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

Essex Olympian League – Premier Division

Venue: Thames Road

2021-22 Season: Match 15

Attendance: 30 (Est)

Saturday 17 September 2022 – 2pm KO

Rayleigh: Navy Blue Shirts, Shorts & Socks

Leigh Rams: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

Impeccably observed minute’s silence pre-match

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

Rayleigh Town  4 – 3 Leigh Ramblers

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

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

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


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

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

Baldry about to launch a throw-in for Rayleigh

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

Half-Time: Rayleigh  2 – 3 Leigh Rams

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

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

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

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

Ramblers push forward in second half

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


Full-Time: Rayleigh Town 4 – 3 Leigh Ramblers

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

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

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

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

Teams

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

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

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

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

Booked: None | Sub Not Used: Chatterway


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

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

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

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

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


Referee: Kevin Nicholson
Assistants: Nnaemeka Ukah & Adam Miller

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

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Oakside

Attendance: 55 (Est)

2022-23 Season: Match 13

Tuesday 13th September 2022 – 7.45pm KO

Redbridge: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

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



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


Redbridge forced to battle hard to ensure victory over Enfield

Redbridge 2 – 1 Enfield

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

Half-Time: Redbridge 2 – 1 Enfield

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



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

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

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

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

Full-Time: Redbridge 2 – 1 Enfield

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

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

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

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


Teams

Redbridge | Manager: George Christou  | Assistant: Jack Toghli

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

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

Booked: None  | Subs Not Used: Gill


Enfield  | Manager: Jamie Cureton  | Assistant: Jim Duggan

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

Goal-scorer: Tyler Corlett [35′]

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


Referee: Gavin Bailey
Assistants: Kadir Nazif & Davide Scaraggi

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

The Emirates FA Cup – Prelim Round

Venue: Mayesbrook Park 3G

Attendance: 136

2022-23 Season: Match 8

Sunday 21 August 2022 – 3pm KO

Romford: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts & Blue Socks

Takeley: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

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

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

Romford 1 – 1 Takeley

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

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

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


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

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

Half-Time: Romford 1 – 1 Takeley


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

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

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

Full-Time: Romford 1 – 1 Takeley

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


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

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

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


Teams

Romford    |  Manager: Steve Butterworth |  Assistant: Dan Spinks

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

Goal-scorer: Kris Newby [pen 5′]

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


Takeley  | Manager: Marc Das | Assistant: Kevin Riley

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

Goal-scorer: George Frodsham [10′]

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

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

S22-23 Match Report: Frenford 3 – 3 May & Baker (Tues 2 Aug) [EaSL Sth 22/23 3.8.22]

Eastern Senior League – Division South

Venue: Jack Carter Centre [3G]

Attendance: 119

2022-23 Season: Match 4

Tuesday 2nd August 2022 – 7.45pm KO

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

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


Superb battle for the neutral ends with Frenford & Bakers sharing the points

Frenford 3 – 3 May & Baker

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

The new season began its midweek foray with a welcome visit to the Jack Carter Centre to see two sides that are highly-regarded in Frenford and May & Baker. The hosts were looking for their first win this term, whilst Bakers were looking to build on a good opening weekend win. Frenford fielded Jack Ryan in goal, with a back four of Alfie Karby, Tom Potter, captain Simon Peddie and Jack Sykes, with wingers Josh Fisayo and Raheem Gray the chief support to forwards James Peagram and Charlie Munns. Bakers had Seb Barford between the posts, with a defence of skipper Jamie Marsh , George Breen and Dauda Nimaga and the full-backs Cain Brougham and Ryan Leavens bombing forward at every oppurtunity. Forwards Shaun Omogbai and Anthony Cooke were supported by rapid wingers Abidemi Lamina and Idris Aminu.

This match did ‘get through the gears’ pretty fast with the visitors looking decent in possession, but it was Frenford who had the better of the early chances, with wingers Josh Fisayo and Raheem Gray both having strikes on Seb Barford’s goal. However, it was Jordan Harris’ tea who broke the deadlock on 11 minutes. From a set-piece from the far side, the threatening ball in found captain Jamie Marsh who powered home a fine header into the right corner, evading the grasp of home stopper Jack Ryan.


Impressive winger Abidemi Lamina had another strike blocked soon after as Bakers looked to push further ahead with the impetus they had created. The match was gathering pace and Dave Forbes’ side levelled on 22 minutes as a powerful strike by Harry Daly was denied by Barford, only to find forward James Peagram well-positioned to strike low into the net on the rebound. The home contingent were celebrating that equaliser but barely three minutes later, Bakers were back ahead. Idris Aminu’s fine weighted pass found fellow winger Lamina who strode through onto goal and his low strike got the better of Ryan to give Bakers the advantage for the second time.

The frenetic pace was still increasing as both defences were struggling to prevent chances. Frenford responded yet again on 34 minutes as a decent strike by energetic midfielder Sam Munton got past the gloves of Barford to make it tw-two. It didn’t stop there though, those of us ground-hoppers in attendance were really finding tricky to keep up but Frenford took the lead for the first time, two minutes after they levelled. Winger Raheem Gray stole in behind the visiting defence and his cool finish ensured that the hosts’ held a slender advantage at the interval.


Half-Time: Frenford 3 – 2 May & Baker

The interval was a chance to catch our breath and while the second half had less goals, it certainly did have plenty of action and big moments. Bakers made a double change of their forward line at the half-time, which saw Trevor Harding and Daniel Whitehead come on to replace Anthony Cooke and Shaun Omogbai. Both substitutes had early chances on goal in the second half and sure enough, they were level with 53 minutes on the clock.

Aminu was involved in the build-up, making another fine run down the right channel, and the ball found its way to Whitehead who connected well with his strike and it was well-saved by unfortunate Frenford stopper Ryan, though Robert Bagnall anticipated the rebound well and promptly tucked the ball into the net into the left corner, to level things up once again.

Ryan was in action throughout the half, making several important saves with his defence finding Bakers’ rapid forward moves tricky to contain. We nearly got a stand-out goal midway through the half as visiting captain Jamie Marsh showing some of the poise of a forward before firing narrowly wide of the target.


/

Frenford’s chances were comparatively rare in the second half but visiting custodian Seb Barford still had to be alert to deny Peagram’s initial effort, only for the rebound to find its way to Munton and without hesitation, his follow-up strike was well-blocked by a Bakers defender. Jordan Harris’ side responded with several set-pieces in the latter stages but Harding’s late strike was well-denied by Ryan’s legs.



Full-Time: Frenford 3 – 3 May & Baker

To sum up this enthralling, attack-minded match at both ends of the pitch, both sides contributed heavily to the game and whilst it can be debated that Bakers had more chances to win it, it would be a positive outlook to menton that both teams deserved something from this match, given their respective efforts. This division once again shown the entertaining factor it has, even if both defences may be disappointed.

There were some great performances from both teams. For Bakers, winger Abidemi Lamina was a consistent, pacey threat dpown the right flank, utilising his pace and trickery well. Lamina also took his goal well so plaudits to him. Also, skipper Jamie Marsh put in another good display at centre-back, being a resolute presence in the heart of the backline and also his powerful headed goal was important for his side’s impetus at that point. Winger Idris Aminu had a fine match too, creating several good half-chances for his team-mates and can be pleased with his performance. Finally, substitute Daniel Whitehead made a big impact after entering the match at half-time, having several efforts at goal and was well-thwarted by the Frenford defence and goalkeeper Jack Ryan.

For Frenford, goalkeeper Jack Ryan did have an excellent game, making at least five good saves to keep his team in the game at times. Ryan also deserved something from this match for his importance to the team, whilst centre-back Alfie Karby also made several important challenges as well. Forward James Peagram took his goal well to typify a good display, particularly in the first 45 minutes. Lastly, recent signing Sam Munton put in a good energetic display, also tracking back well to assist his team’s defence.

I’ll end this report by wishing both teams well for the rest of the season and also a big thanks to Frenford manager Dave Forbes for his warm welcome, on behalf on the club at this match. It is appreciated.

Bakers’ Lamina (#7) arrows in a fine long-throw late on

Teams

Frenford    |  Manager: Dave Forbes |  Assistants: Lee Forbes & Anthony Cook

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jack Ryan (GK), 5 Tom Potter (15 Liam Newton 20′), 2 Alfie Karby, 4 Simon Peddie (Capt), 3 Jack Sykes, 6 Harry Daly (12 Charlie Fairhead 63′), 7 Josh Fisayo, 8 Sam Munton, 10 Charlie Munns, 9 James Peagram, 11 Raheem Gray (14 Callum Owen 65′)

Goal-scorers: James Peagram [22′], Sam Munton [34′], Raheem Gray [36′]

Booked: Gray, Owen | Subs Not Used: Pegg, Silva


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

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Seb Barford (GK), 2 Cain Brougham, 3 Ryan Leavens, 5 Jamie Marsh (Capt), 6 George Breen, 4 Douda Nimaga (16 Kalum Bama 86′), 7 Abidemi Lamina, 8 Robert Bagnall, 9 Shaun Omogbai (14 Trevor Harding 46′), 10 Anthony Cooke (15 Daniel Whitehead 46′), 11Idris Aminu

Goal-scorers: Jamie Marsh [11′], Abidemi Lamina [25′], Robert Bagnall [53′]

Booked: Cooke, Nimaga | Subs Not Used: George, Riddell (GK)

Referee: Andrew Crossley
Assistants: Kevin Curran & Paul Watts

S21-22 Match Report: St Margaretsbury 1 – 3 Little Oakley (Sat 22nd Jan) [ESL 21-22 22.1.22]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: The Recreation Ground

Attendance: TBA

2021-22 Season: Match 50

Saturday 22nd January 2022 – 3pm KO

St Mags: Red Shirts, Black Shorts, Black Socks

L Oakley: Blue & Black Shirts, White Shorts, White Socks


Oakley produce resolute display to win at St Mags

St Margaretsbury 1 – 3 Little Oakley

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

My 50th match of the campaign saw me return to the Essex Senior League and a long trip back to the Recreation Ground for an intriguing match between strugglers St Margaretsbury and mid-table Little Oakley. Paul Holding’s side had garnered two good wins already this week and were looking to pull further clear of the bottom two. This was my first occasion seeing Oakley since their promotion to the Essex Senior and I’d heard good things about a resolute side under Matt Carmichael’s tutelage. Onto the Teams then and St Mags fielded a front three of Miles Holding, Rodney Clements and Tommy Jenkins, with Jon Stevenson joining stalwart skipper Aiden Read in central defence. Options from the bench included forwards Joe Abe and Jake Hayden-Eley. Little Oakley had Daniel Joyce in goal, Jamie Dobkin and captain Lewis Wood as their centre backs with Rory Harman and Ed Nobbs completing their defence. The goal-hungry pair of Danny Garrad & Harry Mann lined up in attack, with support from Michael Brothers and Mason Ridgway-Lumley. Their substitutes were midfielder Tyler Sullivan and the attack-minded Sam Cooke and Daniel Rowe. Greg Rodger and Nick Farthing were among those unavailable.


On a pleasant winter’s day, the match began with Oakley firing in a few shots at goal to test the reflexes of home custodian Harvir Deans, though he was equal to strikes by Harry Mann, Mason Lumley and the experienced Michael Brothers. The hosts did respond with a decent counter which saw the tireless Stefanos Georgiou fizz a decent effort narrowly wide of visiting goalkeeper’s Daniel Joyce’s woodwork. Unfortunately for the hosts, their inability to keep possession did return to bite them on eleven minutes as forward Danny Garrad stole in from the left flank and after evading his marker, sent in a cool lob out of the grasp of the stranded Deans to open the scoring for the Acorns.

Little Oakley did retain the ball better at this point, with St Mags feeling the frustration and getting caught up in a bit of a scrappy match with several free-kicks being conceded. Tricky forward Harry Mann had a powerful strike deflected wide for a set-piece midway through the half, but it was a good indication of what could transpire if the hosts switched off defensively. As it happened, moments after home defender Jon Stevenson was sent to the sin-bin for dissent, the next goal came from twelve yards after a decision that was also hotly disputed by the St Margaretsbury dugout. Even so, referee Benjamin Horne had little hesitation in pointing to the spot, and Mann duly struck home the resulting penalty.


If anything, Oakley could have put themselves beyond reach in the next phase of the game as a speculative drive from the far side by full-back Rory Harman clipped the woodwork with Deans beaten, and Garrad struck narrowly over as well.

With the interval approaching, Paul Holding’s side were starting to find their rhythm. A good left-wing cross by Andy Greenslade found forward Miles Holding though the latter was unable to get sufficient power in his header to get past Joyce in the Acorns’ goal, who could gather relatively untroubled.

St Mags’ Stefanos Georgiou [#5 on right side] looks to test the Oakley defence

Half-Time: St Margaretsbury  0 – 2  Little Oakley

After the break, St Mags having brought on Euan Tungamirai-Hove and Jake Hayden-Eley to replace the promising Charlie Hill and Dylan Gray, they would have a couple of good spells later in the half. First though in the early stages of the second-half, the likes of Read & co. had to deal with a good ball in from the left edge of the penalty area by support forward Michael Brothers which Tungamirai-Hove got in and cleared just ahead of the onrushing Garrad, primed for a far post tap-in. The hosts did switch off defensively on 55 minutes as Oakley substitute Daniel Rowe beat the offside trap but Deans got down low to pull off a good save from the one-on-one opportunity that Rowe had, having made a good run.

To their credit, St Margaretsbury did respond in a positive way, with Georgiou making another decent run and firing his strike narrowly over the woodwork. Georgiou and fellow midfielder Sami Moutawafiq did have more time in possession at this point and were showing good glimpses of their respective abilities, as was forward Tommy Jenkins, who made a few good runs down the left channel in the first-half. Tungamirai-Hove laid the ball off to forward Rodney Clements just short of the hour mark, and his fierce drive brought a good acrobatic save from Joyce as he clawed it over the woodwork.

Oakley begin another forward move

The Acorns had to show their resolute nature to keep themselves ahead, making good interceptions although St Mags didn’t test Joyce with alarming regularity. Midway through the half, a smart ball in by Rodney Clements from the right flank found replacement Joe Abe but when well-placed, Abe could only blaze his effort over the crossbar, much to his frustration. The hosts persistently looked to reduce their arrears but they conceded another spot-kick in the closing minutes, as substitute Sam Cooke was felled by Read’s challenge. Rowe stepped up to convert the penalty and although they were not in top form, Oakley did enough to claim the points here.

St Margaretsbury did get on the score-sheet in the first of six added minutes as Clements was fouled in the area. Clements stepped up himself to strike low into the net past Joyce to erase the clean sheet that could have come for the Acorns but in truth, they should be pleased with the points. Results elsewhere saw Clapton an important win to reduce St Mag’s advantage over the Tons to one point, in a bottom five tussle that will likely run and run.

Tommy Jenkins [#7 St Mags] going forward trying to unlock Oakley’s defence

Full-Time: St Margaretsbury  1 – 3  Little Oakley

In summary, Little Oakley made the most of a disjointed first-half display by the hosts to get themselves ahead but did find it harder after the interval. In fairness though, Matt Carmichael’s side did have enough chances to put the game beyond doubt, particularly in that first 45 minutes.

There were a number of good performances from both sides in this match. Firstly for Oakley, the forward pair of Danny Garrad and Harry Mann posed the home defence enough problems, with Mann’s movement and touch making him hard to track. Garrad came in from the left flank to good effect as well and his goal was well-taken. Ekow Owusu-Boakye had a good match in central midfield, tracking back well at times as well as being involving in attacking moves, with Michael Brothers also playing a good role as a support forward, unsettling the hosts.

For St Mags, forward Tommy Jenkins had a good all-round match, making good runs and making some telling passes to his fellow forwards in a match where his side didn’t create as much as they would have liked. Midfielder Stefanos Georgiou also put in a big shift, looking to dictate the play and playing his part in an improved team showing after the interval. Lastly, a word for forward Rodney Clements who could have been on the score-sheet before the last few moments and showed good energy, pace and work rate with St Margaretsbury looking to get back into the game.  

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

Teams

St Margaretsbury  | Manager: Paul Holding  | Assistant: Richard Dagger

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Harvir Deans (GK), 2 Andy Greenslade, 17 Jon Stevenson, 6 Aiden Read (Capt), 2 Andrew Greenslade, 4 Sami Moutawafiq, 5 Stefanos Georgiou (15 Joe Abe 65’), 8 Charlie Hill (3 Euan Tungamirai Hove 46’), 7 Tommy Jenkins, 9 Dylan Gray (12 Jake Hayden-Eley 46’), 10 Miles Holding, 11 Rodney Clements

Goal-scorer: Rodney Clements [pen 90’+1]

Booked: Read  | Sin-bin: Stevenson [24’]

Subs Not Used: Ajong, Hares


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

1 Daniel Joyce (GK), 2 Rory Harman, 3 Ed Nobbs, 5 Lewis Wood (Capt), 6 Jamie Dobkin, 4 Bradley James, 7 Mason Ridgway- Lumley, 8 Ekow Owusu-Boakye, 9 Harry Mann (15 Daniel Rowe 52’), 10 Michael Brothers (14 Sam Cooke 79’), 11 Danny Garrad (12 Tyler Sullivan 69’),

Goal-scorers: Danny Garrad [11’], Harry Mann [pen 27’], Daniel Rowe [pen 87’]

| Subs Not Used: None


Referee: Benjamin Horne

Assistants: Trevor Williams & Ray Parmenter

S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 18 Dec) [EOFL 21/22 19.12.21]

First look at Nursery Sports Ground where my match took place this week

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

Hello all and welcome to my round-up of the action in the Essex Olympian League, on Saturday 18 December. This week, we had a deluge of matches postponed because of Covid-related reasons (with the fixture list’s proximity to Christmas & rising case numbers in the county) plus the advance of Wintery weather would also have had an effect.

Included in this mini-article is the surviving action this weekend & a look at the Division Two table at Christmas, with four months remaining of the season. Many thanks for reading.

Essex Olympian League Round-up – Saturday 18 December

EOFL Division Two

Two matches were played in Division Two and they involved the top three teams in the division. ACD Utd are the new leaders after a conclusive 5 – 1 win over AS Rawreth at Westlands. Michael Wade lead the goal-scoring here with two goals for Greg Knock’s side. Jacob Dingli, Jamie Alexandrou and Billy Rungay also scored as ACD got their 12th win of the league season.

They lead the standings because rivals Harold Hill dropped points. The East London had a rather tougher assignment as they travelled to third-placed Wakebury. Indeed, it was Wakebury who came out on top with a fine 6 – 2 victory over Harold Hill at the Nursery Sports Ground in the match I attended this weekend. Max Hall netted four goals for Matt Cardy’s side here, with Will Wheeler and substitute Brodie Horne netted minutes into his debut for the club. James Hughes and Harry Agombar’s free-kick got the goals for Hill though they also had two players dismissed and one more sent to the sin-bin late on. For more on this match, my report is available here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2021/12/18/s21-22-match-report-wakebury-6-2-harold-hill-sat-18-dec-eofl/

Here is a look at the Division Two Table, in this 22-game season for clubs at this level.

I’d like to wish all the reders of this column and all involved in the Essex Olympian League a Happy Christmas & sincere best wishes for 2022.

End

S21-22 Match Report: Cockfosters 0 – 4 Tring Athletic (Sat 20 Nov) [FAV R2 21.11.21]

Fa Vase Trophy

The FA Vase – Second Round Proper

Venue: Chalk Lane

Attendance: TBC

2021-22 Season: Match 43

Saturday 20th November 2021 – 3pm KO

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

Tring Ath: Green Shirts, Green Shorts, Green Socks


Inspired Tring overwhelm ‘Fosters to progress into Round Three of the Vase

Cockfosters 0 – 4 Tring Athletic

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

With no League action this weekend in the ESL, I decided to visit Chalk Lane for this big FA Vase Round Two match as Cockfosters took on former Spartan South Midlands rivals Tring Athletic. The hosts named a strong squad, with Bartosz Bilinski retaining his spot in goal, with a defence of Rueben Campbell, Prince Madu & centre-backs Danny Haigh and Jamal Brimah. The forward three here were Charncey Dash, George Beattie and Reece Mosanya. Options from the bench included player-boss Ryan Wade, fellow forward Fred Agyemang and midfielder Joe Entwistle. Tring were missing several players but had Dave Saunders between the posts, a defence that included Ben Johnson and Scott Bonner, with Emmanuel Gbejuade and Frankie Hercules on the flanks supporting forwards Chris Blunden and captain Kieran Turner. A youthful bench included Reily Churchill, Ali Mohiuddin, Jimmy Doherty and Temi Bankole.

Kaidyn Michael on the ball (right) for Cockfosters

In the early minutes of the match, it was ‘a tale of two chances’. The hosts had a fine downward header by forward Charncey Dash well clawed away by visiting stopper Dave Saunders with the ball close to the goal-line. Tring responded with some vigour and broke the deadlock on seven minutes as a floated ball in by skipper Kieran Turner was spilled by home custodian Bartosz Bilinski which allowed the onrushing George Carbery to prod home from close range calmly, much to the delight of the visiting contingent of supporters.

Cockfosters had a decent start to the tie, although they were conceding territory to the Tring forward line and they were looking good on the counter-attack. Ryan Wade’s side were feeling the fustration even more after an incident on 23 minutes. The Referee consulted with his assistant before dismissing Dash for lashing out at a Tring defender. Unsurprisingly, Tring were keen to ramp up the pressure the hosts were feeling and just shy of the half-hour, a good run down the right flank by winger Frankie Hercules ended with a fine strike by Turner which thundered off the woodwork.


‘Fosters responded a few minutes later as from 25 yards out, forward George Beattie let fly with a well-struck effort which Saunders couldn’t gather until the second attempt. Athletic managed to extend their lead at a crucial time (on 39 minutes) as another good ball in ended with an initial header coming back off the goal frame with Bilinski beaten, and midfielder John Smith was happy enough to help himself to a tap-in, ahead of a disorganised home defence, which is unusual for them.

There was still more driving play from the visitors for Cockfosters to withstand ahead of the interval as a fine strike by Smith from 25 yards out drifted in the air and needed Bilinski to parry it over for a set-piece, it was a good save.


Half-Time: Cockfosters 0 – 2 Tring Athletic

However invigorating Ryan Wade’s team-talk may have been for the hosts at the interval, Tring effectively ended any hopes of a comeback just two minutes after the restart as more hesitant defending encouraged a move involving forward Chris Blunden and Hercules which found Emmanuel Gbejuade who slotted home with aplomb past the adavancing Bilinski.

On the whole, it was a quieter second half with fewer chances though substitute Fred Agyemang had a decent strike which went wide, soon after entering the field in place of full-back Rueben Campbell. Athletic were still a threat going forward, with the impressive Turner and Hercules both having strikes off-target. Cockfosters couldn’t rally to get themselves back into the contest despite the efforts of Mosanya and Beattie in attack, but you also have to give credit to the miserly Tring defence and the work rate displayed by the entire team here for reducing the amount of chances that the hosts could create.


Ryan Sturges’ side added gloss to what was a memorable day for them as Carbery fired home superbly, high into the net to grab a late fourth for Tring, who advanced into Round Three. ‘Fosters will be disappointed at their performance and not being able to put their opponents under sustained pressure for long periods of the match. Despite the result, it was a good occasion to be a part of and I thank the hosts for their welcome today.


Full-Time: Cockfosters  0 – 4  Tring Athletic

In summary, Tring more than deserved the win and the pain could’ve been worse for Ryan Wade’s side as Tring squandered a few other good chances here. It could’ve been rather different if Saunders hadn’t denied Dash’s early header, but you know what they say about chances missed….

For this match’s stand-out performances I’ll start with the victors. Being earnest, there were a lot of good options to pick from, with George Carbery nabbing two goals today, both of them were well-taken and it was a memorable day for him. Hard to not start with the forward two of Chris Blunden and skipper Kieran Turner who between them were a big headache for the home defence with their movement, passing and work rate. Plaudits to them. A mention too for winger Emmanuel Gbejuade who did stretch the opposition backline from the left channel and didn’t hesitate with the finish for his goal. Finally, John Smith did well from midfield and put in a hard-working display and supported his forwards well. For ‘Fosters, forwards Reece Mosanya and George Beattie did what they could to orchestrate a comeback, with Mosanya testing the resolute visiting defence with sharp runs and passes, while Beattie tested Tring stopper Saunders on two occasions. A note also for enterprising full-back Prince Madu who was a good outlet down the left side and also centre-back Jamal Brimah who also cleared several dangerous crosses well.

I’d like to wish Tring Athletic all the best in the next round of the Vase. Fortunately for the Essex Senior, Athletic Newham and Saffron Walden Town did make it through to Round Three on December 11th.


Teams

Cockfosters |  Player-Manager: Ryan Wade  | Assistant: Sam Ruff

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Bartosz Bilinski (GK), 2 Rueben Campbell (16 Fred Agyemang 57′), 3 Prince Madu, 4 Danny Haigh, 5 Luke Marshall (Capt), 6 Jamal Brimah, 7 Reece Barrett (15 Joe Entwistle 64′), 8 Kaidyn Michael (12 Zivonimir Lopes 79′) , 9 Charncey Dash, 10 George Beattie, 11 Reece Mosanya

Booked: Haigh | Sent Off: Dash [23′] | Subs Not Used: Wild, Hockney, Ungudi, Wade


Tring Athletic  | Manager: Ryan Sturges   | Assistants: Lee Groves & Ian Henderson

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Dave Saunders (GK), 2 Harrison Cornick, 3 Adam Sawyer, 16 Scott Bonner, 12 Ben Johnson (17 Reily Churchill 84′), 15 George Carbery, 8 John Smith, 7 Frankie Hercules (14 Ali Mohiuddin 79′), 11 Emmanuel Gbejuade (18 Jimmy Doherty 67′), 9 Chris Blunden, 10 Kieran Turner (Capt)

Goal-scorers: George Carbery [7′ & 87′], John Smith [39′], Emmanuel Gbejuade [47′]

| Subs Not Used: Bankole, Pitts (GK)


S21-22 Match Report: St Margaretsbury 0 – 1 Takeley (Tues 16 Nov) [ESL 21/22 17.11.21]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: The Recreation Ground

Attendance: 59

2021-22 Season: Match 42

Tuesday 16th November 2021 – 7.45pm KO

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

Takeley: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks



Takeley claim scrappy win over St Mags

St Margaretsbury  0 – 1  Takeley

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

The midweek match this week was a trip to the Recreation Ground to see another interesting match in the Essex Senior which saw St Margaretsbury face visitors Takeley. The hosts are in the midst of another rebuilding phase under recently-appointed boss Paul Holding and fielded Matthew Botlan in goal, with a central defence of Andy Greenslade, captain Aiden Read and Jake Hayden-Eley and Conor Tyrrell led the forward line with support from Rodney Clements & Stefanos Georgiou. Takeley were looking to get back into the top ten with a victory and had Sam Soutar between the posts, with a forward line of Kieran Southgate, Jordan Westcott and George Frodsham with support from Theo Campbell.
 
As the match got underway, the feeling came to mind that the hosts were in growing need of the points to avoid getting drawn into the bottom four. Unfortunately for St Mags, Takeley did open the scoring after five minutes. A decent move ended with a well-directed header from Theo Campbell found the right corner from about six yards, evading the grasp of home custodian Matthew Boylan. The home dugout was audibly keen on saying it was off-side but the goal stood. In all respect to St Mags, they reacted well after conceding that early goal, having a good amount of possession and midway through the half, a good one-two started with St Mags winger Marcus Poncho sprinting down the left-wing and found forward Conor Tyrrell who in turn laid the ball back to Poncho whose strike was angled narrowly over the right corner of the goal.


Takeley did look more assured in their passing at this point and slightly more solid in defence, with the hosts not able to retain the ball in the opposition half as well as they wanted. Even so, Marc Das’ side were a little fortunate to stay ahead as further strikes for St Mags by Poncho and Rodney Clements came back off the woodwork. Tyrrell also had a goal chalked off for an off-side. Takeley had a good spell shortly before the interval though, with Campbell having another effort which struck the goal frame. All in all though, the visitors needed to have more impetus to make the the points secure here after the break.


Half-Time: St Margaretsbury 0 – 1 Takeley

In the second half, the pace of the game did not liven up hugely it has to be said though St Margaretsbury did keep a good amount of possession and before we reached the hour mark, midfielder Sami Moutawafiq and the lively winger Stefanos Georgiou had half-chances to level up proceedings here, although visiting stopper Sam Soutar was looking comfortable. Takeley were holding firm defensively though but their ball rentention wasn’t at their characteristic best.

St Mags kept going as the minutes ebbed away and they did give Takeley a few nervy moments. With three minutes left until added time, a super run down the middle by Georgiou started with a fine turn before evading two defenders and then narrowly firing over Soutar’s woodwork. It would’ve been a fine goal and given the balance of play, St Mags would’ve earned a draw. However, the last few moments were getting increasingly tetchy and the hosts had skipper Aiden Read dismissed in added time for a poor tackle near the half-way line.



Full-Time: St Margaretsbury  0 – 1 Takeley

To sum up this really gritty encounter, Takeley will be happy enough with the three points and they did enough to deny the hosts’ forward moves. St Mags had several chances to at least get a leveller. There is an argument the visitors didn’t retain possession as often as usual but St Mags were simply unable to make the most of the chances they created, in a match which got increasingly bad-tempered in the latter stages. St Mags will need to be more clinical with their finishing going forward though the positive they have to take from this match is they kept the ball quite well at times.

The stand-out performances from this game start with Takeley. Theo Campbell had a really good game. Besides his goal, he made several good runs from deep in support of his team’s forwards. Jordan Westcott also made good runs down the channels and linked-up well with strike partner Kieran Southgate. Skipper George Powell also did a good job as ever of marshalling his tram and his defence. For St Mags, Stefanos Georgiou had a good game as well, making several good runs and was unlucky not to score, as was forward Rodney Clements who played his part aa well, displaying good movement. Winger Marcus Poncho was also a good outlet for Paul Holding’s side down the flanks as his side did threaten to break past the visiting defence on a few occasions.

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


Teams

St Margaretsbury  | Manager: Paul Holding  | Assistant: Dan Evans

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Matthew Boylan (GK), 3 Andrew Greenslade, 6 Aiden Read (Capt), 5 Jake Hayden-Eley (15 Joe Evans 68′), 2 Evan Hove (12 Casey Nolan-Samuels 75′), 11 Marcus Pancho, 4 Charlie Hill, 8 Sami Moutawafiq, 10 Rodney Clements, 9 Conor Tyrrell (17 Jack Mongey 68′), 7 Stefanos Georgiou

Booked: Hayden-Eley, Hill | Sent Off: Read [90’+5]  | Subs Not Used: Mutsviaro, Rodriguez


Takeley  | Manager: Marc Das  | Assistant: Kevin Riley

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Sam Soutar (GK), 2 Mike La Ronde, 3 Alfie Anderson, 4 George Powell (Capt), 6 Freddie Burrell (12 Lewis Powell 66′), 5 Charlie Dobinson, 7 Charlie Allum, 8 Theo Campbell (14 Carmac Clarke 74′), 9 Kieran Southgate, 10 Jordan Westcott, 11 George Frodsham (17 Charlie Gilbert 82′)

Goal-scorer: Theo Campbell [5′]

Booked: Anderson, Burrell, Southgate | Subs Not Used: Wilson, Jelliman


Referee: Leigh Ballinger
Assistants: Darrell Evans & Andy Wheaton

S21-22 Match Report: Barkingside 1 – 6 Buckhurst Hill (Mon 25 Oct) [EaSL Sth 26.10.21]


Eastern Senior League – South Division

Venue: Cricklefield

Attendance: 115

2021-22 Season: Match 36

Monday 25th October 2021 – 7.45pm KO

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

Buckhurst H: White Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks


Players pre-match

Buckhurst achieve comfortable win over ‘Side at Cricklefield

Barkingside  1 – 6  Buckhurst Hill

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

The midweek match in late October was this fascinating encounter at Cricklefield between two sides in contrasting form as Barkingside welcomed local rivals Buckhurst Hill in Eastern Senior League South. ‘Side were looking to swiftly recover from a heavy weekend loss at Halstead whilst Buckhurst were still buzzing after their progression in the FA Vase after victory at Great Yarmouth. One other bit of news for the hosts saw First-team boss Francesco Zabotti depart for EOFL Premier side Springfield last week, which saw GM Steven Le Sage back in charge for Barkingside here. They named Lubomir Georgiev in goal, with right-back Jordan Cornelius skippering the team. David Etcheri and Patrick Hoy were the centre midfield pair, alongside Reece Simpson and Quincy Warner in attack. Options from the sidelines included defender Berkcan Belindir and forward Joe Gent. Buckhurst rotated their squad somewhat following that aforementioned Vase win but still had Daniel Blockley between the sticks, with a defence of Liam Foster, Edward Buchanan, Alfie Harris and Max Nicholson. Suleyman Zuhdu retained his place and captained the side, with Sonny Shilling and Tyler Dolan joining him in an enterprising forward line. Their bench included forwards Nathan Sollosi, Fehinti Falola and Brad Rowland.


As the match began in earnest, it was the hosts who had the first sight of goal on two minutes as forward Reece Simpson showed his intent, firing a good strike wide of the right-side post from twenty-five yards. It was a cagey start to the game, with little in the way of clear-cut openings and to their credit, ‘Side defended quite well and that was shown by good clearances by centre-back Jason Jones and right-back Jordan Cornelius. However, the first big point of the game happened on 21 minutes as Buckhurst forward Tyler Dolan was fouled in the area, which resulted in the penalty being converted low into the right corner by Dolan himself to give the visitors the lead. Barkingside responded on the counter-attack, with Reece Simpson being played in unselfishly and his firm effort on goal was well denied by visiting stopper Dan Blockley.

Steven Le Sage’s side were having their best period of the match at this juncture, and just before the half-hour, Jones was unfortunate to have a powerful header at goal cleared off the goalline by a well-placed covering Buckhurst defender. This seemed to galvanise the visitors snd they respoonded with a second goal just after the half-hour. A neat passing move ended with a controlled finish by attacking midfielder Jake Moss who did well to beat stranded ‘keeper Lubomir Georgiev. So, with the Stags two goals to the good, they were in a decent position. However, ‘Side responded all of thirty seconds later as Simpson really nailed a powerful strike from 25 yards which Blockley got a glove on but it still sailed high into the net. You could argue that ‘Side deserved that goal, but it was also apparent that Buckhurst could still raise their game further before the evening was done.


A glimmer of this was shown by another rapid run by forward Suleyman Zuhdu who made a good break down the left channel, cut inside and saw a good effort well parried by Georgiev. With half-time approaching, Barkingside tried fo force a leveller but Simpson’s tame effort dribbled wide of the left-side post, almost demanding that a team-mate would run in and grab a tap-in but it wasn’t to be.

Half-Time: Barkingside  1 – 2  Buckhurst Hill


So, as the players emerged for the second half it was fair to say that ‘Side were in the game and that Buckhurst had ‘more gears to find’ in attack. Unfortunately for the hosts, they did find that rhythm after the break. Eight minutes after the restart, a free-kick from just outside the eighteen-yard area on the angle found the top left corner, courtesy of a great strike by full-back Edward Buchanan. Mark Williams’ side were building their attacking ryhthm now and on the hour, forward Sonny Shilling’s lob somehow cannoned back off a post with the majority of the goal to aim at, and seconds later Zuhdu’s fine strike was well clawed away by the impressive Georgiev. Barkingside were in danger of being overrun at this point and Georgiev was in action again moments afterward, denying Zuhdu again with a fine one-handed save low on the ground.


Hill did get a fourth goal with fifteen minutes left as from a set-piece, full-back Liam Foster’s low finish found the net in a congested penalty area. The hosts couldn’t keep the ball for the long enough as Buckhurst poured forward with wave after wave of forward presses. Substitute Brad Rowland shot was denied by Georgiev as we entered the last ten minutes, though the Stags rounded off a fine evening’s work with replacement Fehinti Falola lobbing Georgiev well and in added-time, Rowland’s fierce strike got a hefty deflection off a defender which wrong-footed the goalkeeper.


Full-Time: Barkingside  1 – 6  Buckhurst Hill

In summary, Barkingside did well to compete in the first half and could have made things level at the interval, but ultimately they were unable to stifle a Buckhurst side who continue to impress with their goal-scoring and their pace going forward. Buckhurst deserved to win the game as they continue their quest to fortify their position in the top six.

In terms of stand-out performances, visitors Buckhurst Hill had midfielder Jake Moss to thank for scoring a good goal in a key period of the match. He also played his part in building up forward moves, as did full-back Liam Foster who took his goal well and continues to have a good season thus far. Centre-back Alfie Harris also made a number of important interceptions, while forward Suleyman Zuhdu also had a good gamewith his pace and movement and could’ve had at least two goals here if it wasn’t for good goalkeeping.

On that note, Goalkeeper Lubomir Georgiev had an excellent game for Barkingside, making at least five notable saves to keep his side in the contest. Jason Jones did well at centre-back in making several clearing headers, and support forward Quincy Warner put in a good shift making the visiting defence concentrate with neat passes and good darting runs. Lastly, Reece Simpson took his goal very well and could have added to his goal tally on another day.

My thanks to the hosts for their hospitality & best wishes to both sides for the remainder of the season.


Teams

Barkingside  | Manager: Steven Le Sage |

Starting XI (Subs) : 1 Lubomir Georgiev (GK), 2 Jordan Cornelius (Capt), 3 Shaquel Foyewa (16 Berkcan Belindir 72′), 5 Nathan Saunders, 6 Jason Jones, 14 Patrick Hoy, 7 David Etcheri, 8 Quincy Warner, 9 Reece Simpson, 10 Archie Hammond (18 Grant Frances 83′), 11 Osas Omuru (17 Joe Gent 58′)

Goal-scorer: Reece Simpson [32′]

Booked: Etcheri, Jones  | Sub Not Used: Scott, Thompson


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

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Daniel Blockley (GK), 2 Liam Foster, 3 Edward Buchanan, 4 Alfie Harris, 5 Max Nicholson, 7 Jack Griggs, 8 Josh Banfield, 16 Jake Moss (21 Fehinti Falola 67′), 14 Sonny Shilling, 10 Suleyman Zuhdu (20 Harry Markatis 75′), 15 Tyler Dolan (22 Brad Rowland 46′)

Goal-scorers: Tyler Dolan [pen 21′], Jake Moss [32′], Edward Buchanan [53′], Liam Foster [74′], Fehinti Falola [83′], OG [90’+2]

Sin-Bin: Shilling [44′] | Booked: Nicholson | Subs Not Used: Jiro, N Sollosi


Referee: Tommy Breen
Assistants: Alan Steward & Craig Wood

S21-22 Match Report: Sporting Bengal Utd 2 – 2 Sawbridgeworth Town (Sat 23 Oct) [ESL 23.10.21]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Mile End Stadium

Attendance: 50

2021-22 Season: Match 35

Saturday 23rd October 2021 – 3pm KO

S Bengal: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

Sawbo: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks



Fine comeback by Bengal denies Sawbo an important win at Mile End

Sporting Bengal Utd  2 – 2 Sawbridgeworth Town

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

This weekend’s match saw a return to Mile End Stadium to see a big match at the bottom of the table, as bottom two sides Sporting Bengal Utd and Sawbridgeworth Town faced each other. Bengal are now under the management of Shipon Miah and he named Kevin Rrushi in goal, with a defence of Nazrul Ahmed, George Turner, Ehizojie Onoabhagbe and the returning Kamarl Duncan, who impressed in his previous spell at the club. Redon Abazi and Arinze Ossai led the forward line here, with support from the flanks from Oshun Lewis and Joshua Carr. Tariq Fowler skippered the side, with goal-scoring forward Gianfranco Mici on the bench here, alongside fellow forwards Shiblu Miah and Oscar Onuorah. Sawbridgeworth are jointly-managed by Kieran Amos & Alex Salmon these days and Jimmy Parker was their goalkeeper, with a defensive unit of  Rowan Dorling, Lewis Wicker, Billy Stewart and captain Cory Rider. They had a forward three of Teddy Hall, Harry Davison and Morgan Arnold, with experience on the bench in Prince Alozie, Daryl Doolan and James Falaise, who joined the club this week.

The match got underway with a early effort from home full-back George Turner from 35 yards which went narrowly over visiting custodian Jimmy Parker’s crossbar on three minutes. Sawbridgeworth responded well with forward Harry Davison flashing a strike wide of goal, before strike partner Teddy Hall had a chance denied by Bengal stopper Kevin Rrushi. The visitors were finding their fovus going forward, with full-back Rowan Dorling and midfielder Grant Webb combining well down the right in a move which ended with forward Morgan Arnold slotting narrowly wide of Rrushi’s left-side post.



At this point in proceedings, Sawbo were having more of the ball and constructing more chances with it as well. Hall sent in a powerful strike from thirty yards which sailed wide of the far post. Fortunately for Kieran Amos & Alex Salmon’s side, they did make the most of good period midway through the half. Davison was played in well and he finished well with a low strike into the right corner. As we hurtled towards the interval, Sporting had to defend deep at times, but they were led well by Kamarl Duncan, who denied the opposition several times through good positioning and strong clearances.

Bengal stopper Kevin Rrushi was called into action again on 32 minutes and he denied another effort from Teddy Hall from close range. Sawbo were unable to get themselves clear in this match and conceded more possession in the last ten minutes of the half , which allowed Shipon Miah’s side a couple of promising moves, involving Oshun Lewis and Redon Abazi in the channels. Unfortunately for the hosts, their final ball was missing which meant they didn’t test Sawbo ‘keeper Parker on a regular basis.


Half-Time: Sporting Bengal 0 – 1 Sawbridgeworth Town


The visiting forwards still kept up the initative after the break, as Bengal brought all three of their substitutes on before the hour mark. Gianfranco Mici came on at the start of the second half and you sensed he would give Sawbo a different challenge, gathering the ball from deep and dribbling on past players. Sawbo did have another glimmer of a chance through Davison but the effort was gathered by Rrushi. The visitors certainly needed a second goal and on 56 minutes, it turned up in some style with midfielder Billy Purdy’s powerful strike finding the left corner from 25 yards with Rrushi beaten.

The scale of the task for Bengal got harder as centre-back Duncan had to hobble off on the hour, meaning they had to play the last third of the match with ten men. Even so, the momentum started to come for the home side, as Gianfranco Mici capped off a decent move with a well-struck strike that fizzed off the right-side post with Parker beaten. Sawbridgeworth responded as they hit the woodwork on 71 minutes, with Davison unlucky to see a fine curling drive come back off the goal frame.


The substitutes for Bengal were having an impact with Mici’s driving runs proving hard to stop for the visiting defence, and Oscar Onuorah was also stretching the Sawbo backline down the left channel. This was probably Bengal’s best phase of the match and they soon halved the deficit. With eleven minutes remaining, substitute Shiblu Miah ended a decent counter-attack with a fine strike high into the net to really add to Sawbo’s nerves.

All of a sudden, it was Sawbo’s turn to feel the pressure and it affected them going forward, with some decent approach play scuppered by them unable to find that telling final pass. Bengal did complete a rousing comeback four minutes from time as Onuorah struck home into the left corner after finding a half-yard of space past the tiring visiting defence. It was a frenetic end to the match but neither side could pinch a winner in the several minutes of added time played, so it ended in an entertaining draw.



Full-Time: Sporting Bengal Utd 2 – 2 Sawbridgeworth Town

In summary, this was a tense encounter which was understandable given both sides badly needed the points as they the bottom two sides in the division. There was some neat play from both sides though Sawbridgeworth will be disappointed that they couldn’t see the match out, having been two goals ahead with fifteen minutes remaining. Bengal though will be happy to have got something out of the match, although their defensive vulnerability remains and that may prove costly as the season goes on. All in all, this was a good match to watch.

In terms of stand-out performances here, we’ll start with Sawbo. The front three of Harry Davison, Teddy Hall and Morgan Arnold caused problems for the home defence with good movement, pace and in Davison’s case, good finishing as well. I also thought midfielder Grant Webb had a decent match as well, asisting in building his side’s attacking moves. For Bengal, full-back George Turner had a good game, showing good intent to get forward and start forward moves from the left channel and defended well too. Centre-back Kamarl Duncan had an excellent game, making several fine interceptions and really kept his team in the game, before he had to hobble off on the hour mark. Also, winger Joshua Carr showed good movement and pace and substitute Gianfranco Mici lifted the team after his introduction, showing good dribbling, movement and pace.

Best wishes to both teams for rthe rest of the season.


Teams

Sporting Bengal Utd     |  Manager: Shipon Miah  | Assistant: Rui Costa

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Kevin Rrushi (GK), 2 Nazrul Ahmed, 3 George Turner, 4 Kamarl Duncan, 5 Ehizojie Onoabhagbe, 6 Djibril Cante, 7 Oshun Lewis (16 Oscar Onuorah 54′), 8 Tariq Fowler (Capt), 9 Redon Abazi (15 Shiblu Miah 57′), 10 Arinze Ossai (14 Gianfranco Mici 46′), 11 Joshua Carr

Goal-scorers: Shiblu Miah [79′], Oscar Onuorah [86′]

Booked: Cante | Subs Not Used: Omobdi, Ntueba


Sawbridgeworth Town  | Joint-Managers: Kieran Amos & Alex Salmon

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jimmy Parker (GK), 2 Rowan Dorling, 3 Lewis Wicker, 17 Billy Stewart, 5 Cory Rider (Capt), 4 Billy Purdy, 7 Grant Webb, 8 Jake Skeet, 9 Teddy Hall (14 Daryl Doolan 75′), 10 Harry Davison (19 Jack Walker 84′)), 11 Morgan Arnold

Goal-scorers: Harry Davison [24′],  Billy Purdy [56′]

Booked: Dorling  | Sub Not Used: Potoczek, Alozie, Falaise


Referee: Joseph Sach
Assistants: John Caunt & Kebba Malcolm-Mayenda