S22-23 Match Report: Romford 3 – 2 West Essex (Sat 24 Sept) [FAV 2RQ 24.9.22)

FA Vase

The Isuzu FA Vase – Second Round Qualifying

Venue: Mayesbrook Park 3G

Attendance: TBC

2022-23 Season: Match 16

Saturday 24th September 2022 – 3pm KO

Romford: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts & Blue Socks

West: Yellow & Black Shirts, Black Shorts, Yellow Socks

Romford’s Scott Doe passing ball on

Strong First-half display enough to ward off West Comeback to progress in the Vase

Romford  3 – 2   West Essex

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

The FA Vase road this term continued with Romford hosting fellow Essex Senior side West Essex at Mayesbrook Park. Both sides have had signs of having productive campaigns and that’s why this tie won out. Romford named a strong team, with loanee Billy Lawlor in goal, a defensive four of Tambeson Eyong, Danny Hurford plus centre-backs George Allen and skipper Scott Doe, who was a pro at Dagenham & Redbridge several years back. The forward line was comprised of Emmanuel Robe, Charlie Morris and Jesse Olukolu, with support from Lewis Smith. West also had a near full squad to chose from. Arthur LeBlond kept the gloves, with a defence of Tyler Morgan, Joel Lamb, Emmanuel Oluwole and Tala Lo Seye. Timmy Moncur and Oliseh Okuguni were in central midfield, with Callum Bloss and David Bell in attack, supported by Pascal Thornton and skipper Cameron Gray.

As we match wore on, it was fairly clear to see that Romford’s front three (Olukolu, Robe and Morris) were lively and rapid. Jesse Olukolu in particular was a searing threat down the right side with his pace and passing. West had to overcome an early change to their backline as centre-back Emmanuel Oluwole had to hobble off, we wish him well. Substitute Sam McNally came on to replace him and was soon involved in the action. Olukolu and Smith had already had strikes at goal with LeBlond pulling off a decent save to deny Smith’s strike. Ultimately, the Blues managed to get through the Stags defence almost at will with their incisive passing and pace.

At the other end, West could not threaten the likes of Romford defenders Scott Doe and George Allen much although one good move worth noting involved forwards Cameron Gray, Pascal Thornton and Callum Bloss which ended with Bloss having a tame shot which didn’t unduly trouble Romford stopper Billy Lawlor. Romford did get the opening goal that they did merit on 27 minutes. Olukolu made another super run down the right side and got a cross in, which found Charlie Morris inside the area and a neat finish ensured Steve Butterworth’s side were ahead.



West responded almost immediately as Bloss’ free-kick brought a decent save out of Lawlor on the half-hour. Romford did double their lead though five minutes later as full-back Tambeson Eyong burst forward seeing space to run into, and he found Olukolu who was felled in the area. Kris Newby stepped up and fired the ball high into the left corner of the net. West would have been keen to dampen the momentum and get into the interval but Romford did get a third goal on the stroke of half-time, as Olukolu got the goal his performance did deserve as he got past two defenders and fired home from close range, high into the net which gave LeBlond little chance to deny him.



Half-Time: Romford  3 – 0  West Essex

Romford were good value for their commanding lead at the break as West needed quite a stirring response as the second half began. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the rapid tempo of the first half did soften somewhat though the Blues nearly had a fourth goal at the midway point of the half. Substitute Camillo Restrepo got in on goal but with only the goalkeeper to beat, LeBlond did well to deny the effort low with his feet.

West Essex did get a reply on 69 minutes as a free-kick in a good position not far outside the penalty area. Oliseh Okuguni added to his good individual performance by curling in a well-struck low strike which found the right corner, getting past Lawlor well. Romford were leaving gaps to run into at the back but they held on to keep the rejuvenated visitors at bay, until the last moments as full-back Joel Lamb sent in a fine cross from the left flank which took a deflection and trickled over the goal-line, before Gray could bag himself a tap-in.

Romford’s Hurford [#3] pushes forward late on

Soon after that second West goal, the referee blew his whistle for the last time and while there was a fractious brawl of sorts after the final whistle which saw Eyong get dismissed, the fact remained the Butterworth’s team had booked their passage through to the First Round proper of the Vase, winning another £725 in Prize money, and will get at least £250 more in next round whatever the result.


Full-Time: Romford  3 – 2  West Essex

In summary, Romford’s fine first-half performance was too strong for a disjointed West side to cope with, but the determined Stags did fight their back into the match the last 25 minutes or so. Ultimately though, Kwame Kwateng’s team had too much to do and they went out of the FA Vase here.

There were some fine performances to note in this match. For winners Romford, winger Jesse Olukolu had a fine game. Showcasing his pace and dribbling to good effect, as well as putting in dangerous crosses as well in a busy first-half. He took his goal well too, just before the break. Fellow winger Charlie Morris also had a good game and showed good positioning & composure to put his team ahead before the half-hour. Advanced midfielder Lewis Smith also really tested the visiting defence well and put some good passes forward to set up chances & lastly, Kris Newby also was a good presence in midfield.

For West Essex, midfielder Oliseh Okuguni put in another good, hard-working display in a midfield that did not have it easy. Okuguni’s fine free-kick gave his team a glimmer of hope too. Forward David Bell had a good game also and persisted well despite finding the home defence in miserly form. Midfielder Timmy Moncur put in another good shift and got into some good positions also down the channels while skipper Cameron Gray rounds out the mentions with another decent display, his crosses were a threat for the Romford backline to deal with.


Teams

Romford  | Manager: Steve Butterworth | Assistant: Dan Spinks

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Billy Lawlor (GK), 2 Tambeson Eyong, 3 Danny Hurford, 5 Scott Doe (Capt), 6 George Allen, 4 Kris Newby, 8 George Cox (15 Camilo Restrepo 48′), 7 Jesse Odukolu (12 Jake Gordon 59′) , 10 Lewis Smith (18 Camillo Restrepo 81′) , 9 Emmanuel Robe, 11 Charlie Morris

Goal-scorers: Charlie Morris [27′] , Kris Newby [pen 35′], Jesse Olukolu [44′]

Booked: Wiggins | Sent Off: Eyong | Subs Not Used: Tuohy, Balisani, Ademi, Barlow

West Essex  |  Manager: Kwame Kwateng |  Assistants: George Karsa & Josh Rogers

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Arthur LeBlond (GK), 12 Tyler Morgan, 3 Joel Lamb, 5 Emmanuel Oluwole (4 Sam McNally 4′), 15 Tala Lo Seye, 10 Callum Bloss (9 Marlon Ortiz 76′), 8 Oliseh Okuguni, 22 Timmy Moncur, 20 David Bell, 11 Cameron Gray (Capt), 25 Pascal Thornton (21 Mohamud Kaudeer 57′)

Goal-scorers: Oliseh Okuguni [69′] , OG [90’+1]

 |  Subs Not Used: Ignatiuk (GK), Saliu Lo Seye, Wazola, Hardy


Referee: Adekola Adeyemi

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S22-23 Match Report: Rayleigh Town 4 – 3 Leigh Ramblers (Sat 17 Sept) [EOFL Prem 22-23 18.9.22]

Essex Olympian League – Premier Division

Venue: Thames Road

2021-22 Season: Match 15

Attendance: 30 (Est)

Saturday 17 September 2022 – 2pm KO

Rayleigh: Navy Blue Shirts, Shorts & Socks

Leigh Rams: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

Impeccably observed minute’s silence pre-match

Late winner gives Town the points over impressive Leigh Ramblers in epic battle

Rayleigh Town  4 – 3 Leigh Ramblers

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

The Saturday outing this week was a return to the Essex Olympian League and this well-poised derby between old rivals Rayleigh Town and Leigh Ramblers in the Premier Division. Albeit played at Concord Rangers’ Thames Road ground, which really added something good into the mix. Rayleigh have started their season strongly as their aspirations would demand and Paul Higgins named Mark Brown in goal, with a three-man central defence of Jack Long, Will Baldry and Sonny Coutts. Skipper George Vile was in central midfield as ever, along with Frank Hession-Harris while the forward line was comprised of hot-shot Harry Talbot, Sonny Woodward and Alfie Larkin. Ramblers also had a strong side with Dylan Skinner in goal, a defensive four of Patrick Cannon, Thomas Franks, skipper Ryan Lowe and Scott Keys. Jack Gardner was their hard-working central midfielder alongside George Moxon and Ole Hunter, with Andrew Webster leading their front line with support from Scott Clark and Callum Morris.

There was an entertaining start to this match, as Town set their stall out early to grab the initative, with midfielder Frank Hession-Harris sending a lob over the goal frame after an errant clearance from Rams custodian Dylan Skinner and soon after Skinner did well to deny goal-hungry Rayleigh forward Harry Tabot when he only had the goalie to beat. However, the concerns for the hosts were uncharacteristically in defence as they could not clear their lines with much haste. The visitors took full advantage of this as forward Andrew Webster got some space between defenders and snuck in a low drive at the near post despite defender Jack Long’s attempted clearance. Town responded quickly but Talbot’s day wasn’t starting so well as first his decent curling strike fizzed narrowly wide and then on 18 minutes fellow forward Sonny Woodward’s crisp strike was blocked by his own player (Talbot)!


The pain got worse for Rayleigh as Ramblers took advantage of another defensive error on 24 minutes as Webster got in front of advancing stopper Mark Brown before lobbing him superbly and too quickly for the retreating Town defence to get back to have a chance to clear. Midfielder Ole Hunter sent a strike from about 10 yards out as Town’s defensive struggles continued. The frantic pace of this game continued just after the half-hour as Town defender Will Baldry powered a header against the crossbar from a well-directed set-piece. 

Still, Town would be back level minutes later thanks to two goals in three minutes. Firstly on 37 minutes, a good run in the penalty area by Hession-Harris ended with a good low finish and then just two minutes later, Baldry got in the action again from a corner and this time his header was not able to be stopped by the Rams defenders on the goal-line. 

Baldry about to launch a throw-in for Rayleigh

Soon afterward, Woodward’s opportunistic effort caught Skinner unaware initially but Town’s claims that Skinner had pawed it over the goal-line fell on deaf ears. There was still time just before the break for a superb goal which saw Rams re-take the lead. Town thought they had cleared their lines well enough but they didn’t bank on forward Scott Clark receiving the ball and firing home an unstoppable curling drive from at least 25 yards out, right in the top corner. Credit where it is due for a fabulous strike and it also might have had an influence of the comparative team-talks at the interval. 

Half-Time: Rayleigh  2 – 3 Leigh Rams

After a much-needed break for me to draw breath after such an entertaining first half, you may have thought there’d be a prolonged lull in the second half. I cannot really subscribe to that theory in this game, as Rayleigh poured forward in search of another equaliser. Ramblers did well to reduce the chances which Town’s enterprising play had created though half-time substitute William Vile’s low drive brought a good save out of Skinner before skipper George Vile and Ben Baxter had efforts which were off-target.

That man Talbot was still a threat as well as he finally got his goal with 14 minutes to play. Skinner had done well to get low down to deny his initial shot on goal but Talbot was alert to the rebound and slotted home coolly. Unsurprisingly, this encouraged Paul Higgins’ team as they maintained the pressure on a tiring Leigh Ramblers backline.

Hession-Harris [#17] darts down the right side for Rayleigh

As the minutes ebbed away, Clark was denied on the goal-line which would have given Rams another slender lead, and at the other end, another well-directed Baldry header found the woodwork for Town and you would not have begrudged both sides taking a point from this enthralling match. But there was a winner – four minutes into added time, the chorus of pressure Rayleigh put on finally told and substitute Philip Anunwa was played in, stayed on-side on the shoulder of the last defender before firing home a fine low finish past Skinner, much to the delight of the home dug-out.

Ramblers push forward in second half

The final whistle blew soon after but alongside a papable sense of relief from the Rayleigh players, I think there was a respect of how hard they had been pushed by their opponents, who were understandably disconsolate. Either way, it was another really good spectatcle for Step 7, which I would encourage readers to watch a few games of during the season if you have not already.


Full-Time: Rayleigh Town 4 – 3 Leigh Ramblers

To summarise this epic match of drama, goals, defensive errors and missed chances, the Rams were clinical in the way they punished the hosts’ stuttering defence early on to give them that two-goal advantage. However, the torrent of chances before & just after the break saw their lead get pegged back and having expended so much energy in defending well, Rayleigh did showgood finishing of their own to pinch it deep into added-time. And you have to mention Scott Clark’s stunning 25-yarder for Mark Hunter’s Leigh Ramblers side just before half-time which altered the team-talk for Paul Higgins’ team.

The stand-out performances here were hard to choose. For victors Rayleigh, forward Harry Talbot was a constant threat throughout to the visiting backline and whilst fortune was not on his side in first half, the perseverance on display was there and he took his goal well after Skinner’s initial save. George Vile is the heartbeat of the Town side and despite being frustrated for large periods of the match, the work rate he shows is commendable. Frank Hession-Harris also had a good game in midfield and made good runs from deep as well as taking his goal well while defender Will Baldry was the pick of the Town backline, making several important aerial interceptions.

For Rams, Andrew Webster shone with his well-taken two goals and once again was an important physical presence leading their attack. Callum Morris was also a good outlet down the channels to stretch the Town defence as well as making good passes. Scott Clark had a strong game also and continued his good start to the season, with a stunning goal and good movement and pace too. Finally, a word for skipper Ryan Lowe who put in another high-level defensive showing, making a number of good clearances and showing good positional play.

Will Baldry (#5) sets up another forward move for Town

Teams

Rayleigh Town  | Manager: Paul Higgins  |  Assistant: Del Lamon

Starting XI: 1  Mark Brown (GK), 2 Charlie Seaden, 12 Ben Baxter, 5 Will Baldry, 6 Sonny Coutts, 16 Jack Long, 8 George Vile (Capt), 17 Frank Hession-Harris, 4 Alfie Larkin, 10 Sonny Woodward, 7 Harry Talbot

Goal-scorers: Frank Hession-Harris [37′], Will Baldry [39′], Harry Talbot [76′], Philip Anunwa [90’+4]

Subs On (Time): 11 William Vile [46′ replaced Coutts], 15 George Aston [57′ replaced Woodward], 9 Philip Anunwa [81′ replaced Larkin]

Booked: None | Sub Not Used: Chatterway


Leigh Ramblers  | Manager: Mark Hunter | Assistants: Nathan Dewberry & Paul Cannon

Starting XI: 1 Dylan Skinner (GK), 2 Patrick Cannon, 3 Thomas Franks, 5 Ryan Lowe (Capt), 6 Scott Keys, 8 Jack Gardner, 7 George Moxon, 17 Ole Hunter, 9 Andrew Webster, 10 Scott Clark, 11 Callum Morris

Goal-scorers: Andrew Webster [12′ & 24′], Scott Clark [45’+3]

Subs On (Time): 12 Matt Allum [46′], 14 Barv Waiwaiku [57′], 4 Jamie Skinner [67′ replaced Franks]

Booked: Moxon | Sent Off: Keys (two yellows) | Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Kevin Nicholson
Assistants: Nnaemeka Ukah & Adam Miller

S22-23 Match Report: Southend Manor 1 – 3 White Ensign (Fri 16 Sept) [ESL 22-23 18.9.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Southchurch Park

Attendance: 142

2022-23 Season: Match 14

Friday 13th September 2021 – 7.45pm KO

Manor: Yellow & Black Shirts, Black Shorts, Yellow Socks

Ensign: Red & Blue Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks


Ensign secure hard-fought win in fractious derby at Manor

Southend Manor 1 – 3 White Ensign

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

The Non-League journey continued with an interesting & rare Friday night battle at Southchurch Park, which saw Southend Manor host White Ensign in a keenly-contested local derby. Manor were still looking for their first win of the League campaign and that is a task made ever harder but a few squad departures in the last week or so. They fielded young stopper Harry McKie in goal, with a defence of full-backs Ben Sargent & Callum Ferris allied with centre-backs Mitchell Arthur and Keanu Hill. Skipper Daniel Okah was in an anchor midfield ole, along with Ope Mosuro in central midfield. Forwards Ben Allen and Luca Frankis were supported by Kieran James and Lewis Risk. Ensign are still transitioning their squad following their huge rebuild over the summer. Aaron Bloxham fielded Adam Seal in goal, with a defence of Max Drury, Ollie Jenkins & Daniel Monk. Their forward line was led by Tony Jacobs & Charlie Portway, with chief support coming from Billy Bonham-Dare & Owen Dixie.

It would be fair to say that this match did have a rather tepid start, though given the importance on the points on offer here, that was perhaps understandable. However, the game did soon liven up and the pendulum did swing towards Manor after goalkeeper Harry McKie did snuff out a possible chance in the offing as he gathered Ensign midfielder Joe Hunter’s cross into the path of experienced forward Charlie Portway. Manor’s own Luca Frankis also headed narrowly wide of Adam Seal’s goal on the twenty minute mark.

Ensign were starting to put their passing game together, but it was Manor who marginally had the better of the game and they took the lead on 31 minutes. The impressive Kieran James dodged his marker well before taking a turn and fired home past Seal to give James Wakeling’s side a priceless lead.

Ensign roared back though at the other end, and Manor custodian McKie did well to hold his composure as he denied both Owen Dixie and Tony Jacobs in seperate attacks, with both Ensign players only having the stopper to beat. That being said, White Ensign did get their hugely important equaliser two minutes before the break, as full-back Daniel Monk started the move which ended up with forward Billy Bonham-Dare playing Monk in and the defender showed little hesitation to stroke home his low finish into the right corner.

Visiting goalkeeper Adam Seal about to fire another set-piece forward

Half-Time: S Manor 1 – 1 White Ensign

The second half was when the said pendulum shifted towards Ensign. Manor found it more difficult to get the ball through the thirds of the pitch, although substitute Jack Unwin did make some good runs and passes. That being said, the frustrations were starting to tell as Ensign’s more experienced players were taking their time and winning fouls and the like to pass the pressure back to the hosts.

The big moment came on sixty-three minutes when Ensign took the lead. A fine cross from the right flank found the head of Charlie Portway and that header was well-directed and found the net, giving McKie little chance. Manor did their utmost to put themselves about to get themselves back into the match but they couldn’t give the ball enough to their biggest outlet in Kieran James and substitute Eamon Payne did his bit to tighten up the visiting backline as well along with Ollie Jenkins.

Ensign push forward in the last few moments of the match as Manor defend

As the match entered its last fifteen minutes, Ensign poured forward looking for that crucial third goal to diminish any hope for Manor in this contest. Deep into added time, that third goal did come. Two of the substitutes combined as winger Luc Harpon put in a superb cross from the right side which found fellow replacement Jack Allen and his header found the net, which brought wild celebrations from the visiting dug-out.


Full-Time: Southend Manor 1 – 3 White Ensign

In summary, Manor started fairly well but as Ensign grew into the match, the home side found it harder to create sustained pressure, particularly after the break. Ensign’s experienced players did make a difference and the longer the second half went on, the more they grew in confidence.

For this match’s stand-out performances, we start with victors Ensign. Forward Billy Bonham-Dare played his part in their forward moves and assisted Daniel Monk for his goal. Monk also had a good game, showing high energy levels, good passing and was up for the battle throughout. Midfielder Ethan Evison again showed why he is an important presence for this Ensign team and a word for Ollie Jenkins as well who steadied his team’s defence well in second half.

For Manor, Kieran James had a really good game and made the most of the half-chance he gad to take his goal well while also showing decent pace and movement. Keanu Hill had a good match in central defence, clearing well when put under pressure. Harry McKie had an excellent match in goal, making two decent saves low down just before Ensign’s equaliser. Lastly, I thought midfielder Lewis Risk had a good game too down the left side, putting together some good passes and showed decent work rate as well.

I’d just like to wish both sides a good remainder of the campaign.


Teams

Southend Manor  | Manager: James Wakeling  | Assistant: Ryan Frost

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Harry McKie (GK), 2 Ben Sargent, 3 Callum Ferris (11 Jack Unwin 61′), 5 Keanu Hill, 6 Mitchell Arthur, 4 Daniel Okah (Capt), 14 Lewis Risk (18 Jonnie Gurie 86′), 8 Ope Mosuro, 9 Luca Frankis (7 Jonathan Evans 39′), 10 Ben Allen (16 Joseph Gurie 86′), 22 Kieron James (12 Luke Jackson 83′)

Goal-scorers: Kieron James [31′]

Booked: Hill, Okah   | Subs Not Used: None


White Ensign  | Manager: Aaron Bloxham  | Assistant: Nick Wilbrow

Starting XI (Subs): 36 Adam Seal (GK), 33 Max Drury (5 Eamon Payne 57′), 6 Ollie Jenkins, 3 Daniel Monk, 4 Ben Summers (2 Jack Davies 74′), 8 Ethan Evison (Capt), 7 Joe Hunter, 11 Owen Dixie (16 Tommy Dixon 68′), 10 Tony Jacobs (17 Luc Harpon 82′), 19 Charlie Portway, 9 Billy Bonham-Dare (14 Jack Allen 80′)

Goal-scorers: Daniel Monk [43′], Charlie Portway [63′], Jack Allen [90’+6]

Booked: Hunter, Bonham-Dare, Evison | Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Alan Steward
Assistants: Adeolu Adeyemi & Joe Lannon

S22-23 Match Report: Redbridge 2 – 1 Enfield (Tues 13 Sept) [ESL 22/23 14.9.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Oakside

Attendance: 55 (Est)

2022-23 Season: Match 13

Tuesday 13th September 2022 – 7.45pm KO

Redbridge: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

Enfield: Yellow & Blue Shirts, Yellow Shorts, Yellow & Blue Socks



First half action still with Enfield pushing forward (Image by Scott W)


Redbridge forced to battle hard to ensure victory over Enfield

Redbridge 2 – 1 Enfield

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

The Non-League journey for this season re-commenced after the weekend’s shut-down with a intriguing match at Oakside between two unbeaten sides in Redbridge and Enfield in the Essex Senior League. George Christou named a strong side with George Martin the goalkeeper, with a defence of Bradley Bennett, Josh Olukolu and centre-backs Nathan Okoye and Joe Elliott. Skipper Jake Brocklebank was alongside Jack Roult and Jack Chawner in midfield. The forward line was comprised of Tony Martin, Solomon Ogunwomoju and Simon Bamidele. Enfield had the ever-present James Bransgrove in goal, with a three-man defence of Nnamdi Harold-Eagle, Tyler Corlett and Jack Grosvenor. Skipper Alex Warman was alongside Usman Adeniji and Samrai Gebrai in midfield, with Louie Johnson, Danny Norton and Adu Odukoya leading the forward line.

Before kick-off, both teams marked a fine minute’s silence in honour of the recent passing of Queen Elizabeth II (see image above).

Onto the match itself, and the match got underway with increasing amounts of rain descending down, which made pitch conditions a bit tricky. Enfield started strongly as the hosts had to soak up a fair wad of pressure defensively, with forward Louie Johnson firing wide and Danny Norton also sent a header narrowly over the goal frame. Redbridge did respond and were granted a spot-kick on 13 minutes as centre-back Nathan Okoye was brought down by opposite number Jack Grosvenor, which saw the E’s defender recieve a booking. Centre forward Tony Martin stepped up and duly converted the penalty, firing home into the left-side corner, giving visiting stopper James Bransgrove little chance to save it.


That was an important goal, given that the visitors had started well. Redbridge did have more impetus going forward, but Enfield’s momentum was also building, such was the small margins already present in this match. Johnson had another decent effort at goal, while fellow forward Ayo Odukoya also testing the Motormen defence, with full-back Brad Bennett and Okoye required to make several important clearances.

It was apparent that the hosts would need to increase their lead and they did so on the half-hour in some style. Full-back Josh Olukolu made a superb, fast run down the left before sending in a great centre which tracked the run of Martin in the six-yard area and Martin timed his run perfectly and struck home confidently into the far corner. Enfield did respond well and halved the deficit five minutes later as a floated corner was headed in very well at the near post by centre-back Tyler Corlett.

Both sides poured forward to grab another goal before the interval. Redbridge had a glimmer of goal from an angled set-piece found midfielder Jake Brocklebank who sent in a header narrowly over the woodwork. At the other end, good interplay by Samrai Gebrai and Johnson ended with the latter’s strike being deflected by Elliott which allowed Martin to gather. Moments before the break, Elliott sent a decent strike not far wide of Bransgrove’s goal frame.

Half-Time: Redbridge 2 – 1 Enfield

With the inclement weather getting worse, it added to the chance of errors being made. There were several good chances as the pace of the game didn’t drop. Forward Solomon Ogunwomoju had a good chance to really push the pressure on Jamie Cureton’s side but he fired narrowly wide. The visitors went back on the offensive as Johnson set up Odukoya but the powerful forward also couldn’t find the target.



Bransgrove did well to deny Ogunwomoju’s effort when one-on-one just short of the hour as the E’s also reacted by bringing on Dwade James, Jeffrey Cobblah and Kieran Bishop before the midway point of the half. As the game became increasingly fraught, James and Bishop also had half-chances to get that telling equaliser for Enfield but it wasn’t to be.

All credit to the visitors though as they made Redbridge work hard right until the final whistle. After about four minutes of added time, referee Gavin Bailey blew for the final time and Christou’s side could at last celebrate not only maintaining their unbeaten start to the league season, but also rising to joint-top of the Essex Senior table, behind Little Oakley on goal difference only.

By contrast, Enfield have seen their winning start to the season end but there was enough on display in their performance here to show that they will be up there in the promotion reckoning come March & April 2023. Both teams put on an very good match to watch, so kudos to them for that.

Enfield look to push on in 2nd half (Image by Scott W)

Full-Time: Redbridge 2 – 1 Enfield

To sum up this battle of a match, Redbridge had to defend for large parts of the second half after grabbing the lead before the break but respect to George Christou’s team in that they relished the battle. Enfield on another day would’ve got three or four goals but ultimately had a lot to do after conceding those two goals in the first half-hour. Their midfield took time to adjust to the conditions but they showed enough as a team to suggest they will win a lot of games this season.

For this match’s stand-out performances, we start with victors Redbridge. Tony Martin led the forward line well and showed clinical finishing to dispatch the penalty and showed good positioning throughout, most tellingly to make the run to score his & his team’s second goal. Wing-back Josh Olukolu had a very good game also, making several rapid runs and putting in a superb cross from the left flank for his team’s second goal. Joe Elliott had a fine game alongside Nathan Okoye at centre-back, with skipper Jake Brocklebank putting in a tireless display in anchor midfield, making several important block tackles.

For Enfield, forward Louie Johnson was their chief threat, having several chances that were narrowly wide of goal or had to be denied as well as making several piercing runs. Centre-back Tyler Corlett took his goal well and was a big physical presence in the E’s backline. Samrai Gebrai had a decent game as well down the left side and showed good understanding with Johnson. Lastly, captain Alex Warman grew into the game well and contributed to his team’s forward moves.

I’d just like to wish both sides a good remainder of the campaign.


Teams

Redbridge | Manager: George Christou  | Assistant: Jack Toghli

Starting XI (Subs): 13 George Martin (GK), 2 Bradley Bennett, 3 Joshua Olukolu (19 James Barlow 85′), 5 Joe Elliott, 6 Nathan Okoye, 4 Jake Brocklebank (Capt), 7 Jack Roult, 8 Jack Chawner, 9 Tony Martin (14 Miles Peterkin 75′), 10 Solomon Ogunwomoju (11 Loui Hazlewood 89′), 18 Simon Bamidele (12 Reuben Campbell 66′)

Goal-scorers: Tony Martin [pen 13′ & 30′]

Booked: None  | Subs Not Used: Gill


Enfield  | Manager: Jamie Cureton  | Assistant: Jim Duggan

Starting XI (Subs): 1 James Bransgrove (GK), 21 Tyler Corlett, 5 Nnamdi Harold-Eagle (7 Kieran
Bishop 67′), 6 Jack Grosvenor, 4 Alex Warman (Capt), 16 Usman Adeniji, 23 Danny Norton, 11 Samrai Gebrai, 18 Gavin Cockman (20 Jeffrey Cobblah 61′), 10 Louie Johnson, 19 Ayo Odukoya (27 Dwade James 58′)

Goal-scorer: Tyler Corlett [35′]

Booked: Grosvenor  | Subs Not Used: Cousins, J Johnson


Referee: Gavin Bailey
Assistants: Kadir Nazif & Davide Scaraggi

S22-23 Match Report: Old Southendian 3 – 4 Canning Town (Sat 3 Sept) [EOFL 22/23 4.9.22]

Essex Olympian League – Premier Division

Venue: Garon Park 3G

2022-23 Season: Match 12

Attendance: 20 (Est)

Saturday 3 September 2022 – 2.30pm KO

Old S: Green Shirts, Black Shorts & Green Socks

Canning: Blue Shirts, White Shorts, Blue Socks


Canning look to push forward again in first half

Clinical finishing sees Canning Town resist late fightback by OS at Garon Park

Old Southendian 3 – 4 Canning Town

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

The weekend’s foray into Non-League saw a welcome return to the Intermediate divisions, with this interesting match seeing hosts Old Southendian welcoming Cannning Town to Garon Park in an Essex Olympian League Premier division encounter. Both of these sides can score goals but are also somewhat inconsistent.

We certainly didn’t have to wait long for chances to crop up here, as the drizzle came down. It was the visitors who started well, as physical forward Nabil Musah got past the off-side trap and his strike cannoned off a post, whilst one-on-one with OS stopper Pete Loveday. Before Altar Ali’s side could restore some impetus, Canning forward Napat Pattanawanitkitkul sent a good effort which also came off the woodwork. Unfortunately for the hosts, their fortune did not last, as Nabil Musah continued to pose problems as he got past the home defence before slotting home confidently to open the scoring.


To their credit, Old Southendian did start to find their passing range to an extent, and had a promising moment on 21 minutes as forward Ruari McIntyre broke down the left channel before fizzing a good cross which went right across the face of goalbut was unable to find a team-mate. Fellow forward Callum Ludlaim was also making some decent runs and after he skewed a strike wide, both McIntyre and Ludlaim had decent efforts well denied by Town goalkeeper Nial Akata.

OS crucially did get themselves level eight minutes from the interval. Winger Ed Gould saw a chance to strike and duly launched a fierce effort which deflected off a defender, which wrongfooted Akata on its way into the net. If Town were cursing their luck, they responded superbly as barely a minute later, they were back ahead. Musah was again well-poised just inside the area before sending a good curling effort which came off the crossbar and had crossed the line.

Old Southendian were definitely getting their way back into proceedings although they will be disappointed by the lack of possession they had in the first half. Canning certainly did show some neat play and the instinct of this writer was that there would be more goals to come here.

Half-Time: Old S 1 – 2 Canning Town

OS’ Billy Taylor [#3] scampers down the left flank

Straight after the interval, OS did push forward looking for another leveller but it was Canning Town who added a third goal on the counter-attack. Musah was found against and after getting past his marker, he rounded advancing stopper Loveday before slotting home calmly into the net to complete a clinical hat-trick. Just when you thought it couldn’t get better for Lee Wilson’s team – it did as they got another goal on 52 minutes. Napat Pattanawanitkitkul was found in a congested penalty area and he converted from close range to really add to the hosts’ pain and make it 4 – 1 to Canning Town.

OS responded well though to this setback as McIntyre sent a curling effort not far off-target before the hour mark. Altar Ali’s side were gradually becoming more of a threat as Canning’s nerves were steadily rising. Said nerves were definitely felt for the visitors as OS got a second goal on 68 minutes. Jordan Faulkner had made a good bursting run down the middle and he forced a low strike into the net, via a defender.

That was not a technique goal but the hosts’ third goal certainly was. Callum Ludlaim curled in a dipping strike which looped over Akata and found the net. The last ten minutes or so was a scramble as both sides looked to score.

Jordan Faulkner [#6] makes a run for OS & is challenged by Iheukor for Town

Canning Town held on with some guile to be fair to them, though there was one last chance six minutes into added time which saw home midfielder Mitchell Ali send a cool lob which was heading into top left corner, only for the goal-line defender to clear well with a header.

The fact that Old Southendian could have equalised with the last action of the game really endorses the point that this was an enterprising, all-action match with some quality goals as well.

Full-Time: Old Southendian 3 – 4 Canning Town

To summarise this entertaining match, Canning Town made tbe most of good spells of the game to open up a three-goal advantage before the hour mark. However, the ‘Old Boys’ spirit assisted tbem to a strong finish and really gave their visitors some nervy moments, but ultimately the hosts gave themselves too much to do after a tepid start to this match.

Late on, Frank Iheukor [#4] breaks forward for Canning

The stand-out performances here for the victors Canning Town were led by physical forward Nabil Musah, who put in an impressive performance with his strength & movement only adding to his fine treble here. Creative midfielder Bron Pattanawanitkitkul really added to his team’s performance with good dinking runs and clever passing. Full-back Taiwo Oniti also did well to assist his side defensively, particularly in the first half while the hard-working Dominic Lewis also deserves a mention in central midfield.

For OS, forward Callum Ludlaim scored a fine goal and generally was a good presence leading the hosts’ attack, alsi being thwarted by Akata earlier in the game. Talented winger Ed Gould also scored with an oppurtunistic strike and also tested the Town backline with some  eat interchange passing. Also, Jordan Faulkner made some good runs from the back in possession & also made some telling interceptions. Lastly, Jack Thompson made a good cameo from the substitutes’ bench and added to his team’s renewed momentum after the interval.

Finally, I’d like to wish both teams a good remainder of the season.


Teams

Old Southendian  | Manager: Altar Ali  |  Assistants: David Tubbs, Paul Tonking & John Rees

Starting XI: 1 Pete Loveday (GK), 2 Connor Burrows, 3 Billy Taylor, 4 Neil MacLean, 6 Jordan Faulkner, 5 Oliver Tatton-Bennett, 8 Mitchell Ali, 9 Ruari McIntyre, 10 Jack Lelliott, 7 Callum Ludlaim, 11 Ed Gould (Capt)

Goal-scorers: Ed Gould [37′], Jordan Faulkner [68′], Callum Ludlaim [79′]

Subs On (Time): 14 Jack Thompson [46′], 15 Nico Dubouchet [60′], 12 Ronnie Lovegrove [73′]

Booked: Ali  | Sub Not Used: Tonking


Canning Town  | Manager: Lee Wilson |

Starting XI: 1 Nial Akata (GK), 2 Fernando Johnson, 3 Taiwo Oniti, 4 Frank Iheukor, 5 Matt Betts (Capt), 7 Kane Maloney, 8 Dominic Lewis, 6 Bron Pattanawanitkitkul, 9 Nabil Musah, 10 Napat Pattanawanitkitkul, 11 Jack Williamson

Goal-scorers: Nabil Musah [14′, 38′ & 50′], Napat Pattanawanitkitkul [52′]

Subs On (Time): 16 Emmanuel Omafo [30′], 12 Stephen Ikumelo [44′], 14 Peter van Hooft [64′], 15 Yurii Polischuk

Booked: Johnson, Akata  | Subs Not Used: Wilson


Referee: Nnaemeka Ukah
Assistants: Daniel Mann & Guy Pell-Ilderton

S22-23 Match Report: Barkingside 1 – 1 May & Baker  (Wed 31 Aug) [EaSL South 22/23 1.9.22]

Eastern Senior League – Division South

Venue: Cricklefield

Attendance: 100

2022-23 Season: Match 11

Wednesday 31st August 2022 – 7.45pm KO

B’side: Blue Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts, Black Socks

May & Baker: Red & Black Shirts, Black Shorts, Black Socks


Late leveller sees Bakers to a point at Barkingside

Barkingside 1  –  1 May & Baker

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

The midweek Non-League matches resumed at the end of August, as Barkingside hosted their second Wednesday home match of the season as they welcomed May & Baker in another Eastern Senior League South tie. The hosts are still under the management of Steve LeSage, and he named Hayden West in goal, with a defence of Jordan Cornelius, Elliot Scott and Josh George. Archie Hammond skippered the side, with the forward line being led by James Ross, supported by Michael James-Akerele & Codey Cosgrave. May & Baker returned to league action after a tough battle with Stotfold in the FA Vase just three days before. Seb Barford was their goalkeeper, with a defence of Cain Brougham, Kunle Adeyemi and centre-backs Toulouwa Dada and captain Jamie Marsh. Remi Awosanya led the forward line, with Jayden Silcott-Brown & Idris Aminu on the flanks.

It was ‘Side who began the match with a flourish and stated their intent in the first minute as skipper Archie Hammond’ strike from a freekick was only narrowly over the crossbar. Visuting custodian Seb Barford was the busier stopper as Bakers just about managed to deal with the impetus and pace from Steven LeSage’s side. There was definitely some pushback from a big penalty decision on 14 minutes as the hosts were awarded a spot-kick. Midfielder Harrison Burke’s penalty was initally saved well by Barford but Burke got onto the rebound to slot home at the second attempt, as the visiting defence were unable to prevent it, much to the ire of Barford.



To be fair to ‘Side, they were having the better of the first half which was tight and more than a little scrappy. Chances were not plentiful either and Bakers were probably grateful to get to the interval with a slim disadvantage, given how little they tested home stopper Hayden West.

Bakers look to set up another forward move

Half-Time: Barkingside 1 – 0 May & Baker

Into the second half now, which did liven up somewhat. Bakers were starting to get themselves going towards the hour mark, with Jamie Marsh firing an effort off-target from the edge of the penalty area. On 62 minutes, Barkingside responded as Demi Elegushi’s strike was denied by a decent save from Barford. As we went into the last 25 minutes, Barkingside were defending deeper and deeper in their own half as Bakers maintained the pressure with some decent passing.

With 77 minutes on the clock, Bakers substitute Trevor Harding fizzed a strike narrowly over the goal frame, and Idris Aminu being denied twice in four minutes by ‘Side stopper Hayden West. Moments after fellow substitute Shaun Omogbai’s low effort dribbled agonizingly wide, Bakers finally did make their pressure tell.


Bakers substitute Daniel Barth took full advantage of his marker being unable to clear by firing home a fine strike from inside the area, giving West little chance to deny him as the ball flew high into the net.

Full-Time: Barkingside  1 – 1   May & Baker

To sum up this match, it had glimmers of good play but it didn’t quite find the spark of consistent creativity that said glimmers had perhaps promised, particularly in the first half when the hosts were at their strongest. Bakers definitely had the better of the last 25 minutes though and although they left it late to earn a point, it isn’t a bad result. I suspect boss Jordan Harris will know though that they will need to play better to rack up the wins required in order to reach their target for this term.

There were some good performances from both sides here. For hosts Barkingside, midfielder Harrison Burke looked lively and made some good runs down the middle, as well as some neat passes and got his goal after seeing his spot-kick saved by Barford. Forward James Ross was a good presence too in their forward line, making a welcome return to Football at start of this term.  Also, a mention for Codey Cosgrave as well who contributed to his team’s all-round performance, particularly in the first half.

For May & Baker, winger Jayden Silcott-Brown had a good game, testing the Barkingside left side with his quick runs and decent passing. Idris Aminu also had a good game, particularly in the second period when Bakers’ were posing problems and had a couple of decent chances to score himself. Finally, determined centre-back Jamie Marsh was typically resolute defensively as their team gave less oppurtunities away for their opponents to hurt them after the interval.

This may have been a bit of a scrappy game but the food went down well with quite a few of the spectators, which helps when it gets a bit chilly as it did here. I’d like to wish both teams well for the season ahead.


Teams

Barkingside  | Manager: Steven LeSage | Assistant: Tommy Shelts

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Hayden West (GK), 2 Jordan Cornelius, 3 Josh George, 6 Elliot Scott (12 Josh Peach 68′), 5 Shaquel Foyewa (16 Jon Vanvdyck 63′), 4 Harrison Burke, 7 Codey Cosgrave, 8 Demi Elegushi, 9 James Ross, 10 Archie Hammond (Capt) (15 Joe Oates 74′), 11 Michael James-Akerele (14 Dan Jones 59′)

Goal-scorer: Harrison Burke [14′]

Subs Not Used: Gayer | Booked: James-Akerele, George, Foyewa, Elegushi


May & Baker  | Manager: Jordan Harris | Assistant: Scott Harding

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Seb Barford (GK), 2 Cain Brougham (16 Ryan Leavens 74′), 3 Kunle Adeyemi, 5 Jamie Marsh (Capt), 6 Toulouwa Dada, 4 Kalum Bama (17 Trevor Harding 70′), 7 Jayden Silcott- Brown (15 Shaun Omogbai 67′), 8 Robert Bagnell, 9 Remi Awosanya (18 Daniel Barth 67′), 10 Anthony Cooke, 11 Idris Aminu

Goal-scorer: Daniel Barth [87′]

Sub Not Used: Breen


Referee: Jordan Dixon-Walker

Assistants: Grant Moody & Abu Taher

S22-23 Match Report: West Essex 0 – 0 Harwich & Parkeston (Fri 26 Aug) [FAV 1RQ 27.8.22]

The FA Vase trophy

The Isuzu FA Vase – First Round Qualifying

Venue: Wadham Lodge Stadium

Attendance: 115 (Est)

2022-23 Season: Match 10

Friday 26 August 2022 – 7.45pm KO

West: White & Black Shirts, White Shorts & White Socks

Harwich: Red & White Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks



West progress on Penalties after Harwich battle hard at Wadham

West Essex 0 – 0 Harwich & Parkeston (West won 5 – 3 on spot-kicks)

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

The FA Vase began for another season with an intriguing Friday night tie against Eastern Counties Division One North side Harwich & Parkeston, who reside in mid-table there in tbe early table. West have started their league campaign well but were looking to avoid a second Cup exit in a week after narrowly losing out at Dunstable Town in the FA Cup five days previously. West fielded new goalkeeper Arthur Leblond between the sticks, with a defence comprised of Sanchez Hardy, Joel Lamb, Emmanuel Oluwole and Tala Lo-Seye. Captain Reece Clarke returned after serving his recent suspension, while the forward line included David Bell, Mo Kaudeer and Marlon Ortiz. Harwuch had Brad Cook in goal, with Nathan Kioussis and Jack Wood in central defence and captain Gareth Heaty and Alfred Smith in central midfield. Centre forward Joe Boreham-Knight was supported by Luke Mayhew, Matthew Geen and Brandon Rusby.

Harwich should be commended for travelling from the North East Essex coast on a Friday night and they began the under pressure from this exuberant Stags team. In the first 10 minutes, Visiting ‘keeper Brad Cook pulled off two really good saves to deny Reece Clarke’s fierce opening strike and soon after, a decent strike by forward David Bell. Harwich were focused on their efforts defensively, however it would be a misnomer to say they didn’t push forward with some verve and pace too. Joe Boreham-Knight led the forward line well, though it was Matthew Geen’s strike that kept home goalkeeper Arthur Leblond alert, though the shot lacked the power to unduly trouble him.



The effort levels were there from the hosts though they found it difficult to create an avalanche of chances and to get past the hard-working & organised Harwich backline, led by Nathan Kioussis and Jack Wood. Wood nearly had a moment of hefty misfortune on 38 minutes as a clearing header looped not far wide of the leftside post. Moments later, a rare one-on-one chance for pacy forward Marlon Ortiz saw a well-struck effort cannon off the right-sided post with Cook beaten.

In the main though, Harwich were doing a good role of frustrating the hosts, and while they were a threat from set-plays, West stopper Leblond was largely untroubled heading into the interval.

Half-Time: West Essex 0 – 0 Harwich


For the decent crowd that turned up here (including some travelling Shrimpers fans, credit to them), the second half was more about the competitive contest to win the momentum, more than it was about a large array of chances created. That being said, Harwich & Parkeston did force a good save from West goalkeeper Leblond from close range, while a last-ditch defensive clearance soon afterward prevented them from taking a surprise lead.

Boreham-Knight was still a good outlet for the Shrimpers and his header on 72 minutes was gathered well by Leblond. The tension and urgency was rising by this point as the prospect of the dreaded penalty shoot-out did loom. With 77 minutes on the watch, a good ball in from the right flank by full-back Sanchez Hardy was pounced on by Ortiz though the path of the ball was slightly behind him so the forward couldn’t generate the power in his strike to bypass Cook, who was able to gather. Joel Lamb also struck narrowly over the goal frame from 25 yards out but despite both teams’ efforts, penalties it was.


FT (After 90 mins): West Essex 0 – 0 Harwich & Parkeston

So the neccessary spot-kick shoot-out would determine who went through to the Second Qualifying Round. In summary, West scored some good penalties and notched all five of theirs, with David Bell firing home the winning spot-kick past Harwich stopper Cook, after Harwich winger Luke Mayhew’s spot-kick was well kept out by Stags goalkeeper Arthur Leblond.

Full-Time: West Essex 0 – 0 Harwich & Parkeston (West won 5 – 3 on pens)

In summary, this hard-fought Vase tie was not blessed with a huge array of chances though it is arguable that Harwich goalkeeper Brad Cook and the defence prevented West from winning the game in the ninety minutes. The hosts were good in terms of effort levels even if they couldn’t quite create their final ball as they would have liked.

There were some good performances to note as ever. For winners West Essex, forward David Bell put in a very hard-working display and certainly did his utmost to test Harwich custodian Brad Cook and the tough visiting defence, making several good runs and getting into good positions. Midfielder Timmy Moncur was also an important player in this match for West, getting into the channels to stretch the opposition backline with a high-energy display. Lastly, centre-back Emmanuel Oluwole contributed to a home defence that did not give Harwich too many chances either, making several good interceptions and showing good positioning defensively.

For Harwich, goalkeeper Brad Cook made three terrific saves to keep his team in it before the hour mark, and his presence encouraged the resilent defence as well. Forward Joe Boreham-Knight had another fine game despite not having that much service, getting in behind the opposition full-backs and also keeping the West backline alert in a physical battle. Finally, centre-back Nathan Kioussis typified the robust attitude of his team in frustrating the Stags by anchoring the Harwich backline and restricting the amount of chances conceded.

So, West do progress to the Second Round Qualifying next month and have earned £550 in prize money (Source: The FA Website), congrats to them while Harwich have gained £160 by way of consolation. I wish the Shrimpers well for the rest of their season.


Teams

West Essex  |  Manager: Kwame Kwateng |  Assistants: George Karsa & Josh Rogers

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Arthur Leblond (GK), 2 Sanchez Hardy (12 Tyler Morgan 90’+2), 3 Joel Lamb, 5 Emmanuel Oluwole, 15 Tala Lo-Seye, 17 Saliu Lo-Seye (8 Oliseh Okuguni 66′), 14 Reece Clarke (Capt), 22 Timmy Moncur, 21 Mohamud Kaudeer (10 Callum Bloss 66′), 20 David Bell, 9 Marlon Ortiz

|  Subs Not Used: McNally, Kinzonzi, Pike & Ignatiuk (GK)


Harwich & Parkeston  | Manager: Sean Tynan | Assistant: Gary Kioussis

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Brad Cook (GK), 2 Shaun Kioussis, 3 Reece Harte, 5 Nathan Kioussis, 6 Jack Wood, 4 Alfred Smith, 17 Matthew Geen (14 Robert Pratt 69′), 8 Gareth Heath (Capt), 9 Joe Boreham-Knight, 10 Brandon Rusby (15 Jay Eggerichs 69′), 11 Luke Mayhew

Booked: Rusby | Subs Not Used: Tuck, Lines (GK)


Referee: Sam Everitt

Assistants: Dean Banks & Riley Chalfen

S22-23 Match Report: Frenford Dev 1 – 3 Chadwell Heath Spartans (Thurs 25 Aug) [EAL 22/23 26.8.22]

EAL logo

Essex Alliance League – Senior Division

Venue: Jack Carter Centre [3G]

Attendance: 40 (Est)

2022-23 Season: Match 9

Thursday 25 August 2022 – 7.45pm KO

Frenford: Red & White Shirts, Red Shorts & Socks

Spartans: Grey Shirts, Grey Shorts, Black Socks


Organised Spartans play well to win at Frenford Development

Frenford Dev 1 – 3 Chadwell Heath Spartans

Match Report by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Photos by Scott W and Neil Hunwicks [@ABridgeTooFar16], used with thanks.

A rare Thursday night match saw me make the trip back to Frenford’s Jack Carter Centre as their Development side welcomed Chadwell Heath Spartans, in what was my first EAL venture of the new term. Frenford were elevated to Step 7 after a fine season in Division One last season and boss Wayne Phillips was seeking to get the win against a Spaartans side known for being determined and rugged.

After a decent opening salvo to this game, it was the Spartans who took the lead on ten minutes. A good forward move ended with midfielder Jamie Pooley finding some room just inside the penalty box before firing home a good strike just over the grasp of Frenford custodian Luis Silva which went high into the net. The visitors were having a good spell at this point, with further half-chances for quick forward Samir Aboulainaf and player-boss Aaron Hunwicks’ whose header wasn’t far off target from a set-piece.

Jamie Pooley (#8 in Grey) puts Chadwell Heath ahead with a fine strike [Image by @ABridgeTooFar16]

Frenford did look quite decent down the flanks, with forward Damilola Olaiya making some good bursts to get into crossing positions, unfortunately the central forwards couldn’t evade a resolute Spartans backline. Home defender Rafay Khan’s fierce strike from at least 25 yards did keep visiting stopper Lewis Edwards alert though as it was a well-struck effort. Chadwell Heath’s Tommy Harrison nearly joined his central midfield partner Pooley on the score-sheet after fizzing a good strike narrowly over Silva’s crossbar.

Frenford build a forward move in first half [Image by Scott W]

Spartans did extend their lead on 27 minutes, as a errant pass back to Silva was seized on by Aboulainaf and he made no mistake in sending a low finish into the corner. Frenford had glimpses of goal before the break, as forward Wisley Baltazar sent a decent strike at goal, only for a deflection to see it away for a corner.

Half-Time: Frenford Dev 0 – 2 CH Spartans

To give credit to the home side, they certainly emerged with more energy after the interval. Baltazar was unsurprisingly in the action again soon after we began again, as his low strike was well-denied by Edwards who got down well to it. The visitors responded on 49 minutes as Portuguese forward Miguel Martins’s goal-bound effort brought a good low save from Silva, and debutant Manu Kahatadeniya was only narrowly off-target with his strike, following-up on the rebound.

On the hour, Frenford did translate their momentum into some scoreboard pressure, courtesy of a fine strike by Baltazar who powered home an unstoppable strike past Edwards and into the net. It was a goal of good technique. Wayne Phillips’ team did keep the pressure on for a good portion of the half, but couldn’t breach the well-drilled & hard-working Chadwell Heath defence. Substitute Reon Murray-Whyte had their best chance to add to the score-sheet but somehow lifted his effort over the woodwork from mere yards away.

Handley [#3] looks to break down left side for hosts [Image by Scott W]

Just when it looked like it could have been a really twitchy end for the visitors, they did grab a third goal on the counter with six minutes left. Frenford stopper Silva couldn’t clear the ball away in time, allowing Spartans replacement Daniel Wheeler to pinch the ball off him and curl home from a very acute angle, despite an attempted clearance off the goal-line.

Full-Time: Frenford Development 1 – 3 Chadwell Heath Spartans

So in summary, the Spartans played some neat football to get round an enterprising Frenford team, who did threaten themselves in the wide areas but didn’t test the visiting defence too much until the second half, when they forced the Chadwell backline into being the resilent outfit that they are.

There were some strong performances here. Beginning with winners Chadwell Heath and a word for central midfield pair Jamie Pooley and Tommy Harrison, who worked well together as well as having good individual performances. Pooley took his goal well and generally contributed to his team in both attack and defence while Harrison put in a hard-working display and also set about starting forward moves as well. Forward Samir Aboulainaf put in a good display too, his goal was a oppurtunist forward’s strike but he was alert to the chance. He also chased down the home defenders well, not giving them much peace. Lastly, player-boss Aaron Hunwicks made a number of characteristic & important interceptions to keep his team ahead when the were retteating somewhat in the middle bit of the second half.

For Frenford, forward Damilola Olaiya made several good runs down the flanks and gave the opposition backline some nervy moments. Defender Rafay Khan had a good game to keep his team in it, making a number of good clearances, with forward Wisley Baltazar reminding us of his talents for goal-scoring with a well-taken goal, and being a good presence in attack. Finally, new signing Louie Handley had a good debut at left-back, getting forward well and also making a few good tackles too.


Teams

Frenford Development |  Manager: Wayne Phillips |

Starting XI: 1 Luis Silva (GK), 16 Rafay Khan, 12 Daniel Francis, 4 Quam Adesanya, 3 Louie Handley, 11 Tiwa Osifuwa, 7 Michael Clayman, 8 Murilo Pereira (Capt), 10 Wisley Baltazar, 9 Isima Iguisi, 14 Damilola Olaiya

Goal-scorer: Wisley Baltazar [60′]

 | Subs ON: 15 Reon Murray-Whyte [50′], 17 Kyron Chiedozie [57′], 5 Edem Tetteh [76′], 2 Tyler Beaufort [78′]

Sub Not Used: Barahona


Chadwell Heath Spartans  |  Player-Manager: Aaron Hunwick | Assistant: Niru Hunwicks

Starting XI: 1 Lewis Edwards (GK), 2 Harry Goodwin (Capt), 3 Meer Ishanzadeh, 5 Joe Butcher, 6 Aaron Hunwicks, 4 Tommy Harrison, 8 Jamie Pooley, 10 Josh Duah, 7 Miguel Martins, 9 Samir Aboulainaf, 11 Manu Kahatadeniya

Goal-scorers: Jamie Pooley [10′], Samir Aboulainaf [27′], Daniel Wheeler [84′]

| Subs ON: 21 Rasheed Matabaro [64′], 12 Mofi Lionel [67′], 17 Cory Brown [77′], 15 Daniel Wheeler [82′], 16 Thomas Chawner [90’+2]

Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Albert Forbes
Assistants: Malcolm Pond & John Grocock

S22-23 Match Report: Romford 1 – 1 Takeley (Sun 21 Aug) [FAC PR 21.8.22]

The Emirates FA Cup – Prelim Round

Venue: Mayesbrook Park 3G

Attendance: 136

2022-23 Season: Match 8

Sunday 21 August 2022 – 3pm KO

Romford: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts & Blue Socks

Takeley: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

Hurford (#3) about to cross ball in for Romford

Takeley deny 10-man Romford to force a Replay in midweek

Romford 1 – 1 Takeley

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

The FA Cup returned for its Prelim Round stage this weekend and I made the trip to Mayesbrook Park to see tenants Romford face a tricky test in fellow Essex Senior side Takeley. Romford fielded goalkeeper Billy Lawlor, on loan from local side Dagenham & Redbridge, with a defence of full-backs Toby Barlow and Danny Hurford, plus centre-backs Tambeson Eyong and John Mbamrah. Kris Newby skippered the side in a deep midfield role, with wingers Charlie Morris and Jesse Odukolu supporting forwards Alex Balisani and Emmanuel Robe. Experienced forwards Martin Tuohy and Jake Gordon were among their substitutes. Takeley had Matt Gill between the sticks, with Bryn Thorpe and George Powell in central defence. George Frodsham and Warren Kayembe were the lead forwards for Marc Das’ side, and Glen O’Hanlon once again captained the visitors.

The early stages of this match were lively, and Takeley had a left-off early on as forward Alex Balisani broke clear of the visiting backline before curling a strike wide of the target. The visitors responded a minute later as skipper Glen O’Hanlon fizzed a header wide but we didn’t have to wait long for goals. Five minutes in, the tricky Balisani was felled in the area and home skipper Kris Newby duly converted into the left side corner, giving opposition custodian Matt Gill little chance.


However, Takeley responded within five minutes as Jordan Westcott’s initial strike was parried by Romford stopper Billy Lawlor, but George Frodsham was in prime position to follow-up and his low effort went into the net. That leveller provided a lot of impetus for Takeley in the increasing temperatures, and forward Warren Kayembe’s incisive pass found Frodsham, only for full-back Danny Hurford to make a fine tackle to deny him a good chance at Lawlor’s goal.

Frodsham was continuing to be lively on the right flank, as Romford could not retain the ball for long periods, or create much to sorely test the visiting backline, with Thorpe and Powell well-placed to rebuff any runs down the channels. Romford did have a few good moments, mainly through the runs of Balisani, who couldn’t quite find that telling pass.

Half-Time: Romford 1 – 1 Takeley


The second half didn’t quite get energised like the first half start did, though the job got harder for Takeley on 56 minutes as full-back Andre Humphrey was given a straight red card for a ‘reckless’ tackle. Even with a numerical advantage, the hosts could not strive to really make said advantage count. Indeed it was the visitors who had next chance as Thorpe’s well-hit strike was well-gathered by Lawlor.

Romford boss Steve Butterworth elected to bring on experienced forward pair Martin Tuohy and Jake Gordon in place of Emmanuel Robe and Charlie Morris and the two substitutes combined moments later, with Gordon’ cross from the right finding Tuohy, who toe-poked an effort narrowly wide of the near post.

Newby continued to have an influence on his side and his long searching pass found winger Jesse Olukolu well but Olukolu’s effort was well-gathered by Gill. As the minutes went by, it looked increasingly likely that Takeley were going to hold firm and force the replay in midweek and by the time the final whistle arrived, Marc Das’ team had completed that job.

Full-Time: Romford 1 – 1 Takeley

In summary, this hard-fought Cup tie was high on guts and strong tackles but a bit lighter on chances created as the match went on. Takeley will be happy to have seen off the hosts despite playing with ten men for over half an hour of the second half. Romford may rue the fact they could not test a tiring visiting defence that much in the latter stages, in front of a good attendance of over 130 in the sunshine at Mayesbrook Park.


There were some good performances to note as ever. For Romford, forward Alex Balisani did look to get past defenders quickly and put in some telling passes, though he had to come deeper into midfield to get on the ball in the second half. Captain Kris Newby put in some fine passes too from deep and generally was a good influence for his team. George Cox was his usual hard-working self in central midfield, while a mention also for full-back Danny Hurford who stuck to his task keeping the lively Frodsham from galloping past him several times on his flank.

For Takeley, forward George Frodsham was the livewire of their attack, taking his goal well and making several rapid runs down the right side for most of the game, before switching to a more defensive role late on to aid the visitors. George Powell and Bryn Thope symbolised the defensive effort for Marc Das, making several good jnterceptions and also a word for winger George Wappett who also made good runs down left side and added to the home defenders’ headache until he had to come off with a knock late on.

So, a Replay is required on Wednesday night at Takeley’s Station Road.


Teams

Romford    |  Manager: Steve Butterworth |  Assistant: Dan Spinks

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Billy Lawlor (GK), 2 Toby Barlow, 3 Danny Hurford, 5 Tamerson Eyong, 6 John Mbamarah, 4 Kris Newby (Capt), 8 George Cox (17 Jacob Wiggins), 7 Jesse Olukolu, 9 Emmanuel Robe (16 Martin Tuohy 61′), 10 Alex Balisani, 11 Charlie Morris (14 Jake Gordon 61′)

Goal-scorer: Kris Newby [pen 5′]

Booked: Newby, Gordon  |  Subs Not Used: Ademi, Sibanda


Takeley  | Manager: Marc Das | Assistant: Kevin Riley

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Matthew Gill (GK), 2 Mike La Ronde, 3 Andre Humphrey, 4 Bryn Thorpe, 5 George Powell, 6 Freddie Burrell (15 Charlie Dobinson 73′), 10 Glen O’Hanlon (Capt), 8 Jordan Westcott (14 Lewis Powell 39′), 7 George Frodsham, 9 Warren Kayembe, 11 George Wappett (17 Charlie Allum 81′)

Goal-scorer: George Frodsham [10′]

Booked: Frodsham, Burrell, Dobinson  | Sent Off: Humphrey [56′]

Subs Not Used: Lambrou, Bull (GK), Deamer

S22-23 Match Report: Benfleet 1 – 2 St Margaretsbury (Sat 20 Aug) [EaSL South 22/23 20.8.22]

Eastern Senior League – Division South

Venue: Park Lane

Attendance: 50 (Est)

2022-23 Season: Match 7

Saturday 20th August 2022 – 3pm KO

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

St Margaretsbury: Red Shirts, Black Shorts, Red & Black Socks

The ball is passed through to Stone [#3] for Benfleet [Image by Scott W]

Resilent St Margaretsbury grab 99th minute winner to deny Benfleet at Park Lane

Benfleet  1 – 2  St Margaretsbury

Match Report by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Photos by James Waple & Scott W

This weekend saw the first visit to Park Lane this term to see Benfleet take on visitors St Margaretsbury, who were bottom of the early standings and obviously keen to push on. Benfleet were looking to find the form which saw them win at Wivenhoe Town last week, rather than the form that saw them lose 1 – 2 to Burnham Ramblers in midweek. The hosts are now managed by Alex Salmon and he named stalwart Florent Gislette in goal, with a backline of Deolindo Lima, Frankie Stone, Martyn Lacey and skipper Cory Rider. Mason Shave and Lee Scott were the chief support to forward Ben Foord, with Henry Sims and Billy Carter among the midfield. St Margaretsbury had Sidi Haidara between the sticks, with a defence of Harry Gilzean, captain Emmanuel Ndukwu, Ethan Daniels and Alffie Campbell. Their front line was led by Gerson Artur and Kamarni Collington, with support from Miles Holding and Kai Daniel.

Shave [#11] attempts to break past St Mags defence [Image by James Waple]

This match was delayed by 13 minutes because of the match officials being delayed but when we did get underway, both sides had openings to grab that important early goal. For the visitors, both Miles Holding and Kamarni Collington had half-changes but they could not defeat Benfleet custodian Florent Gislette. The hosts had more ball time in the early stages, with their chance eminating from a fine centre by full-back Frankie Stone, which found forward Ben Foord and his flick was well clawed away by St Mags stopper Sidi Haidara.

Stone (far left) crosses in to find the forwards [Image by Scott W]

Benfleet were showing good effort levels but they could not quite craft their favoured passing game, and they had those earlier warnings which was underlined when St Margaretsbury broke the deadlock on 23 minutes. In a congested penalty area, St Mags managed to find Gerson Artur and without hesitation, his well-taken strike beat Gislette on its way to the right corner of the net. Clear-cut chances were not easy to come by but Collington still sent a set-piece narrowly over the woodwork and Mason Shave had a glimpse at goal before his effort was gathered by the visiting goalkeeper Haidara.

Collington [#14] uses his pace to run down the channels for St Mags [Image by James Waple]

St Mags went into the interval with that slender advantage, though they were showing increasing confidence in their defensive abilities, while the ‘Fleet needed to raise their game a notch or two.

Half-Time: Benfleet 0 – 1 St Margaretsbury

Into the second half then and St Mags were continuing to frustrate the home side, though their resolve was commendable given recent results. There was a nervy moment for St Mags, four minutes in as a short pass back to the ‘keeper by defender Alfie Campbell was seized on by Shave, but Haidara denied him again with his feet. Benfleet continued to press for that important leveller, but St Margaretsbury were holding firm.

St Mags close down Lacey [#4] in first half [Image by James Waple]

As we entered the latter stages of this match, the the tension went up a gear as St Mags nearly made the points safe as Campbell’s crisp strike was well parried away by Gislette. Alex Salmon’s side responded immediately at the other end with a fierce strike by Foord being well saved by the impressive Haidara.

We went into added-on time with St Mags still just the one goal ahead but there was two big monents yet to come. First, with six minutes played in added time, Benfleet struck as a set-piece ended up with Deolindo Lima heading on for Foord to get something on the ball to force it over the line, with the diving defender unable to clear the ball off the goalline. Then there was another twist in the tale, as St Mags launched the ball up field on the counter, and Gerson Artur again found himself in on goal and fired home into the left corner to seal the game with pretty much the last kick of the game.

The Goalkeeper’s perspective… for St Mags ‘keeper Haidara in second half [Image by James Waple]

Full-Time: Benfleet 1 – 2 St Margaretsbury

To sum up at times a gritty and scrappy battle, there were a number of occasions where Benfleet threatened to get back in the game though credit has to go to a well-organised St Margaretsbury side, who made it hard to get through their backline. Their young side has seen a lot of change since last term, but joint-managers Paul Holding & Marce Collington will be happy with the resolve shown by their team here. As for the hosts, they couldn’t create enough on a consistent basis and when Foord scored in added-time, they may well have thought they had grabbed a point but the ‘footballing gods’ were not smiling on them today.

There were some good performances from both sides here. For victors St Mags, I felt forward Kamarni Collington really gave his team a good outlet going forward, stretching the home defence with his pace and dribbling. Full-back Harry Gilzean also impressed, showing good defensive awareness in making timely interceptions and playing a few good passes from the back. Forward Gerson Massala Artur took both his goals well wiith well-taken finishes, and a word for goalkeeper Sidi Haidara who made three good saves to keep his team in the game today.

For Benfleet, Frankie Stone had a good game at left-back, putting in several important crosses to keep the visiting defence alert. Forward Ben Foord showed his usual tireless running and took his goal well in a crowded penalty area. Mason Shave also made some decent runs but ultimately couldn’t get into faultless striking positions, while centre-back Martyn Lacey also showed good composure and positioning to deny the visitors more runs on goal.

Congrats to St Mags on their win & I’d like to wish both teams well for the season ahead.


Teams

Benfleet    |  Manager: Alex Salmon | Assistants: Dave Saxton, Michael Cundy & Ray Coker

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Florent Gislette (GK), 2 Deolindo Lima, 3 Frankie Stone, 4 Martyn Lacey (16 Billy Shulver 70′) 5 Cory Rider (Capt), 6 Taylor Lawrence, 7 Billy Carter (12 Flynn Monk 62′, replaced by 14 Jack Frost 90′), 8 Henry Sims, 9 Ben Foord, 10 Lee Scott (15 Billy Firman 62), 11 Mason Shave (17 Jake Frost 70′)

Goal-scorers: Ben Foord [90’+6]

Subs Not Used: None | Booked: None


St Margaretsbury  | Joint-Managers: Paul Holding & Marce Collington | Assistant: Dom Woods

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Sidi Haidara (GK), 2 Harry Gilzean, 3 Emmanuel Ndukwu (Capt) (15 Dylan Goldsmith 84′), 5 Ethan Daniels, 4 Alfie Campbell, 6Jason Brown (17 James Lawrance 90′), 7 Kai Daniel (12 Jack Standing 78′), 8 Isaac Evans, 9 Gerson Massala Artur, 14 Kamarni Collington, 11 Miles Holding

Goal-scorers: Gerson Massala Artur [23′ & 90’+9]

Subs Not Used: None | Booked: Campbell & Haidara


Referee: Kevin Harrington
Assistants: Martin Burroughs & Brian Chapman