S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 23 Apr) [EOFL 21/22 24.4.22]


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 on Tuesday 19 April and the action on Saturday 23 April. The focus this week is on the League action in the top three divisions. Thank you for reading.

Essex Olympian League – Tuesday 19 April

The midweek action was centred on the Premier Division with two big games. First, Basildon Town got a crucial win as they edged to a 3 – 2 victory over Galleywood at Basildon Sports Club. Graham Harrison, Rhys Willson and Benkjamin Smith all scored to send Marcus Bowers’ side to the top of the table ahead of the weekend’s action. ‘Wood responded through strikes by Luke Seaton and Jack Lakin but they still had several matches left to gain points. Also, Sungate comfortably defeated Harold Wood Athletic 4 – 0 to push Ath ever closer to being relegated. Arif Mustapha, James Smith, Jake Willis and replacement Kyran Chiedozie all struck to send the ‘Gate up to sixth, with aspirations still of a top-four finish.

Essex Olympian League – Saturday 23 April

Remaining with the top-tier onto Saturday’s action now, and Basildon Town were held to a 1 – 1 draw by spirited Canning Town at Gardiners Lane. Graham Harrison netted his 18th league goal of the campaign but Canning levelled to keep themselves in contention to avoid the bottom two. This result also thwarted Bas as Ongar Town got a home walkover win over injury-hit Kelvedon Hatch, which sent Ongar back to the summit on goal difference. Both teams now have two matches and Basildon need two big wins to overhaul that goal deficit.

Galleywood hauled themselves to within a point of their nearest rivals after a 2 – 1 success at home to Harold Wood Athletic. Sam Donn & an OG outdid Billy Reed’s goal for Ath in a result which means Harold Wood are unable to mathematically avoid a bottom-two finish. The hosts here have four matches to gain at least two points to make sure of finish above the top three. Elsewhere, Hutton were held 1 – 1 by a Sungate side dealing well with a hectic run of fixtures. Brad Freeman netted for Matt Singh’s side here but realistically a third-place finish is their objective now. ‘Gate have six games left to gain nine points to confirm at least a fifth-placed finish.

Rounding out the action in Step 7 was Old Southendian’s 3 – 3 draw with Bishop’s Stortford Swifts at Garon Park 3G. Harry Bovington scored twice for the visitors, allied with substitute Edward Pinch’s goal which sees Swifts inch towards a top-ten finish. OS remain eighth. Also, Springfield drew 1 – 1 with Shenfield AFC at Arun Park, with Tristan Ofori-Sampong scored for Francesco Zabotti’s side. AFC have now reached 30 points this term.

In Division One, there was only one match played but also we heard of a big alteration to the final table. Wakering Sports got a 4 – 3 win over Old Chelmsfordians at Lawford Lane, with Aaron Clark, Ben Burrows, Joseph Burton and substitute Alfie Fossett all scored for Sports but while the result was enough to see them secure third spot, events elsewhere meant it was not significant. Epping were adjudged to have fielded an ineligible player in their win over Toby two weeks ago, which meant Toby awarded the points which in turn lifted them above Runwell Sports and claim the title by a point. Both sides will compete in the Premier Division next term as Toby also announced their future plans for a ground move to Barleylands in 15 months’ time.  Congratulations to Toby & Runwell Sports on their promotion.


EOFL Divisions Two, Three & Four

Into Division Two now and what was a hugely significant day for ACD Utd as they won their title decider with Harold Hill 1 – 0 at Westlands. Michael Wade’s 26th league goal of the season was enough to secure yet another title for Greg Knock’s side and they will be in the second-tier next season. Congratulations to all at ACD Utd. Hill need one point from their last match at Hutton Res next month to join them in Division One. That is because Manford Way lost 2 – 1 at Rayleigh Town Res. Sam Barker and Byron Down got the goals as Rayleigh came from behind to end their season on a high. Manford have to win their last game to finish third as Wakebury edged a super match, winning 5 – 4 over Rochford Town at Nursery Sports Ground. Jerry Nkoy notched a treble here for Matt Cardy’s team, with Daniel Buglione also netting his 10th league goal this term and Jake Farthing also scoring here. Rochford will finish bottom and after a good run in Division Two in the last few seasons, it looks very likely they will drop down to Division Three.

In the other game in this division, Harold Wood Athletic Res secured their place in the division next season with a 2 – 1 success over AS Rawreth at Harold Wood Park. Josh Portway and Oliver Portway both netted to give Wood’s second-side an important win. For Rawreth, they will need at least one win to overhaul closest rivals Hutton Res and stay out of the bottom two.

In Division Three, Wakering Sports Res got a priceless 4 – 2 victory at Corinthians Res to put themselves in the best position for the Division Three title & promotion. Eben Rowledge got two goals for the visitors, with Connor Fardyga’s 25th league goal this term and Scott Clark’s 15th goal of the campaign securing victory. Sports are a point clear of Hashtag Utd Dev who were held 1 – 1 by promotion rivals Catholic Utd Res at Barleylands. Shaun Warren netted for the hosts, but Franklin Craik’s 20th league goal this term for Ressie side was enough to claim a point an ensure the race for promotion goes into the last day next weekend. Hashtag travel to Wakering in what is sure to be a big game at Cupid’s.

Lastly, Hullbridge Sports Res got a fine 4 – 1 triumph at Buckhurst Hill U23 in the early game. Joe Ives netted twice for Sports here, with Harry Ives and George Mole also on target to render Jacob Richards’ goal as mere consolation. Both teams are likely to finish in lower mid-table.

Lastly for the main part of this week’s round-up, in Division Four Galleywood Res got a 2 – 0 win over Springfield Res in the late game. Clarke Green and substitute Craig Skipper both netted to give them a big win and dent the visitors’ chances in the promotion race.  Also, Wakering Sports A defeated Sungate Dev 4 – 1 in North East London, meaning they will finish at least eighth.

Div Five – Snaresbrook Res  H – W  Pitsea Athletic Res

S21-22 Match Report: Billericay Town U23 1 – 2 Harlow Town Res (Sun 24 Apr) (ESL LDC Final 25.4.22)

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – League Divisional Cup Final

Venue: Capershotts (Waltham Abbey FC)

Attendance: 165

2021-22 Season: Match 76

Sunday 24th April 2022 – 3pm KO

Billericay: Blue Shirts,  Black Shorts, Blue Socks

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


Harlow’s late winner sees them lift the ESL League Divisional Cup at Capershotts

Billericay Town Res  1 – 2 Harlow Town Res

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

The second & final match of this last weekend of the League part of the ESL campaign saw a welcome ‘bonus’ match at Capershotts as Reserve League Division One Champions Billericay Town Reserves (or U23s) faced Harlow Town Reserves for the League Divisional Cup, which is a new competition in the Essex Senior this term. It is a rare pleasure to see Reserve teams and this was my third Reserves match of this campaign.

The good crowd of over 160 in attendance saw a very open-ended start to the game as both sides were looking to gain the advantage. In the early moments, Harlow forward Manny Phagura got in on goal evading his marker but his goalbound effort was gathered by Billericay stopper Jordan Williams. The Blues side was assisted by the good play down the left flank by Gabriel Ipanga Mbambo and one of his teasing crosses into the centre so nearly found the head of forward Louie Vesper who had a well-timed run in the eighteen yard area.



Harlow responded at the other end as forward Charles Nicol got ahead of his marker and powered a header off-target on 14 minutes. The decent approach play continued from both teams but it was Mbambo who curled in a good ball which evaded the unfortunate Horgan and came back off the post onto him and into the net with 31 minutes on the watch. The Hawks were undeterred though and responded barely two minutes later as attacking midfielder Henry Clark found the run of forward Marko Protic and he finished with aplomb, low under the dive of Williams to level things up.

Williams was called into action again four minutes before the break as a decent move that involved full-back Callum Berg and Protic ended with a curling strike that the Billericay stopper gathered.


Half-Time: Billericay 1 – 1 Harlow


It would be fair to say that the second period was not quite at the same pace as the first half, although there were a few decent chances for either side. Just shy of the hour mark, Billericay midfielder Freddy Cooper sent a header in on goal which Horgan gathered well enough. At the other end, Harlow’s creative forward Manny Phagura had been fizzing in some good passes and one of those on 69 minutes found Nicol who had narrowly strayed offside.

Danny Brown’s side responded with two decent chances, first after a good move involving substitute Nyan Mesuria and Vosper led to Cooper firing his effort wide. Soon afterward, decent build-up play by Mbambo led to full-back George Cornwell having a go at goal, forcing a decent save from Horgan.

Cornwell (2) making a good run down the right flank for Blues (Image by Scott W)

But just when it looked as though it would would finish level after the 90 minutes, Harlow got a crucial winning goal on eighty-four minutes as decent play in the build-up ended with full-back Sammy Bayon drilling in a good low strike which left the unfortunate Williams stranded as it found the net. The Blues could not respond and had to settle for their runners-up medals in what has still been a good campaign for them.

Charles Nicol (far right) jostling for possession with Billericay’s Tom Duffy

Full-Time:  Billericay Town Res  1 – 2 Harlow Town Res

To summarise this match, a really energetic first-half meant that both sides were finding it tricky to match said energy levels after the interval. The Billericay side showed enough to display why they had won the ESL Reserve League Division One title but they could not dominate a good Harlow side, whose main focus ended up being this competition. The late winner really did come at a good time as we were hurtling towards another 30 minutes, for the second time this weekend. It was hard to deny Harlow their win as they put in a good all-round effort.

There were some really good performances in this game. For Harlow Res, I felt forward Charles Nicol had a really good game, provuding his team with a good focal point in attack and show good physicality and passing. Fellow forwards Marko Protic and Manny Phagura also shone, with Protic taking his goal well and being a constant threat to the Billericay backline, while Phagura was the creative passer & dribbler just behind them in the formation. Finally, a word for full-back Sammy Bayon who already put in a hard-working performance before producing a fine strike for the winning goal.

For the Billericay side, I thought winger Gabriel Ipanga Mbambo showed why he’s had loan spells elsewhere in Senior football this term, showcasing good pace, passing and movement in addition to his goal. Freddy Cooper had a fine game in central midfield and made several good passes, while forward Louie Vosper did test the stout Harlow backline with his pace and trickery. Lastly, full-back George Cornwell did well to provide an attacking option at times, making several good runs down the right flank & added some good passes as well.

Here are your winners – Harlow Town Reserves!

Congrats to the victors Harlow but I will add it was good to see both teams looking to play the game in a fast, enterprising style.


I’ll end with some thanks, firstly to Essex Senior League President Rob Errington and also to Match Referee Craig Wood, for his assistance pre-match. Thank you.


Teams

Billericay Town Res     |  Manager: Danny Brown 

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jordan Williams (GK), 2 George Cornwell, 3 James Drake, 18 Henry Lukombo, 16 Tom Duffy (Capt), 5 Josh Brown (7 Nyan Mesuria 63′), 17 Freddy Cooper, 8 Jack Taylor, 14 Gabriel Ipanga Mbambo, 11 Robert Adams, 9 Louie Vosper (19 Kaylen Harris 87′)

Goal-scorer: Gabriel Ipanga Mbambo [31′]

Booked: Mesuria  | Sub Not Used: Davey, Bassa, Clubb


Harlow Town Res     | Manager: Adam Connolly

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Robert Horgan (GK), 2 Sammy Bayon, 3 Callum Berg, 5 Reece Hardwick, 6 Greame Butler (Capt), 4 Jamie Brooker (18 Harry Yorke 90′), 14 Eden Hayday, 10 Henry Clark, 19 Manny Phagura, 9 Marko Protic, 7 Charles Nicol (8 Ishmeal Fiadzomor 84′),

Goal-scorers: Marko Protic [34′], Sammy Bayon [84′]

Booked: Clark | Subs Not Used: Harwood, Ambrose, Parker


Referee: Craig Wood
Assistants: Yaron Woolf & Katie Dorling

Fourth Official: James Latham

S21-22 Match Report: Benfleet 1 – 2 Halstead Town (Sat 23 Apr) [EaSL Sth P/O SF 24.4.22]

Eastern Senior League – South Division Play-Off Semi-Final

Venue: Park Lane

Attendance: 162

2021-22 Season: Match 75

Saturday 23rd April 2022 – 3pm KO

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

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

Action still from first-half (Image by Scott W)

Halstead battle hard to overcome Benfleet in play-off Semi-Final

Benfleet  1 – 2 Halstead Town (AET)

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

The first match this weekend saw a return to Park Lane for a crucial Eastern Senior League play-off Semi-Final, as Benfleet ,who finished 3rd in the League season) entertained Halstead Town, who finished the season strongly.

Buoyed on their sizeable travelling contingent of supporters, Halstead looked to keep things tight early-doors as Halstead forward Calvin Poku struck wide of home custodian Florent Gislette’s woodwork. Benfleet looked to retain possession and gain the impetus as well, and prominent forward Ben Foord had a half-chance two minutes into the game but visiting stopper Jack Cherry did well to deny him. The same two players were key on eleven minutes as a fierce strike by Foord was well-parried onto the woodwork by Cherry.

You may have thought at this point that it was a case of when Robert Polkinghorn’s side would break the deadlock. But that wasn’t the case as the Humbugs certainly defended stoutly and the hosts couldn’t quite create the clear chances their possession advantage may have given them. It got worse for Benfleet on twenty-four minutes. From a relatively rare foray forward at this point in proceedings, a good run down the right channel by winger Jordan Blackwell ended with a fine cross into the six-yard area, which allowed wily forward Calvin Poku to slot home from close range after evading the ‘Fleet backline.

Benfleet looking to get test Halstead keeper Jack Cherry

Benfleet were playing some neat football, but their finishing was going astray. A good move involving full-back Joe Hunter and defender Sonny Hartman ended with Foord again firing off-target. Halstead did also clear a good header off the goalline and they did ride theur luck a little. But for me, the Humbugs were also more composed in defence and they were not rattled by the task at hand. Cherry was called into action again just before the break as a good header by centre-back Cameron Harris from about eight yards out was denied by the Halstead captain.

HT: Benfleet 0 – 1 Halstead

Billy Carter (left) about to launch long pass on for Benfleet

Benfleet needed to find another gear after the interval as although Halstead had few chances in the first half, they looked a danger going forward and they did catch the Blues defence napping on occasion. Early on in the second half, impressive winger Frankie Stone sprinted clear of the retreating visiting defence, only to be denied by an excellent recovery tackle by a Humbugs defender.

I was starting to wonder on the hour whether this match would be a case of ‘missed chances’ for the hosts. On 62 minutes, the Poku was again given too much space in the area by the home defence with his resulting strike being well-denied by Gislette. Benfleet sensed they had to level quickly and responded as Foord was through on goal but again a superb recovery challenge by full-back Ryan Carter stifled the oppurtunity to shoot past Cherry.

Jordan Blackwell (right) launches a forward move for Halstead

Benfleet were really cursing their luck after a free-kick by substitute Henry Sims was nodded on by Foord and Stone’s prod at goal was cleared off the goal-line. Fourth official Ian Pascu signalled six added minutes to play and just as you started to think the solitary goal would be the winner, Benfleet finally scored. A powerful header by Harris found the net in a congested area two minutes into added time and gave them a chance in extra-time.


Joe Hunter (far left) about to cross the ball in for ‘Fleet (Image by Scott W)

FT (90 mins): Benfleet 1 – 1 Halstead 

So, thirty minutes added time we had but there was a near -immediate dramatic turn in the match. Just two minutes in, Benfleet’ defence was caught trying to clear by Poku, who unselfishly slotted in Jordan Palmer who calmly finished past the grasp of Gislette. Halsyead really should have made the game secure eight minutes later but forward Adam Hampson’s decent strike was well-saved low down by Gislette.

Benfleet gave it everything in the second period of extra-time but it wasn’t to be. To their credit, Halstead showed plenty of desire, composure and application to edge their way to the play-off Final with a gritty and commendable performance.


Full-Time (AET):  Benfleet  1 – 2 Halstead Town

This match was a dramatic encounter though in summary, Halstead just edged it on composure in both penalty boxes, in my view. They took their goals well from the relatively few chances they had, compared to their hosts who couldn’t convert their morass of chances due to a combination of profligate finishing and last-ditch Humbugs defending.

There were some fine performances in this match . First, for winners Halstead. Winger Jordan Blackwell put in a fine display, exercising his movement and pace to good effect to stretch the home backline. Forward Calvin Poku also showed his guile and got an goal & an assist as part of a good all-round performance. Goalkeeper Jack Cherry pulled off three good saves in the first-half to keep it tight and centre-back Garry Burdett had another good game, showcasing desire and good positioning.

For Benfleet, I felt full-back Joe Hunter had an excellent game showing high energy, good passing and good awareness too. Support forward Frankie Stone also had a good game too, showing good pace, awareness and movement. Cameron Harris had another good game at centre-half making several good interceptions & also taking his goal well. Lastly, a word for forward Ben Foord who was their focal point up front and never stopped grafting. He was a constant threat until he had to be substituted late on.

Victors Halstead applaud their travelling supporters post-match

Congrats to both sides but it is Halstead who go on to face Buckhurst Hill in the Final after they defeated Wivenhoe 3-2 today. That will be a tough game.


Teams

Benfleet    |  Manager: Robert Polkinghorn  | Assistant: Robert Rook

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Florent Gislette (GK), 2 Billy Carter, 3 Joe Hunter, 4 Martyn Lacey, 5 Cameron Harris, 6 Sonny Hartman (17 Billy Bonham-Dare 67′), 7 Frankie Stone (15 Danny Hurford 108′), 8 Aaron Russell (Capt), 9 Robert Lacey, 11 Ben Foord (14 Mason Shave 86′), 10 Taylor Lawrence (12 Henry Sims 73′)

Goal-scorer: Cameron Harris [90’+2]

Sin-bin: R Lacey (115′)  | Subs Not Used: Frost


Halstead Town  | Manager: Mark McLean | Assistant: Pete Travers

Starting XI: 1 Jack Cherry (GK & Capt), 2 Ryan Carter, 3 Matt Travell, 4 Garry Burdett, 5 Nick Miller (14 Greg Strong 106′), 6 Alfie Cleal, 7 Jordan Blackwell, 8 Jordan Palmer, 9 Calvin Poku (15 Curtis Abel 92′), 10 Adam Hampson, 11 Jordan Pavett (12 Louis O’Sullivan 83′)

Goal-scorers: Calvin Poku  [24′], Jordan Palmer [ET 2′]

Booked: Miller | Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Chris Darling
Assistants: Sam Jones & Iain George

Fourth Official: Ian Pascu

Guest Blog: Essex Alliance League Round-up (Wk 33 – Sat 16 Apr) [EAL 21-22 19.4.22]

Action Still from Woodford East 0 – 2 Sungate in EPC Final on Wed 13 April [Image by Scott W]

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 divisions and action in the respective Divisional Cups on Saturday 16 April. My thanks to the EAL’s Rob Parker. 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 16 April

COUNTY CUP

Wednesday night saw the much-anticipated conclusion of the BBC Essex Saturday Premier Cup competition where Woodford East were representing the league in the final against Sungate at Billericay Town’s New Lodge ground. Woodford had the best of the first half chances, shading the half. Sungate were much improved in the second period and took a lead with a great strike on the hour mark by George Johnson, holding onto their lead well and then netting a deserved second thanks to substitute Arif Mustapha just before the end as ‘Gate won 2-0 to lift the cup. East can hold their heads high after a wonderful run in the competition and not looking out of place in the final.

If you’ like more on this match, NonLeague writers Scott W & Pete Dudley were both in attendance, here are their reports

Scott: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/04/14/s21-22-match-report-woodford-east-0-2-sungate-epc-final-wed-13-apr/

Pete: https://pedroslocalfootiefix.blogspot.com/2022/04/sungate-2-woodford-east-0.html


SENIOR DIVISION CUP

There was further midweek action on Wednesday night as Lymore Gardens took on Chigwell Town in the quarter finals of the cup at Cricklefields. Lymore were in fine form and secured their place in the last four with a 4 – 0 winning performance, Richie Dorcas, Dylan Roberts and Alex Coster all getting on the score-sheet as they await the winner from the other last eight tie.

DIVISION ONE CUP

It was semi-final Saturday in the Division One Cup competition over the weekend as both games took place simultaneously, the first seeing Barkingside A looking to overcome indifferent league form in a local derby game against Wanstead. A seven goal thriller saw Ali Rajim score two and James Blewitt one for ‘Side but their efforts proved not quite enough as Wanstead responded through a Edson Lami treble & one from Segio Lourenco to win 4 – 3 and take their place in the final.

In the other semi-final, over in Dagenham, it was a battle between league champions Belfry and RCXI for the right to take on Wanstead in the final in May and this one also so a close game. But Belfry goals from Solomon Ogunwomoju and Daniel Osborne were the difference in the end between the sides as the hosts won 2 – 0 to keep hopes alive of a league and cup double.


SENIOR DIVISION

A huge week in the Senior Division title race has seen DTFC put one hand on the coveted silverware after they produced a winning performance in a crucial trip to Chadwell Heath Spartans. A late, late goal was the only difference between the sides as Kazim Bishop netted that all important effort to win the game 1 – 0, moving them four points clear of the chasing pack. A win this Wednesday evening will be enough to see DT lift the crown.

The importance of that goal was emphasised even further as news came in from Noak Hill where Woodford East were in town to take on FC Petrocub, the Essex and London cup finalists meeting in a crucial league encounter. Connor Brathwaite found the back of the net for Woodford but Petrocub were in fine form ahead of their big occasion and netted twice to win the game 2 – 1, putting a huge dent in the title race.

Jolof Sports have moved up to fourth spot in the table with four games to go, leaping above Lymore Gardens following a hard fought 2 – 1 win away at Chigwell Town on Saturday afternoon. Joshua Kweifio-Okai and Papa Ndiaye both struck for Jolof with Ryan Gurry scoring the Town goal in reply as the hosts walked away with the points.

An important point was earned by Tower United in their battle to avoid the drop into the Premier Division as they took a share of the spoils in an exciting 3 – 3 draw away at Rapid Chingford over at Lakeside. Abdullah Jama scored a hat-trick in a fine performance but Sorin Tudose, Andrei Boga and Vlad Bucur goals ensured the hosts took a share of the spoils.

PREMIER DIVISION

The race for promotion into the National League System continues to hot up in the Premier Division with a key game on Saturday seeing Oakside taking on Crookz United in Collier Row. With games in hand, both sides still retain hopes of a top three finish but had to settle for a point each as the game finished in a 1 – 1 draw, keeping them fourth and fifth respectively.

DIVISION ONE

In Division One, there was just the one game also as Cowley Community made the trip to east London to take on Kwanzas London Sport, the former knowing they still remain favourites for the runners-up position. But they didn’t get everything their own way and had to settle for a 1 – 1 draw with Anthony Conteh scoring for Cowley. They sit just a point outside of the promotion places with two games in hand.


DIVISION TWO

The title race is reaching a conclusion in Division Two as Fairlop Rovers moved to the cusp of silverware following a solid victory over the weekend, beating Newbury East 5 – 1 in Hainault. Sehraan Hussain struck for the visitors but Rovers scored five of their own, meaning they can win the league with a double header success next weekend. That outcome was made possible following an exhilarating game in Rainham where Redbridge Community secured a terrific three point haul with a 5 – 3 win against cup finalists, Rainham Working Mens Club. Sean Tormey scored twice and Cameron Shakes once but their efforts were not enough as Redbridge ran in five goals of their own to take the points.

There was another huge result at the bottom of the table where St Francis moved out of the relegation zone for the first time this season, picking up a fifth league win following a 3 – 0 away win at Fords against Old Esthameians.  Skye Salmon, Martin Valkov and Abdullah Azizi were the Saints scorers for a vital points haul.

The division’s other game was another goal-filled encounter as Loughton Lions and Royal Forest met in Debden for a local derby game between two sides who know each other well. The sides shared six goals with the game ending in a 3 – 3 scoreline with Joe Meader netting twice for Forest & Joe Owers got the other goal. Lions moved to eleventh with four games left in their campaign while Royal Forest look comfortable in ninth.


DIVISION THREE

The huge game in Division Three saw FC Baresi Under 23s and Old Barkabbeyans Reserves battle it out for pole position in the race for the title. Old Barks started their final game with a four point advantage but an FC Baresi 6 – 4 success saw the latter put one hand on the trophy, now needing one victory from their last three games. Jay Elliott scored a hat-trick and Michael Ryder one for Old Barks with Joshua Adu (2), Maamoon Khan, Harrez Aliane, Zach Aliane and Hamza Shire all netting in reply.

Fourth placed Lymore Gardens Reserves gave themselves a great opportunity of holding on to that position come the end of the season as their second to last game of the campaign saw them secure a 4 – 1 win at Royal Forest Reserves in Hainault. Richard Grove scored for the hosts but four Garden goals courtesy of Warren Isoka, Rob Small, Tafari Miller and Raheem Sinclair were more than enough to take the points.

Together United are another side in with a shout of a top four finish this season as their penultimate league game saw them pick up all three points with an away success against Flyers Under 23s at King Georges. A 4-0 win was enough to add win number ten to their solid record this campaign and move to within two points of fourth spot.

S21-22 Match Report: Stanway Rovers 0 – 2 Redbridge (Mon 18 Apr) [ESL PBT Final 21-22 19.4.22]


ESL crest

ESL Peter Butcher Trophy – Final

Venue: Catons Lane

Attendance: 181

2021-22 Season: Match 74

Monday 18 April 2022 – 3pm KO

Stanway: Yellow Shirts, Black Shorts, Yellow Socks

Redbridge:  Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks



The Silverware.. This is the Peter Butcher Memorial Trophy [Image by Scott W]

Early Action Still with Redbridge defending [Image by Scott W]

Redbridge secure another Trophy with hard-earned win over resilient Stanway

Stanway Rovers  0 – 2  Redbridge

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

Additional photos by Katie Dorling [for @EssexSenior], used with thanks. Thanks also to the ESL’s Ashley Leat.

The last match of the Easter weekend saw the first Essex Senior-related Cup Final of the campaign as we headed to Saffron Walden’s Catons Lane for an interesting battle between high-flyers Redbridge and mid-table side Stanway Rovers. Stanway had to bypass Sawbridgeworth Town, West Essex and Takeley to reach this occasion and named Harry Aldridge between the posts, with captain Jack Clampin and Danny Nesbitt in central defence. Jordan Barnett and Harry Norman were the central midfield, with Ernest Okoh and Ayo Oukoya leading the attack, with support from James Crisell and Sean Bartlett. Forwards Joel Older, Max Sherlock and Ezequiel Franchi were all options from the sidelines for boss Danny Slatter.

Redbridge had to lift themselves following a disappointing end to their League match on Good Friday but in this competition, they had defeated Southend Manor, St Margaretsbury, Walthamstow and Stansted en route to this Final. They named regular stopper George Martin in goal, with a back four of Bradley Bennett, skipper Jack Roult plus centre-backs Dean Hall and Nathan Okoye. Tony Martin led the forward line, alongside Ibrahim Kehinde and Timothy Ogunrinde. Jerold Cobblah and Michael Pindy were cup-tied & therefore unavailable. Their bench included forward Loui Hazelwood, midfielders Kwabena Yeboah and Tayo Olukolu and defender Joe Elliott.  

The Stanway team pre-match [Image by Katie D]

The Redbridge Starting XI pre-match [Image by Katie D]

This match had a cagey start, perhaps reflecting the long & arduous season that both sides have had. It is understandable that the teams were mentally tired more than anything but the match did find its way into gear on ten minutes as Redbridge pushed forward and Robbie Norris’ header forced a decent save from Rovers custodian Harry Aldridge. Stanway had given the Motormen defence a few nervy moments in the early minutes, with forwards Ernest Okoh and Ayo Odukoya proving a good duo with good movement and strength. They couldn’t quite create the chances they needed though as the Blues did get the better of the midfield battle. On twenty-five minutes, a set-piece was angled into the penalty box, which centre-back Nathan Okoye got onto but his header was not powerful enough to trouble Aldridge, who gathered.

Stanway were commendably strong in defence but couldn’t quite find the telling passes to the forwards often enough as they were frustrated by a good Motormen backline. Rovers had a warning on thirty-three minutes when a good one-two passing move involving Martin and Timothy Ogunrinde ended with Ogunrinde firing wide of the right-side post, with Kehinde making a surging run in the centre of the penalty area.

Redbridge looking to get forward in first half [Image by Scott W]

The game was starting to drift towards the interval, needing a goal and one duly arrived nine minutes before the break. Good build-up play saw a good cross-field ball find Ibrahim Kehinde on the left flank, before the wily forward turned past his marker and sent a superb cross in to the far post, finding Tony Martin who powerfully headed home into the far post with Aldridge helpless to prevent it. George Christou’s side were having the better of the chances but they were not plentiful.

So at the Interval, Redbridge had a slender lead but they had to stay alert to shake off the threat posed by Odukoya and Okoh in particular while Rovers had to step up the tempo to further stretch & test the Redbridge defence.

Redbridge looking to counter-attack in 1st half with Stanway skipper Jack Clampin (5) marking [Image by Katie D]

Half-Time: Stanway Rovers 0 – 1 Redbridge


Redbridge looked to regain the momentum early in the second half but Kehinde was unable to make the most of two half-chances, first firing off-target and then shortly afterwards, his effort was saved by Aldridge, who was having a decent game. Stanway were still finding it tricky to create clear chances, with Okoh having the only effort of note off-target ten minutes after the restart. Max Sherlock came off the bench for Danny Slatter’s team to replace Sean Bartlett and immediately gave Rovers an injection of pace and energy down the left flank, which added to the threat the Motormen defence had to face.

At the other end, fellow substitute Loui Hazelwood was also causing problems for the Rovers backline as a surging run ended with Aldridge doing well to deny his effort as well. Stanway came back into proceedings well in the latter stages though as Okoh was denied by Motormen stopper George Martin before Sherlock got hold of the rebound and saw his strike blocked by the well-placed covering defenders. Redbridge were searching keenly for that telling second goal and Hazelwood so nearly had it, sending a curling strike from left side of penalty box which Stanway captain Jack Clampin did very well to clear off the goal-line.


Stanway put another dangerous ball into the box [Image by Scott W]

Rovers were still piling forward looking for that crucial leveller and were leaving gaps in their defence on the counter-attack. Redbridge did just that a minute before the ninety was up, with Hazelwood doing well making another run before playing in skipper Jack Roult but his strike went narrowly wide of Aldridge’s left-side post. That ended up being the last let-off Rovers had as a minute later, Redbridge finally got a second goal to seal the Peter Butcher Trophy.

A searing run by the impressive Kehinde down the right channel got the better of the Stanway defence before coolly playing in Hazelwood who struck home well with a looping finish to send the Redbridge contingent into raptures.

Stanway’s Ayo Odukoya being marked by Redbridge’s Robbie Norris [Image by Scott W]

Rovers had little time to mount a fightback as the final whistle went soon afterwards, though I must pay respect to the performance that they put in here. They put in a hard shift defensively but ultimately it wasn’t enough to claim the Trophy here.


Full-Time: Stanway Rovers  0 – 2 Redbridge

In summary, Redbridge were the stronger of the two sides going forward but Stanway made it tough with a resilient defensive display and the Motormen’s one goal lead going into the latter stages was precarious. That and Stanway looked more lively in attack after the interval meant there were nervy moments but George Christou’s side scored a superb second goal which secured more silverware, their second Trophy in two seasons.     

There were several fine performances from both sides In this Final. For victors Redbridge, forward Ibrahim Kehinde once again impressed, showing high energy and good running down the channels as well as good passing and two good assists and was named Man of the Match during the presentation post-match as well.  Jake Brocklebank had a good game in central midfield, as did centre-back Nathan Okoye who made several important interceptions at the heart of the Motormen backline. Finally, a word too for energetic forward Loui Hazelwood who did cause problems in the last half-hour with his movement and trickery after coming off the bench. He capped a memorable day for the club with a well-taken second goal.


Stanway also had some good performers on the big occasion, with Ernest Okoh leading the line well alongside Ayo Odukoya. His work rate and movement did give the Blues defence some nervy moments, particularly early on. Centre-back & captain Jack Clampin typified their resolve with some good clearances under pressure, assisted by full-back Daniel Smith who also put in a determined performance in defence and also sent in a few good crosses into the penalty area too.  Finally, substitute Max Sherlock made a difference after coming on, on the hour mark as well. His pace and passing really gave Rovers some impetus as the Motormen’s lead was perilously thin. Commiserations to Danny Slatter and his team, they’ve had a decent season.


Here are your winners of the Peter Butcher Trophy for Season 2021-22, Redbridge!!


Teams

Stanway Rovers  | Manager: Danny Slatter | Assistant: Jack Wignall

Starting XI  (Subs): 1 Harry Aldridge (GK), 2 Daniel Smith, 3 Olumide Akinode (15 Ezequiel Franchi 76’), 5 Jack Clampin (Capt), 18 Danny Nesbitt, 4 Jordan Barnett, 8 Harry Norman, 7 James Crisell, 9 Ernest Okoh (14 Joel Older 82’), 10 Ayo Odukoya, 11 Sean Bartlett (12 Max Sherlock 61’)

Booked: Akinode, Odukoya | Subs Not Used: Skinner (GK)


Redbridge  | Manager: George Christou  | Assistant: Jack Toghli

Starting XI (Subs): 1 George Martin (GK), 2 Bradley Bennett, 3 Jack Roult (Capt), 5 Dean Hall, 6 Nathan Okoye, 4 Jake Brocklebank, 8 Robbie Norris (16 Joe Elliott 86’), 18 Jack Chawner, 9 Ibrahim Kehinde, 10 Tony Martin (7 Loui Hazelwood 61’), 11 Timothy Ogunrinde (12 Kwabena Yeboah 80’)

Goal-scorers: Tony Martin [36’], Loui Hazelwood [90’]

Booked: Bennett, Brocklebank, G Martin (GK)  | Subs Not Used: Olukolu, Grace (GK)


Referee: Lukas Wood

Assistants: Ben Compton & Lee Jarvis

Fourth Official: Reece Pinchback

S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 16 Apr) [EOFL 21/22 17.4.22]

Image from Leigh Ramblers v Springfield on Tuesday this week

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 on 12 & 13 April and the action on Saturday 16 April. The focus this week is on the League action and the additional sections on Divisions Four & Five remain in place with their campaigns coming to a conclusion. Thank you for reading.

Essex Olympian Lge – Midweek (12/13 April)

This week we begin with the start of the Midweek EOFL action, in the Premier Division Springfield won their big battle at Leigh Ramblers 2 – 0. Two spot-kicks from Joe Kiff was enough to win a scrappy game and increased the pressure on the Rams as they seek to avoid a bottom two finish. In Division Four, Galleywood Res were held 2 – 2 by Old Chelmsfordians Res at Slades Lane. Oliver Sadler and Bradley Taylor scored for ‘Wood in that one, though goals from Lee Mulholland and Shane Pritchard levelled things up for the visitors.

On Wednesday night, Sungate maintained the EOFL’s recent stranglehold on the Essex Premier Cup after grabbing a 2 – 0 victory over Essex Alliance League Senior Division side Woodford East in the Final at New Lodge 3G, with nearly 450 spectators in attendance. George Johnson and substitute Arif Mustapha got the telling goals as Bobby Port’s side claimed the silverware. I was at this match & my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/04/14/s21-22-match-report-woodford-east-0-2-sungate-epc-final-wed-13-apr/


EOFL – Saturday 16 April

Premier Division, Divisions One & Two

In the Premier Division on Saturday, Basildon Town continued their progress towards the summit with a 3 – 0 victory over Old Southendian. Graham Harrison netted twice for Marcus Bowers’ side here, with Michael Onafuye also on target. Bas have kept the gap to leaders Ongar to one point, but still with one game in hand. Ongar Town themselves stayed top after a fine 5 – 0 success away at Canning Town. Jack Zielinski got two goals for Richard Ponsford’s team there, with Mitchell McCabe, Fred Mattock and Frank Goodall getting the other goals. The crucial game comes in midweek for Basildon Town, if they win that then they will go top.

Elsewhere, Leigh Ramblers drew 2 – 2 with rivals Galleywood at Slades Lane. Nathan Drewberry netted another fine double for Mark Hunter’s team, but strikes by Thomas Watling and Sean Barry really made it a better result for ‘Wood, who have five matches in hand on the Rams to claw back five points. The Rams have one match left to  increase the lead over Canning Town in second-bottom, it currently stands at nine points – but Canning have four matches currently in hand on the Rams so that battle will rumble on.

Also, Catholic Utd were held 2 – 2 by Sungate, only three days after their EPC success mentioned earlier. Harrison Day & Michael Sammut got the goals for Utd in that one to stay a point clear of ‘Gate in sixth. Finally, Kelvedon Hatch were held by Bishop’s Stortford Swifts 1 – 1 at New Hall. Wayne Semanshia netted for Kelvedon there  

With no action in Division One this week, we move to Division Two now. ACD Utd got a precious 3 – 2 win at Rayleigh Town Res to finally confirm promotion to Division One. Michael Wade netted two goals for Greg Knock’s impressive side, with Samuel Payne grabbing the other goal. They still have to face rivals Harold Hill in the title decider, that’ll be a game & a half! Also, Wakebury got a walkover win against Old Southendian Res so they have a chance of finishing third.


EOFL Divisions Three, Four & Five

Into Division Three, Catholic Utd Res kept up the pressure on the leaders by grabbing a 3 – 2 success at Buckhurst Hill U23. James Warder’s double plus one from Alec Bateman was enough to overhaul strikes by Harry Masklin and Olaobajuwan Olagbaju and give the visitors the points. However, Hashtag Utd Dev still lead the way after a narrow 1 – 0 win at Leigh Town Res means the Tags’ youth side lead by a point, with both sies and Wakering Sports Res having two games left to play. Elsewhere in the division, Toby Res ended their season with a 3 – 1 triumph against PItsea Athletic. Both sides will finish in mid-table, which is a creditable achievement for the EOFL newcomers.

Moving into Division Four, and Old Chelmsfordians Res kept their chance of a promotion spot going with a big 6 – 0 victory over Southend Manor Dev at Lawford Lane. Substitte Alex Tomkins got two goals here, with Shane Pritchard, Tmothy King, Emmanuel Mukaka and Lee Mulholland also on target for the OC second-side. Manor will finish in mid-table. Also, Shenfield AFC Res put a dent in Roydon’s promotion aspirations as AFC won 4 – 1 at Warley Playing Fields. Ross Riding got two goals here for the hosts, while Mason Everitt and replacement Shaun Goddard also scored. Halcyon Griffith got Roydon’s reply but they will likely have to win all three of their remaining games to have a chance of a top-three finish.

In Division Five, Bishop’s Stortford Swifts got the points without playing as Herongate Athletic Res conceded, so Swifts got the walkover win and with it the confirmation of Swifts as Division Five champions so congratulations to them. Ath will probably finish fourth as this was their last match of the campaign.


EOFL Cups

EOFL Denny King Memorial Cup – Semi-Final

Snaresbrook  0 – 0 Manford Way   | Snaresbrook won 5 – 4 on pens

Snaresbrook will face Runwell Sports in the DKC Final on Thurs April 28th as Basildon Utd

Thanks again for reading. Just for reference, the last EOFL round-up this term will be online on or around Monday 23rd May. Many thanks to all the readers of the column and for the kind comments it has garnered this season, it is appreciated.

S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Senior League (Sat 16 Apr) [ESL 21-22 17.4.22]

Hello and welcome a bonus blog looking at the action from the Essex Senior from Thurs 14th to Saturday 16th April, the penultimate weekend of the regular league season. Thanks for reading.

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14] – Non-League writer

Action still from Redbridge v Little Oakley on Good Friday [Image by Scott W]

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

On Thursday night, the re-arranged game between Hoddesdon Town and Stansted at Lowfield ended in a 2 – 1 victory for the Lilywhites. Larry Asare-Bediako gave them a first-minute lead, before Harry Andic netted a second goal just after the half-hour. Billy Coyne’s reply by way of a penalty six minutes before the break didn’t do enough to reverse the Airportmen’s fortunes here and further dimmed their play-off spot chances.

On Good Friday, Redbridge also had a dramatic game as they were held 1 – 1 by Little Oakley at Oakside. Michael Pindy put the Motormen ahead after three minutes to give them a dream start. However, profligate finishing scuppered their chances of making the points safe, allowing Oakley to stay in the game and a Harry Mann spot-kick was enough to give a depleted Oakley side a point.

If you’d like more on this game, my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/04/15/s21-22-match-report-redbridge-1-1-little-oakley-fri-15-apr

On Friday night, Woodford Town‘s last home game of the season ended in a 1 – 1 draw with Cockfosters. Both goals came late on, with Montel McKenzie putting Shane Baptiste’s side ahead on 81 minutes, only for substitute Bailey Stevenson levelling the game deep in added time with a fine volley. Cockfosters still remain in the top ten and have a Errington Cup Semi-Final at Enfield in midweek. If you’d like more on this game, fellow Non-League writer Peter Dudley was there & his report can be viewed here (second part of article): https://pedroslocalfootiefix.blogspot.com/2022/04/redbridge-1-little-oakley-1-woodford.html

Onto the five matches on Saturday now, start with Saffron Walden Town‘s priceless 2 – 0 triumph over strugglers Sawbridgeworth Town. Khris Oti and Gavin Cockman got the goals as Walden almost mathematically secured the second-place they have sought after. A crowd of 457 watched on at Catons Lane and they are unbeaten in their last 11 matches – some run that is at a crucial time. Sawbo have to win at home to West Essex next weekend and hope St Margaretsbury fail to win at Redbridge or they will be in the lottery of the relegation/promotion play-off between a Step 5 & 6 side as I understand it.

Elsewhere, Stansted kept up their very slim hopes of that second spot with a 2 – 0 victory at home to White Ensign at Hargrave Park. Michael Salako [49 & 82′] notched a double here to reach 20 league goals this campaign, congrats to him on another fine season. A win for Ensign at Enfield next Saturday evening will confirm a top-ten spot in their first term at Step 5. Also, Enfield conclusively won 4 – 1 at Clapton, with Samrai Gebrai notching a fine treble and Jack Grosvenor also on target midway in the second half. Ryan Ferrari got a consolation for the Tons as they still need a point to vanquish any mathematical chance of finishing in the bottom three.

FC Clacton got a 1 – 0 victory over Athletic Newham at the Rush Green Bowl, with Jamie Bennett the goal-scorer there. the Seasiders go above Newham in the standings into seventh and could still finish in the top eight which would a super achievement. Finally, Hoddesdon Town drew 0 – 0 with Ilford at Lowfield which means both sides will finish the bottom half this term. A good point though for the Foxes in boss Adam Peek’s penultimate game in charge.

S21-22 Match Report: Burnham Ramblers 1 – 2 Harwich & Parkeston  (Sat 16 Apr) [EaSL Sth 21-22 16.4.22]

Eastern Senior League – Division South

Venue: Leslie Field

Attendance: TBC

2021-22 Season: Match 73

Saturday 16th April – 3pm KO

Burnham R: Blue Shirts, Black Shorts, Blue Socks

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

Albert Galbally (far left) sends free-kick into the Harwich 18-yard box [Image by Scott W]

Harwich produce fine away-day display to defeat nervy Burnham at Leslie Field

Burnham Ramblers   1 –  2  Harwich & Parkeston

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

The Easter weekend continued with a trip back to Leslie Field for a real crunch match in the play-off race as Burnham Ramblers entertained Harwich & Parkeston. It’s always good to visit this historic ground and it was also a rare opportunity to see the North East Essex side as well. Burnham realistically had to win to stay in contention for a play-off spot but Harwich had been improving of late. As for the teams then and Burnham fielded Adam French in goal once again, with a back four of Nathan Putt, Albert Galbally and centre-backs Matthew Stevens-Brown and Ben Wood, who skippered the side. Adebolu Adeyemi played in a deeper role here, supporting forwards Samir Ali, George Hart and Haziz Kone. Options on the bench included forwards Said Issa, Deane Stone and Jack Walker. Harwich named Jack Lines as their goalkeeper here, with a defence comprised of Alfred Smith, Reece Harte with captain Nathan Kioussis alongside Jack Wood in central defence. Their attack was led by Joe Boreham-Knight and Jamie Eades. Their depleted bench included Cameron Brunsden, Jay Eggerichs and Tony Clarke.

This match got underway with the palpable sense that Harwich felt more comfortable in possession, and Burnham were feeling the nerves as they knew a strong result was key here. Samir Ali and Adebolu Adeyemi both had glimpses at visiting custodian Jack Lines’ goal frame but they couldn’t test the ‘keeper. Harwich were starting to create problems at the other end, as a set-piece by midfielder Brandon Rusby found commanding centre-back Jack Wood but his header was well parried away by home goalkeeper Adam French. Ramblers had a good chance just short of the half-hour as a move instigated by Haziz Kone down the left flank ended with his pass finding fellow forward George Hart and his effort was well-blocked in a congested penalty area by Harwich full-back Alfred Smith.

Burnham were creating a few nervous moments with their angled crosses in from deep but chances on goal were still few & far between, much to their growing frustration. The scale of the task grew ever higher as Harwich did break the deadlock seven minutes before the break. Harwich forward Joe Boreham-Knight made another telling run and his effort on goal evaded the home defenders which allowed Declan Kama to nip in and slot home from mere yards out, at the far post. Game on for Luke Goodson’s side. The Shrimpers nearly got a second goal as a speculative lobbed effort by Boreham-Knight went wide of French’s goal. You got the sense that Burnham were happy to not concede any more goals and needed some inspiration to rejuvenate their performance and possibly their season after the interval.

Half-Time: Burnham Ramblers  0 – 1   Harwich & Parkeston


The second half got underway as Burnham signalled their intent to resurrect their chances of the play-offs by getting back on terms. However, it was Harwich who were continuing to stretch the hosts’ defence, as Boreham-Knight again got past the backline after an errant pass by skipper Ben Wood was claimed. The forward then again sent a long pass into the far post area, agonizingly wide of strike partner Jamie Eades’ grasp as the ball trickled away, much to French’s relief. Another omen of it not being Burnham’s day came on seventy-five minutes as midfielder Levi Griffiths was given a straight red card for a high foot which did clatter into substitute Jay Eggerichs, who had to be substituted 15 minutes after coming on.

Harwich were sensing that they could wrap the points up and Kama’s strike was well-cleared off the goal line by Burnham captain Ben Wood. Burnham rallied and substitutes Jack Walker and Deane Stone did give them a little more impetus in the latter stages, with Stone breaking through the Harwich defence well before sending a well-struck effort wide of Line’s woodwork.

Despite showing good work rate, the hosts could not get the key passes into the forwards often enough for their liking really and Harwich sealed the win on eighty-nine minutes. A fine cross by midfielder Steven Polley found Boreham-Knight who controlled his header well as it flew into the far corner with French stranded. Burnham were awarded a spot-kick deep into added-time after Adeyemi was felled inside the area, which Samir Ali did convert with aplomb but it was not enough to prevent falling to a demoralising loss here and Ramblers simply have to win at Cornard Utd on the last day and hope Halstead lose at home to mid-table Coggeshall Utd.

The midfield battle… [Image by Scott W]

Full-Time: Burnham Ramblers 1 – 2   Harwich & Parkeston

In summary, Burnham could not conjure up a performance they needed to win the game. It may well been nerves and/or the pressure of needing the points today but that’s not really for me to say. Take nothing away from Harwich though as they put in a very good display, with strong performances all over the pitch, good movement and passing and a resolute defence as well to earn the points.

There were several creditable performances in this match. For victors Harwich, forward Joe Boreham-Knight led the attack well and also took his goal with aplomb. He gave the Burnham defence a tough afternoon, especially when the hosts had to push forward in the second half to get back into the game. Also, centre-back Jack Wood was a aerial threat in both boxes and could have two goals from set-pieces. Full-back Alfred Smith had a good match as well, showing good positional awareness in his defensive responsibilities and good work rate plus winger Declan Kama also took his goal well and showed decent movement off-the-ball.

For Burnham, Adebolu Adeyemi did well in his position supporting the forwards, threading in some good passes and gave everything for his team in terms of work rate. Centre-back Matthew Stevens-Brown put in some fine tackles as well to keep his side competitive and full-back Nathan Putt also showed good energy and passing. Finally, forward Samir Ali did all he could to get his team going and made some decent runs and showed good movement too.

I’d like to wish both sides well for their respective final match on Easter Monday and wish them well going into next season. Also, a big thanks to Burnham for their hospitality, it’s been really good to see the club as a whole on an upward curve this term.  


Teams

Burnham Ramblers  | Manager: Luke Goodson  | Assistant: Ross Mernick

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Adam French (GK), 2 Nathan Putt (16 Deane Stone 84’), 3 Albert Galbally, 5 Ben Wood (Capt), 6 Matthew Stevens-Brown, 4 Levi Griffiths, 8 Harry Shawyer, 7 Samir Ali, 9 Adebolu Adeyemi, 10 Haziz Kone, 14 George Hart (17 Jack Walker 73’)

Goal-scorer: Samir Ali [pen 90’+5]

Booked: Putt | Sent Off: Griffiths [75’] | Subs Not Used: Barry, Jackman & Issa


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

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jack Lines (GK), 2 Alfred Smith, 3 Reece Harte, 5 Nathan Kioussis (Capt), 6 Jack Wood, 7 Mark Palmer (14 Jay Eggerichs 62’ himself replaced due to injury by 12 Cameron Brunsden 77’), 8 Brandon Rusby, 9 Joe Boreham-Knight, 107 Jamie Eades, 11 Declan Kama

Goal-scorers: Declan Kama [38′], Joe Boreham-Knight [89′]

 Booked: Palmer, Eades, Boreham-Knight | Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Joshua Evans

Assistants: Garry Roberts & Daren Bigg

S21-22 Match Report: Redbridge 1 – 1  Little Oakley (Fri 15 Apr) [ESL 21-22 15.4.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Oakside

Attendance: 64

2021-22 Season: Match 72

Friday 15 April 2022 – 1pm KO

Redbridge:  Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

L Oakley: Yellow Shirts, Black Shorts, Black Socks



Redbridge denied an important win by last-gasp Oakley spot-kick

Redbridge    1 – 1  Little Oakley

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

The first match of the Easter weekend saw the hectic end of the season continue with a trip back to Oakside to see a critical mach in the fortunes of the Motormen as they entertained a robust & impressive Oakley side who are still after a top-six finish. George Christou’s hosts also had to think about their Peter Butcher Trophy Final on Easter Monday and fielded George Martin in goal, with a back four in front of him of Bradley Bennett, skipper Jack Roult and centre-backs Nathan Okoye and Joe Elliott. The forward line here was led by Ibrahim Kehinde, Tim Ogunrinde and Michael Pindy. Options from the sidelines included forwards Loui Hazelwood and Tony Martin. Matt Carmichael’s Acorns recently opened their new stand at their Memorial ground celebrating a fan who has supported them for seven decades in Gordon Carter. Their side here included stopper Daniel Joyce, Hayden Dutch and Will Crissell as their central defence, Ekow Owusu-Boakye and Bradley James in central midfield, with top-scorer Harry Mann leading the forward line alongside Sam Cooke. Their depleted bench was comprised of forwards Greg Rodger & Danny Garrad, alongside Tyler Sullivan.  


This match really broke into life early-doors as Redbridge not only threatened visiting custodian Daniel Joyce’s goal but also scored after just three minutes. A characteristic fast forward move allowed Tim Ogunrinde a strike at goal which was parried by Joyce, but the Oakley stopper couldn’t gather and Michael Pindy followed up, pinching the ball off skipper Edward Nobbs’ toes and Pindy duly slotted home low into the net without any further invitation. It was a setback for Oakley, who have made some reputation this season for being tough to break down and bypass. In the next phase of the game though, it was less happiness and more frustration for the team in blue though as they struck the woodwork twice before the half-hour arrived.

First, Ogunrinde’s fine strike nearly bypassed Joyce but not the goal frame and soon after, midfielder Jack Chawner’s well-struck free-kick also thundered off the woodwork with Oakley counting their luck and Redbridge cursing their luck. As they have in several matches this term, the duo of Ibrahim Kehinde & Michael Pindy really orchestrated the home side’s forward line, with Pindy showing excellent movement and no lack of pace either. Kehinde also showcased his pace and technique as well. Oakley did have a half-chance about ten minutes before the break as defender Will Crissell connected with a deep free-kick and the ball trickled wide, thankfully for Motormen goalkeeper George Martin.

Redbridge had one more chance at goal before the break but Kehinde couldn’t find the target as his shot drifted wide. All in all, the hosts should really have been two or three goals ahead at the break, but you know what they say about ‘having to take your chances’. That particular cliché would be further evidenced here but more on that later.

Half-Time: Redbridge  1 – 0  Little Oakley

Redbridge’s Bennett (2) about to launch a long throw [Image by Scott W]

Looking back, Oakley did gradually get themselves back into the running in the match, helped by the ‘midfield engine room’ of Ekow Owusu-Boakye and Bradley James plus the willing runner in forward Harry Mann. Moments on goal were less frequent, as the battle for midfield superiority replaced that to an extent. Oakley had to manage for ten minutes with ten men after Mason Lumley’s sin-bin just shy of the hour but substitute Danny Garrad did give them more impetus in the last fifteen minutes.

Frustratingly for the hosts, their early promise was being overtaken by tired legs and it highlighted how important chances were again just shy of seventy minutes when another set-piece by Chawner from nearly the half-way line also cannoned off the crossbar thanks to a one-handed save by Joyce. Centre-back Nathan Okoye’s effort was also denied by Joyce as Oakley were given some reason for optimism. The other thing the Acorns have been known for doing this season is staying in games and their belief has probably earned them a few points as well. It was Redbridge’s turn for a let-off with ten minutes remaining as Harry Mann fired well over when well-placed after good work by Garrad, but the assistant referee did put up his flag.


With mere moments remaining and despite Oakley not really creating a lot of chances at Martin’s goal, they did get a equaliser on eighty-nine minutes. A foul in a congested box by Okoye allowed Mann to step up and confidently fire home a fine spot-kick into left corner, away from Martin’s grasp – this was also Mann’s 20th league goal this term. And with little time left to conjure up a key second goal, it was the clock that won the day as Oakley left with a point & relatively happy with their afternoon’s work. The same certainly couldn’t be said for the hosts as desolation took hold after the final whistle and those earlier missed chances had come back to bite.

Redbridge now have to focus on the Peter Butcher Trophy final and hope that Sawbridgeworth stifle Saffron Walden’s charge to second spot on Saturday (16 April).

Oakley’s Ed Nobbs looking for options from the Throw-in late on [Image by Scott W]

Full-Time: Redbridge 1 – 1   Little Oakley

In summary, Redbridge should really have been two or three goals up as I said at the interval, but profligate finishing and decent defending by Oakley kept it to one goal. The Acorns would probably have wanted to have played better but their resolute belief will carry them well, looking at next season. It is some ways a credit to the high bar that both teams have set for themselves this term and that has to be recognised.    

There were several good performances from both sides in this match. For Redbridge, forwards Michael Pindy and Ibrahim Kehinde really gave the Oakley backline a hard afternoon, particularly in the first half with their pace, movement and passing. Centre-back Joe Elliott made several key interceptions and added to a good performance from his team’s back five while Jerold Cobblah impressed in central midfield with a high work rate and some good passes too. For Oakley, forward Harry Mann was as ever a good presence in attack, despite little in the way of service at times from his team-mates, but Mann did make several good runs in the channels. Mdfielder Ekow Owusu-Boakye put in a good display with a good work rate as well and good tackles, while defenders Ed Nobbs and Rory Harman also put in decent displays as well.

Best wishes to both sides for the remainder of the season.


Teams

Redbridge  | Manager: George Christou  | Assistant: Jack Toghli

Starting XI (Subs): 1 George Martin (GK), 2 Bradley Bennett, 3 Jack Roult (Capt), 5 Joe Elliott, 6 Nathan Okoye, 4 Jerold Cobblah, 8 Kwabena Yeboah (12 Shawn Harris 75’), 18 Jack Chawner, 7 Michael Pindy, 9 Ibrahim Kehinde (16 Tony Martin 71’), 11 Timothy Ogunrinde (19 Loui Hazelwood 78’)

Goal-scorer: Michael Pindy [3’]

Booked: None | Subs Not Used: Norris, Ayoola


Little Oakley  | Manager: Matt Carmichael | Assistant: James Good

Starting XI  (Subs): 1 Daniel Joyce (GK), 2 Rory Harman, 3 Edward Nobbs (Capt), 5 Hayden Dutch, 6 Will Crissell (12 Tyler Sullivan 65’), 4 Bradley James, 8 Ekow Owusu-Boakye , 7 Daniel Rowe 9 Harry Mann, 10 Sam Cooke (14 Danny Garrad 74’), 11 Mason Lumley

Goal-scorer: Harry Mann [pen 89’]

Booked: James, Rowe | Subs Not Used: Fernandes, Rodger


Referee: John Duffy

Assistants: Olabisi Omotosho & Muzackir Hussain

S21-22 Match Report: Woodford East 0 – 2 Sungate (EPC Final – Wed 13 April) [14.4.22]

BBC Essex Premier Cup – Final

Venue: New Lodge 3G

2021-22 Season: Match 71

Attendance: 448

Wednesday 13th April 2022 – 7.45pm KO

Woodford East: Yellow Shirts, Black Shorts, Yellow Socks

Sungate: Blue Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts, Blue Socks


Sungate celebrate their triumph with the Trophy, with refereeing team (left) looking on [Image by Essex County FA]

Sungate secure Cup glory with enterprising win over East at New Lodge

Woodford East  0 – 2   Sungate

Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]
and additional photos by Essex County FA [Twitter: @EssexCountyFA) and Essex Alliance Lge/Rob P [@EssexAllianceFL] (used with thanks)


The main midweek match was a welcome return to New Lodge for this season’s Essex Premier Cup Final, which saw EAL Senior newcomers Woodford East take on established EOFL side Sungate in the Intermedicate competition. I’d like to note that the occasion was well-run by the Essex County FA and the match had a terrific attendance. Woodford East were looking to mark their first season as a Step 7 side with silverware and fielded Alfie Watts between the posts, with Ben Smith, captain Frank Glock and Will Letchford in midfield. Connor Brathwaite and Callum Maltese led the forward line, with support from Adam Tabbani. Their substitutes included defenders Kieran Bruns and John Gilley plus forward Billy Barr.

Sungate had Stefan Lemacq in goal and a back four of Sam Elwood, Will Halford plus experienced centre-backs Daniel Callaway and William Wells. Stalwart Scott Truman skippered the side, with a forward line comprised of Ciaran Kelly, Lee Samways and George Johnson. Options on the bench included the forward-minded  Kyran Chiedozie, Thomas Drayton,  Arif Mustapha and Jake Willis.

Adam Tabbani (5) and Kai Law (3) look to re-engerize East’s forward moves in 1st half [Image by Scott W]

There was a well-held view that this game would be an entertaining match to watch and it certainly did not disappoint on that front. The first good chance arrived with only two minutes played, as the rapid James Smith made one of several excellent darting runs down right flank, his cross found the advancing Scott Truman who struck narrowly wide of Alfie Watts’ right-sided post. East responded at the other end with centre-back Matt Stacey’s well-directed header which was narrowly off-target two minutes later.

As the first half progressed, it was more evident that Sungate were the more cohesive passing side, with James Smith and Sam Elwood in particular joining up well down the right flank. East did have their moments, but were stifled by resolute defending by the Essex Olympian Premier side. That resoluteness was displayed as Bobby Port’s side made a fine last-ditch interception to deny Callum Maltese a big chance at Stefan Lemacq’s goal. The only thing that prevented the Olympian side taking the lead was a missed spot-kick by the impressive James Smith, as his penalty was skewed wide of the left-side post.


Sungate full-back Elwood (2 – far right) launches another good run down the flank [Image by Scott W]

Frustratingly for the big contigent of supporters backing Woodford East, they couldn’t conjure up many chances, with forward Callum Maltese curling a fine strike from outside the penalty area narrowly wide of left-side post, much to Lemacq’s relief. Smith was again in the action for Sungate, as his good pass found substitute Jake Willis but his effort couldn’t find the target. We got to the break with the no goals perhaps, but plenty of intrigue with Sungate edging it due to their stronger passing and creating more chances.


Half-Time: Woodford East 0 – 0 Sungate

Two captains in view, Glock makes a run for East, shadowed by Sungate skipper Truman [Image by Rob P/EAL]

After the break, the match resumed at a searing pace. Centre-back William Wells sent a fine header narrowly off-target from a set-piece and you felt that the ‘Gate were the side more likely to open the scoring. That being said, Connor Brathwaite timed his run well and nearly lobbed Lemacq after getting in behind the Sungate backline.

As it turned out, Sungate did break the stalemate on 63 minutes with a superb team move. A fast passing exchange between Smith and Lee Samways ended with the latter finding George Johnson on the left edge of the penalty area before sending in a fine curling strike beyond Watts, much to the delight of their fans. Willis had fired a fierce drive wide of Watts’ goal but Sungate did get that crucial gsecond goal with seven minutes remaining. Substitute Thomas Drayton’s strike was well crowded out by two East defenders but the ball was recycled well and fellow replacement Arif Mustapha slotted home from close range.

James Smith (7) in possession for Sungate [Image by Rob P/EAL]

East clear to deny Smith (7) another oppurtunity down right flank [Image by Scott W]

The last few minutes saw both sides looking to add further goals, but two goals was enough to see Sungate to a fine win and take home the cherished Trophy, continuing the recent dominance of Olympian League sides in this competition.

Full-Time: Woodford East  0 – 2  Sungate

In summary, Sungate looked the more assured of the two sides, created more chances and played at an impressive tempo to claim their first-ever Essex Premier Cup. Bobby Port’s team also defended resolutely when needed while East couldn’t create enough chances to continually threaten the ‘Gate defence. They can be very proud of their run to the Final though and their league aspirations continue.

There were a number of excellent performances in this Final. For victors Sungate, winger James Smith had an outstanding display. Showcasing a huge array of pace, work rate, passing and crossing ability – Smith undoubtedly had a fine influence on his team’s attacks. Next, centre-back Daniel Callaway exuded his team’s attitude to resolute defending, making several important challenges. Lastly, full-back Sam Elwood showed good energy and linked up well with Smith on the right flank, plus forward George Johnson had good movement and took his goal really well.

For Woodford East, forward Connor Brathwaite did keep the opposition defence alert making good runs and utilising good passing. While he did spurn East’s best chance, Brathwaite was well stopped by the ‘Gate backline. Will Letchford also had a good game, making good runs from deep which were hard to track. Forward Callum Maltese also showcased his pace and trickery at times while centre-back Matt Stacey made a number of good interceptions to keep his side in the match.

Best wishes to both teams for the rest of the campaign. 


Teams

Woodford East  | Manager: Halil Hassan | Assistant: Gary Wotton

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Alfie Watts (GK), 3 Kai Law (2 John Gilley 88′), 21 Sonny Feltwell, 4 Matt Stacey, 7 Eren Mehmet (6 Kieran Bruns 66′), 10 Ben Smith (18 Frankie Lane 64′), 14 Will Letchford (20 Liam Evans 90′), 15 Frank Glock (Capt), 5 Adam Tabbani (9 Billy Barr 59′), 12 Callum Maltese, 23 Connor Brathwaite

Booked: Stacey, Brathwaite, Gilley, Bruns | Subs Not Used: None


Sungate | Manager: Bobby Port  | Assistant: David Deller

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Stefan Lemacq (GK), 2 Sam Elwood, 3 Will Halford, 5 Daniel Callaway, 6 William Wells, 4 Scott Truman (Capt), 8 Josh Addinall, 7 James Smith (14 Arif Mustapha 75′), 15 Ciaran Kelly (9 Jake Willis 25′), 10 Lee Samways (16 Thomas Drayton 81′), 11 George Johnson (18 Josh Steel 87′)

Goal-scorers: George Johnson [63′], Arif Mustapha [83′]

Booked: Smith, Johnson, Wells, Elwood  | Sub Not Used: Chiedozie


Referee: Alexander Kyriacou
Assistant: Craig Wood & Benjamin Ridge
Fourth Official: Ryan Smith