Essex Olympian League round-up (EOFL 25.4.18)



Written by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

Hello and welcome to my round-up of the Essex Olympian League action from the last week, from the Premier Division through to Senior Division Two, starting off with the weekend’s games then moving on to the midweek action…


Essex Olympian League Premier Division

On Saturday, Harold Wood Athletic were victorious at Silver Leys, defeating Bishop’s Stortford Swifts 4 – 1. A Charlie Liddiard double plus strikes from Danny Gillard and Robert Whitnell kept up Ath’s good form. Abraham Adejokun replied for Swifts. Meanwhile, Catholic Utd gave their title chances ‘the world of good’ by edging to a 1 – 0 home win over leaders Frenford, thanks to Thomas Kearney finding the net.

Elsewhere, Rayleigh Town won 2 – 0 at Kelvedon Hatch, courtesy of goals by Aaron Pallett and George Vile. This victory, Rayleigh’s 5th win of the season, confirmed Basildon Town’s relegation from the division at season’s end.

In other results, Leigh Ramblers defeated Manford Way 2 – 1 with Jack O’Connor and Luke Read netting for Ramblers, substitute Sam Coe replied for Manford. White Ensign were also trimuphant on the day, winning 2 – 0 over May & Baker at Barking Rugby Club. A Liam Sewell brace sealed the win and moved Brett Munyard’s side above their opponents here into 5th spot on goal difference, after the weekend’s action.

In Olympian Senior One, Galleywood secured an important three points with a 3 – 1 victory over high-flying Hutton at Clarkes Field. Sam Donn, Sean Lander and substitute Jared Cousins all scored for the hosts, while Chris Rowlatt grabbed Hutton’s consolation.

In other action, already-relegated Runwell Sports had a day to remember with a win at out-of-form Snaresbrook thanks to strikes from Destiny Oduh and Aaron Rix, the latter of which was later sent off. Old Southendian damaged Sungate’s charge towards the top with a 2 – 1 win, thanks to Ed Gould and Tom Judge goals while in the late kick-off, Newbury Forest were held 2 – 2 by Old Chelmsfordians (Peter attended this one) at Oakside. Ex-Redbridge duo Jason Reynolds-Blanche and Adam Hunt both found the net for the strugglers while Robert King grabbed both of the Chelmsford side’s goals.

Harold Hill once again couldn’t field a side on Saturday so Buckhurst Hill took the points on a ‘Home Walkover’.

Finally for the Saturday action, in Olympian Senior Two, Benfleet continued their fine end to the season with a 4 – 1 triumph over strugglers Upminster at Park Lane. Brad Camm, Sam Dulieu, Ben Foord and Robert Lacy all scored for the hosts, while James Lakey gave Upminster ‘something to shout about’.

In the only other match in the division, a brace from substitute Jack Wiley helped high-flying Ramsden Scotia to a 5 – 1 success at Ongar Town. Antony Driscoll, Kurt King and Jamie Auvache also found the target for Ramsden who bagged their 12th win of the campaign though Ross Carpenter pulled one back for Town.

Into the midweek action now and on Monday night, Catholic Utd won 1 – 0 at ‘home’ to Canning Town at the Len Salmon Stadium. Substitute Ellis Sands got the only goal of the match to maintain the Super Hoops’ title-tilt.

Elsewhere on Monday in Senior One, Newbury Forest triumphed with a 3 – 0 win over Sungate at Oakside.

Moving onto the action on Tuesday night now and May & Baker held improving Leigh Ramblers to a 2 – 2 draw at Belfairs Park. Jack Deasy and Harry Goodwin netted for the hosts while Petrit Elbi and Dan Mackin scored for the visitors. In Senior One, Great Baddow edged a thrilling game against Harold Hill 5 – 4 with braces from Matthew Crick and Samuel Mead plus another from Ryan Baxter sealing the win that almost secures Baddow second spot in the division.

In Senior Division Two, Ramsden Scotia kept up their promotion charge with a 4 – 2 home win over Upminster. Antony Driscoll, Kurt King and Ryan Leddra all found the net as well an own goal. James Lakey and Ollie Williams scored for Upminster though Ramsden rise to 3rd and have games in hand over the top-two.

Onto the Wednesday action and in the Premier Division, Springfield won 4 – 1 at Manford Way thanks to a hat-trick from Ross Lamb and one from Joe Mayer though other results mean that the Chelmsford-based side cannot retain their Premier title now.

That was partly because Frenford rocked up at Harold Wood Recreation Ground and powered their way to a 7 – 2 thumping of Harold Wood Athletic in a match that Peter & Scott both attended. Hat-tricks from Nick Hughes and Luke Woodward was added to by a Daniel Driscoll strike to ensure that only Catholic Utd can catch them now in the title-race. Charlie Liddiard and Rob Whitnell both netted for Ath, who played their part in a really good match, played in tricky conditions. Frenford ended their season here and are seven points clear at the summit though the Super Hoops still have five matches remaining.

As it happens, Catholic Utd were also in action and they grabbed their third win in five days with a 4 – 2 win over Kelvedon Hatch to go level on points with Springfield. In the Senior One matches that took place, leaders Buckhurst Hill won 2 – 1 at Galleywood while FC Hamlets bagged a good 4 – 3 success at Old Chelmsfordians to go into 5th spot in the process.


That’s all for this week, thanks for reading.


Essex Senior League round-up (ESL 22.4.18)


Written by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

Hello & welcome to my round-up of this weekend’s Essex Senior League action, which included some crucial matches at both ends of the table on “Kick It Out” Day.

Saturday 21st April


Basildon Utd 3 – 0 Woodford Town (2017)
| Venue: The Hive   | Att: 76

The Bees rounded off an excellent week with victory over Woodford at The Hive. George Whitby gave the hosts the lead on 11 minutes before a brace from influential winger Jack Adlington [14′ & 45′ +1] sealed the success for Marc Harrison’s side – their 5th straight win and sit 3rd, outside the second promotion place on goal difference alone, with a game in hand on 2nd-placed FC Romania. Woodford drop to 13th and end their season next weekend with a home tie with Enfield 1893.


Enfield 1893  0 – 2  Takeley
| Venue: The Harlow Arena   | Att: 69

Takeley once again showed their gritty determination to get the points at the Harlow Arena. Recently-returned forward Stuart Zanone put Marc Das’ side ahead a minute into the second half before a late OG sealed Takeley’s fourth win in their last six which keeps them 5th, still eight points adrift of Redbridge above them. Enfield’s fine nine-match unbeaten run is over though they are in 9th place and four points from their last two matches should secure a top-ten finish.


FC Romania  3 – 1  Tower Hamlets
| Venue: Theobalds Lane  | Att: 34  | “Kick It Out” Day Designated Match

FCR continued their decent form in recent weeks with a battling win over ten-man Tower Hamlets at Theobalds Lane. Gabriel Ghinea put the hosts ahead eight minutes before the break. Goals from Andrei Baciu [56′] and Sergiu Pitaru [82′] made sure of the points while Montel Williams got Hamlets’ consolation. FCR sit 2nd, above Basildon on goal difference, having played a game more than the Bees. Hamlets eighth-straight defeat drops them to 12th with their chances of a top-ten finish fading.


Great Wakering Rovers  3 – 2  Clapton
| Venue: Burroughs Park  | Att: 81

Wakering had to fight hard to claim another three points over inconsistent Clapton at Burroughs Park. Steven Sardinha struck to give the Tons a surprise lead on 22 minutes though scarcely a minute later, influential winger Billy Johnson brought GWR back on level terms. Neil Richmond put Rovers ahead three minutes before the break. Johnson grabbed his second on the hour to give the hosts daylight though Nathan Cook halved the lead for the visitors with 12 minutes remaining. Wakering’s 6th win in their last seven means they are five points clear at the summit, needing five points to secure the title. Clapton’s poor end to the season goes on with one win in their last eight games & they reside in 6th, only a point clear of West Essex, having played three games more than the Stags.


Hackney Wick  3 – 1  Hullbridge Sports
| Venue:  Old Spotted Dog  | Att: 48

The Wickers dispatched Hullbridge in their first match since relegation was confirmed in midweek. A brace from Tony Cookey and one from Joel Appiah were enough to grab a morale-boosting three points for Chris Davis’ side. Luke Hornsley got a late goal for Sports who could still do with another victory to avoid any last-day drama – they are in 16th, four points clear of the bottom four.

Click this link for Video Highlights & post-match Interviews (courtesy of WD Sportz):


Ilford 1 – 3 Barkingside
| Venue: Cricklefield | Att: 49

Barkingside came from behind to grab a major win in the “Cricklefield derby”. Ilford led through Jake McWee’s opener on 16 minutes though couldn’t see the match out as three goals in the last 22 minutes turned it around. Roddy Lemba [69′] brought things level before strikes from James Briggs [76′] and Michael Ogboin’s spot-kick four minutes from time saw ‘Side to their 3rd win in their last seven to rise to 15th. Ilford’s sixth defeat on-the-reel sees them stay 11th.


Southend Manor  4 – 3  Sawbridgeworth Town
| Venue: Southchurch Park | Att: 49

Manor edged another brillantly entertaining encounter at Southchurch Park. Sawbridgeworth’s goal-scorers were Matt Frew, Daryl Doolan and Jack Cousins while second-half goals from Lewis Sparrow [50′], Alfie Lindfield [62′], Brennon Nolan [73’] and the eventual winner from skipper Lee Delf eight minutes from time ended Manor’s five-match winless run to see Adam Peek’s side move eight points clear of the danger-zone in 14th. Sawbridgeworth’s third defeat in their last seven means they cannot improve on 8th place now this term.


Sporting Bengal Utd  2 – 1  Redbridge
| Venue: Oakside (12pm KO) | Att: 70 | “Kick It Out” Designated Match

Sporting Bengal surprised the Motormen in this match ‘reversed’ to Oakside and was also the early kick-off. Bobby Redwood [16′] broke the deadlock before returning talisman Brian Moses levelled things three minutes before half-time. Bengal skipper Freddy Tandon fired home the winner 16 minutes from time to give Imrul Gazi’s men the double-whammy of a club-record fourth-straight victory and also break the club’s ESL points record and they also rise to 10th spot. Redbridge’s stutter continues as their winless stretch extended to four matches and are now three points adrift of the top three and arguably their fate is ‘no longer in their own hands’ with regards to promotion.


Waltham Forest 2 – 1  Stansted
| Venue: Kitchener Road | Att: 61

Waltham Forest edged ten-man Stansted to record a priceless victory in their bid to avoid the drop. Stansted led thanks to Ryan Ramsey’s penalty on 19 minutes. Though much to the delight of the Waltham Rabble, Elias Siligato erased that lead nine minutes before the break. Recent signing Shomari Barnwell’s spot-kick on the stroke of half-time ended up sealing the points. Forest are now unbeaten in four and they go above Stansted into 17th, two points clear of them though Forest only have one match to play, compared to Stansted’s two. The Airportmen are 18th and face Enfield and Basildon during the week.


West Essex  5 – 1   Wadham Lodge
| Venue: Mayesbrook Park | Att: 84 | “Kick It Out” Designated Match

I attended this match and you can find my match report here:

That’s all for this week, thanks for reading.

Essex Senior League Preview (ESL 20.4.18)


Written by Peter D & Scott W

Hello & welcome to this week’s extended preview piece looking at the weekend’s Essex Senior League action as the league hosts ‘Kick It Out (the anti-discrimination campaign) day 2018’ with three matches designated to support this very worthwhile campaign.


Here are Peter and my thoughts on all the fixtures set for this weekend:

Basildon Utd v Woodford Town | Venue: The Hive

Peter: The Bees have had a decent few days, winning three games in five, which put them right in the mix for promotion. They are tied with FC Romania and Redbridge on 82 points with the former above them on goal difference in second spot and the latter below them for the same reason, so winning is all they want to do right now.  They welcome a good young side to The Ho Ho in the shape of Woodford Town who could climb back into the top ten with victory here, and they will no doubt cause the hosts some problems.  However I feel Basildon will edge this one.

Pete’s Prediction: 3-1

Scott: The Bees end a very hectic week (this is their fourth match in eight days or so) with the visit of mid-table Woodford. Basildon have won all three of them thus far, as they bested Tower Hamlets, Burnham and then Southend Manor late on – all away from home. They sit 3rd on goal difference before this weekend’s action, thanks to FC Romania’s win on Thursday (FCR, Basildon & Redbridge all have 82 points).

Woodford’s recent run of one win in four matches was compounded by a hefty loss to Takeley last weekend though Dee Safer’s side still have a chance of sneaking into the top-ten. The Bees will have to battle once again though I still reckon they will come out victorious here.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1


Enfield 1893 v Takeley   | Venue: The Harlow Arena

Peter: Hosts Enfield will look to continue their unbeaten run when they welcome Takeley to Barrows Farm.  The hosts are one of the in-form teams and saw their eight match winning run come to an end last time out, however that was a draw at Redbridge, which threw the promotion race wide open.  Takeley come to Harlow having just seen their slim hopes of promotion all but ended by FC Romania on Thursday, and this may see them arrive in a downbeat mood.  I have a feeling Enfield may grab the points here.

Pete’s Prediction: 2 – 0

Scott: Takeley travel to the Harlow Arena to take on Enfield in what is their fourth match in eight days. Victories over Woodford and Tower Hamlets were halted by a narrow loss to FC Romania and you suspect the promotion challenge has been dashed for now. Enfield are still unbeaten after their draw at Redbridge last weekend, that run stands at nine matches now. I believe we may see a surprise here, going for a home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1


FC Romania v Tower Hamlets
| Venue: Theobalds Lane | ‘Kick It Out’ Designated Match

Peter: The hosts ‘threw their hat into the ring’ for promotion after Thursday evening’s victory at Takeley, and they now sit in second on goal difference above Basildon and Redbridge.  They welcome to Theobalds Lane a Tower Hamlets team who have struggled of late and seem to be going through the motions at times, however they could take advantage of the fact FCR had a tough game on Thursday so may be fresher.  However, I can’t see the hosts slipping up here so three points to the hosts.

Pete’s Prediction: 3-0

Scott: FC Romania welcome Tower Hamlets in another of the “Kick It Out” designated matches at Theobalds Lane. FCR narrowly won at Takeley on Thursday night to keep their dream of promotion alive, being one of three teams on 82 points. They welcome a Hamlets outfit that has lost their last seven on-the-spin and conceded seven goals without reply in the losses to Basildon and Takeley in the last week. The hosts may be jaded, though I still believe they’ll edge this one.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 0


Great Wakering Rovers v Clapton | Venue: Burroughs Park

Peter: Rovers could all-but-clinch the title and promotion with a win here against an out-of-form Tons side at Burroughs Park.  Rovers lead by five points with four matches remaining so you feel they are the ones to catch now, however they must be wary of this Clapton side who could easily end the hosts fifteen-match unbeaten run.  However, the only thing Clapton have to play for is sixth spot as they have West Essex hot-on-their-heels but will this be a big enough incentive?  Possibly not and I feel Rovers will continue their march towards the Bostik North.

Pete’s Prediction: 2-0

Scott: Wakering welcome the Tons to Burroughs Park. It’s hard to see where the leaders will ‘brake down’ at the moment in the promotion-race though their opponents will have the freedom to play without pressure though the Tons’ recent run of six losses in their eight matches tells its own story. If Jon Fowell’s side do play near their best, this could be a cracker of a match. That said, Wakering have this knack of ‘grinding out’ wins and they may do so again here.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


Hackney Wick  v  Hullbridge Sports   | Venue: OSD

Peter: With Wick’s relegation confirmed in the week and Sports pretty much safe from the drop this game doesn’t have too much riding on it.  The hosts have four games left now to try and end the season on a high whilst Sports will still be looking for that win to make their position even more safe so both sides will still want to have a ‘W’ on their record.  Feel Sports may edge this one.

Pete’s Prediction 1-2

Scott: Wick welcome Hullbridge in their first match since relegation was unfortunately confirmed for them by virtue of their narrow loss at Stansted in midweek. Just three wins at home all season certainly hasn’t helped matters though they have to look to build for a better season next term now. Other results didn’t exactly assist Hullbridge in midweek and they will look to attain another 3 – 4 points to 100% seal their place in the ESL next season. Although they did well to record a comeback win at Burnham last weekend, they endured a ‘bad day at the office’ in a heavy home loss to West Essex in midweek. My thought is that Sports boss Darren Manning will demand a reaction from his side and they may get all three points here.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 3


Ilford v Barkingside   | Venue: Cricklefield

Peter: It’s the Cricklefield derby on Saturday as Ilford host Barkingside with ‘no love lost’ between these two in recent weeks and months. It has all the ingredients to be an explosive encounter and for the visitors it’s an important one as they need a win to put some daylight between them and the drop-zone.  The Foxes themselves have been in terrible form recently however form goes out the window in these type of contests and they often end all square too, hence why I feel this may end a draw.

Pete’s Prediction: 1-1

Scott: The ‘Cricklefield derby’ comes at a time where both sides are enduring a tough time for differing reasons. Ilford’s form has somewhat unravelled thanks to five straight defeats which leaves them vulnerable with regards to a top-ten finish. A poor performance in midweek against relegation-battlers Wadham may not have inspired confidence either. They face a Barkingside outfit that are far from safe themselves, two points ahead of the bottom-four after a recent run of two wins in their last six outings though they lost to Sporting Bengal in midweek.

Being totally honest, I do wonder when the Foxes are going to find their form and this could be another scrappy encounter though have to go with a ‘Side win here.

Scott’s Prediction: 0 – 2


Southend Manor v Sawbridgeworth Town
| Venue: Southchurch Park

Peter: Manor sit eight points above the drop-zone and are probably going to be OK, although they would like another win to just make it more comfortable, however they welcome a Robins side to Southchurch Park playing with freedom and no worries as they sit in eighth spot after a more than decent 2018.  However, if Manor can replicate their battling qualities they showed in their last game against Basildon they will give themselves a chance.  But I see this one ending all-square.

Pete’s Prediction: 2-2

Scott: Manor welcome a Sawbo side in decent form, on the back of giving Basildon a scare before going down 2 – 1 on Wednesday night. Adam Peek’s side are winless in five matches now and will want to finish the season well. John Watters’ side have had the midweek off after defeat to FC Romania last weekend, though four wins in their last seven outings tells you they are in decent nick. Sawbridgeworth also have a good record at Southchurch Park in previous seasons and I see no reason why that cannot continue here. Away win.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2


Sporting Bengal Utd v Redbridge
| Venue: Oakside (12pm KO) | ‘Kick It Out’ Designated Match |

Peter: The Motormen are away but they are also at home, if that makes sense, as because Mile End is now closed for football until next season the match was switched to Oakside.  This could play into the Motormen’s hands and they need a win to try and get themselves back into the runners-up spot after falling to fourth on goal difference.

This will be a tough assignment though against a Sporting side who have equalled their best points tally in the ESL and are now all-but-safe from any danger of the drop too. Therefore, the pressure is all on Redbridge, and I feel they will sneak this one in an entertaining game no doubt.

Pete’s Prediction: 2-3

Scott: Bengal face Redbridge in this ‘reversed’ match at Oakside, in what is the early kick-off and also serves as one of the three ‘Designated matches’ for this year’s ‘Kick It Out’ Day. These sides have had a rather contrasting week – Bengal matched their best-ever ESL points total with away wins over Clapton and Barkingside while the Motormen were held by in-form Enfield last weekend. Imrul Gazi’s side are seeking their fourth straight ESL triumph while Redbridge really need to plug a three-match winless run here. There could be goals in this one, purely because of their attacking prowess, I’m plumping for an ‘away’ win.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 3


Waltham Forest v Stansted   | Venue: Kitchener Road

Peter: This is a huge game down at the bottom of the table as fourth-bottom Forest host fifth-bottom Stansted, with both sitting just above the drop-zone.  A win for either side would give them a great chance of survival, whilst for the loser it’s a nervous look over their shoulders.  Recent form suggests a tight one too as both have pretty much the same record over the last half dozen games, so this will probably end all-square.

Pete’s Prediction: 2-2

Scott: This is probably ‘Match of the day’ in the division at Kitchener Road as it has the whiff of “Winner-takes-all’ about it. Both sides have struggled to obtain wins of late with Forest having just one success in recent times and held Southend Manor last weekend. The Airportmen battled to a home draw with West Essex last Saturday before finally ending a seven-match losing run by beating now-relegated Hackney Wick in midweek.

In fairness, there is perhaps a tad more onus on Forest here, not only because they are the hosts here but also it’s their penultimate match of the season. This is not a nice one to have to call quite honestly, and it may well be a scrappy affair- I’ll go home win..just.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1


West Essex v Wadham Lodge 
|  Venue: Mayesbrook Park | ‘Kick It Out’ Designated Match

Peter: Hosts West Essex know a win could take them a point behind sixth place with three games in-hand, whilst for Lodge this is another huge game for them in the battle against the drop.  The ‘carrot’ for the visitors is if they win it could see them replaced in the drop-zone by Walthamstow rivals Forest, however they are coming up against a dangerous opponent at Mayesbrook Park who just put five past Hullbridge Sports.  Lodge though did net a super away win at Ilford but I feel the hosts may prove too much here.

Pete’s Prediction: 4-2

Scott: Finally this weekend, The Stags entertain Wadham Lodge in what is their second-to-last home match of a very spirited campaign. It is also the third of the ‘Kick It Out’ Day’s designated matches. West Essex have had a good week, following up a good point at Stansted with a very good performance in a big win at Hullbridge in midweek – their fourth win in their last seven outings. Wadham’s week didn’t start well with a heavy loss at Great Wakering last weekend though it did get better for them with a very encouraging away win at out-of-form Ilford in midweek. Ironically, Wadham have conceded exactly half of their total goals away from home (45 goals in 17 matches) thus far and two successes in their last seven matches isn’t great, and the pressure is still on them to win here to escape the bottom four.

Kwame Kwateng’s side are chasing down Clapton for 6th spot and will pretty much secure a top-ten finish with a victory here. The Wadham back-line may also face another tough afternoon dealing with the likes of Michael Mignot & company. Hard to see anything but a home win for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1


That’s your lot for the Preview this week. If you’d like to follow Peter on Twitter: @ped1980 & Scott: @ScottMHC14



Essex Olympian League round-up (EOFL 18.4.18)



Written by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

Hello and welcome to my round-up of the Essex Olympian League action from the last week, from the Premier Division through to Senior Division Two, starting off with the weekend’s games then moving on to the midweek action…

Senior League Cup Semi-Final

Leigh Ramblers defeated Kelvedon Hatch 2 – 0 to reach the Senior League Cup Final against Frenford at Bishop’s Stortford FC on Tuesday 15th May. Goals from Tommy Hollingsworth and Seb Allen completed the job at Belfairs Park. Congrats to Ramblers and I wish them well in the showpiece Final.


Essex Olympian League Premier Division

In an goal-laden fixture schedule, Bishop’s Stortford Swifts withstood a superb comeback from Catholic Utd to triumph 4 – 3. Gavin Cockman, Danny Morgan and Charlie Pollard strikes put the hosts three up before the visitors responded through strikes from Mark Baptist, a Harley Kee spot-kick & Max Kent though the Westcliff-based side conceded late on through an unfortunate OG. Swifts stay 9th while the “Super Hoops” dropped to 5th after Saturday’s action.

Meanwhile, Springfield comprehensively won at Canning Town 6 – 0, courtesy of a brace from Josh White & goals from Jamie Doyle, Jack Mundy, Charles Egleton and Louis O’Sullivan to ensure they remained 2nd after the weekend’s action. Canning stay 11th.

Harold Wood Athletic won 2 – 1 at Manford Way thanks to goals from Steve Willis and Tom Quinn to keep their slim chances of winning the title intact. Henry Fisher replied for Manford who reside in 7th while Ath rose to 3rd, thanks to their 10th win of the season.

There was an eight-goal thriller at the Len Forge Centre 3G as leaders Frenford came back from two goals down to power past 10-man White Ensign 5 – 3. Daniel Driscoll had put the visitors ahead early on though Brett Munyard’s side roared back through strikes from Connor Barnby, Andy George and Luke Skinner to take the lead. Luke Woodward made it 2 – 3 before the half-time introduction of substitute Ashley Taylor-Forbes changed the game. Taylor-Forbes grabbed a second-half hat-trick to keep Frenford at the summit, while Ensign stayed 6th.

Moving into Senior Division One now and Hutton continued their good season with a hefty 6 – 0 win at Snaresbrook. Chris Rowlatt did the bulk of the damage with a hat-trick and goals from George Nash, Thomas Price and substitute Brad Freeman sealed the win. Elsewhere, Great Baddow defeated Newbury Forest 4 – 2 while Galleywood drew 1 – 1 with Old Southendian.

Sungate travelled to Lawford Lane and won 3 – 2 over Old Chelmsfordians thanks to a brace from Nicholas Muir and one from Stuart Griffiths. The hosts’ reply came thanks to a brace from Josh Goodey. Buckhurst Hill also maintained their sterling season with a 4 – 1 victory over ten-man FC Hamlets in a match that was switched to Hackney Marshes. Jose Espinoza, Fehinti Felola, substitute Eren Muti and Sam Sollasi fired the goals to provide the win. Substitute Ashley King got Hamlets’ goal who also had Josh Brind dismissed.

Harold Hill v Shenfield AFC was postponed.


Finally on Saturday, in Senior Division Two, three matches provided 11 goals. Ongar Town won 4 – 0 at home to relegation-battlers Rochford Town thanks to a brace from Peter Davies with Steve Merrick and Ben Stone also netting. May & Baker Reserves also maintained their title tilt with a 5 – 0 triumph at strugglers Upminster. Carl Patten helped himself to a hat-trick, supported by strikes by Kane Messenger and Darren Seymour while Ramsden Scotia defeated Benfleet 2 – 0 with Max Corrigan and Ryan Leddra finding the net as Ramsden went level on points with their opponents here.

Into the midweek action and in Olympian Premier on Monday night, Catholic United edged Harold Wood Athletic 2 – 1 at Bowers & Pitsea’s Len Salmon Stadium. Dan Trenkel and Brad Vaughan struck to seal the points for the Super Hoops, while Charlie Liddiard replied for the visitors. Catholic went above Ath into 3rd spot on goal difference with this win.

In the only other match on Monday night, in Olympian Senior One, Buckhurst Hill smashed strugglers Newbury Forest 9 – 1 at Oakside. Nathan Sollose scored four while Fehinti Falola and Steven Townsend each grabbed braces and Sam Sollasi added another as the leaders had a night they won’t soon forget.

On Tuesday night, Great Baddow kept their grip on 2nd spot in Olympian Division One with a 3 – 1 home win over Old Southendian while Galleywood won handsomely, 4 – 0 at out-of-form Snaresbrook thanks to a double from Craig Skipper and strikes from Matthew Ridley and Lewis Rose.

On Wednesday evening, there were two encounters in Olympian Premier. First, leaders Frenford were held 2 – 2 by Leigh Ramblers at Belfairs Park. Ramblers remain 10th while Frenford are 7 points clear at the summit though Catholic Utd in 3rd have 6 matches in hand on them. Elsewhere, Bishop’s Stortford Swifts won 3 – 0 at Manford Way to go above them into 7th spot.

Finally on Wednesday, in Senior One, Hutton won 2 – 1 at Old Chelmsfordians to stay 3rd, nine points clear of their nearest challengers.

One match takes place tomorrow (Thursday) at Oakside: Newbury Forest v Galleywood in Senior Division One.

That’s your lot for this week, thanks for reading.




Match Report: Hullbridge Sports 2 – 5 West Essex (ESL 17.4.18)

Essex Senior League

Venue: Lower Road

Attendance: 49

2017-18 Season – Match 65

Tuesday 17th April 2018 – 7.45pm KO

Hullbridge: Blue & White Striped Shirts, Blue Shorts and Blue Socks

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


Both sides before kick-off (Image: Scott W)

Scott W Reporting (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

With additional photos by Neil Hunwicks (Twitter: @ABridgeTooFar16) & Peter Dudley (Twitter: @ped1980)


On a nice spring evening at Lower Road, Hullbridge Sports welcomed a West Essex side that still had an outside chance of grabbing sixth place come season’s end. Hullbridge meanwhile could have done with one more success to absolutely confirm safety and they named the front two of Luke Hornsley and Adebola Sotoyinbo with Charllie Buffin and Matt Rose on the flanks. Matt Dicks and Jimmy Cox were among those unavailable for Darren Manning’s side so Conor Mead took the armband and reverted to a centre-back role alongside the recently returned Perry Dunn.

West Essex themselves named a strong side with the front-line of Isaac Marfo and talisman Michael Mignot with the creative likes of Brad Russell and Joe Lefley in support. Josh French and James Bromley were on the bench with Dan Christey and goalkeeper Jack Coker still unavailable. Club skipper Tom MacLeod did return to the starting XI.

The match started with the visitors pouring forward though forward Isaac Marfo and defender Tom MacLeod could not find their way past home goalkeeper Jamie Merralls. The hosts did have the odd foray forward in the early stages of the match though found the Stags defence in a stubborn mood. West Essex forward Michael Mignot stated his intent just past the 25 minute mark as his goal-bound header was blocked.

Arguably the best chance of the first half for Sports came moments later as a powerful drive by winger Charlie Buffin was well-tipped over by Stags custodian Dan Russell. The visitors responded just past the half-hour by taking the lead as the ever-dangerous Mignot slotted past Merralls calmly into the right corner of the net. Home forward Luke Hornsley did have sight of goal minutes later though his strike was straight at Russell who gratefully gathered.

Nine minutes before half-time, West doubled their lead as midfielder Joe Lefley cooly put Mignot in on goal and the forward finished well. The visitors had a couple chances to further extend their lead very soon after, with full-back Ben Leo’s fine left-wing cross just evading Marfo in the box. That said, the Stags were in no mood to be denied as a minute before the interval, Lefley’s sweet strike found the bottom corner. In all honesty, West’s movement and pace was very difficult for the home defence to handle thus far.

Half-Time: Hullbridge Sports 0 – 3 West Essex

Hul v W.E pen (17.4.18)
‘Bridge forward Sotoyinbo beats Russell from the spot (Image: Neil H)

As the second half began, Sports did threaten a comeback as moments after the inital whistle, a foul on Hornsley in the area by West centre-back Kofi Appiah was spotted and strike partner Adebola Sotoyinbo duly converted the resulting spot-kick. Sotoyinbo shot wide for the hosts only two minutes later though soon afterward, Mignot continued to give the home defence a tough evening’s work and snuck in to gather a ball from the left flank and stroked past Merralls, although a home defender may have got the final touch.

Just past the hour mark, Hullbridge pulled another goal back as a wind-assisted 40-yard free-kick from skipper Conor Mead found its way into the net past Russell and suddenly, the Stags defence looked a bit rocky as Hornsley and substitute Eamon Payne, playing as a makeshift forward, were proving a presence for the hosts’ front-line. Stags full-back Leo did msake a couple of good tackles as the hosts did threaten to eat further into West Essex’s lead for a short period.

However, the match was more than settled with eight minutes of normal time remaining, a corner from Lefley was powerfully headed home by substitute Josh French, to cap a throughly good night’s work for Kwame Kwateng’s side. The only downer for them was that midfielder Brad Russell limped off late on.

Full-Time: Hullbridge Sports 2 – 5 West Essex

Hullbridge boss Manning will know there is still ‘some work to do’ to ensure his side improves next season as they are practically safe now. They travel to Hackney Wick on Saturday, while West Essex host Wadham Lodge in one of the three designated matches suppporting ‘Kick It Out’ day on Saturday.



Hullbridge Sports | Manager: Darren Manning

Jamie Merralls (GK), Shawn Coe (Eamon Payne 46′), Sam Taylor, Perry Dunn, Conor Mead (Capt), Joe Pattison, Dan Okah, Charlie Buffin (Howard Wright 82′), Luke Hornsley, Adebola Sotoyinbo, Matt Rose

Goal-scorers: Adebola Sotoyinbo [pen 46′], Conor Mead [62′]

Booked: Dunn   | Subs Not Used: Burrell, Poole


West Essex  | Head Coach: Kwame Kwateng

Dan Russell (GK), Sanchez Hardy, Ben Leo, Tom McLeod (Capt), Nick Walk, Kofi Appiah, Bradley Russell, Joe Lefley, Greg Frederick (Musa Manneh 71′), Michael Mignot (Jonathan Tyrell 82′), Isaac Marfo (Josh French 64′)

Goal-scorers: Michael Mignot [31′, 36′ & 50′], Joe Lefley [44′], Josh French [82′]

Booked: Appiah, McLeod, Russell, Walk  | Subs Not Used: Bromley


Referee: Michael Scott

Match Report: Burnham Ramblers 1 – 2 Basildon Utd (ESL 16.4.18)

Essex Senior League

Venue: Leslie Field

Attendance: 72

Monday 16th April 2018 7.45pm KO

2017-18 Season: Match 64

Burnham: Navy Blue & Black Striped Shirts, Black Shorts, Sky Blue Socks

Basildon: Green & White Striped Shirts, Green Shorts, Green Socks


Scott W Reporting (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

On a slightly chilly Monday evening at Leslie Field, relegation-threatened Burnham Ramblers welcomed promotion-chasing Basildon in what was a critical Essex Senior League encounter. For the hosts, Joshua Strizovic resumed duties between the sticks while Charlee Hughes also returned in attack, alongside Karl Swanborough. Basildon also welcomed back star striker Marcus Bowers into the starting XI, with Jack Adlington and Jamie Brown on the flanks. James Peagram and Matt Brinklow were among the options on the bench.

The visitors started in a dominant fashion, with wave after wave of attacks in the opening quarter-hour. Seven minutes in, centre-back Zac Littlejohn’s powerful drive  forced an excellent one-handed save from Burnham custodian Joshua Strizovic at full-stretch. Winger Jack Adlington miscued his shot from point-blank range in what was a let-off for Lee Hughes’ side. Burnham did make their way forward at scattered intervals though forwards Julian Bavin and Charlee Hughes should have done better but blazed efforts over the bar.

Bees’ forward Marcus Bowers was once again proving a physical threat to the over-worked Burnham back-line and felllow Basildon forward Oli Spooner also made a nuisance of himself in the number-ten role. After the visitors had a goal ruled-out for off-side on the half-hour, Spooner headed wide from a good delivery from winger Jamie Brown. Burnham skipper Alex Salmon typified his side’s stubborn defending, making two crucial blocks though you wondered whether the Ramblers defence could keep defensive display for the whole 90 minutes. In all honesty, Basildon should have been two goals ahead at  the break.

Half-Time: Burnham 0 – 0 Basildon

Into the second period and five minutes in, Hughes fired a shot from a narrow angle though visiting goalkeeper Connor Wheatley gathered. Moments later, the hosts conceded another free-kick, just outside the edge of the penalty area after Brown’s shot was adjudged to have been blocked by a hand. Bowers stepped up and blasted a sweet strike past Strizovic into the left corner. It was no less than the visitors deserved really and on the hour, Bees substitute Matt Brinklow was denied a good sniff at goal by Burnham winger Alfie Vinton, tracking back.

With 64 minutes on the clock, a Basildon corner was punched out by Strizovic though the ball fell kindly to Bowers in the area, who blasted another well-struck effort past the unsighted Strizovic, who managed to get a hand on it but couldn’t divert it over the bar. Burnham rallied though Hughes’ powerful goal-bound shot was parried by Wheatley. Just after that, the hosts were down to ten men after Vinton was dismissed for expressing his frustrations rather too fiercely.

The Bees should have been further ahead though Brinklow’s effort was cleared off the line. The hosts punished Basildon for that miss as Jamie Marsh’s fine cross was struck home by Hughes. Wheatley had to be alert late on to react to Burnham midfielder Bill Howard’s back header, which the ‘keeper tipped over the bar well. The Bees held on to claim another important win.


All in all, Marc Harrison’s side deserved the points with an assured display at times and their attacking pace and movement though Burnham did work hard at times, though they struggled to assert themselves in the first half. Things look bleak for Burnham now as they really need to win both of their remaining fixtures though it looks as though their fate is ‘out of their hands’ now. Basildon return to action at Southend Manor on Wednesday night and a win there will see them go level on points with Redbridge.



Burnham Ramblers  | Head Coach: Lee Hughes

Joshua Strizovic (GK), Tom Bennett (Tomiwa Adebayo 49′), Ricardo Bailey, Charles Brewer, Alex Salmon (Capt), Jamie Marsh, Alfie Vinton, William Howard, Karl Swanborough, Charlee Hughes, Julian Bavin (Scott Plom 73′)

Goal-scorer: Charlee Hughes [77′]

Booked: Howard, Hughes, Bavin, Salmon, Brewer

Sent Off: Vinton (Foul and Abusive language) | Subs Not Used: Hanlon, French (GK), Lewis


Basildon Utd  | Manager: Marc Harrison

Connor Wheatley (GK), Jamie Selby-Knight, Chris Charlery, Joe Skeels, Joe Burgess, Zac Littlejohn, Jamie Brown, Grant Cumming, Marcus Bowers (James Peagram 65′), Oli Spooner (Jack Renew 71′), Jack Adlington (Matt Brinklow 60′)

Goal-scorer: Marcus Bowers [53′, 64′]

Booked: None | Subs Not Used: Putt, Phillips




Essex Senior League round-up (ESL 15.4.18)

Written by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

Hello & welcome to this round-up of the weekend’s Essex Senior League action.

This weekend saw nine matches take place, here’s what transpired in big matches at both ends of the table.

Friday 13th April

Tower Hamlets  0 – 4  Basildon Utd
| Venue: Parkside (Aveley FC)  | Att: 85

Basildon took advantage of a hapless Hamlets showing to keep their promotion hopes alive at Parkside on Friday night. George Whitby’s spot-kick on ten minutes tempered any nerves for the Bees fans. James Brown smashed in a cracker two minutes before the break before goals from Jack Adlington [67′] and substutute James Peagram [69′] sealed a big win, the Bees fourth in their last six to cut the gap to Redbridge in 2nd to six points with two matches in hand on the Motormen. Hamlets’ sixth straight loss keeps them 11th.


Saturday 14th April

Burnham Ramblers 2 – 4  Hullbridge Sports
| Venue: Leslie Field  | Att: 48

Hullbridge staged quite a comeback to grab a big victory at Leslie Field. It started very well for the hosts as Alex Salmon’s header eight minutes in & Karl Swanborough’s strike ten minutes afterward gave Lee Hughes’s men a good lead. That lead was halved by Jimmy Cox [36′] before Cox restored parity for the visitors on 65 minutes. Darren Manning’s side wrestled the balance of power from the hosts soon after as Adebola Sotoyinbo [70′] and Michael Salako [80′] strikes sealed the win, Sports’ 4th in their last six matches to go seven points clear of the bottom four in 15th. Burnham’s 24th loss of the season leaves them three points adrift of safety.


Clapton  1 – 2  Sporting Bengal Utd
| Venue: Old Spotted Dog  | Att: 34

Sporting Bengal came from behind to secure a valuable win at the OSD. Jeff Cobblah broke the deadlock to give the Tons the advantage though a strong Bengal line-up recovered after the break as David Vaughan levelled on 65 minutes before Eaia Embalo got the winner ten minutes later. Bengal’s fourth win in their last seven encounters sees them up to 13th, nine points clear of danger.


Great Wakering Rovers  4 – 1  Wadham Lodge
| Venue: Burroughs Park  | Att: 78

I attended this match alongside the core GFS Radio team of Adam & Pete and other ESL luminaries at Burroughs Park. My report is here:


Redbridge  1 – 1  Enfield 1893
| Venue: Oakside | Att: 61

The Motormen managed to stall the E’s stunning recent run though had to battle for a point at Oakside. Aundre Spencer [34′] gave Matt Hanning’s side the lead though Phillip Browne-Bampfoe’s leveller on the hour may prove important for Ricky Eaton & Joey May’s side who remain 2nd, despite being winless in three matches now. Enfield’s unbeaten run extends to nine matches as they stay 9th.


Sawbridgeworth Town  0 – 2  FC Romania
| Venue: Crofters End  | Att: 30

FC Romania battled past stubborn Sawbo at Crofters. Goals from Gabriel Ghinea [48′] and Mihai Botosan [88′] sealed a vital win for Ionut Vintila’s men as they stay third, three points off Redbridge in the likely second promotion spot. Sawbo’s third defeat in their last eight sees them remain 8th.


Stansted  2 – 2  West Essex
| Venue: Hargrave Park  | Att: 27

Stansted were twice held by an improving West Essex side at Hargrave Park. Sam West gave the hosts a lifeline three minutes into the second half though substitute Tom MacLeod, making his return from injury, levelled on 65 minutes. Ryan Ramsey’s penalty [72′] gave the hosts the lead once again though the Stags forced a share of the spoils thanks to talismanic striker Michael Mignot’s strike with ten minutes left. Stansted’s dreams of survival are creaking as they sit 18th, two points from safety with three matches left. West are still 7th with only two losses in their last six and have a shot at pinching 6th from Clapton, given they have four matches in hand on the Tons to claw back a gap of seven points.


Waltham Forest  2 – 2  Southend Manor
| Venue: Kitchener Road | Att: 66

A last-minute leveller deprived Forest of a vital three points at Kitchener Road. Manor led after just four minutes thanks to skipper Lee Delf though Forest replied thanks to recent signing Shomari Barnwell’s penalty [52′] and then took the lead themselves with eight minutes left through giant midfielder Tony Da Silva. Though the action didn’t stop there as Tyler Fowles dramatically secured a point at the death for Adam Peek’s side. Forest may well be ‘kicking themselves’ as they stay 17th, two points above the relegation trap-door after a run of only one triumph in their last ten matches now. Manor have also found wins hard to come by still, with one win in their last nine encounters which drops them to 14th, eight points clear of danger.

You can watch video highlights of this match (courtesy of  WD Sportz) & post-match Interviews here:


Woodford Town (2017) 1 – 4  Takeley
| Venue: Station Road | Att: 71

Takeley overwhelmed Woodford to grab another good three points in this reversed fixture at Station Road. Goals from George Wappett [20′] and Matt Gill [45′] gave Marc Das’ side a two-goal cushion at the break. Further strikes from Mitchell Das [57′] and Olakunmi Bossanya [83′] added to Takeley’s already good goal difference which could prove important in three weeks’ time. Jack Grosvenor’s late consolation four minutes from time probably did little to lift the ‘Woodlife’ side and they stay 12th. Takeley’s 22nd win of the season leaves them 14 points off Redbridge with four matches in hand on them so they need a stellar run-in to overhaul the sides ahead of them.


Midweek fixtures:

Barkingside  v   Sporting Bengal Utd
Burnham Ramblers v Basildon Utd (both Mon 16th Apr)

Hullbridge Sports v West Essex
Stansted  v  Hackney Wick
Takeley  v   Tower Hamlets  (all Tues 17th Apr)

Ilford v Wadham Lodge
Southend Manor v Basildon Utd (both Wed 18th Apr)

Takeley v  FC Romania  (Thurs 19th Apr)


That’s all from the ESL Round-up this week. Check back soon for more as the season heads for a fascinating conclusion.