Season Review 2019-20: Essex Senior League (Part 2 – Bottom half) [ESL SR 19/20 10.5.20]

Written By Scott W  [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome to the second of a two-part blog looking back at the Essex Senior League 2019-20 season, as part of my Non-League ‘Season Review’ series.

In this concluding part, I look back at the sides in the bottom half of the division from the dry statistics perspective and my own thoughts on seeing them in action during the campaign, followed by the stats on Top Goal-scorers this season.

For The Top Ten sides in the ESL, add this URL: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2020/05/05/season-review-2019-20-essex-senior-lge-p1/   Thanks for reading.

 

Essex Senior League   (as of season cut-off point of March 14th 2020)

As with most Football at or below Step 3 (Isthmian Premier Division in the local area), the season was halted in mid-March 2020 before eventually being curtailed several weeks later.

Beginning the bottom half in 11th are West Essex. The Stags had a season of transition with thirty-one points being gathered in their 24 matches. Their campaign was also blighted by weather-affected postponements though they still struck fifty-one goals (a goals per game average (GpG) of 2.125) and also shelled fifty-one in defence. They won five of their 12 matches away from their Mayesbrook Park home and their strong team ethos spread to their goal-scorers with Michael Mignot (10 league goals), Brad Russell (8) and Hakim Medfai (6) leading the way on that front. It is also notable that they have continued to encourage young talent into the first team this term. I saw them in action defeat Woodford in September, win well at Sawbridgeworth Town and narrowly lose at Cockfosters, the latter two matches both in October. Their attacking pace has continued from last term though I think for most of the season they have been that bit stronger defensively, despite suffering a few heavy losses this term. It may be that their counter-attacking style favours playing away from home, but I believe it is also about longer-term brick-building you feel for the club as they seek to strengthen the youth side of the club to build pathways through to Senior football.

 

In 12th place were Clapton. The Tons had a very strong ‘end’ to the campaign to record thirty-one points also from their 27 matches.  Five of their nine wins this term came in their last eight matches and Julian Charles’ side were nomads, playing at Parkside before finishing the campaign at Southchurch Park. They scored forty goals and conceded 59 in total, though their ten losses from seventeen away matches also impeded them. I saw them twice back in November where they lost at Stansted after a decent start and then gave Saffron Walden Town a test before falling to a loss at home to the Bloods. They struck me as a decent side on-the-pitch though their concentration did let down at times. Deimar Queni led the goal-scoring charts with six league goals so well done Deimar.

In 13th place are Ilford, with Jonny Fowell’s side gaining thirty points from their twenty-eight games. Stats will show that they scored only 31 league goals (a GpG of 1.11) which is the third-lowest in the division this term, though they did concede fifty times at the other end, which on balance is second-best of all the bottom-half sides. Cricklefield was their ‘fortress’ with all league eight wins this season coming from their 15 home games, with only five points coming away from home. Being positive, I have little doubt that Fowell and his strong coaching team will be aiming for a better season next time out. I saw them narrowly best Tower Hamlets at home back in August before giving it their all in a draw with Walthamstow in late January. I found them to be a determined outfit with some talented players who will improve with coaching & experience.

St Margaretsbury ended up in 14th spot with twenty-six points from their 28 games, after a tough end to the season which saw them gain one win in their last ten matches. Tony Wild & Ray Bartlett’s team had issues finding the net, as they scored 36 goals (a GpG of 1.28) whilst shelling forty-eight goals at the other end. Forward Kyle Roberts snared eleven league goals to lessen the threat of being caught in the bottom four. In one of those quirks, I saw them twice against Southend Manor this term. Firstly, in early September where they just edged to a win at home in a real helter-skelter high-scoring battle before Manor returned the favour at Southchurch Park in early January. When I saw them they played quite an open, attacking style and benefitted by having the likes of Ryan Reed on set-pieces too. But in defence, they could be got at, much the same as their rivals in that bottom half. It was announced post-season that Tony Wild has moved across to lead the Youth section next term, with Bartlett taking sole charge of the first team, I’d like to wish both well in their respective roles next season.

A point behind St Mags were Sporting Bengal Utd in 15th, having gathered twenty-five points from their 26 matches, after being deducted three points early on in the campaign. Imrul Gazi’s side have played a attractive style of football for several seasons now, though this term they were that bit more vulnerable defensively, having conceded 62 goals (a GpG of 2.38) this term. Curtley McIntosh led the way in attack with a very respectable twelve league goals, with support from Bobby Redwood who got seven. As mentioned in the previous part of this article, Bengal contributed hugely to a fine match in their draw with Redbridge at Mile End in late September and reminds us that they have a very capable side, even if the consistency isn’t quite there.

Enfield 1893

Into the bottom four now, starting with Enfield in 16th spot. Matt Hanning’s side had twenty-four points on the board from their 26 matches, thanks in part to a decent run of two wins and three draws in their last eight matches. Defensively they conceded sixty-six goals – the second-worst in the division but to their credit, in the last few matches they did tighten up at the back and had the season continued, they may have ended the season in a better position. One plus for them as well was their new home of Woodside (Bishop’s Stortford) and they got some fine results there, winning five of their 14 matches there this season. In 17th spot was Southend Manor who endured a tough season it has to be said. They gained twenty-three points from their 26 matches, with four of their six league wins coming at Southchurch Park. The principal issue for them was scoring goals, as they scored twenty-eight times during the entire season – the lowest in the division (a GpG of 1.07). When I saw them live though, they did have their moments (particularly in the midway point of the season as they held Sawbridgeworth in November and edged to victory of St Margaretsbury in early January) but earlier in the campaign, lapses of concentration & confidence showed in home losses to Redbridge and Cockfosters.

 

Moving into the bottom two, and in 18th place were Tower Hamlets. They were a point adrift of Manor on 22 points from their 27 games played. I wouldn’t be too surprised if Hamlets had one of the youngest squads to play in the division, certainly this season if not going further back into the league’s history. One for the historians that is. On their day, their pace and exuberance was tough to stifle, but on the other end of that scale is that their inexperience cost them, defensively in particular. They shipped sixty-five goals (a GpG of 2.41) and they didn’t win any of their last ten league matches which did put them in the position that they finished, but ran the top-of-the-table sides close which did earn John Jatto’s side respect.  Finally, bottom of the standings were Sawbridgeworth Town who won eight points from their 28 matches. Two league wins all season kind of sets the tone though what really leaps off the page was the unfortunate defensive record, conceding ninety-nine goals this term (a GpG of 3.53). Their league wins came against Cockfosters at home in mid-November and at Sporting Bengal in mid-February. I saw them lose out at home to West Essex in mid-October where they had promising parts of the game but not enough end product.  When I saw next saw them battle hard for a point at Manor at the end of November, there were signs they were tightening up and their attacking promise was evident too. Ultimately though, you’re forced to concede that it was a very harsh campaign for Sawbo and one they can scarcely afford to see again.

 

 

Finally, here’s the Leading Goal-scorers in the Essex Senior League 2019/20

(Source: essexseniorleague.co.uk)

       
    Club/s League Goals Total Goals (All Comps)
1 Dwade James Walthamstow 27 40
2 George Smith Hashtag Utd 19 26
3 Solomon Ofori Hadley 18 25
         
4 Gavin Cockman Saffron Walden Town 16 20
5 Suiabo Balde Tower Hamlets 15 15
6 Lewis Francis Walthamstow/ Saffron Walden Town 13 17
         
=7 Taylor Tombides Redbridge 12 19
  Curtley McIntosh Sporting Bengal Utd 12 16
  Issac Marfo-Jacobs Hoddesdon Town 12 15
         
=10 Kyle Roberts St Margaretsbury/ Hadley 11 15
  Connor Hammond Stansted 11 13
         
=12 Michael Mignot West Essex 10 15
  Manny Hammond Hadley 10 12
  Ned Clarke Cockfosters/ Hadley 10 10
         
=15 Charlie Cole Saffron Walden Town 9 28
  Bryn Thorpe Takeley 9 15
  Alfie Bartram Hadley 9 12
  Hassan Nalbant Redbridge 9 11
  Cameron Ferguson Hadley 9 9
         
         

 

Round-up: Essex Senior League (Fri/Sat 31 Jan/1 Feb) [ESL 19/20 2.2.20]

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and a warm welcome to another of my semi-regular round-up pieces looking at this weekend’s Essex Senior League action, from Friday 31st January & Saturday 1st February.

 

Essex Senior

Friday 31 January

Redbridge  2 – 7  Clapton  | Oakside  | Att: 49

Clapton put in an outstanding showing to batter the Motormen at Oakside on Friday night. Deimar Queni, Jaydon Charles and Nana Boakye-Yiadom all got braces for the Tons, to which Asher Modeste added a goal so Clapton led 7 – 0 before a late double from Hassan Nalbant and substitute Charlie Portway spared the hosts from a heavier loss. The Tons’ recent form continues to impress as its five wins from their last seven matches which sees them in 11th. Redbridge fell to their second loss in their last five though remain eighth.

Saturday 1 February    –   Essex Senior

Hashtag Utd  2 – 2  Takeley  | Chadfields  | Att: 139

Hashtag fought back twice to claim a share of the points at Chadfields. An OG put Marc Das’ side ahead on the quarter-hour, though Kris Newby got the Tags back on terms four minutes into the second half. In an encounter that was getting increasingly fraught, Reece Barrett put the visitors back in front on 55 minutes and it looked as though they may eke out the win though it wasn’t to be. Tom Anderson kept up his knack of scoring goals with a late equaliser to preserve the unbeaten run at five matches for Jay Devereux’s team.  Takeley remain 5th while Utd go up to second with rivals Walthamstow in Cup action this weekend.

Sawbridgeworth Town  0 – 1  Enfield   | Crofters | Att: 40

Enfield left it late before getting a crucial win at fellow strugglers Sawbridgeworth. Prince Adeyemi’s 90th-minute goal was enough to give Matt Hanning’s team an important three points, their first in eleven games to gain ground on rivals Tower Hamlets in the bottom three. Sawbo’s losing run extends to eight matches now and they are now 14 points adrift at the bottom with twelve matches remaining.

Southend Manor  1 – 0  Hoddesdon Town  | Southchurch Park | Att: 21

Manor emerged with a narrow win over Hoddesdon, thanks to Ruben Kennedy’s strike seven minutes before the end to obtain their first win in four games and leap up above Tower Hamlets into 16th and they are only three points off Sporting Bengal in 12th spot. Hoddesdon’s top-five aspiration this term is slipping as their winless run extended to four as they remain in ninth.

Stansted  3 – 2  West Essex  | Hargrave Park | Att: 68

The Airportmen made it ten straight league wins with a battling win over West Essex at Hargrave Park. Ryan Ramsay got the opener for the hosts inside a minute, though West have shown they are fired up in recent matches and levelled the match after 12 minutes through Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe. The game was well-poised into the second-half though Paul Clayton turned the game in a big way with a brace [70’ & 87’]. The Stags were depleted through illness and suspension though still got one back in added-time through Hakim Medfai though Paul Pittuck & John Watters’ side held on to remain sixth though they went four points clear of Cockfosters in 7th.

My Non-League colleague Matt North was at the game and here is his report: mattnorthfootball.wordpress.com/2020/02/01/match-report-stansted-3-2-west-essex-esl-19-20-01-02-20/

Tower Hamlets  0 – 2  Sporting Bengal Utd  | Mile End ‘derby’ | Att: 30

Bengal got their second Mile End ‘derby’ win of the season as they got a much-needed three points. Curtley McIntosh got the opener for Imrul Gazi’s side five minutes before the break and Bobby Redwood ended up securing the win midway through the second-half to give Bengal their second win in their last six to rise up to 12th spot. Hamlets’ quest for a win goes on and they drop to third-bottom after a winless stretch which now sits at eight matches.

 

News: In better news for Hamlets, starlet Ali Omar signed for EFL Championship side Barnsley this week so plaudits have to go to the Essex Senior side for the project they have instigated this term and best wishes go to Ali as he continues his football development at Oakwell.

 

Errington Challenge Cup : Quarter-Final

Walthamstow  0 – 2  Cockfosters  | Wadham Lodge | Att: 40

The new dawn at Walthamstow began with defeat as Cockfosters made the last four of the Errington Cup. First-half goals by Ceykan Karagozlu [20’] and Harley Haag five minutes before the break ensured that Ryan Wade’s team got the win though for ‘Stow, it is arguably more important that new boss Max Mitchell & his new signings get settled quickly as the club seeks to maintain its promotion challenge this season.

Round-up: Essex Senior League (Fri 10/Sat 11 Jan) [ESL 19/20 11.1.20]

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome to this week’s round-up of the seven Essex Senior League matches that took place this weekend. As ever, there were surprises, late winners and more. Thanks for reading.

Friday 10 January

Redbridge  2 – 2  Ilford   | Oakside   | Att: 75

Ilford struck late to grab a point in this absorbing encounter at Oakside. Loanee Jeffrey Cobblah netted on his debut to give the Foxes the lead with 63 minutes gone. Kurt Smith soon levelled for Micky Wetherall’s team seven minutes later. In an increasingly dramatic latter part of the match, Liam Burgess turned the tide in favour of the Motormen with their second with five minutes remaining. However, Larry Akanbi had the last word with the equalizer for Jonny Fowell’s team with two minutes left to play.  On the plus side, Redbridge are unbeaten in their last five matches and reside in 9th spot, whereas Ilf have only lost one of their last five matches and rise to 11th after Saturday’s action.

 

Saturday 11 January

Hashtag Utd  4 – 2  Sawbridgeworth Town   | Chadfields   | Att: 148

Hashtag produced a stirring performance after the break to get another important three points in their promotion hunt. Debutant Tom Anderson struck after just five minutes to give Jay Deveraux’s side the impetus. However, Jake Skeet got another goal for Sawbo only two minutes afterward to restore parity. Things were tight until George Smith made his presence felt again in front of goal with a brace [65’ & an 88th-minute spot-kick], either side of a strike by Samraj Gill with 15 minutes remaining. Moyo-Jordan Ajibade got a consolation for Town on the stroke of the ninety minutes though the Tags fortified third spot with a sixth league win in their last seven which keeps them third, eight points clear of Hadley in 4th. Sawbo’s fifth consecutive loss sees them remain eleven points adrift of nearest rivals Enfield.

Hoddesdon Town  0 – 2  Walthamstow   | Lowfield

Walthamstow got their fifth straight victory at Lowfield. Ryan Maxwell’s team broke the deadlock a minute prior to the interval as Kyan Gulliver’s cross was turned in by the ever-prolific Dwade James. Then late on, substitute Lewis Francis pounced to fire home low to secure the points which keep them second after their 16th win this season. The Lilywhites have won one of their last five matches now and remain 8th, three points behind Cockfosters. My Non-League colleague Matt North was at the match & here’s his report: https://mattnorthfootball.wordpress.com/2020/01/11/match-report-hoddesdon-town-0-2-walthamstow-esl-19-20-11-01-2020/

 

Saffron Walden Town  4 – 0  Woodford Town   | Catons Lane | Att: 257

The Bloods made it a fine week with a comfortable victory over Woodford at Catons Lane., in front of a Towners-enhanced crowd of over 250. Tyger Smalls continued his promising start to his Walden career with the opening goal on six minutes. Gavin Cockman then added to his account for the season with Walden’s second on 24 minutes. Cockman then got his tenth goal of the season, six minutes before the break and 11 minutes after the break, the former Sawbridgeworth Town striker completed a fine hat-trick and crowned off another strong showing by Jason Maher’s side. Walden’s seventh win in their last eight league matches means they retain top spot & are three points clear of ‘Stow having played two games more. Woodford drop to 12th after their fifth loss in their last seven matches.

 

Southend Manor  2 – 2  Hadley   | Southchurch Park   | Att: 28

Manor showed they have big performances in them by holding Hadley to an entertaining draw at Southchurch Park. Michael Ogboin and Jordan Chambers goals gave Manor a two-goal lead at half-time, though another brace by talisman Solomon Ofori ended up securing a point for the Bricks. Manor go above Clapton with this point and we now have three teams on 18 points – Tower Hamlets, Manor & the Tons. Hadley got their second draw in succession as they lost ground on the top three.

 

Sporting Bengal Utd  2 – 1  Enfield   | Mile End  | Att: 30

Bengal got their first win in five matches with a late success over Enfield at Mile End. Mauricio Rimcon put Imrul Gazi’s side ahead on twenty minutes and that lead stood until Michael Salako’s strike restored parity for the E’s with 64 minutes on the watch. Freddy Tandon’s well-hit strike found the net on the stroke of the ninety to ensure the points stayed in East London. Bengal rise to 10th and Enfield drop to second-bottom as their winless run to nine matches.

 

St Margaretsbury  0 – 1  Stansted   | The Recreation Ground  | Att: 38

Stansted’s battle at St Mags were heading for a stalemate when Moses Carvalho headed home at the back stick with five minutes to play to breach the Airportmen’s winning run from last season and extends the current run to nine matches and puts them back in sixth spot. The hosts have lost their last six matches on-the-bounce and consequently drop to 13th.

That’s all for this week. We’ll be back soon with more Essex Senior action.

Round-up: Essex Senior League & FA Vase Second Rd (ESL sides) (Sat 2 Nov) [ESL 19/20 3.11.19]

ESL Badge

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome to this week’s Essex Senior League review, looking back at the seven matches that took place in the League, with three ESL sides taking part in the FA Vase Second Round Proper also. Thanks for reading.

Saturday 2nd November – ESL

Cockfosters  1 – 1  Hoddesdon Town  | Chalk Lane  | Att: 87

The ‘Fosters ended their run of three-home matches on-the-spin with a late leveller against Hoddesdon. Joss Lillis put the Lilywhites ahead on 37 minutes and Simon Riddle’s side may have thought they were heading for a gutsy win though substitute Billy Murray netted in added-time to deny the visitors the win and extend the hosts unbeaten stretch to three matches. Ryan Wade’s side drop to eighth, with Hoddy only ahead of them on goal difference in 7th.

 

Hadley  3 – 0  Woodford Town   | Brickfield Lane | Att: 46

Hadley’s terrific home form continued as they set aside Woodford at Brickfield Lane. A brace from in-form forward Luke Jupp and one from lively winger Solomon Ofori ensured the Bricks made it five league wins in succession, rising to fourth in the standings, seven points adrift of leaders Hashtag. Woodford’s third defeat in their last five meant they fell to 11th place though their squad rebuild will mean patience is needed at this point.

 

Ilford  3 – 1  Enfield   | Cricklefield | Att: 28

The Foxes overwhelmed inconsistent Enfield at Cricklefield. Tela Trivelato opened the scoring on 11 minutes for Jonny Fowell’s side though the bulk of the scoring came in the latter stages of the contest. Ikechi Eze netted direct from a corner with 16 minutes remaining to give he hosts that crucial second goal. Matt Frew pulled one back for the E’s after coming off the substitutes’ bench though Trivelato had the last word as he netted his second with a minute of normal time to play. Two wins from two at home since Fowell took charge means they rise to fourth-bottom. Enfield drop to 13th.

 

Sawbridgeworth Town  P – P  Redbridge    | Crofters

This match at Crofters fell foul of the elements and was postponed due to a waterlogged pitch.

 

Southend Manor   1 – 0   Clapton    | Southchurch Park | Att: 12

Manor recorded what could be a very important win over fellow strugglers Clapton at Southchurch Park. Michael Ogboin got the only goal as the Southend side ended a streak of five matches without a win to go above the Tons into 17th, twelve points above bottom side Sawbridgeworth.

 

Sporting Bengal Utd   2 – 1  Hashtag Utd   | Mile End | Att: 101

Sporting put in a big performance to end the Tags’ ten-match league winning run at Mile End. Quick-fire goals from Bobby Redwood [30’] and talisman Steven Carvell only a minute later put them well on their way to the win. After the break, Imrul Gazi’s side had to be very resilent as Utd forced their way back into the match through Ross Gleed’s free-kick 15 minutes from time. Despite the league leaders pressurising the home side hard in the latter stages, Bengal did emerge with their first win in six matches, which puts them up to 9th place in the table. Hashtag’s fantastic streak is over though with nearest rivals Saffron Walden and Walthamstow both in FA Vase action this weekend, they remain four points clear at the summit.

 

St Margaretsbury  1 – 2  Tower Hamlets   | The Recreation Ground | Att: 19

Hamlets emerged with a fine win at St Mags. Goals from Ben Brookes [10’] and the in-form Suaibo Balde just before the break ended up giving the East London side the victory, their third win in their last four. The hosts replied through their own chief goal-getter Kyle Roberts on the half-hour though still fell to first loss in five matches. Hamlets rise to 12th spot now while St Mags drop to 10th.

 

West Essex  1 – 5  Takeley   | Mayesbrook Park  | Att: 28

West’s week went from bad to worse as Takeley powered five in a big win at Mayesbrook. In a match played in awful conditions, Jason Todd [23’] and Mitchell Das [26’] goals put Marc Das’ team in the ‘box seat’ before Bryn Thorpe made it three five minutes before the interval. After the break, former St Margaretsbury striker Charncey Dash made his mark for his new club by grabbing a fourth on 55 minutes, then Michael Castle added further gloss to the score-line with the fifth 18 minutes from time. Brad Russell’s strike was scant consolation as the Stags dropped to sixth spot after this loss, with Takeley rising above them into 5th after ending a run of four matches without a win.

 

 

FA Vase image

The FA Vase Second Round Proper (ESL Sides)

 

Saffron Walden Town  3 – 4  FC Clacton   | Catons Lane | Att: 235

Walden exited the FA Vase in an enthralling contest with Thurlow Nunn Premier side FC Clacton at Catons Lane. New signing Ricky Griggs put the visitors ahead with a minute gone, though Charlie Cole levelled only four minutes later for Jason Maher’s side. Lewis Francis struck to put the hosts ahead with 16 minutes played, though nine minutes afterward Adam Hampson restored parity for Clacton. The tide really turned in favour of the East Essex Coast side as Hampson got his second 12 minutes before the break and Griggs netting just before the interval to make it 4 – 2. Ryan Fleming made it tight with the hosts’ third goal nine minutes after the break though Cacton withstood the pressure to advance.

News: Tonight (Sunday), it’s been announced by Saffron Walden that long-serving forward Lewis Francis has departed, with the club thanking him for all his efforts in his time there. I’d like to wish Lewis well in his next chapter, certainly been an important player for the Bloods.

 

Stansted  1 – 0  Mildenhall Town  | Hargrave Park | Att: 142

The Airportmen edged a close game with Thurlow Nunn Premier side Mildenhall at Hargrave Park. Ryan Ramsey got the only goal on the stroke of half-time to ensure that his side are the only ESL representatives remaining in the FA Vase this season. Congrats to co-managers Paul Pittuck & John Watters and the team on their progress.

 

Walthamstow   2 – 3  AFC Uckfield Town   | Wadham Lodge | Att: 74

AFC Uckfield sent ‘Stow out of the FA Vase with a narrow win at Wadham Lodge. It started well for the hosts as Ollie Fortune struck ten minutes in to put them ahead, though the start of the second half saw the game turn. First, Dan Okosie struck five minutes after the resumption to level the tie, before Ellis Cormack put AFC ahead five minutes later. Richie Welsh got a crucial third goal for the visitors with 18 minutes left and though Samrai Gebrai made it a tight finish with a second for ‘Stow 11 minutes from time, the visitors held on despite the hosts being unhappy at ‘unsportsmanlike behaviour’ by their opposition. Even so, Ryan Maxwell’s side will hone their focus in on the league, as they have matches to catch up on in the following weeks.

Preview: Essex Senior League (Fri 18/Sat 19 Oct) [ESL 17.10.19]

20191012_161733
Archive: Sawridgeworth 0 – 3 W Essex in ESL last week (Image: Scott W)


Written by Scott W
[Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome to this weekend’s preview of Essex Senior League action on Saturday 19 October, as nine matches take place this coming weekend.

 

ESL Fixtures  –

Friday 18th October

Woodford Town  v  Sawbridgeworth Town   | Harlow Arena [3G]  |

The weekend’s action gets underway once again at the Harlow Arena as Woodford welcome Sawbridgeworth. The Towners were held last Friday night by Clapton after a late OG gave the Tons a point. Ross Weare’s side have got two wins in their last five but are adjusting after a influx of squad changes recently. Sawbridgeworth showed some spirit before going down at home to West Essex at home last weekend which extended their winless run. The results may start coming for Lee Mackman’s side soon though this is still a tough test on paper. Narrow home win for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 0

 

Saturday 19th October

Enfield  v  Southend Manor   | Woodside |

Saturday’s action starts with Manor’s trip to Enfield. The E’s have had a disappointing week, with a long away-day at Harborough Town resulting in their exit from the FA Vase last weekend, followed up by a loss at North Greenford Utd in the Middlesex County Cup in midweek. Southend’s Manor’s form is also mixed of late, with two losses in their last four matches, though new Michael Walther has brought in new players of late so it make time for his new-look squad to gel. Think there will be goals in this one. Draw for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2

 

Hadley  v  Hoddesdon Town  | Brickfield Lane |

The Bricks look to get their league campaign back on track as they welcome fellow high-flyers Hoddesdon. Hadley suffered a rare home loss to exit the FA Vase as Milton Keynes Robins won last weekend. In the ESL though, they have only conceded one goal in four home matches to date so that tells you something. Hoddesdon were involved in a corker of a match in their loss to Hashtag, having had a two-goal lead thus ultimately fell to a heavy defeat, their first loss since the opening day of the campaign. Therefore, manager Simon Riddle will want a reaction from his side, though piercing the second-best defence in the league will be tough. Narrow home win for the hosts for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

 

Updated: Walthamstow v Redbridge | Wadham Lodge |

The Motormen’s match with ‘Stow has been switched to Wadham Lodge as Oakside is not sufficiently recovered from the week’s weather to host. Redbridge have had their last two league matches postponed, so you have to go back to October 5th for their last league game, a win at Southend Manor. Ryan Maxwell’s Walthamstow side are a different proposition though (with all respect to Manor) as they continued their FA Vase run into Round Two with a good win at Broadfields Utd last weekend,  and won well at St Margaretsbury the midweek before that. ‘Stow have a very stingy defence, the best in the league having only conceded one goal in their six matches so far. Micky Wetherall’s side are strong going forward though can be a tad leaky defensively and ‘Stow will know they need to win their games in hand on the top two. Hard to see anything but an a win for Walthamstow here

 

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

 

 

Saffron Walden Town  v  Cockfosters   | Catons Lane  |

Walden return to the league action after a hugely admirable win in their FA Vase Replay with Biggleswade Utd in midweek. They welcome Cockfosters to Catons Lane, looking to continue their unbeaten league run and keep tabs on leaders Hashtag Utd. Cockfosters were in action in midweek after being thwarted by the weather last weekend. The ‘Fosters won on penalties at Ilford to advance to the last four of the Gordon Brasted Trophy. Their away form does not favour them here, with one win in five matches and therefore, have to go with a win for the Bloods here.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

 

Stansted  v  Sporting Bengal Utd  | Hargrave Park

The Airportmen welcome Bengal to Hargrave Park, with arguably both sides in need of a win. Paul Pittuck’s & John Watters’ side picked a morale-boosting win in the FA Vase last weekend over Aylesbury Vale Dynamos. Their league form recently though isn’t great as four straight defeats see them third-bottom at present. Bengal have been defeated in their last two home matches, to West Essex and most recently, St Margaretsbury. This could be a highlight match of the weekend. Draw for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2

 

Takeley  v  Hashtag Utd | Station Road

The ‘big match’ this weekend surely takes place at Station Road as Takeley welcome in-form Hashtag. Marc Das’ side exited the FA Vase last weekend with a narrow loss at Wellingborough Town, after being held by a spirited Southend Manor at home the midweek before. Hashtag are in prime form after a superb comeback win at Hoddesdon last week extended their winning run to eight matches. Goalkeeper Louis Hawes (formerly of Basildon Utd & Great Wakering) has also been added to the squad this week to compete with regular stopper Tim Pitman. The likes of George Smith and Ryan Adams will take some stopping at present and while Takeley are quite capable of producing a brilliant defensive showing, the Tags may well edge this one.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 3

 

Tower Hamlets  v  Clapton | Mile End Stadium

Hamlets welcome the Tons to Mile End. Both sides are finding wins hard to come by, though Hamlets did produce an impressive performance to win well at Southend Manor last weekend. That win was their first in five matches, while the Tons got a point at Woodford last weekend. They are winless in three matches though with both sides being unpredictable, I’m going head for a stalemate here.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 1

 

West Essex  v  St Margaretsbury  | Mayesbrook Park

Finally for this weekend, the Stags welcome a similarly in-form St Mags side to Mayesbrook. West made it four consecutive league wins with success at Sawbridgeworth last weekend, while Ray Bartlett & Tony Wild’s side win at Sporting Bengal made it one loss in their last six matches. This has the hallmarks of a bruising encounter with technical players in both sides. The crucial factor may be how the visitors’ defence deals with the likes of Taylor and Mignot. Expect this one to a very hard-fought match.

Scott’s Prediction:  2 – 1

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

 

Match Report: Sporting Bengal Utd 3 – 3 Redbridge (Sat 28th Sept) [ESL 19/20 29.9.19]

Essex Senior League

Venue: Mile End Stadium

Attendance: TBC

2019 – 20 Season: Match 25

Saturday 28th September 2019 – 3pm KO

S Bengal: Green Shirts, Red Shorts, Green Socks

Redbridge : Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

 

 

 

 

Bengal & Redbridge battle to a very entertaining draw at Mile End

Sporting Bengal Utd 3 – 3 Redbridge

Report & Photos by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14)

After a mini-break from ESL action recently, I returned ‘to the field’ with a fascinating tie in store which saw Sporting Bengal welcome Redbridge to Mile End. Imrul Gazi’s side have competed in the UK Asian Championships in Glasgow recently, while the Motormen are right in the middle of a squad re-build and from afar, both sides have been scoring goals of late so that added to the anticipation before the match.

Bengal named a front three of Curtley McIntosh, Bobby Redwood and Steven Carvell with Charles Gregory and Chaka Barnett supporting them. Billal Khan retained the goalkeeper’s jersey while Adil Haque, Dominic Stephens and Tanvir Ahmed were options from the bench. Redbridge named Florent Gislette in goal, skipper Liam Burgess in midfield and a front three of Tom Harvey, Tony Martin and reliable goal-getter Daniel Gilchrist. James Barlow, Sam Dickens and recent addition Rujorn Tuitt were all among the substitutes.

The match didn’t take long to ‘get into gear’ with home custodian Billal Khan called into action after just four minutes to deny a drive by Motormen forward Tom Harvey. It was Bengal who took the lead though five minutes later as attacking midfielder Chaka Barnett was fouled in the area. Charles Gregory stepped up and concerted the resulting spot-kick. The hosts couldn’t celebrate for long though on 12 minutes, the visitors vanquished their arrears as Dan Gilchrist pounced with a cool finish to beat Khan to level things up. The early stages saw both teams ‘going for it’ and there was no lack of chances created. Bengal forward Bobby Redwood’s strike was parried by visiting goalkeeper Florent Gislette out of danger before Redbridge centre-back Joe Maskell headed over after a hurried clearance by the hosts led to a corner.

Both teams continued to create chances, almost in tandem as with the half-hour mark coming, the visitors were well-denied following Gilchrist’s pass to strike partner Tony Martin who only had Khan to beat though Bengal’s stopper did well to snuff out the chance. At the other end, Curtley McIntosh was stretching the visiting defence with runs down the channels, and his build-up fed Carvell who fired wide twice in as many minutes. Khan then denied Gilchrist and Maskell whose header was adjudged to have not passed the goal-line.

Half-Time: Sporting Bengal Utd  1 – 1  Redbridge

Bengal started the second half strongly and early-doors, a good move involving McIntosh and Barnett found Carvell who again fired a thunder-bolt narrowly wide of the goal-frame. Barnett then had a half-chance himself, though Gislette pushed away his header at the near post. Imrul Gazi’s side would not be denied though as two quick-fire goals gave them the impetus in this game. First, on 51 minutes, the ball was threaded through to McIntosh who calmly passed home into the far corner with only the stranded Gislette to beat. Then, as the visitors were still recovering two minutes later, Barnett’s fine cross from the right gave Redwood a tap-in. Even then though, with the tenor of the match being as it was, you still felt there was more drama to come.

We weren’t disappointed. Just after the hour mark, the visitors made the most of a yard of space just outside the 18-yard box as Harvey Brown teed up skipper Liam Burgess to lash a cracker into the top corner, giving Khan no chance. Unsurprisingly this lifted Micky Wetherall’s side and after substitute Anthony Bruce had denied Martin another good chance at goal, a goal-mouth scramble followed with Bengal under heavy pressure. As we went into the latter stages of this enthralling tie, Bengal full-back Jerry Jairette did well to ghost in past the Redbridge backline though Gislette denied his header before Redwood fired a promising chance wide after another good run by Barnett.

The topsy-turvy nature of this one continued. Redbridge substitute Rujorn Tuitt had looked a threat since his introduction, and with fifteen minutes left, he was fouled in the area by Bruce. Gilchrist stepped up to take the penalty and fired it low into the corner. Redbridge did finish the match the stronger as midfielder Harvey Brown was denied by the impressive Khan with a fingertip save in added-time though it was hard to deny both sides a share of the points.

 

Full-Time: Sporting Bengal Utd 3 – 3 Redbridge

All told, this match was a real winner in terms of both sides wanting to play attacking Football and on another day it could easily have been 5 – 5, such was the open manner in which it was played. I don’t often say this though today, a draw really was the fair result. Both managers respected the opposition’s abilities I felt and I wouldn’t be surprised if both teams got mid-table finishes this term.

Also, I have to give a brief mention to the youthful team manning the Tea Bar by the stands, certainly added a nice aura to the tone of this match, they did a good deed for their club so good on them.

Finally, in terms of stand-out performances, for the home side, goalkeeper Billal Khan made at least three good saves to assist his defence while the front three of Curtley McIntosh, Steven Carvell and Bobby Redwood all posed a threat with McIntosh leading the line well, Carvell’s passing and strikes a near ever-present danger. Recent signing Chaka Barnett was also a threat down the right flank with his trickery and pace. It’s good to see Bengal having perhaps a few more options in attack this term.  For the Motormen, forward Daniel Gilchrist showed again why he is highly-thought of at this level with his pace, finishing and calmness. Tom Harvey and Tony Martin also added to the danger posed by the visiting front three, playing their part in good teams moves, while substitute Rujorn Tuitt also made an impact in his cameo, and ‘keeper Gislette also made a few good saves to round off a good display by Micky Wetherall’s team.

 

Teams

Sporting Bengal    |  Manager: Imrul Gazi

Billal Khan (GK), Jerry Jairette, Raul Gazi (Anthony Bruce 68’), Joshua Adeji, Edward Lang (Capt), Kaleem Luthra, Chaka Barnett (Adil Haque 77’), Charles Gregory (Dominic Stephens 70’), Curtley McIntosh, Steven Carvell, Bobby Redwood

Goal-scorers: Charles Gregory [pen 9’], Curtley McIntosh [51’], Bobby Redwood [53’]

Booked: Gregory, Bruce | Subs Not Used: T Ahmed, Ross

 

Redbridge  |  Manager: Micky Wetherall

Florent Gislette (GK), Luke Stanley (Rujorn Tuitt 65’), Jordayne Henry, Jack Blackledge (Sam Dickens 57’), Joe Maskell, Dean Hall, Harvey Brown, Liam Burgess (Capt), Tom Harvey, Tony Martin (James Barlow 77’), Daniel Gilchrist

Goal-scorers: Daniel Gilchrist [12’ & pen 76’], Liam Burgess [63’]

Booked: Burgess, Blackledge, Tuitt | Subs Not Used: C Brown, Latimer

Referee: Michael Scott

Preview: Essex Senior League (Fri 16/Sat 17 August) [ESL 19/20 15.8.19]

20190807_201148
Still from Hashtag Utd v S Manor on August 7th (Image: Scott W)

Written by Scott W (Twitter: @ScottMHC14) – ESL Writer & Grassroots Football Show Contributor

Hello all and welcome to another of my weekly Preview pieces for the 2019-20 Essex Senior League campaign. After a frenetic two weeks of ESL & FA Cup matches which involved replays for a few of our sides, the league programme to take centre stage, hot on the heels of the Replays that two of our sides had in midweek.

 

Friday 9th August – 7.45pm KO

 

Woodford Town v West Essex   | the Harlow Arena

The weekend kicks off with Woodford back in action just 48 hours after their battle with White Ensign in the FA Cup Extra Prelim Round Replay which went to extra-time on Wednesday night. They face a West Essex who also went out of the FA Cup this week so both teams may feel they have to ‘get back in the saddle’ with a league triumph. If both sides play near their best, this could be another corker of a match given both teams’ attacking nature. Have to go with my gut instinct which says a narrow West win, purely because they’ve had three more days to recover from their last match than their hosts.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

 

Saturday 10th August – 3pm KO

 

Enfield    v   Cockfosters  | Woodside

Our look at the Saturday action begins at Woodside as Enfield welcome Cockfosters. The E’s haven’t had the best week with a loss in their long trip to Fairford Town last weekend in the Cup before getting narrowly beaten by Hoddesdon in midweek, also at home. Their only win in their opening three has come at home though, ten days ago at home to Stansted so there are signs they could make their new home a fortress, which you sense boss Matt Hanning & co will want to do. Cockfosters may be ‘riding high’ after progression in the FA Cup with a win over Eastern Senior League South side Leyton Athletic last weekend, which was followed by a super comeback to draw at home to Ilford in midweek. Player-boss Ryan Wade scored twice in that latter match and I can see this one perhaps being a draw as well.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2

 

Hadley  v  Sporting Bengal Utd   | Brickfield Lane

The Bricks return to ‘home comforts’ after a good win over ESL side Redbridge in the FA Cup last weekend. Anthony Clark’s team have scored ten goals in their three matches in League & Cup thus far so that is a record they will want to keep adding to at this early stage of the season. Bengal were overpowered by Walthamstow in the Cup last weekend and will seek to avoid a repeat here. Imrul Gazi’s side are not one to under-estimate though in my view they will need to improve defensively to get anything out of this away-day. Home win for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

 

Ilford  v  Hoddesdon Town  | Cricklefield

Ilford are at home once again as they welcome the Lilywhites to Cricklefield. Morgan LaForce’s Foxes have had a mixed week at best. Last weekend wasn’t a happy one as they exited the FA Cup with a home loss to Eastern Senior League South side Harwich & Parkeston. That said, their midweek exploits was better as they battled to an entertaining draw at Cockfosters, which was their first points of the campaign. Hoddesdon have had a brighter week with a good win over Brantham Athletic in the FA Cup before a good away performance in the win at Enfield on Wednesday night. If Simon Riddle’s side keep stern in defence then it could be an away win.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

 

Redbridge   v   Hashtag Utd  | Oakside

The Motormen entertain Hashtag Utd at Oakside. Micky Wetherall’s side played their part in their recent two matches, before succumbing to successive defeats at Hadley and Takeley in the FA Cup and league respectively in the past week, despite four goals in those two games. Jay Devereux’s Hashtag outfit will be buoyed after a late five-goal flourish in a hefty win over Tower Hamlets in midweek at Chadfields. This is a tricky one to call as both sides have the firepower to score goals though will narrowly go with ‘the Tags’.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 3

 

Sawbridgeworth Town  v  Tower Hamlets  | Crofters

Sawbo welcome Hamlets to Crofters. These two sides had many battles last term though since then both have had rather extensive squad changes and their recent results suggest that those changes will take time to settle. Sawbridgeworth went out of the Cup with a home loss to Step 6 side Halstead Town last weekend though did score in that match. Hamlets did triumph in the Cup last weekend with a battling win over Selsey at Mile End though had a chastening end to their match at Hashtag in midweek. Manager Damien Briggs will want to get that out result out of his team’s systems. Instinct says a narrow win for the hosts.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

 

Takeley  v  Saffron Walden Town  | Station Road

Takeley face Saffron Walden in an early-season belter at Station Road. Marc Das’ side has started the season in a spritely fashion and backed that up in the last week with wins in League & Cup. First, a good victory at Crawley Green in the Cup last weekend was followed by a hard-fought win at Redbridge in the league in midweek. Forward Bryn Thorpe has notched five goals in all competitions already though this match represents arguably their toughest test yet. Walden also progressed in the FA Cup with a narrow win over Baldock Town last weekend and you do sense their forward line will click into goal-scoring touch sooner or later. Takeley powered to a good win in this fixture last season so Jason Maher’s team may have that in their minds too. Draw in my view.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2

 

Walthamstow  v  Stansted       | Wadham Lodge Stadium

Finally this weekend, another potential corker awaits as ‘Stow entertain Stansted at Wadham Lodge. Ryan Maxwell’s side have started the season as they mean to go on, in regards to goal-scoring. They progressed in the Cup with a big win over Sporting Bengal last weekend though following that match, it was revealed that promising forward Samrai Gebrai has departed for Step 3 Canvey Island. Stansted had a hiccup last Sunday as they crashed out to Eastern Senior League South side Barkingside in the Cup as they seek to settle following minor squad changes recently. This may be closer than some think though hard to go against another home triumph.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

 

That’s all for this edition of the ESL preview blogs. Check back on Sunday/Monday  when I’ll have the round-up of what happened in this weekend’s matches of the 2019 – 20 Essex Senior League season. Thanks for reading.