which was a real blow for Rainham after their impressive start.

As we approached the interval, Connor Kain’s setpiece was cleared off the goal-line before Rainham midfielder Cameron Shakes had a decent effort denied by Ngoy at his near post but at this point Rainham really needed to find another gear or two & get the next goal. The team-talk would have been interesting to hear, that’s for sure.

Rainham’s Ndukwe (18) makes a run down left flank

Half-Time: Rainham 0 – 2 Unitey

After the break, Rainham did find their rhythm as Unitey were pushed back. The ‘home’ side did get the next crucial goal, from a set-piece. Nathan Wilson’s firm header found the net well, past Ngoy to finally give Rainham a chance of a comeback. Unitey were stuttering in possession and they were finding it harder to clear their lines, as a defensive error gave Shakes the chance to turn and get past two defenders and strike home confidently.

Unitey burst forward through the midfield

Unitey had to re-focus in what was becoming an increasingly tetchy match, with several free-kicks being conceded. Both sides had the chances to get that priceless winning goal, with Rainham having two good chances in the last ten minutes. Firstly, Wilson had a header go wide at the far post from yards out. Soon after, Cameron Shakes then knocked the ball on to replacement Scott Gormer skewed his shot wide, much to Ngoy’s relief.


Unitey were decent in their passing in midfield in the latter stages but they couldn’t quite breach the high off-side line of the Rainham backline often enough, leaving Dousa and winger Mohammed Abaker frustrated as they were looking a threat for the tiring Rainham defenders. After seven minutes of added time, referee Alan Steward blew up for the end of 90 minutes, and penalties would be required to settle this absorbing match, played in front of over 275 spectators which is another boost to the Essex Alliance League.


Full-Time (After 90 mins): Rainham WMC 2 – 2 Unitey

So, the nerve-racking shoot-out was called upon to decide the destination of the EAL Division Two Cup. After several missed spot-kicks both by sides, It had to be Unitey’s goal-scoring hero Ahmed Dousa who converting the winning penalty to ensure his team took the Cup, 3 – 2 on penalties.

To sum up this fiesty and sometimes fiery match, Unitey really battled back well after Rainham had put in a fine first 15 minutes, even if they could not make the most of their build-up play. Unitey went two goals up to really punish their lack of finishing and it could’ve been more. Credit has to go to Rainham though for the manner of their comeback and it was Unitey’s turn to battle hard. Both teams tgen had chances to win in a tense finale but ultimately, the lottery of spot-kicks decided the contest.

There were some good performances from both sides here. For victors Unitey, forward Ahmed Dousa led the line well and aside from his two goals, his movement and dribbling were a threat for a hard-working Rainham defence. Centre-back  Nathan Lupumba also had a really strong match in my view, really limiting the opposition forwards and made timely jnterceptions to keep his team in it early on. Winger Mohammed Abaker also had a good game, showing high work rate and good intent with his crosses from the left side. And finally, a word for substitute Romario Christian who produced a superb through ball for Dousa’s first goal and all in all, put in a good shift for his team too.

For Rainham Working Men’s Club, playmaker Connor Kain put in a hard-working performance to try & lift his side back into the contest after going behind and still put in some telling passes. Centre-back Tyrell Phillips had a really good game as well, marshalling his defence well and clearing the ball from danger with good effect. Forwards Cameron Shakes and Charlie Perry also put in good performances as well, testing the Unitey backline at times, with Shakes taking his goal well to crucially level the tie midway into the second half.

Congratulations to Unitey who played some neat football at times, and commiserations to Rainham who fought back well to give themselves a chance after their mixed first half display.


Teams

Rainham Working Men’s Club |  Manager:  Paul Tormey  | 

Starting XI: 1 Owen Ryley (GK), 2 Josh Perry, 12 Matty Humphreys, 6 Tyrell Phillips (Capt), 5 Nicky Tormey, 18 Gozie Ndukwe, 10 Nathan Wilson, 7 Cameron Shakes, 8 Connor Kain, 9 Charlie Perry, 11 Sean Tormey

Goal-scorers: Nathan Wilson [56′], Cameron Shakes [68′]

Subs ON [Time]: 28 Dillon Anderson [68′], 14 Scott Gormer [84′], 3 Joe McGivney [90’+5]

Subs Not Used: Brady, Obeney


Unitey  |  Manager: Vincent Ndodi | 

Starting XI: 1 Atu Ngoy (GK & Capt), 2 Matthew Surry, 16 Peter Spencer, 4 Nathan Lupumba, 5 Renal Stewart, 6 Matthew Pitchford, 7 Devantae Young, 8 Ishwar Ravi, 9 Bubintende Masadi, 10 Ahmed Dousa, 11 Mohammed Abaker

Goal-scorers: Ahmed Dousa [24′ & 28′]

 | Subs ON: 13 Romario Christian [13′], 14 Remy Beckford [69′], 17 David Blessing [74′], 3 Ameer Bursal [89′], 15 Eddy Litambolo [90’+1]

Subs Not Used: None

Referee: Alan Steward
Assistants: Robert Watson & Jeff Mattheou

Fourth Official: Dave Rivett

S21-22 Match Report: Corinthians 2 – 1 Wakebury  (Thurs 19 May) [SCC 21-22 20.5.22]

Southend Charity Cup A Final

Venue: Len Forge 3G

Attendance: 110 [Est]

2021-22 Season: Match 85

Thursday 19th May 2022 – 7.30pm KO

Corinthians: Blue & White Shirts, Black Shorts & Socks

Wakebury: Yellow Shirts, Blue Shorts, Yellow Socks  


Corinthians battle hard to claim Southend Charity Cup

Corinthians 2 – 1 Wakebury

Match Report & Photos by Scott W  [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Additional photo by Daniel Mann/Corinthians FC [@_corinthiansf_c], used with thanks

There was a ‘bonus’ match which saw a return to the Len Forge Centre for this Southend Charity Cup Final between two local sides in EOFL Division One side Corinthians and another ambitious side in EOFL Division Two side Wakebury. It is a credit to both teams that they named near full-strength sides for this contest, and as you often see in a Cup Final, it was a slow-building start to the game as broth sides were keen not to hand the initiative to their opponents.

As it happened, the opening goal cropped up on the quarter-hour, as a good ball in from left side evaded the Corinthians backline and found Wakebury skipper Ben Perry at the back post and his strike fizzed low into the left corner past stopper Nathan Warren with a similar calmness to a goal-hungry striker. It added to the intrigue of the game & as you’d expect, Corinthians responded quickly. Forward Leo Clarke had two decent strikes denied by a well-drilled ‘Bury defence but Clarke was having an increasingly important part to play here.

Corinthians attack down the left flank, with Wilton (3) on the ball

Chris Stoneham’s side did find their rhythm as the half went on, and Wakebury’s spirited defending was holding them off well, until the ‘home’ side got an equalizer on 26 minutes. Matt Burrell’s well-placed corner into the back post found top scorer Bailey Moss who powered in a header into the right corner. Matt Cardy’s team were still well in the contest here, and their pace in attack was finding the gap between the opposition’s midfield and defence to good effect. Unfortunately though for them, after making a fine run down the left, Wheeler’s strike couldn’t bypass Warren.

The Berries had a let-off of their own three minutes before the interval as Corinthians recycled the ball well and Moss displayed good close control before having another low shot denied by the advancing ‘Bury custodian Lewis Catling. The ball trickled towards the goal-line before it was cleared by the well-positioned Liam Ellis.

Half-Time: Corinthians 1 – 1 Wakebury


The second half began with a higher tempo, Wakebury had the first effort on goal as Wheeler was again well-denied by Warren and although they had several decent chances, the Corinthians backline was also stifling their enterprising forward moves. Moments later, forward Harry Kateley got in behind the opposition defence utilizing his pace well but Warren again blocked his fierce shot with his legs.

Those two saves by Warren did prove important as Corinthians took the lead for the first time soon afterward as a deft set-piece by Clarke was slid through to substitute John Bolton-Smith who sent the ball on, but centre-back Connor Summerhill got the final tough to force the ball into the net. Wakebury midfielder Junior Lawrence also had a well-struck effort which was off-target.

Harry Kateley strikes a shot for Wakebury from edge of the 18-yard box

At the other end, Clarke was unfortunate to see his powerful, curling strike go narrowly wide of the top left corner, as the number of chances increased as the half went on. Wakebury kept going admirably, but the Corinthians backline was not as troubled by them as they were earlier in the game. The latter’s concern would have been that they had to recoup their tempo & rhythm a little.

As we got into the latter phase of the this game, Corinthians were getting a bit tense and were conceding several free-kicks did not help their cause. On the stroke of 70 minutes, Wakebury underlined that the main inhibitor for them was finishing as a decent corner by full-back Kofi Gyamfi was turned towards goal by substitute Ben Morley’s swiveling effort but it was straight at Warren, who gathered. Chris Stoneham’s side responded at the other end with 14 minutes of normal time left as forward Jake Hodder broke forward well, twisting and turning past his marker before his low strike was well-denied by Catling, who had to get down well to avoid the ball creeping in at left-side post.

The six minutes of added time did not help the Corinthians’ contingent’s understandable nerves and at the end of that stopage time, Wakebury thought they had levelled as Gyamfi had put stuck the ball into the net well from another set-piece, but was denied by an assistant’s flag. In the end, Corinthians did deserve the victory, mainly because of their more assured finishing but Wakebury really gave them a good match here and they certainly have positives to take, ahead of next season.

Full-Time: Corinthians  2 – 1  Wakebury


Corinthians celebrate their triumph with the Shield post-match [Image by Daniel Mann]

To sum up this one, Wakebury took a surprise lead and whilst Corinthians produced a stirring comeback to take the lead shortly after the interval, they were also made to battle hard because of an exuberant ‘Bury forward line that couldn’t quite find the required finishing. This was a good match, and credit to both teams for contributing heavily to it so late in the campaign.

There were several fine performances from both sides in this match. Firstly for winners Corinthians, I thought full-back Bill Wilton had a good game, showing characteristically high energy levels, and was an important player down the left side in both boxes. Forward Leo Clarke also had a strong match, making several important driving runs and made some astute passes as well. Captain Matt Burrell was a decent threat from set-pieces & put in a good shift in central midfield, while forward Jake Hodder also put in a good display

For Wakebury, tricky forward Will Wheeler once again put in a good display, showcasing his dribbling & passing ability. The only thing that denied him at least one goal was clinical finishing. Harry Kateley was also a threat in the forward line and was well-denied by the opposition backline, and showed good tracking back in defence when required. Skipper Ben Perry took his goal well & defensively was also robust too. Full-back Kofi Gyamfi had a good match too & in the second half was a threat from set-pieces and would have levelled, but for an off-side flag.

Best wishes to both sides for the forthcoming season & it was good to see them both in action once again. Finally, congratulations to the Southend Borough & District Combination Committee for holding a good event here, which was well supported by the local area.


Teams (up to 5 substitutes allowed)

Corinthians | Manager: Chris Stoneham  | Assistant: Graham Owen

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Nathan Warren (GK), 2 Charlie Marden, 3 Bill Wilton, 5 Connor Summerhill, 6 Alfie Knight, 7 Jordan Stoneham, 8 Matt Burrell (Capt), 11 Damien Siemienczuk, 9 Jake Hodder, 18 Bailey Moss, 10 Leo Clarke

Goal-scorers: Bailey Moss [26’] , Connor Summerhill [51’]

Subs ON: 15 John Bolton-Smith [46’], 12 Ollie Brickwood [74’], 4 Sammy Ayres [81’], 14 Ethan Lemmon [89’]

Booked: Summerhill, Burrell, Brickwood, Warren | Sub Not Used: Peralta |


Wakebury | Manager: Matt Cardy  | Assistants: Dan Blewett & Gareth Cleverly

Starting XI: 1 Lewis Catling (GK), 2 Elliott Hutchinson-Khupe, 3 Kofi Gyamfi, 5 Jack Smith, 6 Ben Perry (Capt), 4 Liam Ellis, 8 Junior Lawrence, 7 Will Wheeler, 10 Daley Grant, 9 Harry Kateley, 11 Ibrahim Kagbanda

Goal-scorer: Ben Perry [15’]

Subs ON: 16 Ben Morley [54’], 14 Jerry Nkoy [74’], 12 Alex Horey [84’]

| Booked: Wheeler | Subs Not Used: Butler


Referee: Connor Cornell

Assistants: Joe Wise & Keith Robinson

S21-22 Match Report: Fairlop Rovers 3 – 1 Old Esthameians (Mon 16 May) [EAL 17.5.22]

Essex Alliance League – Fenton Trophy Final

Venue: Brisbane Road

Attendance: 400+

2021-22 Season: Match 84

Monday 16 May 2022 – 7.30pm KO

Fairlop: Green & Black Shirts,  Black Shorts & Socks

Old E’s: White Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts, Red Socks

A glimpse of the Brisbane Road ground at pitch level pre-match

Good Finishing gives Rovers the EAL Fenton Trophy at Orient

Fairlop Rovers 3 – 1 Old Esthamieans

(Short) Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

The ‘Cup Finals’ fortnight began with a welcome first visit to Leyton Orient’s Brisbane Road for my first of the series of Essex Alliance League Cup Finals, in this first-ever Fenton Trophy Final between Division Two champions Fairlop Rovers & mid-table D2 side Old Esthameians. Fairlop had James Crowe in goal here, with skipper Ellis Simmonds in central defence, allied with the forward line of Jake Kibblewhite, Dylan Scutt & Harry Oliver. Old Esthameians named Johnny Clayton between the posts, Les Moyo & Bradley Harris in central midfield & the trio of David Watson, Nelson Goncalves & Neil Robinson.

The match really found its rhythm early on as Fairlop broke the deadlock after just three minutes. Fairlop took advantage of some hesitant defending by Old E’s, which allowed forward Harry Oliver to head home into the corner from about six yards out with opposition stopper Johnny Clayton stranded. You may have thought that Old Esthamieans may take some time to recover their rhythm, but much to their credit, they responded in a fine and rapid manner. Their forward line of quick & tricky forward Nelson Goncalves and central forwards Dave Watson & Neil Robinson did pose problems for the Fairlop defence, marshalled well by Rovers skipper Ellis Simmonds. In fairness, both teams were showing good build-up play to support their respective forward lines.


Watson himself had a header off target for Old E’s just short of the quarter-hour but they retained the impetus and had a good chance on 18 minutes as good link-up play from Goncalves and Robinson ended with the latter’s effort lacked the power to get past Fairlop custodian James Crowe. That was a warning as to things to follow as more decent build-up ended with a leveller for Old E’s on twenty-four minutes as Les Moyo showed good athleticism to strike past Crowe from about seven yards out.

With the half-hour approaching, Crowe was called into action again as Robinson’s low drive was again denied as the Old E’s were edging their way ahead at this point, in terms of ball time. As you’d expect, the League champions responded in a big way on the half-hour, with Oliver again finding space in behind the opposition backline but his strike was well-stopped by Clayton.

Half-Time: Fairlop Rovers 1 – 1 Old Esthameians


The match was an entertaining one in the first half but again you felt Fairlop needed to make the most of their chances. In the early stages of the second period, they certainly showed that. Eight minutes after the break, referee Nathan Buckle took a moment before pointing to the penalty spot after a foul in the Old E’s penalty area. Oliver duly stepped up to emphatically strike home the resulting spot-kick and celebrated in front of both teams’ fans, which were part of impressive attendance of over 400 here tonight.

Crucially though, Fairlop maintained the pressure after that second goal and Clayton made an unorthodox save with his legs moments later to deny Rovers midfielder George Birch’s powerful effort. The third goal did materalise though for Fairlop on the hour as forward Jake Kibblewhite smashed in a superb, skilful strike into the left-side corner to really put the pressure on the Old E’s to recover.

Dylan Bruns (28) on the ball for Fairlop in first-half

Again, credit goes to Old Esthameians for keeping on going and robust defending from Fairlop stifled their attempts to grab a goal back and that would have made for a heck of a nervy end to the match. As it happened, Robinson was sent off late on adjudged simulation but it was too late for Fairlop to make the most of their numerical advantage. The clock did wind down and after six minutes of stoppage time, Fairlop could at last celebrate what has been a truly memorable campaign for them as they celebrated a Trophy triumph to go with their league honours. Congratulations to them on their fantastic season but also a big well done for Old Esthameians who also showed why they are a decent side as well in a match which was a good advert for the EAL and for Division Two specifically.


Full-Time:  Fairlop Rovers 3 – 1 Old Esthameians

To summarise this good all-round Final, Fairlop taking the early lead did really spur Old E”s to a fine comeback which saw them level and they threatened to wrestle the impetus back as well, buoyed by a decent supporting contingent. However, Rovers hit hard in the early part of the second half and crucially got a two-goal lead, which their opponents could not ultimately battle back from.

There were some good performances from both sides here. For victors Fairlop, Harry Oliver had a fine game, scoring two goals and also providing a constant threat in attack against a decent Old E’s backline. Centre-back & captain Ellis Simmonds also made a number of important interceptions to rebuff some decent build-up play by their opponents, who certainly threatened to take the game away from the League Division Two champions before the break. Finally, forward Jake Kibblewhite deserves a mention for his terrific goal on the hour, while he also put in a good shift for Andrew Moffat’s team.

For Old Esthameians, forward Nelson Goncalves had a really strong game, showing good skill and passing to aid his side’s first-half comeback and kept the Fairlop defenders occupied. Midfielder Les Moyo also took his goal well & made some good tackles to stifle the Fairlop forward line. Finally, goalkeeper Johnny Clayton also pulled off some decent saves after conceding early on.

Thanks to the Essex Alliance League for having us & also congratulations again to both Finalists.


Teams

Fairlop Rovers     |  Manager: Andrew Moffat  |

Starting XI: 1 James Crowe (GK), 12 Harrison McDonagh, 88 Ellis Simmonds (Capt), 6 Lewis Crowe, 28 Dylan Bruns, 32 Ben Harris, 8 George Birch, 21 Aodan Downer, 9 Jack Kibblewhite, 27 Harry Oliver, 37 Dylan Scutt

Goal-scorers: Harry Oliver [3′] & [pen 53′], Jake Kibblewhite [60′]

 | Substitutes: Kian Burton, Michael Colgan, Toby Stephens, Logan Simmonds, Sam Beaman


Old Esthameians  |  Player-Manager: Danny Harris |

Starting XI: 1 Johnny Clayton (GK & Capt), 16 Henry Gray, 3 George Coffey, 6 Bartosz Bak, 14 Tavershima Yongo, 11 Shaun Vickers, 8 Les Moyo, 10 Bradley Harris, 5 David Watson, 7 Nelson Goncalves, 9 Neil Robinson

Goal-scorer: Les Moyo [24′] | Sent Off: Robinson

 | Substitutes: Danny Harris, Jack Smerdon, Harland Taylor, 13 Dave Seed, 17 Josh Mitsu


Referee: Nathan Buckle
Assistants: Robert Watson & Tyriq Spencer

Fourth Official: Imran Patel

S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 14 May) [EOFL 21/22 15.5.22]

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14] – Non-League & EOFL Writer

Hello and welcome to this week’s extended round-up of the action in the Essex Olympian League this week, including the midweek action In League & Cups and the action on Saturday 14 May. The focus this week is on the League action in the top three divisions. Thank you for reading.

Photos by Trevor Robinson Photography [@TrevRobPhoto] & Scott W

Image from Basildon Town’s 1 – 0 win at Hutton last week, Image by @TrevRobPhoto

Essex Olympian League – Midweek [Tues 10 May]

The solitary midweek match this week was the EOFL Senior League Cup Final, which saw Canning Town grab a surprise 3 – 2 triumph over Sungate at Woodside. Goals from Dominic Lewis, Karl Harms and Jack Williamson confirmed a memorable evening for Canning. Jake Willis and Petrit Elbi both netted for Sungate but they will have to be content with their Essex Premier Cup success this term.


Essex Olympian League – Saturday 14 May

Now moving on to the weekend action, and Ongar Town got a big 4 – 0 victory over Catholic Utd to confirm the EOFL Premier Division title for the first time. Second-half goals from Evernage Nyahunda, Joe Lilly, Mitchell McCabe & a Fred Mattock special secured a memorable day (and evening) of celebrations for Richard Ponsford’s team as they won the title on goal difference. Utd will finish no worse than seventh and have one more match to play at home to Canning Town next weekend. If you’d like more on this match, my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/05/15/s21-22-match-report-ongar-town-4-0-catholic-utd-sat-14-may/

A Champions’ Guard of Honour for Ongar Town yesterday post-match by Catholic Utd

Continuing with the Premier Division, Galleywood secured their divisional safety for another season with a 3 – 0 success at Springfield. Matthew Crick scored twice for the visitors there, with Thomas Watling again on target in this win against their local rivals. Canning Town retained their slim hopes of avoiding a bottom two finish with a 3 – 0 home victory over Bishop’s Stortford Swifts in Beckton. Town will have to win all three of their remaining matches to do that, and two of those games are against Sungate. Swifts fell to 11th but are out of immediate danger.

Finally in the Premier, Old Southendian grabbed a 2 – 0 win at Sungate, with two Daniel Frimley goals giving Altar Ali’s team the points, they will likely finish in eighth in what has been a good season in the main for OS.

In Division One, Beacon Hill Rovers confirmed their safety for another season with a superb 3 – 2 win away at rivals Snaresbrook at Hackney Marshes. ‘Brook need at least a point to avoid a bottom two finish from their last match – against rivals Leigh Town next weekend.

In Division Two, Manford Way got given the points from a recent match after an infringement from the opposition and that boost assisted them to a runners-up finish (and promotion so congratulations to them) as they won 4 – 3 at AS Rawreth. James Dobson, Alfie Smith and substitutes Samuel Oramadike and Dawid Potoczek all netted to secure the win for the East London side. Harold Hill finished third as they lost 1 – 4 to Hutton Res at Polo Fields, which also ensured the Hutton scond-side will avoid a bottom two finish and likely avoiding relegation along with it. With Division One short of clubs, Hill might still get elevated. Rawreth & Rochford Town are the bottom two clubs and will likely be demoted.

Finally, in Division Four Old Chelmsfordians Res secured their promotion as they grabbed a 4 – 1 victory over Ongar Town Res. They will finish second and congrats to them as well. Champions Chingford Athletic Res also ended their season with a home walkover win against Sungate Development, who finish bottom and will be relegated.

The last edition of this round-up for the season will be online on or soon after Monday 23 May. Thank you for reading.

S21-22 Match Report: Ongar Town 4 – 0 Catholic Utd (Sat 14 May) [EOFL 15.5.22]

Essex Olympian League – Premier Division

Venue: Lakeside Sports Ground 3G

2021-22 Season: Match 83

Attendance: 130 (Est)

Saturday 14 May 2022 – 2.30pm KO

Ongar Town: Navy Blue Shirts, Shorts & Socks

Catholic Utd: Green & White Shirts, Black Shorts, Green & White Socks



Strong display from Ongar confirms EOFL Premier title win with victory over Catholic Utd

Ongar Town 4 – 0 Catholic Utd

Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

The last Olympian League game of the campaign saw me travel to Lakeside 3G for the first time to see title-chasing Ongar Town face Catholic Utd with the assignment being a simple one – win this last game and the title would be theirs. Utd could still get fifth spot if they won here. Ongar named regular stopper Tim Pitman in goal, with a back four of Delphin Moorat, Harry Herbert and centre-backs George Hayes & Jake Chadwick. Skipper Mitchell McCabe was in midfield alongside Evernage Nyahunda and the forward line was led by Jack Zielinski and Harry Rawlins, supported by Joe Lilly. The visitors had Louis Godwin-Green as their custodian as ever, with John Nutman & Louis Robinson in their backline. Captain Michael Sammut was alongside Tom Elliott and Tom Kearney in midfield with James Warder and Franklin Craik leading their attack.

With the match being played in serene, warm conditions it was understandably a cagey start to proceedings as the visitors held firm defensively and negated the array of chances that Town had. Jack Zielinski had a header wide for Ongar and James Warder sent a difficult header off-target in the early moments. Ongar gradually retained possession better as Utd just could not keep the ball out of their half for long periods, and centre-back Jake Chadwick was unfortunate to have a decent header cannon back off the woodwork midway through the half.

First-half image with Catholic Utd defending well

Chances were increasing in their regularity for the hosts as a fine through ball by creative forward Joe Lilly found the run of Fred Mattock could only skew his effort wide of the left-sided post. Also, rapid forward Harry Rawlins was posing consistent problems down the left flank for Richard Ponsford’s side, and sent several chances in on goal but they didn’t seriously trouble Utd stopper Louis Godwin-Green. The only ‘down side’ for Ongar about the half was that they were not ahead when they certainly could have been.


Half-Time: Ongar Town 0 – 0 Catholic Utd

With the tension palpable as the match restarted, the visitors were keen to re=establish the defensive screen they fought hard to manage in the first 45 minutes but that shut-out ended two minutes after the break. Rawlins made another surging run down the left, and his pass eventually came to energetic midfielder Evernage Nyahunda who struck home low to find the net, much to the relief of the home contingent. It got better for Ongar just two minutes after that as a decent strike by Zielinski came back off the woodwork, but Lilly was there in the right spot ahead of covering defenders, and the Ongar forward made no mistake to really dampen the resolve of the Utd side.

By this point, it was really starting to be a one-sided match but take nothing away from the champions-elect as they made it three on 57 minutes. Rawlins made another fine bursting run past the Catholic defence and again the visitors couldn’t clear, allowing skipper Mitchell McCabe to stroke the ball home from close range. Lilly nearly made it four just short of the hour mark but his effort on goal was wide, though Utd really needed to retain the ball for the next phase of the game as they were being over-run by the exuberant Ongar forwards.

Second half action still as Utd’s Alfie Whiteaker (3) seeks to clear the ball from immediate danger

However, Ongar pressed on and they rewarded with the goal of the game with twenty-one minutes remaining. Mattock made a fine run himself on the left side of the penalty area, showing superb skill to evade his marker whilst controlling the ball to create the opportunity and fired home a great strike into the right corner of the net to add further gloss to an already strong score-line. Catholic did have a moment where they threatened to deny Ongar a clean sheet, but substitute Matt Creevy’s cross almost dipped under Ongar stopper Tim Pitman’s crossbar and with moments remaining, Rawlins was denied a deserved goal as his good low strike was denied well by Godwin-Green’s legs.

Overall though, Ongar more than deserved the points and they win the EOFL Premier Division on goal difference, which is tough on rivals Basildon Town but they have a different challenge in Step 6 next season after their promotion was ratified by the FA on Thursday evening. Ongar will remain in the Premier Division next term but don’t be surprised if they match Basildon’s achievement in time.


Catholic Utd giving the Champions Ongar an impromptu Guard of Honour post-match

Full-Time: Ongar Town  4 – 0 Catholic Utd

To summarise, Ongar were thwarted by a hard-working Utd defence in first half but it was an altogether different story after the interval, as superb finishing comfortably saw them to a memorable first Premier Division title win since they entered the EOFL in 1968, many congratulations to manager Richard Ponsford, the playing squad and all at the club. They will definitely be ambitious for more success next term.

The stand-out performances here were led by Ongar’s Harry Rawlins who simply outpaced & outclassed the Catholic Utd defence and grabbed at least two assists, and was unfortunate to not score himself. His pace, crossing and energy levels were excellent. Central midfielder Mitchell McCabe had another assured game and did well to stroke home the third goal here, with Fred Mattock scoring the goal of the natch and generally assisted his team well. Lastly, a word for creative forward Joe Lilly who had a good game as well, curling in some fine passes and took his goal calmly as well.

For Utd, defender John Nutman did well in holding the lively Ongar forwards at bay for long periods in the first half, making important clearances. Full-back Alfie Whiteaker also made several good challenges & was decent with his free-kicks as well. To end, forwards James Warder & Franklin Craik had a hard job in attack but they still gave the home backline a couple if nervy moments in the first half. They just didn’t really get the service to influence the game here.


Finally, I’d like to add that it’s been super to watch more Olympian League matches this term, and with Runwell Sports & Toby joining the top-tier in 2022-23, next season looks good too. Just hope we have 15 or 16 teams in the division in August as that would add to the strength of the division.


Teams

Ongar Town  | Manager: Richard Ponsford 

Starting XI: 1 Tim Pitman (GK), 2 Delphin Moorat, 3 Harry Herbert, 5 George Hayes, 6 Jake Chadwick, 4 Evernage Nyahunda, 8 Mitchell McCabe (Capt), 7 Freddy Mattock, 9 Jack Zielinski, 10 Joe Lilly, 11 Harry Rawlins

Goal-scorers: Evernage Nyahunda [47′], Joe Lilly [49′], Mitchell McCabe [57′], Fred Mattock [69′]

Subs On (Time): 16 Conner Jones [62 ], 14 Joshua Boxall [67′], 15 Brandon Wood [70′], 17 Zach Holding [84′], 12 Oliver Plunkett [84′]

Booked: Herbert | Sub Not Used: None


Catholic Utd  | Player-Manager: Simon Thomas | Assistant: Tom Harding

Starting XI: 1 Louis Godwin-Green (GK), 3 Alfie Whiteaker, 20 John Nutman, 5 Louis Robinson, 6 Jack Leech, 19 Tom Elliott, 8 Michael Sammut (Capt),  7 Thomas Kearney, 10 Harrison Day, 9 James Warder, 19, 11 Franklin Craik

Subs On (Time): 17 Patrick Kearney [54′], 12 Tobias DeSouza [59′], 14 Matt Creevy [59′]

Booked: None  | Subs Not Used: Thomas


Referee: Kevin Nicholson
Assistants: Joseph Wilby & Henry Steele

Guest Blog: Essex Alliance League Round-up (Wk 36 – Sat 7 May) [EAL 21-22 10.5.22]

Hello and welcome to the latest action from the Essex Alliance League, which continues on this blog this season under the “Guest Blog” strand.  This edition looks at the action across the League on Saturday 7 May. My thanks to the EAL’s Rob Parker. This round-up also includes a mention of Monday night’s solitary match in Senior Divsion. This round-up is posted with the author’s permission. Thanks for reading.

Guest Blog written by Rob Parker for EAL  [EAL Twitter: @EssexAllianceFL]

With additional reporting by Scott W

Essex Alliance League Round-up- Saturday 7 May

PREMIER DIVISION CUP

The full line-up for this season’s Premier Division Cup is now known as the second semi-final was completed on Saturday where London Park City were in action once again, taking on London Cranes in Seven Kings. A close game saw the sides finish level at 1-1 at full-time, sending the game to another shootout. After a penalties victory last weekend, it was London Park City who once again prevailed, winning 3 – 2 to send their side to a maiden final, facing Wapping later in the month.

DIVISION THREE CUP

In the Division Three Cup, the first of the semi-finals took place which saw ASA attempting to stand in the way of champions FC Baresi Under 23s as the latter sought the opportunity of a league and cup double. A terrific game saw ASA lead through strikes by Mithurn Vijayarajah & Panushanth Kulenthiran before a Baresi fightback led by goals from Maamoon Khan and Zach Aliane took the game to penalties. In the shootout, it was the champions who progressed to their first final, winning 4 – 2 to send their side to Dagenham & Redbridge!


SENIOR DIVISION

Some huge games in the Senior Division took place over the weekend which saw Chigwell Town, a side who had been in the relegation zone almost the entirety of the season, pull off a massive win, defeating Tower United 3 – 2 to stay in the league. Harry Tew-Robinson was the hero with a hat-trick which ensured his side stayed up by the narrowest of margins. Abdullah Jama’s double was not enough for Tower who finished bottom & will most likely be relegated.

It was also a great day for Blue Marlin who knew they had to get a win against London Cup finalists FC Petrocub in order to give themselves a chance of beating the drop. And a win was exactly what Blue Marlin delivered, beating their mid-table opponents in a 2 – 0 scoreline, thanks to strikes by Macauley Harrington & Ni Acquaye and moved out of the relegation zone and confirm their senior status for another season.

Over in Beckton, those results meant that CSM London had no choice but to win their game to stay in the league but were facing a Woodford East side with just as much in the game for them as they strove for runners-up spot. Eli Brown scored for CSM but East goals from Billy Barr, Andrew Rowe, Ben Smith and Reece Beaumont meant their side took the honours in a 4 – 1 win, keeping their hopes of top two alive going into Monday’s match.

Cup finalists, Rapid Chingford, warmed up for their huge occasion in the coming fortnight with a terrific win in their last game of the season, defeating Jolof Sports in a 1 – 0 scoreline over at Mayfield Leisure Centre. A single Tita Daniel goal was enough for the Fenton Cup finalists to take the points, confirming an eighth placed finish in the process.

On Monday night, Jolof Sports recovered from their narrow loss 48 hours earlier by recording a superb 5 – 0 victory over Woodford East in their match, held at Mayesbrook Park 3G. This result means that East finish the league campaign in third spot but Halil Hassan’s side are still involved in two Cup competitions so they have a chance of endoing their first season at Step 7 in a memorable way. 

PREMIER DIVISION

The penultimate game of the Premier Division season saw Frenford A the hosts to fifth placed Wapping, the latter looking for a confidence boost ahead of their own cup final in a couple of weeks time. A closely fought battle eventually went in favour of the champions as Frenford won the game 4 – 2 to ensure they completed a terrific campaign in some style ahead of their debut top flight season. Joel Opara and Wisley Baltazar both netted two goals each to confirm a memorable day.

DIVISION ONE

Division One’s action was wrapped up on Saturday as Belfry went out knowing that three points would see them achieve something quite special. But standing in their way were a side who will have been pleased with their own efforts this year and RCXI raced into a 3 – 0 lead through goals two goals from Ayo Matthews and a Sammy Anjorin goal. Two Kieran James responses wasn’t enough as RCXI sent the champions to just their first defeat, in the very last game of the season.

All eyes were then on the big game at the Marshes where Cowley Community went into their battle against Francis Luke knowing they needed the points to ensure themselves of the runners-up position. They delivered exactly what they needed, winning the game 3 – 1 as two Elias Tackie strikes and a Michael Taylor goal promoted their club into the Premier Division for next season!

DIVISION TWO

It’s congratulations to Fairlop Rovers who were confirmed as Division Two champions on Saturday as their opponents could not raise a side for the remaining fixture. A tremendous achievement for the club as they continue their rise through the divisions. Well done to Dylan and all of the Rovers players on their success!

Following that outcome, the battle was then on for the runners-up spot which saw Rainham Working Mens Club needing to secure a win against Royal Forest to take second place. And that was exactly what they managed to do as Connor Kain scored twice and Sean Tormey once to give the Workies a 3 – 2 win, confirming promotion to Division One. Well done to everyone involved!

In the battle to avoid the drop in Division Two, a key six pointer saw St Francis taking on Loughton Lions at Robert Clack, the Saints knowing they needed to secure a win to keep things in their favour. But the Lions were able to secure a valuable point for their side in a 3 – 3 draw, despite two Omar Hafid goals and a Peter Luvualu effort for Saints. Lions now need just two points to beat the drop.

S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 7 May) [EOFL 21/22 8.5.22]

Hutton winger Luke Ricketts in possession v Catholic Utd [Image by Scott W]

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14] – Non-League & EOFL Writer

Hello and welcome to this week’s extended round-up of the action in the Essex Olympian League this week, including the midweek action In League & Cups and the action on Saturday 7 May. The focus this week is on the League action in the top three divisions. Thank you for reading. Photos are by Scott W & Wakering Sports FC, used with thanks.


Essex Olympian League – Midweek [Tues 3 May]

We begin the midweek action began with the EOFL Reserve Cup Final, held once again at Woodside (Bishop’s Stortford FC). Wakering Sports Res ended a fine campaign with a 4 – 1 triumph over Buckhurst Hill U23 with Connor Fardyga underlining his superb goal-scoring campaign with a brace here, which Ciaran Sweeney and David Watson added goals to complete the win to claim the silverware.
Before we move on, I’d like to add my congratulations to the Wakering Sports second-side, as a club Sports have had a strong season.

Wakering Sports celebrate with the Res Lge Cup [Image by Wakering Sports FC]

Also on Tuesday night, Rayleigh Town maintained their slim chances of the EOFL Premier title with a superb second-half showing securing them a 4 – 0 success at home to Galleywood. Harry Talbot netted twice for Paul Higgins’ side, with Liam Oliver and replacement William Vile also on target. Rivals Basildon Town and Ongar Town need a point to both overhaul Rayleigh’s points total as of this point ahead of the weekend’s action. Non-League writer Peter Dudley was there & here is his report:  https://pedroslocalfootiefix.blogspot.com/2022/05/rayleigh-town-4-galleywood-0.html  

The other game was at a chilly Len Forge 3G where Catholic Utd put in a good performance to dispatch Hutton 4 – 0. James Warder struck two goals here for Simon Thomas’ team and Aaron Baldwin & Joe O’Kane was also on the score-sheet in the match I attended. If you’d like more on this match, my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/05/04/s21-22-match-report-catholic-utd-4-0-hutton-tues-3-may-eofl/


Essex Olympian League – Saturday 7 May

Now onto the weekend’s action, and in the match I attended, Basildon Town got a crucial 1 – 0 victoryat Hutton to seal a top-two finish at least. Graham Harrison got the goal just before the hour mark which means Ongar Town have to win next weekend to claim the title. If you’d like more on this game, my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/05/07/s21-22-match-report-hutton-0-1-basildon-town-sat-7-may-eofl/

Elsewhere, Catholic Utd still have a chance of afifth-placed finish after they secured a superb 5 – 1 triumph over Galleywood at the Len Forge. Aaron Baldwin netted twice here, with Franklin Craik, Thomas Kearney and debutant Matt Creevy also netting here. Thomas Watling again scored for ‘Wood but they still need at least a point to avoid a bottom-three finish. Finally, Sungate will definitely finish in the top half after a 4 – 2 success at Harold Wood Athletic. James Pottle and replacement Jamie Webb-Kelly struck for Ath but it was confirmed here that they will finish bottom. ‘Gate will face Canning Town in the Senior League Cup Final on Tuesday at Woodside (Bishop’s Stortford) – the first of three matches against Canning in 18 days.

In Division One, Snaresbrook are two points from safety now after a fine 4 – 2 victory over Corinthians at Hackney Marshes. Bailey Moss and John Bolton-Smith scored for Chris Stoneham’s visitors but a double from Lee Lashley as well as strikes by Yevhen Zhyvka and substitute Tyrell Holder were enough to claim the win which keeps Rob Caine’s side well in contention for Division One survival. If they defeat Beacon Hill Rovers next weekend, they will stay up. The Stambridge-based side have finished fourth after another good season.

In Division Two, AS Rawreth also earned a crucial triumph, winning 3 – 2 against Harld Wood Athletic Res at the Warren. Freddy Shepherd & Thomas Butler’s penalty made it tough but Rawreth responded to claim the points. A victory next week at home to promotion-chasing Manford Way may be enough to avoid a bottom-two finish, if Hutton Res lose at home to Manford’s promotion rivals Harold Hill.

Lastly, for this week – in Division Four, Roydon kept up their slim chances of a top three finish with a 2 – 0 victory at Sungate Dev. Mike Hayes & an OG secured the win for Roydon but they must win by at least six clear goals at Springfield Res in two weeks’ time to leapfrog their rivals and finish 3rd. Sungate Development are now confirmed as finishing second-bottom and will likely be relegated. 


EOL Divisions Three & Five have now been completed.

That’s all for this week, the EOFL round-up has two more editions this month before we end for the season. Thanks to you all for reading.

S21-22 Match Report: Hutton 0 – 1 Basildon Town (Sat 7 May) [EOFL 7.5.22]

Essex Olympian League – Premier Division

Venue: Polo Fields

2021-22 Season: Match 82

Attendance: 100 (est)

Saturday 7 May 2022 – 2pm KO

Hutton: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

Basildon: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

George Nash (11) makes another good run for Hutton down left side

Basildon Town overcome spirited Hutton to claim a priceless victory at Polo Fields

Hutton  0 – 1 Basildon Town

Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Additional Photo by Steve Alison (Twitter: @EastLondonWall], used with thanks.

This weekend, the Intermediate season continued with a huge match between Hutton and title-chasing visitors Basildon Town in the Essex Olympian League Premier Division. This match could be the last competitive match played here by the Hutton first team for a while, as next term they will be a tenant at Tilbury’s Chadfields so it was nice to return here.

Reece Latimer (5) recycling possession for Town [Image by Scott W]

This match got underway with the premise being simple, anything less than a win for Basildon would be the end of their title hopes. It was unsurprisingly a tense start to the game, with Hutton looking for some response after a hefty loss away at Catholic Utd in midweek, Matt Singh’s team started in a lively manner. With the match going at a good tempo, chances were at a premium with Bas forward Rhys Willson’s fine cross narrowly evading player-boss Marcus Bowers at the far post. Soon afterward, lead goalscorer Graham Harrison nearly had a one-on-one chance with Reds stopper Adrian Faherty but the assistant’s flag was raised.

Basildon were the more threatening of the sides as we got towards the half hour mark, as Faherty denied Harrison’s stinging strike. James Gardner and Jonathon Hilliard were doing well in the Hutton central defence to break up the enterprising Town forward line. At the other end though, Hutton were also a threat through hard-working forward Brad Freeman who had two chances but was unable to bypass Bas custodian Matt Knight. The first of those chances saw him well found by strike partner Luke Ricketts but Freeman’s effort went narrowly wide.

Basildon pushing forward in first half [Image by Scott W]

With the interval fast approaching, Bas nearly got that precious goal as another good centre by Willson found winger Rhys Fatt at the far post but the latter’s header was straight at Faherty. Harrison also had another effort well stopped by Faherty as the visitors were getting closer to breaking the stalemate.

Half-Time: Hutton 0 – 0 Basildon Town

Tom Stephens making another run down right side [Image by Scott W]

Town began the second half with renewed impetus, and the occasional error was creeping into the hosts’ defending. First, Fatt’s strike came back off the woodwork when he could’ve found the corner, and soon after Harrison again was thwarted as his header was off-target.

That let-off though for Hutton would not last though as Basildon took the lead on 56 minutes. Graham Harrison did make the most of half a yard of space in a congested penalty area and fired home a fine strike into the right corner. Bowers was involved in the build-up. Commendably, Hutton did not let their heads drop and substitute Stephen Judge’s decent free-kick was saved by Knight’s legs.


Basildon threaten in the Hutton penalty box [Image by Steve Alison]

Both sides carried on with some vigour, and replacement Adam Bessadi got in past the Reds backline, but his effort was again ably stopped by Faherty. Fatt was there to put the ball in the net following up, but the assistant had other ideas as his flag was again raised. Basildon could not get that comforting second goal to seal the win and that was adding to the tension for all the travelling contingent.

Despite some nervy moments at the end of the match for Bas, which saw Gardner’s header come back off the woodwork, Town held on for the win which means Ongar Town have to defeat Catholic Utd at Lakeside Sports ground 3G next weekend to claim the title. Even if Bas lose out on the silverware, it is still very likely they will be promoted to Eastern Counties Lge Division One South and join the most recent addition from the EOFL – Buckhurst Hill. Many congrats to all at Basildon Town on a superb season.


Full-Time: Hutton 0 – 1 Basildon Town

In summary, Basildon did have to work hard to secure this win but credit to them for battling and keeping a good defensive shut-out. Hutton more than contributed to the game with a spirited display and had their finishing been more clinical, it would have been more than nervy moments for Bas at the match’s end. All in all, I felt this match deserved more than the one goal we got, such was the high tempo and quality of the match, buoyed on a very good crowd for a Step 7 game.

As ever, there was a number of good perfrmances in this match. For victors Basildon, forward Rhys Willson got engaged into the match from the early stages, putting in a number of telling crosses from the left side and generally having a good game, being a good outlet for his team. Graham Harrison grew into the match as it went on, playing in a deeper role today but nonetheless getting the crucial goal. But for good goalkeeping by Faherty, he could have had more goals today. A word also for energetic midfielder Michael Onafuye who put in a good performance, being good in possession and gave his team another option making forward runs as well. Lastly, centre-back Reece Latimer had a good game, dealing with a number of aerial balls in with relative ease and alongside Keanu Hill, they ensured they kept out the lively Hutton forward line.

Onto Hutton then, and full-back Tom Stephens showed good awareness in both defence and attack, making several long runs down the flank to aid his team. Captain James Gardner was again commendably strong in dealing with the tricky and quick Town forward line, making several important clearances. Forward Luke Ricketts did well to break past the opposition backline at times while fellow forward Brad Freeman put in another hard-working display and was unfortunate to not be on the score-sheet today.

My thanks to both teams, was good to see them both in action.


Teams (Rolling Subs Used in EOFL matches)

Hutton  | Manager: Matt Singh | Assistant: Bill Stratford

Starting XI: 1 Adrian Faherty (GK), 2 Tom Stephens, 3 John Carroll, 5 James Gardner (Capt), 6 Jonathon Hilliard, 4 Lewis Scott, 7 Jamie Moore, 8 Billy Chilcott, 9 Brad Freeman, 10 Luke Ricketts, 11 George Nash

Subs On (Time): 17 Stephen Judge [21′], 15 Jack Greenwood [56′], 16 Will Marlowe [70′], 18 Frazer Wraights [73′]

Booked: Gardner  | Subs Not Used: None


Basildon Town | Player-Manager: Marcus Bowers  |  Assistant: Lee Bunn

Starting XI: 1 Matt Knight (GK & Capt), 2 Andy Edmunds,  3 James O’Brien, 5 Reece Latimer, 6 Keanu Hill, 8 Michael Onafuye, 4 Graham Harrison, 7 Rhys Fatt, 17 Marcus Bowers, 10 Grant Cumming, 9 Rhys Willson

Goal-scorer: Graham Harrison [56′]

Subs On (Time): 11 Adam Bessadi [56 ], 12 Ben Smith [56′], 14 Jamie Bradbourn [83′], 18 Louis Hill [84′], 16 Keith King [90’+1]

Booked: Edmunds, King | Sub Not Used: None


Referee: Alan Moore
Assistants: Henry Steele & George Marsh