S21-22 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 28 Aug) [EOFL 21/22 29.8.21]

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

Hello all and welcome to my round-up of the third weekend of action in the Essex Olympian League, on Saturday 28th August. This weekend saw some high-scoring matches and some surprise results as ever. As usual, the focus is on the top four divisions with results from Divisions Four & Five.

Many thanks for reading.

EOFL Premier Division 

As ever we begin in the Premier, and Old Southendian maintained their 100% record with a 3 – 2 win over Kelvedon Hatch at Garon Park. Craig Paton, Mattias Tonking and Taylor Turner all scored for Altar Ali’s side as they held on for a good victory. Sungate also shone this weekend with a 5 – 1 success at Galleywood, with Ciaran Kelly, Ben Absolon and Thomas Drayton among the scorers for the visitors there. Jack Chatterway got the solitary response for ‘Wood in that game. Elsewhere, Springfield edged to a late 2 – 1 victory over Basildon Town at Springfield Hall Park. Strikes from Jack French and Aiden Brown were enough to overturn an earlier Antony Aylett leveller for Marcus Bowers’ side and complete a surprise win. 

Meanwhile, Rayleigh Town got back to winning ways with a good 2 – 1 triumph at Bishop’s Stortford Swifts. Paul Morris and Jack Long both scored for Paul Higgins’ side, with Sam Chaney responding for Craig Glashan’s new side. Catholic Utd also got a second successive win as they defeated Harold Wood Athletic 2 – 1 at Harold Wood Park. Pablo Passenda and Max Kent got the goals for Simon Thomas’ team, while Matt Donovan replied for Gary Willis’ side.

In other action in the division, Shenfield AFC managed a comfortable 3 – 0 win over Canning Town at St Martins School 3G. Ben Carroll, Pelumi Adedokun and replacement Alex Broadbridge got the goals here in what was a much-needed win for them. Finally, Ongar Town continued their 100% record with a hard fought 2 – 0 win over Hutton at Lakeside Sports Ground, thanks to goals from Frankie Goodhall and Ayodele Awosika.


EOFL Division One 

Moving now into Division One, with Herongate Athletic sitting as early front-runners as they made it three wins from three games with a 2 – 0 victory over Runwell Sports at Billericay Road. Another brace from Robbie Farrell made it five goals already for him this term, as Billy Cove’s side sit three points clear. Toby won their top-of-the-table clash, impressively defeating Wakering Sports 3 – 1 at Cupid’s. A brace from Albert Perry and thunderbolt from Mitch Grace gave Mark Jones’ side the win as they went second. Substitute Alfie Fossett scored for Mitch Gleeson’s side here. Snaresbrook got their first win of the new campaign, winning 3 – 2 at Epping Town. Ife Ogunbayo, Daniel Tesfay and Max Catherall all netted one each to outdo strikes by Andrew Smith and Joe Rickett for Town and ultimately give Rob Caine’s side the points.

Also, Beacon Hill Rovers won 2 – 1 at home to Old Chelmsfordians and there was a hugely entertaining match for the neutral at least at Stambridge where Corinthians came from three goals down to draw 4 – 4 with Leigh Town. Bailey Moss struck twice for Chris Stoneham’s side, with Jake Hodder and Damian Siemienczuk also on target.



EOFL Division Two

In Division Two, it is newcomers Harold Hill who are at the summit on goal difference after a 4 – 0 win at home to Rayleigh Town Res. In second spot are ACD Utd after they won 5 – 2 at Hutton Res. Jacob Dingli and Jamie Alexandrou both got doubles for Greg Knock’s team, with replacement Shaun Goddard also finding the net. Jack Shaw got both of the hosts’ goals here. Also on six points are Old Southendian Res as they made two wins from two following a 2 – 1 win at Shoebury Town. Jack Cripps and Nico Dubouchet got the goals for Josh Bambury’s side, with Jason Doyle’s team responding through club stalwart Garry Johnson.

Meanwhile, AS Rawreth are the last of the four teams at the top end of the table on six points after a 1 – 0 win over Rochford Town at The Warren. Tom Binks got the all-important goal for Josh Hutchins’s team here.


EOFL Division Three

In Division Three, the early leaders are Basildon Town Res after a 2 – 0 triumph over Collier Row at Basildon Sports Club. Jamie Miller and Nathan Fisher saw Tony Bowers’ side to the points. Buckhurst Hill U23 got their maiden win this term with a 4 – 0 victory over Corinthians Res at Roding Lane. The ensemble cast of Buttrint Iecaj, Jason Gomes, Nicolas Chramiec and Flynn Toye got the goals that saw Alan Byers’ team get their season underway in earnest. A hat-trick from perennial goal-getter Joseph Darby saw Hullbridge Res to a 3 – 0 home success over Leigh Town Res at Lower Road.

Elsewhere in the division, Hashtag Utd Development got another victory as they defeated PItsea Athletic 5 – 0 at Barleylands. Samuel Pratt netted twice for Denis Simpson’s team, with Bradley Bunker, Kai Warren and Jake Smith also on the scorer’s sheet. Also, Catholic Utd Res joined them on six points after a resounding 7 – 1 success at Toby Res.


EOFL Division Four

Results

Chingford Athletic Res  5 – 2  Galleywood Res   | Town Mead [3G]

Leytonstone Utd  1 – 2  Springfield Res               | Forest Row Centre (Pitch 1)

Ongar Town Res 3 – 2  Roydon                             | Melbourne Park 3G, Chelmsford


EOFL Division Five

Results

Collier Row Res  0 – 2  Epping Town Res      | Forest Row Centre (Pitch 2)  

Old Barkabbeyans  5 – 6  Leigh Ramblers Res  | Barking Abbey Sch 3G

Pitsea Athletic Res   6 – 2  AS Rawreth Res  | Basildon Sporting Village

Runwell Sports Res   5 – 2  Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Res   | St Luke’s Park

Wakebury Res   0 – 2  Snaresbrook Res  | Nursery Sports Ground

S21-22 Match Report: Catholic Utd 6 – 0 Springfield (Sat 21 Aug) [EOFL 21/22 21.8.21]

Essex Olympian League – Premier Division

Venue: Len Forge Centre 3G

2021-22 Season: Match 13

Saturday 21st August 2021 – 3pm KO

Catholic Utd: Green & White Shirts, Black Shorts, Green & White Socks

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

Pre-match, both sides remembered Grassroots legend Robert Hutchings-Spiller in a moving minute’s silence


Six-goal Catholic Utd convincingly defeat Springfield at Len Forge

Catholic Utd 6 – 0 Springfield

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

With the FA Cup taking centre stage in Non-League circles this weekend, I decided it’d be a good time to begin my coverage of Essex Olympian League matches with a trip to the Len Forge Centre to see Catholic Utd welcome visitors Springfield in this Premier Division encounter. Simon Thomas’ Utd side fielded club stalwart & now assistant boss Louis Godwin-Green between the posts, with a three-man central defence of John Nutman, John Mbamarah and Lewis Payne. Centre forward Jay Nash led the line, with support from Franklin Craik and Pablo Passenda. On their substitutes’ bench were Max Kent, Daniel Dunn, Carl Read and Thomas himself. Springfield also had a number of players unavailable, with Tom Storkey in goal behind a back four of Callum Crown, Henry Lynch and centre-backs Liam Wright and skipper Ryan Batchford. Forwards Jake Clarke and Aiden Brown were supported by wingers Jack Mundy and Jordan Sargeant. Options from the sidelines included new signing Dean Wallace and forwards Andy Morgan and Rhys Williams.

The match began with a sluggish start for both sides, with Springfield winger Jordan Sargeant looking to get on the ball early to set attacking moves up, though he found the home defence in good form. Catholic were a little casual in possession, much to the dismay of their vocal goalkeeper Godwin-Green. That casualness didn’t last long though as on twelve minutes, Utd were ahead. Good forward hold-play play down the left flank by Jay Nash started the move before the ball fell to Frankin Craik who struck low to defeat stopper Tom Storkey.

The visitors were holding firm for the most part at this stage, but other than occasional ball play by wingers Sargeant and Jack Munday, they could not really conjure up telling passes to outwit an organised defence. Catholic Utd were slowly building up wave after wave of pressure going forward in the remainder of the first half. Springfield had a bit of a warning on the half hour as a good centre by energetic left-back Alfie Whiteaker found Nash who headed narrowly wide, though the assistant’s flag was up anyway.

Half-Time:  Catholic Utd 1 – 0 Springfield

So at the break, the hosts were largely frustrated by a combination of lack of a final pass and good defending by the visitors. That frustration was certainly dealt with for the hosts after the break. Just seven minutes after the break, a good move by the Super Hoops ended with them doubling their lead as tricky forward Pablo Passenda evading his marker before calmly finishing past Storkey. You got the feeling that Simon Thomas’ side were going up through the gears and they nearly went three goals ahead on 56 minutes. Another fine run by Craik ended with finding Nash but Storkey did well to get down low and deny the effort.

It turned out to be delaying the inevitable in a sense as just after the hour, the third goal came. Substitute Daniel Dunn was involved in another enterprising foray forward, before Craik again turned past the covering defender before striking low into the net. By this stage, Craik was really giving the opposition a hard afternoon, and another move involving Dunn and Craik ended with replacement Max Kent blasting an effort on goal which Storkey did well to parry away. Again though, there was no denying the hosts as with fifteen minutes remaining, a cross by Whiteaker found centre-back John Nutman at the far post and the latter powered a header home.

Springfield were feeling weary by this point and on a rare second half attack, substitute Andy Morgan sent a decent header wide of Godwin-Green’s goal but there was to be more pain before this match was complete. In the latter stages of the contest, Storkey again denied the unfortunate Nash, before another Kent thunderbolt cannoned off the woodwork. Two well-taken finishes by Franklin Craik made it six in the last few minutes, the second of those ending up being the last kick of the match, but it sealed a memorable afternoon for the Super Hoops forward and will build confidence for his side.

Full-Time:   Catholic Utd 6 – 0 Springfield

In summary, the home side here were much too strong for their Chelmsford-based visitors after the interval. Catholic Utd showed a real zest for goals today and took their chances well. That being said, Springfield did well to hold them to one goal in the first half but when Simon Thomas’ side stepped up the pressure after the break, they could not respond, having struggled to create chances all afternoon.

There were a number of strong performances today. For the hosts, four-goal star forward Franklin Craik was superb today, taking his goals very well and also making a number of piercing runs down the flanks to assist his team going forward. Tom Kearney put in a characteristic midfield display, with forward Jay Nash having a fine game showing intelligent hold-up play and deserved a goal himself as well. For Springfield, forward Jordan Sargeant was their main outlet in attack, showing good energy and movement. Centre-back Liam Wright also made a number of telling interceptions in the first half, but his departure at half-time through injury was a turning point for the visitors. Experienced fellow centre-back Ryan Batchford did well to command his area in the air in the first half.

I’d like to thank both teams for their assistance & wish them a good rest of the season.



Catholic Utd  | Player-Manager: Simon Thomas

Starting XI: 1 Louis Godwin-Green (GK), 2 Patrick Kearney, 3 Alfie Whiteaker, 20 John Nutman, 9 Johnathan Mbamarah, 17 Lewis Payne, 7 Tom Kearney, 8 Mike Sammut (Capt), 11 Franklin Craik, 15 Pablo Passenda, 18 Jay Nash

Goal-scorers: Franklin Craik [12′, 62′, 86′, 90’+2], Pablo Passenda [52′], John Nutman [75′]

Sin-Bin: Craik  | Sub Not Used: Thomas



Springfield |  Manager: Dan Williams   |

Starting XI:1 Tom Storkey (GK), 2 Callum Crown, 3 Henry Lynch, 4 Andy Elgar, 5 Ryan Batchford (Capt), 6 Liam Wright, 7 Jordan Sargeant, 8 James Shadwell, 19 Jake Clarke, 10 Aiden Brown, 11 Jack Mundy

Subs On: 14 Dean Wallace [46′], 9 Andy Morgan [52′], 15 Robert Dunn [52′], 12 Rhys Williams [68′]

Booked: Sargeant, Clarke  | Sub Not Used: Miller


Referee: Nnaemeka Ukah

Assistants: Max Di-Lieto & Joe Lannon

S20-21 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 22 May) [EOFL 20/21 23.5.21]

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

Hello all and welcome to another edition of my round-up articles, looking the action in week ten of the ‘mini-season’ in the  Essex Olympian League divisions on Saturday 22nd May, plus a mention of the action in midweek as the champions were confirmed in the Premier Division. As ever, the focus is on the top four divisions despite several matches being uncontested this week.

EOFL logo

EOFL Premier Division 

In the Premier Division, Basildon Town secured second place after a 3 – 1 triumph at home to Old Southendian. Strikes from player-boss Marcus Bowers, Grant Cumming and replacement Michael Clark were enough to earn a good tangible reward for the change of fortunes under Bowers this term. Basildon Town have also announced this week that they will ground-share at Gardiners Close with Step 4 side Basildon Utd next season, ahead of the heavily-rumoured new ground that Utd will build in the near future. Os will likely finish the season bottom but with relegation looking most unlikely, they will have some room to re-build ahead of what will be a tough division next term.

Elsewhere, Springfield got their second win in their last four with a 2 – 1 success at Rayleigh Town. A Shaun Gittleson power strike was not enough for the hosts to avoid defeat here. Dan Williams’ visiting side have secured a tenth-placed finish after this win. That is the case as Shenfield AFC lost their final game of the season, as Harold Wood Athletic won 2 – 1 at St Martins Sch 3G. Strikes from Max Shepherd and Tom Ward secured a second consecutive away win for Alex Goldstone’s team and a win in their final match next weekend could see them sneak into the top six.

Also, Bishop’s Stortford Swifts came from behind to draw 1 – 1 with Catholic Utd at Silver Leys. Aaron Baldwin put the visitors ahead on the hour, but substitute Gabriel Odili’s third league goal in his spell at the club ensured the points were shared. The Hoops have finished their season now and they remain third, but the form Billy Cove’s side has shown since the restart continues – they are nine league games unbeaten now.

Sungate’s match with Kelvedon Hatch was uncontested and the ‘Gate got the points, with Hatch also unable to compete next week too.

Finally, Buckhurst Hill were given a scare before securing a 4 – 3 success at Hutton. A brace from Max Nicholson plus goals by Tyler Dolan and Jack Griggs were enough to give Mark Williams’ side the points but the hosts responded through Josh Brocklebank and a brace from substitute Ben Stanton made it a nervy end for the Champions, who were presented with the Trophy shortly after the match, which I had a chance to see first-hand as I was at this match & my in-depth report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2021/05/22/s-20-21-match-report-hutton-3-4-buckhurst-hill-sat-22-may/

 Hill can pass the fifty-point mark with a win at Sungate next weekend, whereas Hutton need to defeat Springfield to at least secure fifth spot.

Buckhurst Hill celebrate their Premier Division title win [Image: Scott W]

EOFL Division One 

Moving now into Division One, with two matches uncontested (see listing at end of this section), the action was restricted to two matches this weekend. Firstly, Toby got a fine 2 – 0 win at Chingford Athletic to go up to fifth in the table after their third win in a row. Chingford drop to ninth and a rebuilding job awaits in the summer though full respect to Chairman Lee Bowers who has stepped in as manager for the last several weeks. Also, Manford Way defeated Herongate Athletic 4 – 0 at Jo Richardson Sch to give them hope of overhauling rivals Galleywood to secure the runners-up spot next weekend. Charlie Heatley scored twice here after coming off the bench, with James Clarke and Tyrone Scarlett also netting for Trevor Grace’s side. Fellow Non-League writer Aaron Moore was there & here’s his look at the game: https://footballreview.net/match-report-manford-way-4-0-herongate-athletic/

Next weekend, Manford have to win in the reverse match at Herongate whilst Galleywood have to win at champions Ongar Town. Intriguingly poised I’m sure you’ll agree.

Uncontested:

Ramsden Scotia   H – W   Snaresbrook   | Home Walkover
Ongar Tn   H – W   Rayleigh Tn Res    | Home Walkover


EOFL Division Two

Division Two is also not all ‘said & done’ either in terms of the promotion spots. That being said, Champions Leigh Town endorsed their growing reputation with a 5 – 1 win away at Ryan in Leigh’s farewell match of the season. Jack Pearman’s side remain third in the conventional table, though have won the title thanks to their superior PPG ratio. Ryan have two matches left and maximum points from those matches will see them pinch eighth spot.

Elsewhere, Harold Wood Athletic Res gathered a third win in succession with a 1 – 0 triumph at Laindon Orient. James Pottle got the only goal from twelve yards as their campaign ended on a high at Markhams Chase. Laindon must win next weekend to have any chance of pinching fifth spot but all in all, it’s been a decent season for Neil Blackburn’s side.

Beacon Hill Rovers are still in the box seat for the crucial runners-up position in the division after a nerve-jangling 4 – 3 win over May & Baker A at Wickham Bishops Sports Ground. Strikes from Bradley Morgan, Josh Perry, George Davis and player-boss Stephen Bennett were enough to secure a fourth win in five matches. Their job next week is simple, win against Wakering Sports and the job is done. Bakers were in the game for long periods through a brace from Tolouwa Dada and one from Jeese Martin ultimately wasn’t enough and they need four points from their last two matches to have any chance of a top-ten finish.

Finally, Wakering Sports secured a top-five finish with a 2 – 0 win over AS Rawreth at Cupid’s. Aaron Clark and Ben Rowe goals made it six wins in their last seven matches for Mitchell Gleeson’s side. This result also makes sure Rawreth will finish bottom of the standings.

As far the promotion picture stands, Epping Town have a chance of overhauling Beacon Hill if the latter fail to win, but Stuart Hoskins’ side also have to defeat Corinthians at home on the final day after they got another three points without playing, as did the Stambridge side.

Uncontested matches:

Corinthians  H – W Rochford Town    | Home Walkover

Epping Tn  H – W  Old Southendian Res   | Home Walkover

EOFL Division Three

Finally for this week, in Division Three ACD Utd cemented their position as Champions with a walkover win against Toby Res. The race for second is somewhat more complex, as Hutton Res played twice this week again. Firstly, on Thursday night they edged to a 4 – 3 win over Hullbridge A at a very windy Lower Road. Matthew Price struck twice for Bill Stratford’s side here, with Thomas Price and Jack Shaw also on target to make Joe Ives’ fine treble for Hullbridge semi-redundant with regards to the points.

Then on Saturday, the Hutton second-side were held 4 – 4 by Basildon Town Ressies at Basildon Sports Club in the late kick-off. Jack Shaw struck another treble to take his tally to nineteen league goals this term, with James Gardner also netting. But Town responded through the ensemble cast of Keith King, Garron Leatherbarrow, Tom Clayton and replacement Jamie Simpkins to gain a point which means they will finish at least sixth.

The knock-on effect of the above now means that Manford Way Res can secure the runners-up spot with another win next weekend after they won 2 – 1 at Lakeside Utd in the lunchtime kick-off this weekend. David Hornsby took his tally to 24 this term with another brace here, in a match that Aaron also watched – his report is here: https://footballreview.net/match-report-lakeside-united-1-2-manford-way-reserves/

Daniel Stokes responded for Lakeside but this defeat means they will finish the season in eighth spot. In the other matches, Hullbridge A defeated Collier Row 2 – 1 while Wakebury secured a top-four finish with a 3 – 1 success at Buckhurst Hill Res, with Charlie Little’s 15th league goal of the campaign plus Jack Smith and Billy Bonham-Dare goals were enough for Matt Cardy’s team to secure the win

.

EOFL Division Four Results    

Laindon Orient Res 0 – 3   Shenfield AFC Res   |  Peagsus Club

Wakering Sports Res  1 – 1   Galleywood Res  |  Cupid’s CC (Pitch 1)

Uncontested:
Sungate Res    H – W    Leytonstone Utd   |  Home Walkover

EOFL Division Five  Results


AS Rawreth Res   0 – 10   Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Res  | The Warren

Springfield Res   1 – 0  Leigh Ramblers Res   |  Arun Park

Uncontested:
Epping Town Res   H – W  Shoebury Town Res   | Home Walkover

Herongate Athletic Res   A – W   Roydon   |  Away Walkover

Runwell Sports Res   A – W   Collier Row Res   |  Away Walkover

Wakering Sports A   H – W   Newbury Forest Res   | Home Walkover

Thank you for reading, the final edition of this season’s EOFL Round-up will be available in about ten days time to round out the campaign. It’s been a pleasure to write about the Essex Olympian League this term once again and my thanks to all the clubs, managers & players that have assisted these articles this season.

S20-21 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Sat 8 May) [EOFL 20/21 9.5.21]

Image from Rayleigh 2 – 1 H Wood (Premier Division) (Image: Scott W)

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

Hello all and welcome to another edition of my round-up articles, looking the action in week seven of the ‘mini-season’ in the  Essex Olympian League divisions on Saturday 8th May. As ever, our focus here is on the top four tiers, with results from Divisions Four & Five. Thank you for reading.

EOFL Premier Division 

In the Premier Division, Springfield got arguably the result of the weekend, as they won 1 – 0 at Basildon Town. It may not have been pretty for Dan Williams’ side, given that their goal was an OG from a set-piece but that won’t worry the Springfield management team. The win sees them rise up to eleventh spot and Basildon needing points to secure their second place. Bas have a swift chance to exact some payback though – they visit Arun Park next weekend! Bas’ chief challengers could well be Bishop’s Stortford Swifts who made it seven league matches unbeaten with a 2 – 1 success at Kelvedon Hatch. Kurt Smith and Ryan Blackman goals got Billy Cove’s side another win and it sees them go fourth, level on points with Leigh Ramblers just above them. Lee Hamill’s strike for Kelvedon couldn’t prevent their second loss in their last five games, and they fell to twelfth place.

In other action, Buckhurst Hill can win the Premier Division title in midweek after they were made to work hard to defeat Canning Town 3 – 1 at Roding Lane. Alfie Harris’ double and Suleyman Zuhdu’s 20th league goal of the campaign secured Hill’s 13th win in fourteen matches. Canning’s defeat sees them drop back to second-bottom.  Sungate were held 2 – 2 by Old Southendian in East London, with Craig Paton and Jamie Oates scoring for player-boss Connor Lane’s side. OS are two bottom, two points adrift of Canning Town but it was another gutsy point on the road. The ‘Gate remain sixth and they will aim for a top-four finish I feel given all their remaining three games are at home.  

Elsewhere, Rayleigh Town got an important 2 – 1 triumph over Harold Wood Athletic at London Road. Strikes from George Vile and Bailey Moss were enough to see Paul Higgins’ side keep a three-point cushion in ninth spot. Robert Whitnell’s strike from the penalty spot had brought Alex Goldstone’s side level but they fell to defeat, which sees them stay eighth. I was watching this match & my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2021/05/09/s20-21-match-report-rayleigh-town-2-1-harold-wood-athletic-sat-8-may-eofl/

In the other action in this division, Catholic Utd travelled to Polo Fields and drew 2 – 2 with Hutton. Brad Rowland and Max O’Leary got the goals for Simon Thomas’ visiting side, but Joshua Seal and Alfie Curelli responded for Matt Singh’s team. Hutton remain sixth, while the Hoops drop to fifth after this result. Finally, Shenfield AFC got an eye-catching 3 – 2 win over Leigh Ramblers at St Martins Sch 3G. The win takes them up to tenth spot and Ramblers will have to hope victory in their last match next weekend at Hutton is enough to keep them in the top four at the end of May.

EOFL Division One 

In the second tier, Galleywood completed a terrific 5 – 3 win at home to Snaresbrook, played at Moulsham Sch 3G. Mark O’Sullivan’s side finished the match with ten men but a treble from Thomas Watling (who made it eight league goals in twelve starts this term) plus strikes by Jack Chatterway and Jack Hayes secured the win which kept them in second spot. Drew Barbier’s double (one from 12 yards) and one from Daniel Walsh kept ‘Brook in the match but they drop to eighth spot in this increasingly competitive division.

The hunt for the second-placed finish is also getting tighter. Runwell Sports are a point behind Galleywood in second after a 2 – 0 win at Ramsden Scotia. This was their third win in their last five matches for Jason Plom’s side. They are a point clear of Manford Way who got a important 1 – 0 win at Chingford Athletic with Charlie Heatley getting the only goal of the game for Trevor Grace’s side. Fellow Non-League writer Aaron Moore (Twitter: @aaron_moore25) was there & here’s his take on the match: https://footballreview.net/match-report-chingford-afc-0-1-manford-way/

Image from Rayleigh Tn Res 3 – 5 Shoebury Tn (Division One) (Image: Scott W)

Elsewhere, Shoebury Town got their first win in eight league matches with a fine 5 – 3 win at Rayleigh Town Res. Garry Johnson’s treble plus strikes by Billy Cottrill and a Kirk Hudson penalty was enough for Lee Boosey’s new side. Goals from Harry Barham, Matt Atoo and Matthew Bampus were not quite enough to recover any points for Dave Barker’s side in an entertaining match at London Road which I also attended. Here’s my report: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2021/05/09/s20-21-match-report-rayleigh-town-res-3-5-shoebury-town-sat-8-may-eofl/ 

Also, Toby got a good 3 – 2 win at Herongate Athletic, with Rhys Willson, Chris Rowland and Louis Hill all on target for Mark Jones’ side. This result takes them up to sixth spot and they will have a say in how the top five shapes up, given they have to play Old Chelmsfordians & Runwell Sports in the next three weeks. Herongate remain second-bottom. 

Meanwhile, Ongar Town garnering the points without needing to navigate a tricky tie with Old Chelmsfordians because the latter were unable to field an XI. It means that nearest challengers Galleywood have to defeat Chingford Athletic in midweek to stave off the party for champions-elect Town for another week.


EOFL Division Two   

We have our first confirmed champions in the Olympian divisions as Leigh Town battled to a 3 – 2 win at Laindon Orient at Markhams Chase. Strikes from Max Jones, Brodie Horne and James Roberts finally secured elevation for Jack Pearman’s side here. Shomari Barnwell’s brace had put Neil Blackburn’s side in strong position earlier in the game but Leigh would not be denied and they get deserved recognition for the form they’ve showed in the last couple of seasons. I’d like to pass on my congratulations to Jack and the whole squad on a great achievement. Laindon remain in sixth, ready to pounce if the sides above them falter as they will be looking for a top-four finish.

Elsewhere, Beacon Hill Rovers gained another big three points with a 3 – 1 victory over promotion rivals Corinthians at Wickham Bishops Sports Ground. The former Burnham Ramblers pair of Karl Swanborough (2) and Bradley Morgan combined to overpower Chris Stoneham’s side and stay a point clear in second spot. Ted Turnham netted a late consolation for the visitors but this result means they are not in charge of their own destiny. That is chiefly because Epping Town moved above them into third spot after a thumping 5 – 1 win at AS Rawreth. Joe Rickett notched four times in this one to take his tally to 14 league goals this term. Peter Paoletti had opened the scoring for the visitors here and Stuart Hoskins’ side are two points clear of the Stambridge side with both teams having three matches remaining. Oh, and they face each other on the last day of the Olympian season in Epping. Rawreth remain bottom, five points off their nearest rival May & Baker A, who lost 3 – 1 at Harold Wood Athletic Res. Darren Wettner, Warren Taylor and Adam Farley got the goals to give Wood’s second side the win which takes them up to ninth spot, whereas the visitors stay second-bottom.

Elsewhere in the division, Old Southendian Res put a spanner in the works of Wakering Sports‘ promotion aspirations as the OS side won 2 – 1 at Cupid’s. Nico Dubouchet’s ninth league goal this term and one from Jack Cripps were enough to overturn substitute Mohammed Sesay’s strike and go five points clear in seventh, with one match remaining on May 22nd – a trip to Epping Town. Sports stay fifth but their chances of a top-two finish appear slim, despite having three matches remaining – and they welcome Corinthians to Cupid’s next weekend.

Finally, Rochford Town drew 1 – 1 with Ryan, with Freddie Pettitt getting the goal for Town. Ryan have four matches remaining, two of those against the top two sides so realistically, the best they can hope for is a seventh-placed finish which would be creditable for Declan Murphy’s team.

EOFL Division Three 

This was quite a day in Division Three. Firstly, Hutton Res gave the title race added impetus as they fought back to win 3 – 2 at leaders ACD Utd. An OG and a Jamie Alexandrou strike put Michael Wade’s team in command but Bill Stratford’s side turned it around through strikes from Jim Gardner, Mike Cason and Jack Shaw and made it seven straight league wins as well. The visitors stay third, but are only two points away from the leaders, who have three matches remaining.

Manford Way Res are also right in the chase for elevation, after a 4 – 0 win over Toby Res at Ford’s Social Club in Newbury Park. David Hornsby took his goal tally past twenty for the league season with a treble here, with Jake Muller also on target. Manford’s second side are a point behind the leaders in second spot, with two matches remaining. It’s worth noting that Points Per Game (PPG) might also be a factor in which sides get promoted in the close season. Hullbridge Sports A picked up a hard-fought 1 – 0 win at Collier Row, which all but ends Row’s chances of a top-two finish. William Bray got the only goal to reduce the deficit between the sides to one point. The youthful Sports side in 7th and Row are in sixth.

Elsewhere, Basildon Town Reserves are three points clear now in fifth after a 3 – 0 success against Leigh Town Res at Basildon Sports Club. Jamie Simpkins’ brace and one from replacement Shaun Watkins were enough to give Richard Bennett’s side the points. Wakebury are also still in contention for that top-two finish as they battled to a 4 – 1 victory at Buckhurst Hill Res. A brace from Charlie Little plus goals from Billy Bonham-Dare and Harry Kateley made sure Matt Cardy’s side picked up the win against a side which certainly earned the visiting manager’s respect. Jason Gomes got the sole goal for the home side. The Berries stay fourth and realistically need at least two of the three sides above them to slip up but they have still had a great campaign to date, regardless of the outcome.

Also, Corinthians Res held Lakeside Utd to a creditable 2 – 2 draw in Stambridge. Utd remain in eighth place after their first draw this term. The hosts remain in tenth after a difficult campaign.

EOFL Division Four Results  

Hashtag Utd Dev  0 – 1  Catholic Utd Res | Barleylands Road

Laindon Orient Res   3 – 3  Leytonstone Utd   | Pegasus Club, Corringham

and

Sungate Res  A – W  Canning Town Res  | Away Walkover

Wakering Sports Res  H – W  Old Chelmsfordians Res   | Home Walkover

EOFL Senior Five Results  

Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Res  3 – 2  Newbury Forest Res  | Silver Leys

Runwell Sports Res  0 – 5  Old Barkabbeyans   | St Luke’s Park

Wakering Sports A   4 – 1 Roydon   | Cupid’s CC (Pitch 2)

and
Collier Row Res  H – W  Herongate Athletic Res
  | Home Walkover

Epping Town Res  H – W  AS Rawreth Res  | Home Walkover

Springfield Res  H – W  Shoebury Town Res  | Home Walkover

Preview: Essex Olympian League Premier Division Resumption [EOFL 20-21 2.4.21]

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

Hello everyone and welcome to a preview of the opening weekend of the resumption of the 2020-21 Essex Olympian League Premier Division season, looking at the first fixture weekend taking place on the 3rd April, plus a look at who is in the race for the Premier Division title this term, which of course has recently been dominated by the inspired Buckhurst Hill.

As a spectator and writer on Non-League Football, Saturdays in the last four months have been something to adapt to, just another caveat of a thoroughly troubling year.

Alright, we’ll start with a snapshot of the current Premier Division table, courtesy of the re-modelled FA Full-time site. Then we’ll move on to who is in the running for the title & the first three fixtures those runners have to restart their campaign.

EOFL Premier Division table (as of March 2021)

So who is in the running for the Premier Division title?

This is an intriguing question, particularly given the resurgence of a Marcus Bowers-led Basildon Town this season. They sit level on points with leaders Buckhurst Hill who once again have shown they are the yardstick to overcome. Then you also have fellow Essex sides in Catholic Utd and Leigh Ramblers who are had positive ‘first halves’ of the campaign before the suspension of the campaign in December.

Given how they have played in the last season or so, you cannot rule out Sungate who do have games in hand on their opposition which may be played before the end of May, when the season will be brought to an end. It would be remiss not to mention the form of Matt Singh’s Hutton side as well and I doubt many would have put them in the top four in August 2020 but that is every compliment to his playing squad & management team.

Leaders Buckhurst Hill have some tough matches to resume their campaign as they begin with a trip to Springfield this weekend, which is followed by a home tussle with Hutton a week later, and then the battle that most have probably looked forward to for a while – a tough visit of rivals Basildon Town on April 17th.

Second-placed Basildon themselves have a decent run of games, beginning with a home fixture with bottom four side Shenfield AFC on April 3rd, with a trip to Sungate a week later and then the aforementioned possible title ‘six-pointer’ with Buckhurst Hill.

‘Best of the rest’ Catholic Utd in third have two local derbies to resume their tilt at the title, welcoming Harold Wood Athletic to the Len Forge this weekend, followed by a intriguing battle with Rayleigh Town at London Road next time out, and then on April 17th, they also face the trip to East London to face Sungate.

Fourth-placed Hutton cannot be dismissed yet from staging a surprise title challenge, which will be endorsed if they get a result from their opening match with strugglers Old Southendian at Polo Fields. Trips to Buckhurst Hill and Leigh Ramblers follow on consecutive weekends, which will be a test of the side’s mettle.

Leigh Ramblers reside in fifth place at present and some might consider them an outside bet despite having the second-best defence in the division. They begin at home to Canning Town, before a tricky visit to East London to face Harold Wood Athletic and then they welcome Hutton to Belfairs.

Finally, Sungate may be in sixth place but they do have games in hand and the best defensive record, having only conceded four goals in six matches thus far. They face tricky visits to Bishop’s Stortford Swifts and Catholic Utd, with a home match with Basildon Town in the middle of those two away trips on April 10th.

Yes, it may be a tired cliché but I believe the next three weeks will give us an interesting insight into how the last five weeks of the season will shape up.

The following fixtures this weekend are subject to Covid protocols (ie. they could be postponed at short notice) & a reminder that spectators are still barred until at least April 12th.

Saturday 3rd April (2.30pm KOs unless stated)

EOFL Premier Division   

Basildon Town   v  Shenfield AFC | Basildon Sports Club

Bishop’s Stortford Swifts  v  Sungate   | Silver Leys

Catholic Utd  v  Harold Wood Athletic  | Len Forge Centre [3G]

Hutton  v   Old Southendian    | Polo Fields

Kelvedon Hatch  v  Rayleigh Town   | New Hall

Leigh Ramblers  v  Canning Town | Belfairs Park

Springfield v   Buckhurst Hill   |  Springfield Hall Park

That’s all for this article, thank you for reading & I hope to be able to bring back my round-ups of Olympian League action early next week. I wish each team well.

S20-21 So Far: Club In-Focus – Springfield [20-21 CIF 27.11.20]

Written By Scott W  [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome the fifth article in this current series of  ‘Club In-Focus’ blogs where figures in the Grassroots & Non-League game fill us in on their season so far and also recite some chosen moments from recent seasons too.

In this edition, I speak to Springfield manager Dan Williams [DW] who took the post in January 2020 but has been around the EOFL for many years. Springfield play in the EOFL Premier Division and are currently in mid-table.

SW: Hello Dan, firstly can I thank you for your time. You were appointed in January 2020, replacing Glen Wilkinson who moved up to Head of Football Development. How do you assess your time at the club so far? 

DW: “Thanks Scott, and thank you for the opportunity to speak about Springfield FC and my time at such a great club. Yes, I was approached not long after I left Rayleigh Town Reserves, and to be honest it was a no brainer. As soon as I met John Meates (Chairman) and Dave Wareham Snr (Secretary), I knew that this was going to be my next home as it’s an unbelievable club with a great committee backing my every move. I took over from Glen as he stepped into the role of overseeing the development of the club. Glen did an amazing job with the first team before I took over, and he does an even more amazing job now behind-the-scenes and helping me out off-the-pitch.

I was stepping into the unknown, as I did not know any of the players. But that gave me a fresh start in the Olympian Premier where I wanted to be. My time so far has been really good and I’m enjoying every minute of it as the players are a dream to manage and welcomed me with open arms.”

SW:  Before the season began, what was the main goal for the First Team this season? [Springfield finished in sixth spot last term, three points adrift of the top three]

DW: “Before the season began Scott, we knew that this year was going to be tough. There was a lot of new managers coming in, and also these managers were stepping down from Isthmian League and Essex Senior League football. So, we knew we had to build a strong side, and that started with my backroom staff. I bought in Mark Brook who does the coaching with Billericay Town Youth set up, and Neil Robinson, who has a wealth of experience and also is a coach/scout for Tottenham. We sat down through pre-season and said that our aim is to build a structure within the next 2 seasons to take us to the Thurlow Nunn (Eastern Senior League South) and we still believe this is possible, whether it is this year or next season.”

SW: As it stands at the season break, the ‘Field reside in seventh spot with eight points from seven games. Which sides have stood out for you in EOFL Premier Division in the first two months of this campaign? 

DW: “Yes, we are sitting comfortably in seventh, but we are disappointed with the results because our performances have been brilliant, but we have not been getting the ‘rub of the green’ and taking our chances effectively. Buckhurst Hill are by far the best team we have played so far. They are a well-drilled side and the way they play football and their movement on and off the ball is proof that Mark is doing a great job with his players.”

——–

SW:  For those that aren’t that familiar with your squad, you have stalwart Dave Wareham, who is a highly-rated forward. Could you take us through some of the squad that is integral to the spine of the team?

DW: “Yes, We have Dave Wareham Jr, what an unbelievable player he is. Not only is he a great player, but his experience in the game is key with what we want to achieve at the club. He was unlucky last season, as he was sitting top of the goal- scorers table  [with 15 League goals in eighteen games] and I believe he would have stayed there. This season he has struggled through injury and has only played 45 minutes so far. But, with him in and around the changing room and training, the boys love it as he brings a massive boost to the whole squad.

Other than Dave, we have some really good players.  Ryan Batchford, Andy Elgar and Jack Mundy who won the Olympian Premier with Springfield a few seasons ago. We have Josh Bards, Charlie Nichols and Jack Gifford who signed from Hutton FC. Ollie Evans and skipper Nav Arain who stayed on with me from Glen’s team last season. Denzel Adebiyi is on loan from Grays Athletic. And we have two goal keepers, Adam French and Joe Williams (yes, he’s my Brother). We have also secured the signing of Jake Clarke who is a massive signing as he is a proven goal-scorer in the Olympian League with (former club) Sungate FC.”

SW: Looking longer-term, what are the club’s plans for the next two to three years or so?

DW: “The club’s longer-term plans over the next two seasons are to get into the Thurlow Nunn Eastern Senior League South (Step 6) and build from there. The committee are working endlessly behind the scenes and have recently got an under 13 and under 14 side in the Eastern Junior Alliance (EJA) League, which as you know is massive for a club like Springfield. The foundations are there for us now, and as a whole. Its looking great for the future of the club.”

SW: Away from Football, what are your sporting interests?

DW: “Other than Football which takes up a lot of my time, I enjoy my boxing. I used to box as a kid and find it a good way to switch off from football, especially after a bad result. Other than that, I don’t really have enough time to like anything else, I have three kids and run a business, so that takes up most of the time.”

SW: How would you rate the Essex Olympian League Premier as a division? And do you think it is under-rated by some observers?

DW: “The Olympian League this year is the strongest that it has been for a long time. As I said above, there are a lot of players and managers stepping down now because they can’t do the travelling or the commitment because of work issues or family. So, they are stepping down to play. To be honest Scott, I really don’t think that some observers think it’s under-rated. I think managers now are taking notice that the league is very strong.”

SW: Finally, you’ve been around the Olympian divisions for a while now so as a manager – which teams & managers do you particularly enjoy pitting your wits against?

DW: “Yes, I’ve been around the Olympian now for fifteen or sixteen years as a player and manager. Most of them years have been playing at Hutton FC. So, I enjoy going back there. And Shenfield AFC (also a club I managed).”

End

I’d like to thank Dan for his thoughts and insight in this article. Springfield are certainly in a highly-competitive division and I wish them well in their ambitions. Thank you for reading.

S2020-21 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League (Wk 9 – Sat 31 Oct) [EOFL 20-21 1.11.20]

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

Hello and welcome to another edition of the Essex Olympian League round-up, here on my blog, looking at the action from Saturday 31st October from the Premier Division all the way to Division Three this week, also including results from Senior Four & Five. Thanks for reading.

EOFL Crest

EOFL Premier Division

Despite the awful weather this week, most of the Olympian League programme went ahead. In the top-tier, Buckhurst Hill temporarily went back to the top of the standings after edging a titanic tussle to win 5 – 4 at Harold Wood Athletic. Harold Wood started the better of the sides with Tom Ward and Connor Hartwell goals giving them a 2 – 1 lead, with Alfie Harris initially responding for Hill. Louis Wynter levelled things up for Mark Williams’ side who then found another gear with Suleyman Zuhdu’s 14th league goal of the season and a brace from Reece Tranter putting the high-flyers 5 – 2 up. But any notion that they would canter to victory soon dissolved as Wynter was dismissed for a strong tackle and in the latter stages, Athletic ensured a nervy ending for the visitors through strikes from substitute Jack Sykes and Robert Whitnell. Hill did hold on for an important win which takes them back top on goals scored. Harold Wood fall to tenth spot.

Elsewhere, Catholic Utd are up to third spot after a hard-fought 3 – 1 win over Rayleigh Town in the match I attended this weekend. An early header from Michael Sammut and a brace from livewire Brad Rowland ensured the ‘Super Hoops’ first home win of the season. Bailey Moss got one back for Rayleigh but they drop to 11th spot. If you’d like more on this match, my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2020/11/01/s20-21-match-report-catholic-utd-3-1-rayleigh-town-saturday-31st-oct-eofl/

Kelvedon Hatch finally got their first league win this term as they narrow defeated Canning Town 1 – 0 at New Hall. Lewis Young got the crucial goal to ensure his side leaps off the bottom of the table. Canning drop to eighth spot. Leigh Ramblers also got a narrow win, 1 – 0 over Bishop’s Stortford Swifts at Belfairs Park, Matt Brinklow with the crucial goal in that contest to see Ronnie Bridges’ side up to fifth. Swifts’ sixth loss this season means they drop to third-bottom. Finally in this division, Springfield got only their second win this campaign, as they defeated Shenfield AFC 2 – 1 at Arun Close. Andy Elgar and Charlie Nicholls got the strikes for Dan Williams’ side as they rise to seventh spot in a congested bottom half of the table. 

EOFL Division One

In Division One, Ongar Town are five points clear at the summit after a fine 4 – 1 win at rivals Galleywood. Frank Goodall’s hat-trick and one for Aaron Blair secured Town’s third consecutive win and reached thirty goals scored already this term. Harry Bond netted Wood’s reply but they dropped to fourth place. Runwell Sports had a Daniel Okah goal to thank for a 1 – 0 win over Shoebury Town as they went second. Shoebury drop to the bottom of the table as Rayleigh Town Res got a 2 – 2 draw at Herongate Athletic with Pat Mills and Robbie Allen goals helped Dave Gip’ side claim a point at St Clere’s. Herongate drop to ninth place.

Elsewhere, Ramsden Scotia held Chingford Athletic to a 1 – 1 draw at Town Mead, with Jamie Auvache netting for Scotia in this one. Chingford’s tricky start continues as they remain tenth, seven points adrift of the top five. Also, Old Chelmsfordians powered to a 7 – 2 win over Toby at Lawford Lane to go up to third spot, ahead of Galleywood and Snaresbrook on goal difference.

EOFL Division Two

Things are getting tight at the summit in Division Two. Beacon Hill Rovers remain top after a 3 – 2 win over Epping Town. Callum Turner and another goal-scoring cameo from substitute Dave Limber accounted for the Epping goals but Rovers scored three of their own to go two points clear at the summit. With Leigh Town’s match at Ryan postponed, Corinthians had a chance to go into a second spot, which they did after a tough 3 – 1 win at home to May & Baker ‘A’ at Stambridge Memorial Ground. Strikes by John Bolton-Smith, Ollie Brickwood and Sammy Ayres were enough to give Chris Stoneham’s side their fifth win this term.

Also, Laindon Orient are up to fourth spot after a hard-fought 1 – 0 win at Rochford Town. Ashley Blackburn got his sixth league goal this term to help his side to the win which keeps Rochford in 8th spot. Orient went above Wakering Sports as the Shoebury-based side lost 2 – 1 at home to Harold Wood Athletic Res. Del Hawtin and Tommy Harber goals sealed their first win of the league campaign and go level on points with May & Baker ‘A’ and Ryan above them. Ben Rowe netted for Sports in this one. Old Southendian Res also got a big 5 – 1 win over struggling AS Rawreth at Garon Park, which keeps them seventh, five points away from the top four.

EOFL Division Three

Finally this week in the round-up section, in Division Three this weekend the top three sides all won. The leaders are still ACD Utd after their hard-fought 4 – 3 win at Manford Way Res. David Hornsby netted another double to reach ten league goals this term for Manford’s second-side who drop to fifth, who also had an OG to thank for their other goal. But, ACD are known for scoring bundles and they made it 27 goals in just five league games thanks to Michael Wade’s double (he is now on 13 league goals this term) and strikes by Billy Wren and Paul Mangan. Wakebury remain the nearest challengers, two points adrift in second after they won 3 – 1 at Hutton Res. The cast of William Wheeler, Charlie Little and replacement Harry Kateley did the job for Matt Cardy’s side. Hutton’s Reserve side remain third-bottom.

The turnaround at Hullbridge ‘A’ this term continued as they won 3 – 2 at bottom side Leigh Town Res Joe Ives got a brace to make it three matches in a row he’s netted in, with Harry Boswell also scoring to put the Lower Road development side in third and are one of only two sides that are unbeaten in this division, alongside ACD Utd. Collier Row went up to fourth after a hard-fought 2 – 1 win at Toby Res, who remain second from bottom. Lastly, Basildon Town Res got a fine 4 – 2 win at Lakeside Utd to go up to sixth with Michael Clark getting another double here to reach five league goals this term, with Sam Marsh also notching twice here. David Alele and Harry Davison’s 5th league goal this season accounted for Lakeside’s goals, but they slide down to 8th spot.

EOFL Reserve League Cup Result

Ongar Town Res  2 – 3  Wakering Sports Res

EOFL Division Four Results

Catholic Utd Res  5 – 1  Chingford Athletic Res

Leytonstone Utd 0 – 6  Galleywood Res

Shenfield AFC Res  3 – 1  Canning Town Res

EOFL Division Five  Results

Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Res  6 – 4  Herongate Athletic Res

Old Barkabbeyans 0 – 0  Runwell Sports Res

Season 2020-21 Round-ups: Essex Olympian League & Cups (Wk 2 – Sat 12 Sept) [EOFL 20-21 13.9.20]

EOFL Crest

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

Hello and welcome back to the the second of my round-up blogs looking at the Essex Olympian League divisions for the Season 2020-21. In this piece, we look at the League, Reserve Cup & Senior Cup action, focusing on the Top four divisions and the Cups this weekend. How did your side get on? Thank you for reading.

EOFL Premier Division                                                  

In this week’s action in the Premier Division, Basildon Town made it two wins from two games with a 4 – 0 home win over Kelvedon Hatch. Antony Aylett, Keith King,  Benjamin Smith and substitute Jamie Simpkins all netted for Marcus Bowers’ side. Hatch have conceded seven goals now in their opening two games, without scoring. Buckhurst Hill also made continued their good start to the season with a hard-fought 2 – 1 win over Bishop’s Stortford Swifts at Roding Lane. Suleyman Zuhdu and Nathan Sollosi goals before the interval secured the points for Mark Williams’ side.

Elsewhere, Springfield had an own goal to thank for a 1 – 0 triumph in a tight contest with Rayleigh Town at Arun Close. Catholic Utd returned to winning ways with a 2 – 0 success at Shenfield AFC. Ronnie Hobbrough’s first-half penalty put Stuart Marshall’s side ahead before Ellis Sands sealed the win on his 100th appearance for the club. Sungate also kept their 100% record with a 3 – 2 win over Harold Wood Athletic, although Tom Ward and an OG accounted for Ath’s goals In that contest. Finally in this division, Canning Town remain unbeaten after defeating Leigh Ramblers 1 – 0 in Beckton.  

EOFL Division One

Now moving into Division One, and Ongar Town maintained their fine start in all competitions with a thumping 7 – 0 over Toby at the Lakeside Sports Ground. Aaron Blair scored four goals on his own, with Ayo Awosinka notching a brace and Harry Rawlins also chipping in. Snaresbrook also won, 3 – 0 at Rayleigh Town Res with Ife Ogunbayo grabbing two goals and an OG also appearing on the score-sheet.

Meanwhile, Runwell Sports roared to a 5 – 0 success over Herongate Athletic at St Luke’s Park. Jon Atmore and Ashley Burgess both struck twice for Jason Plom’s side, with Ben Austin also on target. Also, Ramsden Scotia drew 2 – 2 at home with Shoebury Town.

EOFL Division Two

In Division Two, Beacon Hill Rovers made it two wins from two with a 2 – 0 win over AS Rawreth. Also, Ryan made it two wins from two in League & Cup as they defeated Wakering Sports 2 – 0 at Cupid’s. Lewis Watson and Tayyab Mahmoud were the scorers for the new-look Walthamstow-based outfit.

Corinthians also returned to league action with a 5 – 2 away triumph at Laindon Orient. Nathan Dewberry returned with a brace, with John Bolton-Smith also grabbing two goals plus Connor Summerhill also netted in this fine win for Chris Stoneham’s side. In the other match in the division, Rochford Town held visitors Epping Town to a 1 – 1 draw, with Charlie Pollard getting Epping’s goal there..

Still from Res Cup: Old S Res 3 – 1 L Town Res [Image: Scott W]

EOFL Reserve League Cup    

This week, the Reserve League Cup took centre stage with fourteen ties taking place. In the first of our nine featured matches, Division Five side Shoebury Town Res got a fine win at Division Two side Harold Wood Athletic Res, winning 4 – 3 at Harold Wood Park. Replacement Connor Payne scored twice for Shoebury, with Kirk Hudson and Garry Johnson also netting for the visitors. James Pottle’s brace and one from Joe McBurney in response for Ath’s second-side was not enough to prevent them heading out of the competition.

Collier Row Res also progressed with a 2 – 0 home win over Shenfield AFC Res at the Forest Row Centre. Nicky George and Johnson Lawrence were the goal-scoring heroes for the Division Five side. Galleywood Res also went through, beating fellow Division Four side Canning Town Res 3 – 1 away from home. Jack Chatterway’s double and one from Zak Robinson meant the Chelmsford-based side went through.

Hutton Ressies also progressed as they achieved a 3 – 1 home win over Basildon Town Res at Polo Fields. Stewart Biggie, Brad Freeman and substitute Benjamin Rose all found the net for Hutton, with Jamie Miller getting the consolation for Town here. Runwell Sports Res also went through, as they won 3 – 1 at Epping Town Res, with James Driver notching a brace and Alex Marsh getting the other goal for Runwell. Andrew Smith got the goal for the hosts but they unfortunately headed out of the Cup. Ongar Town Ressies made it a good day for the club as they won 3 – 2 at Leigh Ramblers Res. Frankie Goodall struck twice for the visitors, with Jack Zielinski’s goal also proving important.

Next, in the match I attended at Garon Park, Old Southendian Reserves were made to work hard before they grabbed a 3 – 0 win over Leigh Town Res. A fine strike by Jack Cripps and two from substitute Nico Debouchet sealed the win. If you’d like more on this match, the link to my report is here: survivor16b.wordpress.com/2020/09/12/match-report-os-res-3-0-leigh-town-res-eofl-rc-12-9-20/  

Manford Way Ressies also had a great day, winning 5 – 1 at Toby Res, with Shaun Goddard leading the goal-scorers with a double. David Hornsby, Jack Barraclough and Jake Muller all also netted as they took their place in Round Two. Chingford Athletic Res also advanced to the next round as they triumphed 4 – 1 at Old Chelmsfordians Res. Callum Godfrey, Leighton Hughes-Franklin and Conor Medhurst were among their Ath’s scorers here.

Other EOFL Reserve Cup Results:

AS Rawreth Res  0 – 6  Wakering Sports Res

Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Res  0 – 2  Springfield Res

Corinthians Res  2 – 6  Catholic Utd Res

Herongate Athletic Res 1 – 1 Laindon Orient Res (Laindon won 4 – 3 on pens)

Wakering Sports Dev. 4 – 0 Buckhurst Hill Res

EOFL Senior League Cup

In the two remaining Senior Cup ties, the South Essex sides competing both prevailed. First, Division Three side Wakebury went through on spot-kicks, after a 3 – 3 draw with Division One side Chingford Athletic at Town Mead. Two goals from Harry Kateley and one from Billy Bonham-Dare for Matt Cardy’s side forced the penalty shoot-out, which they won 4 – 1 to claim a scalp and go through.

Also, Division One side Leigh Town went through after a comfortable 3 – 0 win at Division Four side Leytonstone Utd. Dan Steerwood, Mark Frostick and James Roberts were all on target to seal progression for Jack Pearman’s side.   

EOFL Division Three

Finally for the round-up section this week, in the one Division Three match this week, Hullbridge Sports ‘A’ got a good 3 – 1 win over Lakeside Utd at Lower Road. Harry Boswell, William Bray and Joseph Bray were the scorers for the ‘Bridge side.

EOFL Division Four Result

Hashtag Utd Dev. 1 – 2 Sungate Res  

EOFL Senior Five Result

Old Barkabbeyans  0 – 4  Roydon

That’s all from the Essex Olympian League round-up this week. Check back next week for the next edition, and thank to those clubs who passed on the info of goal-scorers this week.

Season Review 2019-20: Essex Olympian League Premier Division [EOFL SR 19/20 30.4.20]

Written By Scott W  [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome to the fifth piece of a mini-series of blog articles looking back at the ‘void’ Season 2019-20, as deemed by the FA.

In this piece, I look back what was a fascinating Essex Olympian League Premier Division campaign, rounded out with an array of statistics compiled from the EOFL FA Full-Time website including top goal-scorers & top appearance makers in the League fixtures. I was fortunate to see a few of the teams in action live this term.

 

EOFL Premier Division   (as of season cut-off point of March 14th 2020)

As with all the EOFL divisions, the season was halted in mid-March 2020 before eventually being curtailed several weeks later. At the summit were Sungate, who amassed forty-four points from their 22 matches in what was a very good season for the East London-based side. They had the secod-best defensive record, conceding twenty-nine times (at a average per game (or GpG) of 1.32) and also enjoyed the joint-best goal-scoring record, scoring 52 times (GpG of 2.36). I saw them come back to win a really enterprising game at Old Southendian in February and you could certainly see why they were hot in front of-goal and they will hope to carry on the impetus going forward. Leigh Ramblers had a really good campaign, finishing in second spot. Wayne Seal’s team had a strong end to the season, ending up with thirty-eight points from their 22 games played. They won seven of their 11 matches at their Belfairs Park home and were also joint-high goal-scorers with 52 strikes this term. Murmurings indicate that they are looking to build the club going forward and they will be a threat next term you feel. Last season’s champions Buckhurst Hill finished in third, with 32 points gained from only fourteen matches. Postponements and Cup runs perhaps thwarted Mark Williams’ side from a higher finish and you would not have gone against Hill obtaining a top-two finish, had the season gone on for another month. As it was, they still got ten league wins, along with being the division’s fourth-best goal-scorers with 46 strikes (a GpG of 3.28) and held the best defensive record (16 goals shelled) for the second consecutive campaign. Not bad going! Factor in their three entrants in the leading goal-scorers chart (see below) and you start to see why Hill are highly-regarded in the local Non-League scene. Both of their losses this season came in South Essex, at Rayleigh Town and Leigh Ramblers but it does seem they are well-placed for another tilt at success next term.

In fourth place were Catholic Utd, having managed 31 points from their twenty-one matches this term. The ‘Super Hoops’ are based at Bowers & Pitsea’s Len Salmon Stadium [3G] and grabbed seven wins from their thirteen games there. They scored fifty-one goals (GpG of 2.43) to put them in third in the list of ‘Entertainers’ this term though it was at the other end where the issues were, having shelled 39 goals this season. Their form tailed towards the end of the campaign, and they were uncharacteristic in their loss at Old Southendian in late January, which I watched. Utd have announced that former Southend Manor & Waltham Abbey Reserves boss Stuart Marshall will take the reins next season and it is good to see him back in the game, all the best to him. Kelvedon Hatch made the most of a decent run prior to the cut-off to finish fifth, having got thirty points from their 20 outings. Glen Golby & Steve Willis’ side certainly were not dull to watch, having struck the net forty-one times and conceded 45 times (a GpG of 2.25) this term. I saw them lose out narrowly at Old Southendian in December and you could see why quite a few of their players have played at a higher level, the guile and the craft is there. On that note, Petrit Elbi deserves a mention as their top goal-scorer with eight goals.

Into mid-table now, with Springfield finishing sixth with twenty-eight points from their 20 games played. Nine of them were wins with 44 goals scored, the fifth-best record in the division. Unfortunately, they conceded forty-nine goals as well, the second-worst in the division. Their Arun Close home was the place of six of their wins this term, and they also can champion the league’s top goal-scorer in Dave Wareham who netted fifteen times. Congratulations to him. The club saw a transition as well as stalwart Glen Wilkinson moved upstairs to Director of Football, with former Laindon Orient & Rayleigh Town Reserves co-boss Dan Williams coming in the second half of the season. They seem well set for another promising campaign next term. Rayleigh Town are another club with plans for the future, and they ended up seventh with twenty-five points from their 16 matches. They were hampered by weather & Cup fixtures somewhat though still won eight of their games, having scored thirty-three times and conceded 33 times as well – the fifth-best defensive record. I saw Paul Higgins’ side in action back in August as they defeated Leigh Ramblers, though I must note that like a lot of clubs at this level, they are welcoming and do deserve to increase their fan following as they play decent football as well.

In eighth place were a club I saw a few times in the second half of the campaign: Old Southendian. They found a degree of form in that second part of the season to also end on twenty-five points from their 22 matches. An inferior goal difference saw them below their local rivals Rayleigh, but Connor Lane’s team still won seven times, three of which I saw in person. Stats-wise, they struck 38 goals (a GpG of 1.73) and shelled 42 times as well though as is so often the case, the stats don’t tell the whole story. At their best, they do play some good stuff and given the experience they have in abundance in their squad, that isn’t a surprise.  Nick Henesy and Ed Gould both got eight goals apiece and as has been well-publicised, they are another of the clubs to play on artificial 3G at Garon Park.

 

Another club that saw a managerial change in Bishop’s Stortford Swifts finished ninth. They accrued twenty-three points from their 20 matches and on the face of it, you may call it a very mixed campaign. They scored 35 goals (a GpG of 1.75) and conceded forty-three times but they did get five of their seven wins at Silver Leys this term. Former Epping Town boss Billy Cove came in as manager in February and you sense the club’s focus has been renewed as they picked up two important wins over Kelvedon Hatch and Sungate which staved off immediate relegation worries at that time. I would predict a more positive season to come for the Swifts. Canning Town ended up tenth with twenty-three points coming from the 22 matches they contested. Their defence was the most troublesome area for the Beckton-based team, having conceded 49 times, the joint-second highest in the division. They did finish the season well though, with four wins in their last eight games with the pressure on so that may bode well for the next campaign. Another side who finished strongly sits in eleventh, which is Shenfield AFC, who won Division One in 2018/19. They garnered twenty-two points from their 18 matches, having won four of their last seven matches. That was quite the opposite of their early-season woes, as they didn’t win any of their first six games. It is true that only the bottom three sides had more trouble in front of goal, as AFC netted thirty times in all, though the team were more than decent at the back, shelling 35 goals to gain the sixth-best defensive record in the division. Ben Carroll also deserves to be mentioned as he grabbed nine league goals this term, well done Ben. Basildon Town were just below them in 12th, with 21 points from their fifteen outings. Those points came from their seven league wins, and they struck the net 27 times, the joint-lowest in the division. Couple that with conceding 48 times and you can see why the management would be frustrated to say the least. I saw Town at Old Southendian in late February and to be honest, they played well in patches so that must add to the frustration.

Now to the bottom two, with Hutton ending up 13th having gathered eighteen points from their 14 matches, having been one of many clubs affected by the deluge of rain over the winter. Gary Damrill’s team on five of their matches and although going forward they scored 27 times (joint-lowest with Basildon Town), the promising statistic is that they conceded 32 goals, which was the fourth-strongest defensive record. Quirks of numbers indeed. Top scorer Will Marlowe netted eight times as well so congrats to Will. Finally, Harold Wood Athletic ended a season they would probably like to forget bottom, also on 18 points from the same amount of matches. They finished below Hutton because of a much weaker goal difference, largely due to conceding 53 times. Stalwart boss Kris Taylor moved sideways at season’s end, to be replaced by former Barkingside boss Alex Goldstone and they will certainly want a better season next time out.

To close this part, I’d like to note my belief that the quality of the Premier Division is rising this season. Some may disagree with that and they are welcome to their opinion, I just don’t think it is an accident that players are dropping into Step 7 and on the same note, there are some good managers as well. All in all, it should be a really fascinating division next season, if it isn’t too badly affected by the current world events (No, I’m not saying the ‘C-word here). I hope to watch a few matches in this division again next term.

 

EOFL Premier Division  – Top Goalscorers 2019-20 Season

    Club/s League Goals League Starts
1 Dave Wareham Jr Springfield 15 18
         
=2 Nathan Sollosi Buckhurst Hill 12 12
  Jake Clarke Sungate 12 15
         
=4 Fehinti Falola Buckhurst Hill 10 8
  Suleyman Zuhdu Buckhurst Hill 10 11
         
6 Ben Caroll Shenfield AFC 9 15
         
=7 Will Marlowe Hutton 8 8
  Petrit Elbi Kelvedon Hatch 8 13
  Nick Henesy Old Southendian 8 13
  Joe Nathanson Springfield 8 13
  Aaron Baldwin Catholic Utd 8 14
  Rhys Fatt Leigh Ramblers 8 14
  Reece Clarke Sungate 8 15
  Daniel Williams Leigh Ramblers 8 16
  Ed Gould Old Southendian 8 18
         

 

Finally, here’s the top page of the Leading Appearance Makers in Premier Division  (focus on League Starts)

      Appearances
    Club/s League Starts Bench Total
1 Michael Sammut Catholic Utd 21 0 21
           
=2 Thomas Kearney Catholic Utd 20 1 21
  James Smith Sungate 20 1 21
  Ryan Batchford Springfield 20 0 20
  Ryan Lowe Leigh Ramblers 20 0 20
  Rorie McKenzie Sungate 20 0 20
  Tyron Thomas Canning Town 20 0 20
           
=8 Billy Evans Canning Town 19 1 20
  Reece Still Bishop’s Stortford Swifts 19 1 20
  Dylan Skinner Leigh Ramblers 19 0 19
           
=11 Ed Gould Old Southendian 18 2 20
  Dave Wareham Jr Springfield 18 1 19
  Adam Palmer Bishop’s Stortford Swifts 18 0 18
  Scott Truman Sungate 18 0 18
  Bradley Vaughan Catholic Utd 18 0 18
  Matt Wilson Old Southendian 18 0 18
           

 

Round-up : Essex Olympian League (Sat 1 Feb) (EOFL 19/20 2.2.20)

 

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Image from Leigh Town 2 – 0 Corinthians (in EPC) yesterday {Image: Scott W]

Written by Scott W   [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome to this week’s Essex Olympian League round-up, tracking the action on Saturday 1st February in League & Cups. Thanks for reading.

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Saturday 1 February

Premier Division

Starting off as we do with the top-tier, leaders Sungate retained their eight-point cushion with a battling 1 – 0 home win over Canning Town in what was their sixth win in their last seven games. Catholic Utd edged their local derby with Leigh Ramblers 2 – 1 with Harley Kee getting both goals, the second from the penalty spot. Ryan Lowe struck for Ramblers as they drop to third, with Catholic overhauling them into second spot after a morale-boosting win. Kelvedon Hatch got a fine 4 – 3 success at Basildon Town with the returning Theo Ola getting a brace for Hatch, along with Calvin Poku and replacement Joe Gregory also netting. Jamie Bradbourn got a double of his own for Town, with James O’Brien also chipping in. Kelvedon rise to sixth while Basildon drop to 11th.

In the battle of two of the sides battling to avoid the drop, Old Southendian were held 1 – 1 by Harold Wood Athletic in the day’s late kick-off at Garon Park 3G. Brad Foley struck for Ath as they limped off the bottom to 12th spot, although they are unbeaten in their last three matches. OS levelled through Ryan Stillwell’s goal and rise up to eighth though are still only three points above the bottom two. Finally, Springfield got a narrow 3 – 2 win at home to Bishop’s Stortford Swifts. Recent signing Bryn Thorpe got both goals for Swifts after coming off the bench though this result means they drop to the foot of the table. Springfield go up to fourth after this win.

Match OFF: Rayleigh Town P – P  Shenfield AFC (Due to Waterlogged pitch)

Cups

There were also four Cup ties across two Cup competitions this weekend. Firstly, Olympian Premier side Hutton defeated Senior One side FC Hamlets 2 – 1 in a match moved to Woodlands School 3G in Basildon. George Nash and Lewis Scott strikes sent the hosts through, and although John Gilroy netted for hard-working FCH, they went out.

In the three Essex Premier Cup Quarter-Finals that took place, Chingford Athletic went through after defeating Essex & Suffolk Border League (or ESBL) Premier side West Bergholt  on penalties, following a 2 – 2 draw at Town Mead. Gary Murray and Luke Dimond struck for Dave Richbell’s side in normal play and they won the shoot-out 7 – 6 to make the Semi-Finals. Leigh Town won their all-Olympian League Div Two battle with Corinthians 2 – 0 in the match I attended at a muddy John Burrows Rec. Substitutes Sam Gillmore and Shane Cooper got the decisive goals to win a highly-charged contest. If you’d like more of this match, my report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2020/02/01/match-report-leigh-town-2-0-corinthians-sat-1st-feb-epc/

Lastly, Buckhurst Hill powered to a 6 – 1 triumph over ESBL Premier side Gas Recreation at Roding Lane. The games are mounting up in League & Cups for the defending Premier Cup champions as they are seeking to win this title for a third consecutive season.

Senior ONE

In Senior One, Ramsden Scotia won 4 – 1 at fellow mid-table side Manford Way. Jamie Auvache stroke twice for Scotia, plus Antony Driscoll and Kurt King also on target as they went up to ninth spot. Lakeside also got the three points, as they won 4 – 1 at home to Galleywood. Drew Klessa-Smith nabbed another treble in this one with Luke Quinton also scoring, ‘Side are unbeaten in five matches now as they also are five points adrift of Old Chelmsfordians who remain second after a thumping 7 – 0 win over Toby at Lawford Lane. Toby were further blighted by player availability problems, and apparently could only field nine players to start though respect to those who all took the field.

Meanwhile, Ongar Town retained their unbeaten run this term, with a 4 – 1 win over Herongate Athletic in a match moved to St John’s 3G in Epping. Town remain handily-placed in third spot, 12 points behind leaders Chingford Athletic with six matches in hand on them. Rayleigh Town Res won 4 – 1 at Shoebury Town to go back up to fifth place with Shoebury remaining in seventh.

Match OFF: Runwell Sports  P – P  Snaresbrook | (Due to a waterlogged pitch)

Senior TWO

In a depleted Senior Two programme, Laindon Orient won 2 – 0 at in-form May & Baker Res with Ashley Blackburn and Carlos Dias netting in first-half for Neil Blackburn’s team, who made it five wins in succession here to remain in 5th, with matches in hand on all but one of the sides above them. M & B’s second side had their own six-match winning run ended here though remain fourth in the standings, although they are vulnerable to being caught up as they have played a few more matches. Also, Rochford Town got a crucial win away from home as they won 3 – 2 at fellow strugglers Ryan and in the process, brought a seven-match losing run to a close.

Matches OFF:

Beacon Hill Rovers  P – P  Wakering Sports  (Due to a waterlogged pitch)

Epping Town  P – P  AS Rawreth   | (Due to issues at Epping)

Harold Wood Athletic Res  P – P  Old Southendian Res |(Due to a waterlogged pitch)

Senior Division Three

In another weather-affected match list in Senior Three, Wakebury had to overcome a bout of illness among the squad and got a very late leveller as they drew 2 – 2 at fellow promotion challengers ACD Utd. Player-boss Michael Wade and Frankie Markham netted for the Romford-based side, while Harry Kateley and Chris Gore’s late free-kick salvaged a point for the South Essex side, who had to field boss Matt Cardy in defence and assistant boss Dan Blewett also came off the bench to play as a forward. Well, never dull in Non-League….

Seriously though, ACD remain second, three points off their opposition here with three matches in hand. Wakebury remain top though with just four matches remaining this term, they will have to aim to get as close to the 50-point mark as possible to win the division, you feel. You must credit both sides for how they’ve done in their first season in the Olympian League, so well done all.

Meanwhile, Toby Res got a much-needed win, 5 – 2 over mid-table side Buckhurst Hill Res in Newbury Park. Marc Porter-Brown was among the goals again with a treble here, with Chris Cox and birthday boy Luis Ruiz also netted as their side into fourth spot and end a four-match losing trough. Tim Strike and Rhys Davies got Hill’s goals as they remain 7th. Also, Basildon Town Res won 2 – 0 at fellow strugglers White Ensign Res to overhaul them in the table. Jake Bridgeman and Shaun Watkins were the goal-getters here to grab Town’s third win this season.

 

Matches OFF (Due to Waterlogged pitches):
Collier Row  P – P  Lakeside Res   |

Corinthians Res  P – P  Hutton Res   |

Senior Division Four Results

Forest Glade  1 – 5  Roydon

Galleywood Res  1 – 3  Canning Town Res
Laindon Orient Res P – P  Shenfield AFC Res

Leytonstone Utd  P – P  Old Chelmsfordians Res |

Ongar Town Res  2 – 1  Chingford Athletic Development

Wakering Sports Res  3 – 3  Catholic Utd Res

Senior Division Five Results


Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Res  1 – 0  Newbury Forest Res

Herongate Athletic Res  3 – 0  Leigh Ramblers Res
Old Barkabbeyans 3 – 2  Runwell Sports Res
Roydon Res  0 – 2  Collier Row Res
Shoebury Town Res  P – P  Springfield Res