S22-23 Match Report: Ilford 0 – 0 West Essex (Sat 28 Jan) [ESL 22-23 28.1.23]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Cricklefield

Attendance: TBA

2022-23 Season: Match 37

Saturday 28th January 2023 – 2pm KO

Ilford: Blue & White Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

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



Hard-fought battle sees West held at Ilford

Ilford 0 – 0 West Essex

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

The Saturday match this weekend saw a return to Cricklefield for an interesting local derby between Ilford and West Essex. Both sides wanted the points for different reasons, with the Foxes looking to get into the top ten and West looking to remain in the top six. Richard Ponsford fielded Tim Pitman in goal, with a defence comprised of Paul Cox & Henry Fisher plus centre-backs Tobi James & Jake Chadwick. The midfield was marshalled by skipper Mitchell McCabe with Mwetsi Matangi alongside him, with Josh Boxall & Mo Kargbo down the channels. Caleb Adomako-Mensah and Joe Lilly led the attack here. West have brought a couple of players into the squad in recent weeks, with loanee Dren Hoti deputising for the unwell Arthur LeBlond in goal, and a backline of Emanuel Wazola, Tala Lo Seye, Mitchell Arthur and Joel Lamb. Their energetic midfield had captain Reece Clarke, Saliu Lo Seye and Oliseh Okuguni in its ranks. David Bell led the attack, with support from Cameron Gray and Zak Oliver.

The early stages of this match saw the visitors start quite well, as their astute passing game did test the levels of focus of their hosts. Forward David Bell and midfielder Oliseh Okuguni had early half-chances that were wide of Tim Pitman’s goal. Ilford were finding it tricky to keep the ball but they still had one decent glimpse at goal as forward Caleb Adomako-Mensah saw a close-range effort fizz wide of the left-side post. As we entered the last 15 minutes of the first half, the Foxes did have arguably their best phase of the game up to this point, with only determined defending by the Stags preventing them from testing goalkeeper Dren Hoti.

Ilford boss Richard Ponsford watches on, early in first half

West Essex were creating promising moments, led by the enterprising running of support forward Zak Oliver, who was breaking down the right flank well, although his crosses was cleared by a stubborn central defence, led by Ilford’s Jake Chadwick. One of those Oliver crosses was well-angled in toards the far post, which Bell got across to well but could only loft his effort over the crossbar.

Half-Time: Ilford 0 – 0 West Essex

The Stags did have the better of the first half which was pretty hard-going for both teams. However, besides a glimmer at goal from captain Reece Clarke, West were spending more time defending in the early stages after the break. This was particularly the case on the hour as a good run by support forward Joshua Boxall down the left side ended with a good ball into the six yard box, which found Adomako-Mensah who timed his header well and was unfortunate as said header cannoned back off the under-side of the crossbar and back out. Bell also had another decent sight of goal but couldn’t direct his strike, allowing Pitman to gather fairly comfortably.

West winger Zak Oliver gets past Ilf’s Henry Fisher

My gut instinct was starting to sense that the stalemate could prevail here, although Ilford were keen to get down the channels, with substitutes Harry Rawlins and Delphin Moorat keen to evade the Stags midfield, who themselves battled well. There was two more chances of note as we entered the last ten minutes. First, substitute Moyo Ajibade did well to break down the right channel, putting a good ball into the box, which fellow replacement Callum Bloss latched on to but his strike sailed wide of the left-sided post. And then with mere moments left, Foxes skipper Mitchell McCabe struck a low-crisp effort which came back off the near post with Hoti beaten.

In the end though, the draw was a decent point for the Foxes who gathered their eighth shut-out of the season, which is good reward for a squad adapting to Senior football this term. West will be disappointed that they couldn’t convert their chances but they also showed parts of their development as a team in the last 12 months – specifically that they are often a tough side to beat.

Full-Time: Ilford 0 – 0 West Essex


So in the end, it was a battling if scrappy contest which neither side could edge. Even so, there was a lot to applaud from both sides as they will be pleased with elements of their respective displays here.
 
For West, the stand-out performers here were led by support forward Zak Oliver who made several good runs down the right flank, and included some good passing & pace as well. Full-back Emanuel Wazola also had a fine game, particularly in the second half as the hosts were getting more lively in attack, with Wazola making some good interceptions under pressure and used the ball well too. Centre-back Tala Lo Seye also put in a very good defensive display, making it hard for the opposition to create clear-cut chances. Finally, a word for dependable skipper Reece Clarke who put in a high-energy display in both defence & supporting the attack.

Ilford had a number of good individual performances here also, with full-back Henry Fisher putting in a very good performance, utilising possession well and making several important tackles to stifle a decent West forward line. Centre forward Caleb Adomako-Mensah also had a good game, showing decent pace & movement. He could count himself unlucky to not get on the score-sheet. Support forward Josh Boxall put in a number of good runs and passes, particularly after the break. While captain Mitchell McCabe also put in a hard shift for his team, becoming more influential in the last half hour.

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


Ilford | Manager: Richard Ponsford   | Assistant: Mark Lilly

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Tim Pitman (GK), 2 Paul Cox (16 Delphin Moorat 13′), 3 Henry Fisher, 5 Tobi James, 6 Jake Chadwick, 4 Mwetsi Matangi (14 Ozzie Nyahunda 46′), 8 Mitchell McCabe (Capt), 7 Mo Kargbo, 10 Joe Lilly (12 Harry Rawlins 66′), 9 Caleb Adomako-Mensah (15 Luke Pike 76′), 11 Joshua Boxall

Booked: James  | Sub Not Used: Fresneda


West Essex | Manager: Kwame Kwateng | Assistant: George Kars

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Dren Hoti (GK) , 6 Emanuel Wazola, 15 Tala Lo Seye, 25 Mitchell Arthur, 3 Joel Lamb (10 Callum Bloss 59′), 14 Reece Clarke (Capt), 17 Saliu Lo Seye (22 Timmy Moncur 73′), 8 Oliseh Okuguni, 19 Zak Oliver (18 Moyo Ajibade 70′), 20 David Bell (21 Mohamud Kaudeer 78′), 11 Cameron Gray

Sin-Bin: Okuguni [90’+2] | Subs Not Used: None

Referee: Dumitru Vasile
Assistants: Karl Dunnage & Adam Schroder

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S22-23 Match Report: White Ensign 0 – 0 Redbridge (Sat 7 Jan) [ESL 22-23 8.1.23]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Burroughs Park

Attendance: 52

2022-23 Season: Match 34

Saturday 7th January 2023 – 2pm KO

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

Redbridge: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks


Ensign secure hard-earned point and deny Redbridge a much-needed win

White Ensign  0 – 0  Redbridge

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

The opening match of 2023 saw a interesting tussle between second-placed Redbridge and hosts White Ensign, who have already secured some big results in the 2022-23 campaign in the Essex Senior. The conditions were windy and a tad slippery but considering the amount of recent rain, Burroughs Park was in good shape. With boss Aaron Bloxham away, assistant boss Nick Wibrow took the reigns here for the hosts and he named new loan signing Luis Shamshoum in goal, a defence comprised of Ben Sargent, Daniel Monk & Centre-backs Montel Shonubi and captain Mitchell Stuart-Evans. Their midfield featured Iyiola Adebayo, Joe Hunter and Kyle McAlindon, with the forward line being led by Charlie Portway, supported by Billy Bonham-Dare and Kian Bradshaw. Redbridge knew they needed the win here after leaders Enfield’s big win at Buckhurst Hill 18 hours prior and manager George Christou fielded Connor Wheatley as their goalkeeper, with a backline of Reuben Campbell, Joe Elliott and centre-backs Nathan Okoye and skipper Dean Hall. Jerrold Cobblah and Jack Chawner were their central midfield pairing. Michael Pindy and Joey May supported forwards Ibrahim Kehinde and Tony Martin.

The early stages of this match was interesting to watch, given that White Ensign succeeded somewhat in frustrating the opposition, who could not find their rhythm, particularly in attack. Defensively, Redbridge were more rigid as you would expect for a good side & where they are in the table at present, but Ensign still carved out a big chance in the first quarter of the game. Support forward Billy Bonham-Dare managed to evade his marker and slip through a good pass into forward Charlie Portway, but unfortunately for the hosts, his low effort trickled past visiting custodian Connor Wheatley and wide of the left-side post. As the half passed the midway point, the Motormen were starting to find their passing game, with forward Ibrahim Kehinde getting in good positions, but a combination of good defending and a lack of a final pass did frustrate both Kehinde and the visiting dug-out.

Joe Elliott fires in a long throw for the visitors

Full-back Joe Elliott’s long throws were also posing a problem for the home defence, and from one of those throw-ins, support forward Joey May’s header needed tipping over by loanee stopper Luis Shamshoum, a short-term signing from Frenford I understand. Forward Kian Bradshaw was also posing a threat down the right flank wth his pace, though his tame effort when in space in the penalty area was comfortably gathered by Wheatley. Redbridge pushed on towards the end of the first half, with Kehinde having a decent chance on goal which couldn’t bypass Shamshoum.

Half-Time:  White Ensign 0 – 0 Redbridge 

Reuben Campbell [#2] making a good surging run early in 2nd half for Motormen

I had a feeling that Motormen boss George Christou would utilise his substitutes soon after the resumption, and that would prove to be the case, with full-back Jack Roult, tricky winger Samraj Gill and midfielder Jamie Price all coming on before the hour, replacing Campbell, May & Cobblah respectively. Much to their credit, Ensign continued to be resilent in defence and occasionally made decent strides going forward as well, with midfielder Joe Hunter’s looping drive forcing Redbridge stopper Wheatley into action four minutes after the restart. Forward Ibrahim Kehinde also had a header which was well-gathered by Shamshoum after a good ball in by Elliott from the right flank. It was undeniable that the Motormen put pressure on the Ensign defence, though skipper Mitchell Stuart-Evans and full-back Daniel Monk led the way commendably to stifle an increasingly frustated visiting side.

Winger Samraj Gill did make a difference to the visiting forward line after coming on, as he put in several good crosses into the box, but Shamshoum and his defenders were equal to the task, with the Ensign stopper showing as much by palming away a dangerous ball in by Gill from the left flank late on, despite being under pressure from the advancing Jamie Price. Harry Kateley also had come on for Ensign and he also made a few good runs to give the Redbridge defence a couple of nervy moments alongside Bradshaw in the latter stages, but all in all, this was a good point for Ensign, hard-earned as it was. The result sees Ensign drop to 15th, because of Romford’s win at Sawbridgeworth, while the Motormen are now ten points adrift of leaders Enfield. 

Full-Time:  White Ensign 0 – 0 Redbridge


Although there were no goals in this contest, there was a lot of endeavour, a few good chances and some good approach play. Overall, Ensign stuck to their task well & their confidence grew as the match went on. Redbridge were unusually slow to get into their rhythm & although they pushed hard at times, they couldn’t grab that decisive goal to lessen the gap to leaders Enfield.

 Redbridge’s good performances here were led by forwards Michael Pindy and Ibrahim Kehinde, who both put in a good shift for their team. Pindy made several good runs down the right flank and showed good movement while Kehinde showed guile and good willingness to get in between defenders, although both were thwarted by a resilent home defence. Full-back Joe Elliott put in a good defensive display, as well as making a few good surging runs down the flanks. Lastly, substitute Samraj Gill heightened the pressure on a tiring Ensign defence in the last half hour, putting in several dangerous crosses into the penalty area in the latter stages. 

White Ensign had several good individual displays here, led in my view by full-back Daniel Monk who made several important clearances, covered well defensively as well as putting in some good passes forward. Midfielder Iyiola Adebayo put in another good display in both boxes, distributing the ball well alongside Joe Hunter in central midfield and showed hgh energy levels. Captain Mitchell Stuart-Evans was a good anchor in defence as well, making several timely interceptions to frustrate the Motormen attack, while goalkeeper Luis Shamshoum was as assured presence, making a few decent saves and stayed alert well too. 

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


Teams

White Ensign  | Stand-in Manager: Nick Wilbrow | Assistant: Enrico Tiritera

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Luis Shamshoum (GK), 2 Ben Sargent, 3 Daniel Monk, 5 Montel Shonubi, 4 Mitchell Stuart-Evans (Capt), 6 Kyle McAlindon, 7 Joe Hunter (16 Teddy Rumsey 87′), 8 Iyiola Adebayo, 9 Billy Bonham-Dare (11 Harry Kateley 58′), 19 Charlie Portway, 10 Kian Bradshaw

Booked: Bonham-Dare | Subs Not Used: Ferris, O Jenkins


Redbridge | Manager: George Christou  | Assistant: Jack Toghli

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Connor Wheatley (GK), 2 Reuben Campbell (Jack Roult 52′), 3 Joe Elliott, 5 Nathan Okoye, 6 Dean Hall (Capt), 4 Jerrold Cobblah (16 Jamie Price 58′), 8 Jack Chawner, 7 Michael Pindy (14 Tayo Joshua Olukolu 72′), 19 Joey May (20 Samraj Gill 58′), 9 Ibrahim Kehinde (15 James Barlow 72′), 10 Tony Martin

Booked: Cobblah  | Sub Not Used: None


Referee: Alex Baker
Assistants: Gary Telling & Joe Lannon

S22-23 Match Report: Buckhurst Hill 1 – 2 White Ensign (Fri 2 Dec) [ESL 22/23 3.12.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Roding Lane

Attendance: 83

2022-23 Season: Match 30

Friday 3rd December 2022 – 7.45pm KO

Buckhurst H: Blue & Black Shirts, Black Shorts, Black Socks

W Ensign: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks


Ensign grab another fine away win, this time at Roding Lane

Buckhurst Hill  1 – 2 White Ensign

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

A rare Friday night outing of late saw a welcome return to Roding Lane to see Buckhurst Hill take on White Ensign in the Essex Senior League. Recent departures from the home side were compounded here by a host of players being unavailable for Mark Williams’ side for this game. Goalkeeper Daniel Blockley was again between the posts, with a defence comprised of Olabajuwon Olagbaju, Will Halford, Alfie Harris & skipper Conor Tyrrell. Jake Moss, Harry Markatis & Oliver Williams were in midfield, supporting a forward line led by Hassan Nalbant and Ezekiel Bademosi, with support from James Deaney. Ensign were looking to vanquish the pain of a heavy loss in their last game, as Aaron Bloxham named Charlie Martin as goalkeeper, with their defence featuring full-backs Ben Sargent & Daniel Monk, with centre-halves Montel Shonubi and Lee Delf. Their high-energy midfield trio here were Iyiola Adebayo, Kyle McAlindon and captain Ethan Evison and in attack, Alfie Lindfield led the line with support from Billy Bonham-Dare & Harry Kateley.

The visitors looked to pinch an early advantage and forward Harry Kateley put the ball wide from a yard or so out, thanks to brave goalkeeping by Hill’s Daniel Blockley, who required some teatment. However, it was Ensign who took the lead after only five minutes as fellow forward Alfie Lindfield’s strike hit the left-side post, only for the ball to curl towards the opposite post and nestle into the net. Buckhurst also had to reconfigure their side after full-back Olabajuwon Olagbaju had to be substituted through injury after 12 minutes, with forward Fehinti Falola replacing him and James Deaney reverting to right wing-back. As the half wore on, Buckhurst did find their possession game and ventured forward to decent effect, with forward Hassan Nalbant having a few decent chances but a combination of good defending and striking off-target meant the hosts were still chasing.

Ensign were a danger on the counter-attack with Harry Kateley breaking down the left side, and another effort on goal from him brought out a good save from Blockley. Buckhurst Hill was also uncharacteristically hesitant in defence, with centre-back Alfie Harris making a few decent interceptions. At the other end, forward Ezekiel Bademosi had a powerful strike at Charlie Martin’s goal, and it came off the woodwork, as the first half was entering its last phase. Mark Williams’ side did get a deserved equaliser four minutes before the interval, as a good run down the channel by substitute Fehinti Falola found Bademosi, who fired home a good effort past Martin and into the corner.

Half-Time:  Buckhurst Hill 1 – 1 White Ensign


After the break, Buckhurst’s plans to push on and gain the upper hand suffered a setback as Ensign re-took the lead four minutes after the restart. An errant clearance allowed Lindfield to strive towards goal and slot home comfortably, low into the right corner. Unsurprisingly, this spurred on the hosts to claw their back into proceedings, and Nalbant again was in the action midway through the half, as his fierce drive was well parried away by Martin. Ensign did respond once again on the counter, with midfielder Iyiola Adebayo advancing towards the 18-yard box before powering a good effort which cannoned off the woodwork.

The tempo wasn’t quite as high in the latter stages which was understandable given the freezing conditions, but Ensign could have made the points safe five minutes from time as Adebayo again garnered some space before his effort on goal was denied well by Blockley. Ensign had to hold firm defensively in the last moments of this game, as from a set-piece, Buckhurst midfielder Harry Markatis brought a fine save from Martin, as Markatis’ 20-yarder forced the visiting custodian to dive away low to his left to claw the ball away from danger.


Full-Time: Buckhurst Hill 1 – 2 White Ensign

In summary, whilst the depleted hosts did show good intent going forward, they were thwarted by several errors – particularly in defence. Ensign showed again that they are up for the tough battles away from home and after a heavy defeat 48 hours before this game, they showed a lot of grit, as well as some neat play at times.

For this game’s ‘stand-out’ mentions, I’ll start with the victors Ensign. Alfie Lindfield had a very good evening, scoring two decent goals and also tested the Buckhurst defence at times as well, having a few other glimpses at goal. Iyiola Adebayo put in a high-energy display in midfield, pushing forward with good movement & passing to go with it as well. Goalkeeper Charlie Martin was a reassuring presence too, making some decent saves to frustrate a fast home forward line. Lastly, a word for full-back Ben Sargent who again put in a good display, making several rapid runs down the right side to add an attacking dimension to the visitors’ counter-attacks.

For Buckhurst Hill, forward Ezekiel Bademosi took his goal well and posed problems with his good running and pace and together with fellow forward Hassan Nalbant, they looked a good forward line, getting down the channels well and putting in good crosses into the box. Early replacement Fehinti Falola also put in a good display and got a good assist, while midfielder Harry Markatis made several good interceptions to assist his team’s defending, as well as sending good forward passes as well.

Teams

Buckhurst Hill  |  Manager: Mark Williams  | Assistant: JP Kent

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Daniel Blockley (GK), 2 Olabajuwon Olagbaju (10 Fehinti Falola 12′), 3 Will Halford, 4 Alfie Harris, 5 Conor Tyrrell (Capt), 6 Harry Markatis, 7 Jake Moss (14 Sajid Aziz 76′), 8 Oliver Williams, 11 James Deaney, 9 Hassan Nalbant (15 Ayomide Ademokun 71′), 12 Ezekiel Bademosi

Goal-scorer: Ezekiel Bademosi [41′]

Booked: Bademosi, Halford  | Subs Not Used: Ferris


White Ensign | Manager: Aaron Bloxham   | Assistant: Enrico Tiritera

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Charlie Martin (GK), 2 Ben Sargent, 3 Daniel Monk, 5 Montel Shonubi, 6 Lee Delf, 4 Kyle McAlindon (12 Teddy Rumsey 64′), 8 Ethan Evison (Capt), 7 Iyiola Adebayo (16 Jack Allen 88′), 9 Billy Bonham-Dare (15 Callum Ferris 88′), 10 Alfie Lindfield, 11 Harry Kateley (14 Jordan Chambers 64′)

Goal-scorers: Alfie Lindfield [5′ & 49′]

Booked: Evison | Subs Not Used: Summers


Referee: Michael Iddenden-Smith
Assistants: James Latham & Olabisi Omotosho

S22-23 Round-ups: Essex Senior Lge (Sat 12 Nov) [ESL 13.11.22]

ESL crest

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

Hello & welcome to the latest of my occasional series, looking at the three Essex Senior League matches that took place on the weekend of Saturday 12 November. We saw nine goals in the top-tier, while we also have sections on the FA Vase Round Two, the one Reserve D2 match & the Len Cordell Trophy action, with the latter featuring the Reserve sides.

Essex Senior Lge –  Saturday 12 November

The weekend’s action behigs with Ilford returning to winning ways with a 4 – 2 victory at White Ensign. Ilford were indebted to Joshua Boxall who grabbed a fine treble to give the Foxes a big advantage. Joe Lilly got the other goal for Richard Ponsford’s team. Ensign replied through goals from skipper Mitchell Stuart-Evans and new recruit Kian Bradshaw. The win takes Ilford above their opppnents here & into 13th spot. West Essex had to battle for a 1 – 0 success over Clapton at Wadham Lodge. Oliseh Okuguni was again the hero for Kwame Kwateng’s side with the winning goal midway through the second half, after good initial work by substitute David Bell. The Stags have gone four points clear in fifth.

Lastly, Halstead Town got a hugely important triumph as they won 2 – 0 at Southchurch Park. Tom White and Joel Older got the goals for Mark McLean’s side. This win takes them above Sawbridgeworth into fourth-bottom on goal difference. The majority of sides didn’t play this weekend because of the FA Vase action this weekend, but at present Enfield sit top, two points clear of FC Clacton in second, with Redbridge in third and Little Oakley in fourth spot.


Meanwhile, in the FA Vase Round Two, Athletic Newham booked their spot in Round Three with a 4 – 0 success at home to Kennington. Daniel Izekor added to his growing reputation with a fine treble here for Chris Davis’ team. Richard Kone added the other goal early in the second half as Newham took their place in the Last 64. Romford put a difficult week behind them and also progressed with a 2 – 0 triumph over divisional rivals Little Oakley, with Camilo Restrepo scoring a brace for Steve Butterworth’s side. In other results, Dunstable Town edged Enfield 1 – 0 at Creasey Park on Friday night. Lakenheath responded superbly after an early setback to defeat Buckhurst Hilll 3 – 2. Sam Hawley, a penalty from Luke Young and Thomas Thulborn’s late goal sealed te Eastern Counties Premier side’s progression. Suleyman Zuhdu had given Buckhurst the lead after 13 minutes and Nathan Sollosi added a late consolation.

Elsewhere, Norwich Utd scored two late goals to defeat Stansted 2 – 0 at Plantation Park. Haydn Davis & Thomas Hunter got those goals to break the Airportmen’s hearts. Leighton Town won 2 – 0 at Saffron Walden Town as the Bloods played their first match after the departure of long-serving boss Jason Maher this week. Finally in the Vase, Woodford Town exited on the lottery of penalties after a 2 – 2 draw with Fakenham Town at Ashton’s. Alejandro Machado got both goals for Shane Baptiste’s team but a double from Jack Robinson for the Ghosts forced a shoot-out, with Fakenham won 4 – 3.


In the the Len Cordell Trophy, Barking U23 grabbed a fine 4 – 0 triumph at Frenford Res, with Argest Nela scoring twice, with Abdul Charfi & George Fairhead also scoring. Billericay Town Ressies also won away from home, coming away with a 4 – 2 win at May & Baker Res. Joshua Brown led the way with a double, added to by strikes from Rhian Fowler and substitute Jes Oshitola. Other results in the Cordell Cup were Barkingside Res’ 2 – 2 draw with Grays Athletic Res on Friday night and Romford’s second side drawing 3 – 3 with Redridge Res at Westlands on Saturday.

We close this article with the one Reserve Division Two match that took place on Friday night, which saw Takeley Res win 2 – 1 at Southend Manor U23. Bryn Thorpe notching both goals there for Takeley’s second side, which took them level on points with leaders Barking U23.

S22-23 Match Report: Romford 1 – 4 White Ensign (Wed 9 Nov) [ESL 22-23 10.11.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Mayesbrook Park 3G

Attendance: 84

2022-23 Season: Match 26

Wednesday 9 November 2022 – 7.45pm KO

Romford: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts & Blue Socks

White Ensign: Red  Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

Jesse Olukolu (centre) on the ball for Romford

Incredible turnaround sees Ensign grab big win

Romford 1 – 4 White Ensign

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

The second match of this midweek saw a welcome return to Mayesbrook Park to see Romford entertain White Ensign in another Essex Senior League match. Romford had something of a re-jig in their starting XI with free-scoring Charlie Morris having recently departed for Step 4 Tilbury and skipper Kris Newby unavailable. Jake Anderson was the goalkeeper here, with an experienced backline comprised of Tambeson Eyong, Danny Hurford & centre-backs George Allen & skipper Scott Doe. Adalberto Pinto & Billy Harris were in central midfield, with wingers Jesse Olukolu and new recruit Josh Osude supporting forwards Emmanuel Robe & Lewis Smith. Ensign fielded Charlie Martin between the posts, with a defence of Ben Sargent, Callum Ferris plus centre-backs Mitchell Stuart-Evans (also skipper) and Charlie Portway. Iyiola El-Ameen Adebayo & Ethan Evison were the central midfield pair, with forwards Billy Bonham-Dare & Harry Kateley being supported by Ben Allen & Emmanuel Abudiore.

The match began with Romford putting Ensign under pressure from the early-going. Forward Lewis Smith made a good turn before getting his strike away but it didn’t test visiting goalkeeper Charlie Martin. Ensign had to do a large amount of defending during the half but when they did get forward, they did pose a threat. Harry Kateley did have a half-chance after a decent run down the left flank but saw his strike blocked. Centre forward Emmanuel Robe had the first of a few good chances but saw his effort saved low down by Martin, and rapid winger Josh Osude also firing off-target.

Romford could well have been ahead by this point but soon afterward, they had a big chance which saw Robe in on goal, with only Martin to bypass but Robe skewed his shot wide of the left-side post. The visitors had a few glimpses at goal themselves as the half wore on, with centre-back Charlie Portway angling a header over the crossbar & also Kateley also fizzed an effort wide. In the main, Ensign defended resolutely but Romford really should have had a comfortable lead at the interval, given the chances they had.


Half-Time: Romford 0 – 0 White Ensign

The second half began with a big moment for the hosts, as experienced centre-back Scott Doe was dismissed for a foul on the edge of the area. That ended up being a massive turning point as moments later, a fine strike by Ethan Evison found the net after good work by Emmanuel Abudiore, to give Aaron Bloxham’s side the lead. Before the Blues could wrestle back the momentum, Ensign’s lead was doubled on 53 minutes. Kateley was felled in the area, and referee Lukas Wood pointed to the spot. Portway stepped up & duly blasted the ball into the left corner, past Anderson.

Ensign about to have set-piece in 2nd half

The surprising turnaround continued on the stroke of the hour, as Ensign struck again with a third goal. Kateley finally did get past the Romford defence and his crisp, low finish defeated Anderson and found the left corner. Steve Butterworth’s side still pushed forward, with Osude & substitute George Cox having half-chances, with Cox being well denied by Martin. However, the home side did finally grab a goal with 13 minutes remaining. After jostling in a congested penalty area, replacement Camilo Restrepo slotted home low into the left side of the goal, five minutes after coming on to replace Olukolu.

Six minutes later, Ensign pushed forward again & after a good surging run, Ben Allen added a fourth goal with his low drive finding the far corner to complete a remarkable turnaround, in what was a really good match to watch.


Full-Time: Romford  1 – 4 White Ensign

This match is tough to summarise. Romford were the stronger side in the first half & should’ve had a clear advantage at the interval but Doe’s dismissal for the hosts energised Ensign to a terrific counter-effort which saw them score three goals in thirteen second-half minutes to utterly change the flow of the game. To their credit, the Blues never stopped pushing forward but it was ‘one of those games’ where not taking their chances cost them. That and you must also credit Ensign’s makeshift defence who competed very well indeed, as well as scoring some very good goals themselves in a incredible second half performance, boss Aaron Bloxham will have been delighted with the reaction.

There were some superb performances to note as ever. For Ensign, forward Ben Allen put in a fine display, testing the Romford defence for most of the game, as well as showing savvy passing and movement. Charlie Portway also stuck to his task really well playing as a centre-back here, making several important clearances aerially. Full-back Ben Sargent also showed his characteristic high work-rate and also made some good tackles. Forward Harry Kateley also deserves a mention for his good goal & showed good movement in the channels.

For Romford, rapid winger Josh Osude made several fine sprints down the flanks, and with it put in some good passes which on another day would’ve been key. Jesse Olukolu also put in a good display, utilising his pace and movement well and was thwarted by dedicated defending. Full-back Danny Hurford made several intelligent passes and important tackles while a mention too for tricky number 10 Lewis Smith, who made several fine runs & was unlucky not to score.

I’ll close by wishing both sides well for remainder of the season & a thank you also to Romford for their hospitality.


Teams

Romford    |  Manager: Steve Butterworth |  Assistant: Dan Spinks

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jake Anderson (GK), 2 Tambeson Eyong (16 Bleron Ademi 60′), 3 Danny Hurford, 5 Scott Doe (Capt), 6 George Allen, 4 Adalberto Pinto, 8 Billy Harris (12 Jacob Wiggins 60′), 10 Lewis Smith (17 George Cox 60′), 7 Jesse Olukolu (14 Camilo Restrepo 72′), 9 Emmanuel Robe (15 Jake Gordon 72′), 11 Joshua Osude

Goal-scorer: Camilo Restrepo [77′]

Booked: Olukolu | Sent Off: Doe  |  Subs Not Used: None


White Ensign  | Manager: Aaron Bloxham | Assistant: Enrico Tiritera

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Charlie Martin (GK), 2 Ben Sargent, 3 Callum Ferris (6 Teddy Rumsey 46′), 4 Mitchell Stuart-Evans (Capt), 19 Charlie Portway, 8 Ethan Evison (12 Jack Allen 82′), 5 Iyiola El-Ameen Adebayo (15 Kyle McAlindon 62′), 11 Emmanuel Abudiore (16 Charlie Sullivan 74′), 10 Ben Allen, 9 Billy Bonham-Dare, 7 Harry Kateley

Goal-scorers: Ethan Evison [47′], Charlie Portway [pen 53′], Harry Kateley [59′], Ben Allen [83′]

Booked: Stuart-Evans, Evison & Bonham-Dare | Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Lukas Wood
Asstistants: Craig Wood & Gary Telling

S22-23 Match Report: Ilford 0 – 3 FC Clacton (Mon 7 Nov) [ESL 22-23 8.11.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Cricklefield

Attendance: TBA

2022-23 Season: Match 25

Monday 7th November 2022 – 7.45pm KO

Ilford: Blue & White Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

FC Clacton: Yellow Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts, Yellow Socks



Resolute Clacton emerge triumphant at Ilford

Ilford 0 – 3 FC Clacton

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

The first midweek match this week saw a return visit to Cricklefield to see Ilford face FC Clacton in a Monday night match in the Essex Senior League. As you may have read, I saw Clacton put in a excellent display 48 hours previously but this was a different test altogether. It was also interesting to see the Foxes who had a complete squad change from last term, with boss Richard Ponsford bringing over the vast majority of his Essex Olympian League Premier winning Ongar Town side from last term, as well as promoting a few from the Ilford Reserve side, who compete in the Essex Alliance League now. The hosts had Tim Pitman in goal, allied with a defence comprised of Jay Fisher, Harry Herbert & centre-backs Jake Chadwick & Paul Cox. Ollie Nyahunda & skipper Mitchell McCabe were in central midfield with the advancing wingers being Josh Boxall & Harry Rawlins. Caleb Adomako-Mensah and Liam Oliver were their forwards here. Clacton made only one change to their starting XI from the aforementioned win at Southend Manor, with Jack Marshall coming into central midfield, alongside Toby Harms. Jack Johnson dropped to the bench.

Despite the hefty amount of rain in the last week, it’s worth noting that the pitch was in good nick and in the early-going of this tie, there was a few niggly fouls as both sides looked to grab the momentum. Clacton were the stronger side on-the-ball and tested the home defence more. After already having one shout for a penalty, they were awarded one on the quarter-hour by referee Jide Ogunba with foward Mekhi McKenzie being thwarted in the area. McKenzie stepped up to take the spot-kick himself but his effort was well-saved by a sprawling save by Foxes custodian Tim Pitman at the left-side post.


Clacton were the more likely side to opening the scoring, though there were a few nervy moments as the half wore on. Caleb Adomako-Mendsah broke down the left channel for the hosts, but his end strike didn’t test visiting goalkeeper Luke Avenell. In fairness, Ilford were doing alright in frustrating the fast-paced Seasiders attackers, with centre-half Jake Chadwick leading his defence well.

However, deep into first-half added time, the visitors did get the breakthrough. Ilford simply couldn’t clear their lines and in a congested 18-yard box, Jake Clowsley took a touch and fired in a good strike into the right corner.

Marshall (right) breaks down right channel for Clacton

Half-Time:  Ilford 0 – 1 FC Clacton 

After the interval, the match got ever more scrappy as both sides got rather frustrated. Soon after McKenzie had an effort over the crossbar for the Seasiders, enterprising forward Charlie Collis sent in a good cross, which centre-back Charlie Thompson headed off-target but that did serve as a warning that the hosts did not heed. Clacton did double their advantage on 69 minutes as Charlie Collis’ crisp strike from about 18 yards out fizzed into the net past Pitman.

To their credit, Ilford responded almost immediately, as a good header by Chadwick forced Avenell to parry over the crossbar well. But as so often occurs, this livened up Clacton further, and Pitman was in action again to first deny a looping effort from skipper Billy Wales and soon afterward, Pitman pulled off a fine save to deny McKenzie’s fierce strike with the 90 minutes fast approaching.


But there was another added-time goal as substitute Adam Tilson absolutely smashed a superb strike right into the top corner from at least 20 yards out, which really put the gloss on the score-line for Tom Austin’s side. You had to feel a bit for Pitman who had no chance of denying such a powerful effort. Soon after, the final whistle went and Clacton’s win took them just two points adrift of free-scoring Enfield at the summit.


Full-Time:  Ilford 0 – 3 FC Clacton

In summary, Clacton once again showed that they are they are a good side, as well as being in-form and can out-work sides. They took their goals well and the last two goals were quality strikes. Ilford had their moments as well but ultimately could not make their opponents cutting edge in front of goal, although they were decent defensively at times and had goalkeeper Tim Pitman to thank for keeping them in the match with some fine saves, particularly in the second half.

 
For victors FC Clacton, the stand-out performers begin with another fine performance by tireless forward Mekhi McKenzie. Despite having his spot-kick well-saved in the first quarter of the game, his work rate again was on display as well as showing good touches and passes. Midfielder Jack Marshall also put in a high-energy performance and took advantage of a fluid formation at times to get down the channels to put in decent crosses. A mention also for Charlie Collis who interlinked well with McKenzie in the forward line and contributed to giving the home defence a headache for large parts of the game. Finally, Technical winger Jake Clowsley also had an influence, scoring the opening goal to finally break the deadlock.

For Ilford, centre-back Jake Chadwick had to be on-form to clear seveal dangerous balls in the box and made a number of good interceptions. Goalkeeper Tim Pitman added to his early penalty save but making at least three good saves to keep his side in the contest. Forward Caleb Adomako-Mensah made a number of good runs to stretch the visiting backline plus he showed good pace and you could see why he has scored goals this term, while right-back Jay Fisher also made good tackles at times and contributed to his side’s decent defensive effort, particularly in the first hour.

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

Ilford  |  Manager: Richard Ponsford  | Assistant: Mark Lilly

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Tim Pitman (GK), 2 Jay Fisher, 3 Harry Herbert, 5 Paul Cox (17 George Hayes 47′), 6 Jake Chadwick, 4 Ollie Nyahunda (14 Josiah Ereku 22′ in turn replaced by 16 Harry Williams 90′), 8 Mitchell McCabe (Capt) (12 Julio Fresneda 43′), 7 Joshua Boxall (15 Emmamuel Kouassi 56′), 9 Liam Oliver, 10 Caleb Adomako-Mensah, 11 Harry Rawlins
 

Booked: Hayes, Kouassi  | Subs Not Used: None


FC Clacton  | Manager: Tom Austin   | Assistant: Adam Daniels

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Luke Avenell (GK), 2 Jenson Mulqueen (13 Fletcher Hanna 89′), 3 Billy Wales (Capt), 5 Chris Ribchester, 6 Charlie Thompson, 4 Jack Marshall, 8 Toby Harms (16 Adam Tilson 84′), 7 Jake Clowsley (15 Jordan Lartey 86′), 9 Mekhi McKenzie, 10 Charlie Collis (12 Jack Johnson 79′), 11 Teddy Collis (14 Reuben Cowler 68′)

Goal-scorers: Jake Clowsley [45’+6], Charlie Collis [69′], Adam Tilson [90’+6]

Booked: Thompson, McKenzie, T Collis  | Sub Not Used: None


Referee: Jide Ogunba
Assistants: Charlie Duggins-Jones & Ibrahim Kose

S22-23 Round-ups: Essex Senior League (Sat 5 Nov) [ESL 22-23 6.11.22]

ESL crest

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

Hello & welcome to the latest of my occasional series, looking at the Essex Senior League action, looking at all ten matches that took place on the weekend of Saturday 5 November. We saw 43 goals in the ten matches.


Essex Senior Lge –  Saturday 5 November

The weekend’s action started on Friday night as Saffron Walden Town grabbed an impressive 4 – 1 victory at Halstead Town to bolster their top-five aspirations. The ensemble cast of Solomon Ofori, Dion Lewis-Kirwan, Palvy Manduakila and Stanley Leech all netted a goal each to render Jordan Blackwell’s goal for Halstead as mere consolation, in front of 425 spectators at Rosemary Lane. Also, Ilford got an decent 1 – 0 victory at Romford, with Paul Cox the scorer there for Richard Ponsford’s team who are 15th after the weekend’s action. Finally on Friday night, Woodford Town handed Clapton another loss as Town won 4 – 0, with Jaedon Phillips’ early double being added to by Luke Parrott & substitute Dimi Christou to keep the Tons second bottom.


On Saturday, Enfield remain five points clear at the summit with a comprehensive 6 – 0 victory over Sawbridgeworth Town at Woodside. Ibrahim Kehinde opened the scoring on 25 minutes for Jamie Curerton’s team, while Danny Norton added another two goals to reach nine leaguwe goals this term. Louie Johnson’s spot-kick, Samrai Gebrai & substitute Dwade James all added a goal each to make it 11 wins from 12 games for the E’s. Elsewhere, Redbridge are third after a 4 – 0 victory over White Ensign at Oakside. Joey May made a rare start & got the opening goal after five minutes. Bradley Bennett added another first-half goal before Solomon Ogunwomoju struck twice to secure the win. Little Oakley also got another good three points with a 3 – 2 win over Stanway Rovers at the Memorial Stadium. Harry Mann, William Crisell & Mason Ridgway-Lumley got the crucial goals for Matt Carmichael’s side to overturn strikes by Ernest Okoh and replacement Sanunur Bah Bah for Rovers.

FC Clacton got back to winning ways with an impressive 5 – 1 win at Southend Manor, in the match I attended this weekend. Mekhi McKenzie has so often been an important player for Tom Austin’s side and McKenzie showed that again with a treble, which was added to by strikes by Reuben Cowler & a penalty by Teddy Collis. Substitute Joe Darby got a late consolation for Manor but they remain bottom. My report is available here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/11/05/s22-23-match-report-southend-manor-1-5-fc-clacton-sat-5-nov/


Meanwhile, Athletic Newham welcomed back Richard Kone from injury and he bagged a fine treble as Newham defeated West Essex 4 – 0 at the Terry Mac. Daniel Izekor got the other goal as the hosts went up to ninth spot. Buckhurst Hill made the most of an early sending off for Barking to grab a 4 – 0 win over Charlie MacDonald’s side at Roding Lane. Ezekiel Bademosi got a brace for Mark Williams’ side, with Nathan Sollosi also netting and there was a late goal for Hassan Nalbant as well. Finally, Takeley got a fine 3 – 1 victory at Stansted, with Glenn O’Hanlon and George Wappett getting first-half goals for Marc Das’ team. Ashaan Siddik got a goal back for the Airportmen before the interval. Hodje Almeida-Joaquim added a third goal to give the visitors the points which saw them rise to 11th.

That’s all for this week, thank you for reading.

S22-23 Match Report: Southend Manor 1 – 5 FC Clacton (Sat 5 Nov) [ESL 22-23 5.11.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Southchurch Park

Attendance: 45 (Est)

2022-23 Season: Match 24

Saturday 5th November 2022 – 2pm KO

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

Clacton: White & Red Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks


Clacton power to big win at Manor to stay second

Southend Manor 1 – 5 FC Clacton

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

The Non-League journey finally returned after an unexpected fortnight away, as FC Clacton visited Southend Manor, in an Essex Senior League match which saw both sides wanting the points, but for very different reasons. Clacton were second pre-match, while Manor were still looking for their first win this term. Recently-appointed gaffer Alex O’Leary named loanee stopper Harry McKie in goal, with a defence comprised of full-backs Joe Burton & Kevin Toualeu and centre-backs Charm Dube and skipper Tobi James. Adalberto Pinto was in central midfield, alongside Mo Kamara. Ben Bayoko and Billy Knott were the wingers in support of forwards Deimar Queni and Harrison Day.

Clacton by contrast are having a very good start to the season but lost out last week at home to Takeley. Manager Tom Austin fielded Luke Avenell between the posts for Clacton, with a backline of centre-backs Chris Ribchester and utility player Charlie Thompson, with full-backs Jenson Mulqueen and captain Billy Wales. Their central midfield included Toby Harms & Charlie Collis, with brother Teddy Collis and Jake Clowsley on the flanks. Mekhi McKenzie led the forward line here, with support from Jack Johnson.

Jake Clowsley [#7] about to pass ball forward for FC Clacton in 1st half

The conditions really highlighted the onset on winter but then again it is November now, and Clacton started the stronger of the two sides, showcasing their possession game pretty without creating an avalanche of chances. However, that latter detail was soon sorted out as Tom Austin’s side surprised no-one by taking a 15th-minute lead. The assist went to centre-back Chris Ribchester as his lofted ball in from just outside the penalty area found forward Mekhi McKenzie and his low finish gave home stopper Harry McKie little chance. The Seasiders had scored 25 league goals prior to today’s match and that clinicial finishing was shown again five minutes after the opening goal, as winger Jake Clowsley’s fine cross from the right flank found McKenzie and after his initial attempt was blocked, his finish went high into the net to double the lead.

Manor were decent in getting their passes from defence to midfield but their final ball was not good enough to pierce the resolute Seasiders backline and therefore test goalkeeper Luke Avenell. Forwards Deimar Queni and Harrison Day were both willing runners but there was very little for them to latch on to. It could’ve been worse for Alex O’Leary’s side before the interval as Clacton winger Teddy Collis made a fine run down the left wing, evading two defenders before playing in Clowsley with the latter’s powerful strike being well parried away by McKie.


HT: Manor 0 – 2 Clacton

Unsurprisingly, the hosts rung the changes after the interval with three substitutions made. Darby, Manyewe and Attwood all entered the action in place of James, Bayoko and Knott. There was a distinct need of a change of fortune and it nearly cropped up four minutes into the half. A fine free-kick from the right by central midfielder Adalberto Pinto found the run of full-back Kevin Toualeu and his powerful header wasn’t far wide of the right-sided post. But before they could build-up any momentum, Clacton grabbed a third goal on 52 minutes. McKenzie was in the action again as patient build-up from a set-piece saw skipper Billy Wales loft the ball into the far post area and McKenzie’s well-directed header found the net for his treble here and an 11th league goal of the season.


Chris Ribchester (centre) heads the ball away for the Seasiders

That goal really made the challenge more difficult for Manor, and this time Clacton were not in any frame of mind to concede territory. Charlie Collis’ free-kick was parried over by the over-worked McKie before the hour mark though Clacton finished the match strongly to take the points. Firstly, a good darting run by substitute Reuben Cowler ended with a fine low finish on seventy-five minutes before a Teddy Collis spot-kick made it five seven minutes later. Manor did get something from the game with moments remaining as replacement Joe Darby was played in well by O’Leary’s pass and his low finish defeated Avenell to get a consolation. Even so though, the Seasiders were comfortable winners and all credit to them.

Wales (#3 – left) puts in cross for McKenzie’s 3rd goal for Clacton

Full-Time: Southend Manor 1 – 5 FC Clacton

In summary, Clacton were comfortable for the vast majority of this match and their resolute defending gave a resounding answer as to what the outcome was going to be in this game. Manor unfortunately could create enough chances to test Seasiders custodian Luke Avenell, despite the occasional decent forward move. Clacton’s finishing & final ball were far superior as they remain in second spot after this match.

Several visiting players stood out today. Forward Mekhi McKenzie had another really influential match, scoring three good goals, provided a constant threat and also showed high work rate. Congrats to him. Also, Chris Ribchester had another fine game in defence for Clacton, with full-back Jenson Mulqueen bursting down the flank from right-back, putting in some good crosses & lastly Jake Clowsley once again showed his quality from the right flank, putting in fine passes to create chances well.

For Manor, forward Deimar Queni stuck to his task and showed a high work rate, and made some good darting runs down the channels as well. Full-back Kevin Toualeu also did well, showing high energy and made good tackles. Midfielder Mo Kamara also had an alright game & a word for substitute Joe Darby who showed good finishing to claim his late goal.

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


Teams

Southend Manor  | Player-Manager: Alex O’Leary  | Assistants: Kudus Oyenuga & Jack Morris

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Harry McKie (GK), 2 Joe Burton, 3 Kevin Toualeu, 5 Charm Dube (16 Murphy Duncan 75′), 6 Tobi James (Capt) (17 Rgee Manyewe 46′), 4 Adalberto Pinto, 7 Ben Bayoko (15 Niall Attwood 46′), 8 Mohamed Kamara, 9 Deimar Queni, 10 Harrison Day (14 Alex O’Leary 75′), 11 Billy Knott (12 Joe Darby 46′)

Goal-scorers: Joe Darby [89′]

Booked: Kamara   | Subs Not Used: None


FC Clacton  | Manager: Tom Austin  | Assistant: Ryan Salter

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Luke Avenell (GK), 2 Jenson Mulqueen (16 Fletcher Hanna 76′), 3 Billy Wales (Capt), 5 Chris Ribchester, 6 Charlie Thompson, 4 Toby Harms, 8 Charlie Collis (15 Adam Tilson 68′), 7 Jake Clowsley (14 Rueben Cowler 58′), 9 Mekhi McKenzie (12 Jordan Lartey 68′), 10 Jack Johnson (17 Joe Hillier 76′), 11 Teddy Collis

Goal-scorers: Mekhi McKenzie [15′, 20′ & 52′], Reuben Cowler [75′], Teddy Collis [pen 82′]

Booked: None | Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Daniel Ripton

Assistants: Gary Telling & Ray Parmenter

S22-23 Round-ups: Essex Senior Lge (Sat 8 Oct) [ESL 22-23 9.10.22]

ESL crest

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

Hello & welcome to the latest of my occasional series, looking at the Essex Senior League action, looking at all ten matches that took place on Saturday 8 October, which saw three teams get important away wins.

Essex Senior Lge –  Saturday 8 October

The weekend’s action started on Friday night as Saffron Walden Town got a 2 – 1 win in a heated battle at Barking. Luke Hirst got the goal for Charlie MacDonald’s side, but Jason Hallett’s free-kick & a Connor Scully goal was enough to see Jason Maher’s team to a hugely important win which sees them rise to mid-table. On Saturday, Stanway Rovers grabbed a 4 – 0 victory over visitors Clapton in the early kick-off at the Hawthorns. Ernest Okoh netted another two goals for Danny Slatter’s team, with Ezequiel Franchi & Joe Debell also on target to leave Clapton two points adrift of nearest rivals Halstead.

Elsewhere, FC Clacton got another good win with a 2 – 1 success at Halstead Town in the match I attended this weekend. Charlie Thompson and Jake Clowsley’s penalty was enough to overhaul Ben Morris’ first goal for Town at Rosemary Lane and send Tommy Austin’s side up to fifth spot. If you’d like more on this match, my report is available here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2022/10/09/s22-23-match-report-halstead-town-1-2-fc-clacton-sat-8-oct-esl/


Ilford also got a good 3 – 1 win over Buckhurst Hill at Cricklefield. Joe Lilly netted twice (one from 12 yards) for Richard Ponsford’s team, with Harry Rawlins also scoring to outdo another goal for the in-form Hassan Nalbant for Buckhurst. The Foxes are up to 13th place after this win. Romford got an important 2 – 0 win at rivals Redbridge, with Charlie Morris and Jesse Olukolu the goal-getters for Steve Butterworth’s side there, which saw them up to tenth with games in hand.  Enfield are up to third spot after a super 3 – 0 victory at Little Oakley, thanks to strikes by Danny Norton, Gavin Cockman & Dwade James. Jamie Cureton’s side are well-placed with two games in hand on the top two.

West Essex went back up to the summit with a 4 – 0 success at Southend Manor. Marlon Ortiz netted twice after coming off the bench, with Callum Bloss and Cameron Gray also on target for Kwame Kwateng’s side. Manor also announced Alex O’Leary as their new gaffer this week, and his role in lifting this hastily rebuilt side will be a hard ask as they seek to get out of the bottom two. Takeley also prevailed with a 2 – 0 win over White Ensign at Station Road, with George Powell & Glenn O’Hanlon on target for Marc Das’ team, which saw them go up to 12th spot.

We end this article with two home wins. First, Sawbridgeworth Town continued their impressive start to the campaign with a 3 – 2 success over Stansted at Crofters. Larry Akanbi, Zach Davidson & David Etcheri all netted for Kieran Amos & Ben Taylor’s team which sent them up to ninth. Carl Conway & Connor Hammond scored for the Airportmen but they remain in mid-table. Lastly, Woodford Town managed an excellent 3 – 1 triumph against Athletic Newham at Ashton’s. Jaedon Phillips, Lee Sharpe & substitute Dimi Christou’s goal ensured Shane Baptiste’s side ended the day in seventh. Chris Nguidjol got his second goal this week for Chris Davis’ team. 

S22-23 Match Report: Halstead Town 1 – 2 FC Clacton (Sat 8 Oct) [ESL 22-23 9.10.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Rosemary Lane

Attendance: 243

2022-23 Season: Match 21

Saturday 8 October 2022 – 3pm KO

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

Clacton: Yellow Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts, Yellow Socks


FC Clacton edge their way to good win at Halstead

Halstead Town 1 – 2  FC Clacton

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

The match this weekend was a welcome first visit to Rosemary Lane for the Essex Senior League match featuring Halstead Town and visitors FC Clacton. The reverse fixture only took place only seven days previously, and Clacton were looking for their second win in as many weeks here. Halstead named stalwart Jack Cherry as skipper & goalkeeper, with a defence of Joe Vogler, Matt Travell, Jack Schelvis and Matt Coppen. The midfield included Louis O’Sullivan, Ben Morris and Jordan Palmer with a forward line comprised of Adam Hampson, Jordan Pavett and Ryan Carter. Calvin Poku & Nick Miller were among the options from the bench. Clacton had Luke Avenell in goal, with a defensive four made up of centre-backs Chris Ribchester & Michael Okafor and full-backs Jenson Mulqueen and Jake Gould. Their attack-minded midfield included Jack Marshall, Charlie Thompson and Jake Clowsley. Their attack was led by Mekhi McKenzie, skipper Billy Wales and Rueben Cowler. Teddy Collis, Jordan Lartey & Jettluke Hogan were all on the bench for Tommy Austin’s team.

Both teams were getting themselves into gear in the early stages, whilst trying to get some early momentum. Ryan Carter’s header was the only chance of note for the hosts early on, as an organised visiting defence made it tough for the Halstead midfield to get the ball in behind them to the forwards. At the other end, forward Mekhi McKenzie was getting in good positions, making good runs down the flanks to isolate the two home central defenders, and was supported by Rueben Cowler and Jake Clowsley down the flanks well.

As the half went on, Clacton were starting to retain possession more & having more glimpses at goal. A crisp strike from central midfielder Jack Marshall was gathered by commanding stopper Jack Cherry, while Clowsley’s well-struck effort sailed wide of Cherry’s goal, which was a marker for how much Mark McLean’s side needed to keep the ball and make the Seasiders work for it.

Clacton’s Jake Gould [#3] looking to push on [Image by Scott W]

As we passed the half-hour mark though, Halstead did start to have more forays forward, enterprising full-back Joe Vogler had been pushed further forward and his good ball in was agonizingly close for the home fans to seeing a close range tap-in. However, from a fast counter-attack, Halstead did take the lead on 36 minutes. Adam Hampson’s searing run had got down the left channel, getting past his marker before unselfishly playing in midfielder Ben Morris who calmly slotted home past Clacton stopper Luke Avenell.

That narrow lead for Halstead persisted at the break, though Clacton will have felt hard done by to be behind as they were carrying that bit of extra zip going forward.


Half-Time:  Halstead  1 – 0  Clacton

Into the second half now, and Halstead were finding it harder to clear their defensive line after centre-back Matt Coppen had to be replaced due to shoulder injury and had a let-off six minutes after the resumption. Clacton skipper Billy Wales had earlier had a couple of strikes off-target but his low strike this time with only Cherry to bypass, saw the Humbugs custodian make a fine save low down on the ground to deny him. Unfortunately for the hosts, it was a sign of things to follow as two minutes later, Charlie Thompson’s good curling strike found the top left corner and levelled things up for Clacton.

That goal did give Clacton more added impetus and with their full-backs Jake Gould & Jenson Mulqueen also venturing forward on the over-load – it was a stiff test for Town to not concede again.

Clacton winger Rueben Cowler [#11] looking to break down the left channel

They held their line fairly well, until the 68th minute where they conceded a spot-kick. Referee Jide Ogunba pointed to the spot after some consideration after Clowsley’s shot had struck a Halstead defender on the hand. Clowsley himself stepped up and powered the ball high into the corner, giving Cherry little chance.

Substitutions did come in as ever for the last 20 minutes but Halstead had to do a fair bit more defending in those latter stages. Full-back Mulqueen’s effort was also well denied by home stopper Cherry, and replacement Teddy Collis did get into some good positions to send in dangerous crosses too. Halstead’s best chance late on came from substitute Harry Pinkney, whose effort did force a good save from Clacton stopper Luke Avenell, who for the most part had been protected well by a resolute Clacton backline.


Full-Time: Halstead Town 1 – 2   FC Clacton

In summary, Halstead showed good energy levels & application but were lacking that cutting edge to test a resolute Clacton side, who showed why they have been winning more than they have lost so far this term under Tommy Austin’s tutelage. The Seasiders also had a forward line which put in a fine display, which stretched the Halstead backline and kept the ball quite well.

There were a number of great performances in this match. For winners Clacton, although he didn’t have a lot of fortune, credit has to go to centre forward Mekhi McKenzie who kept running all game and stretched the Halstead defence well with his pace & strength. Winger Rueben Cowler also had a fine match, getting down the left channel often and putting in teasing crosses too. Attacking midfielder Jake Clowsley took his goal well and also added to the headache that the home backline faced, with his dribbling and good running. Finally, defender Chris Ribchester typified his side’s defensive efforts but making a number of important clearances.

For Halstead, goalkeeper Jack Cherry made several good saves to keep his side in it & was his usual commanding presence. Forward Adam Hampson was the chief threat to the visiting backline and put in a high-energy display, while right-sided Joe Vogler did well with his pace & defensive awareness on his first league start of the season. Midfielder Louis O’Sullivan also put in a good shift to ward off the enterprising Clacton forwards.

Finally, it has to be noted that Halstead really do have a good set-up, a lovely ground to visit and were welcoming to ESL President Rob Errington & myself. Thanks to all at the Humbugs for that. I’d like to wish both teams a good remainder of the season.


Teams:

Halstead Town   |  Manager: Mark McLean   | Assistant: Adam Munn

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jack Cherry (GK & Capt), 2 Joe Vogler, 3 Matt Travell, 4 Jack Schelvis, 5 Matt Coppen (12 Calvin Poku 47′), 18 Louis O’Sullivan (15 Tom White 69′), 8 Ben Morris, 9 Adam Hampson (14 Nick Miller 69′), 10 Jordan Palmer (17 Joe Jones 85′), 11 Jordan Pavett (16 Harry Pinkney 78′)

Goal-scorers: Ben Morris [36′]

 | Subs Not Used: None


FC Clacton  | Manager: Tommy Austin   | Assistant: Ryan Salter

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Luke Avenell (GK), 2 Jenson Mulqueen, 3 Jake Gould, 5 Chris Ribchester, 6 Michael Okafor, 4 Jack Marshall, 7 Charlie Thompson (12 Jack Johnson 66′), 8 Jake Clowsley (14 Jordan Lartey 87′), 10 Billy Wales (Capt) (16 Jettluke Hogan 71′), 9 Mekhi McKenzie, 11 Rueben Cowler (13 Teddy Collis 69′)

Goal-scorers: Charlie Thompson [53′], Jake Clowsley [pen 68′]

 | Sub Not Used: K Wales


Referee: Jide Ogunba
Assistants: Liam Dawson & Craig Wood