S21-22 Match Report: White Ensign 8 – 3 Cockfosters (Sat 2 Oct) [ESL 21/22 2.10.21]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Burroughs Park

Attendance: 57

2021-22 Season: Match 28

Saturday 2nd October 2021 – 3pm KO

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

Cockfosters: Royal Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks


Ensign grab big win over Cockfosters in a truly memorable Match

White Ensign  8 – 3  Cockfosters

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

This weekend’s main match saw a return trip to Burroughs Park for this enticing match between in-form White Ensign and visitors Cockfosters, who are in the top ten. Both sides were missing players here, for Ensign they were missing the likes of goalkeeper Frankie Worboyes, midfielder Harry Skinner and forward Connor Barnby. Jack Riddell deputised in goal, with a back four of Jason Reynolds-Blanche, skipper Andy George, Jake McWee and recent recruit Liam Whipps. The forward line was led by Luke Woodward, Joe Gregory and Dominic Locke. Options from the bench included full-backs Adams & Buffin, plus forward Brandon Martin. Ryan Wade’s ‘Fosters side were also missing the likes of star winger Reece Mosanya, forward Billy Healey and experienced defenders in Danny Haigh and Marcus Crowther. Joshua Bradley deputised here for regular stopper Matt Nolan, with a defensive four of Andy Polycarpou, Jamal Brimah, Michael Okafor and Prince Madu. Player-boss Ryan Wade led the line alongside skipper George Beattie, with support from the flanks from Joe Entwistle and George Constanti. Their options from the sidelines were midfielders Lopes and Ungudi, with forwards Jack Hockney and Charncey Dash also named.


Even before kick-off, the grey clouds did their worst to try and affect this one and the rain continued throughout the match. In the early stages  of the contest, Ensign seemed keen to use the channels to test the visiting backline as on three minutes a decent left-wing cross from full-back Liam Whipps had to be cleared by visiting defender Michael Okafor for a set-piece.  However, it didn’t take the hosts long to open the scoring as on six minutes, in-form forward Joe Gregory was well found and with only ‘keeper Josh Bradley to beat, he slipped in a low shot that trickled into the net. Ensign were starting to signify that they were finding their passing rhythm as with 13 minutes played, good interplay by forward Dominic Locke and full-back Jason Reynolds-Blanche down the right flank found Gregory but this time Bradley got in to make a decent save.

The visitors couldn’t retain possession as well as they would’ve liked in the early stages but on the quarter-hour, a corner delivered by forward George Beattie saw Ensign stopper Jack Riddell have to punch away well to deny the lurking Cockfosters forwards. There was a degree of fortune to Ensign’s second goal on seventeen minutes as another good centre by Whipps cannoned off unfortunate defender Michael Okafor and gave Bradley little chance to save. That said, Cockfosters could’ve been further behind moments later but Locke was just unable to slide his effort past Bradley from a narrow angle at the far post.


What was a tough first 25 minutes for the visitors was compunded by a fine third goal for Brett Munyard & Mark Healy’s side. Luke Skinner sent in a fine threaded ball through to the on-running Luke Woodward who fired home superbly. Cockfosters at that point had a lot of work to do just to get back in the game but the spirit of Wade’s side was apparent again as soon afterwards, they pulled a goal back to make it three-one. After Riddell had parried an initial effort, Beattie was there to power home a well-directed strike in a congested penalty area. Cockfosters were starting to show their good attacking game as well at this point in proceedings, with midfielders Kaidyn Michael and Joe Entwistle making good runs in supporting forwards Beattie and Wade. Riddell stayed alert to gather Wade’s chip just after the half-hour but seven minutes before the interval, Cockfosters grabbed another goal.


Entwistle was involved again as he was played in well before firing in an angled drive into the left-sided corner, giving Riddell little chance. The Ensign goalkeeper managed to deny another strike by Wade but at the interval it was anyone’s game and the nerves may have started to gather for the hosts.

Half-Time: W.  Ensign 3 – 2 Cockfosters

One thing was for sure, we didn’t have to wait long for more goalmouth action after the interval. Locke fired wide moments after the resumption, and the rapid forward was involved again in the next forward move which also involved Skinner ended up being deflected for another corner. This one wasn’t dealt with by the visiting defence, which allowed Woodward to strike powerfully into the net. Four-two to the hosts and we still had forty minutes remaining. Although Ensign were only just getting started in this hugely telling spell of attacking play.

Both management teams look on..

Six minutes after their fourth goal, Ensign made it five as Woodward did well to win the ball on the left flank, before advancing forward  and feeding Locke who squeezed his strike into the left corner of the net despite the attentions of ‘keeper Bradley and the declining angle. To be fair to ‘Fosters, they still looked a threat going forward as well, as midway through the half a good pass by Reece Barrett found Entwistle but this time he could only send his strike high over the woodwork.

White Ensign were still keen to grab more goals, and got a sixth goal on 68 minutes as midfielder Zack Littlejohn send a well-struck strike from twenty-five yards into the net, with Bradley beaten. Sometimes you see sides with a big lead on the score-sheet tighten up defensively and be content with what they’ve got – but that wasn’t the case here. Two minutes after Littlejohn’s goal, Woodward took advantage of uncertain defending to fire home his third goal and cement this match as a memorable occasion for the home supporters. Even at this stage of the match given the declining conditions, it was still pretty end-to-end with Cockfosters keen to showcase their talents as well. They got a third goal with ten minutes remaining, with Barrett threading in a good pass to the onrushing Beattie who then faced Riddell one-on-one and Beattie’s confident low finish found the net.


Moments later, Beattie could have secured his hat-trick for the visitors after evading the home backline again, but this time his low strike cannoned back off the right-side post and away. Ensign still found time to add further pain to the opposition as on the stroke on ninety minutes, a good pass by Thando Moyo found substitute Brandon Martin who unleashed a sumptious chip over Bradley and nestled into the net to grab a goal on his debut for the club. Eight-three was the scoreline and it was a truly memorable match, but ‘Fosters will lament the chances they couldn’t take here. Take nothing away from the free-scoring Ensign side though, they were near their best as they grabbed another excellent three points.

Locke [#7 in Red] gets another forward move going for Ensign…

Full-Time:  White Ensign  8 – 3  Cockfosters

In summary, this was a really enthralling match played in awful conditions with rain falling throughout. Ensign were the stronger side and more than deserved the points. Cockfosters did well to come back from three goals down to only have a one-goal deficit at the interval but they had no answer for four goals in a twenty minute spell for Ensign soon after the resumption. ‘Fosters were still a threat going forward and took their goals well though there was just no stopping a superb Ensign forward line, with Woodward grabbing a treble and the match was sealed with Martin’s superb chip right at the end.

In a match of so many goals & quality, it is tough to pick out players. For Ensign, Luke Woodward had a brilliant match. Three goals, a searing threat down the channels and he supported his fellow forwards very well indeed on a memorable day for him. Fellow forward Dominic Locke also had another very good match, with good running down the flanks, good passing and high energy levels – he also took his goal well. Luke Skinner was also a very important player here, setting up several good moves for the hosts and displayed good awareness and passing. Finally, a mention for Zack Littlejohn whose goal was well-taken & also showed good energy levels to break up enterprising counter-attacks from the visitors. For Cockfosters, I felt midfielder Kaidyn Michael had another good game, showing good movement and passing alongside energetic full-back Prince Madu. Skipper George Beattie was their chief goal threat here and took his two goals very well. Lastly, a word for Reece Barrett who set up Beattie for his second goal and put in a good shift for his team.

I’d just like to wish both sides a good remainder of the campaign, as they both contributed to a terrific afternoon’s entertainment for the small, dedicated contingent of supporters who attended today.


Teams

White Ensign   |  Player-Manager: Brett Munyard  | Assistant: Mark Healy

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jack Riddell (GK), 11 Jason Reynolds-Blanche (2 Charlie Buffin 70′), 5 Andy George (Capt), 6 Jake McWee, 12 Liam Whipps (14 Charlie Adams 70′), 3 Thando Moyo, 10 Luke Skinner , 16 Zack Littlejohn, 7 Dominic Locke, 19 Luke Woodward, 17 Joe Gregory (8 Brandon Martin 66′)

Goal-scorers: Joe Gregory [6′], OG (Okafor) [17′], Luke Woodward [24′, 50′ & 70′], Dominic Locke [56′], Zack Littlejohn [68′], Brandon Martin [90′]

Booked: None | Subs Not Used: Maleary, Munyard


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

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Josh Bradley (GK), 2 Andy Polycarpou (15 Zivonimir Lopes 58′), 3 Prince Madu, 5 Jamal Brimah, 6 Michael Okafor, 4 Reece Barrett, 8 Kaidyn Michael (16 Daniel Ugundi 72′), 7 Joe Entwistle, 9 Ryan Wade (12 Jack Hockney 69′), 10 George Beattie (Capt), 11 George Constanti

Goal-scorers: George Beattie [26′ & 80′], Joe Entwistle [38′]

Booked: None  | Sub Not Used: Wild, Dash


Referee: Adam Miller
Assistants: Glenn Michaels & Connor Cornell

S21-22 Match Report: Southend Manor  0 – 3 West Essex (Sat 18th Sept) [ESL 21-22 18.9.21]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Southchurch Park

Attendance: 13

2021-22 Season: Match 23

Saturday 18th September 2021 – 3pm KO

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

West E: White Shirts, White Shorts, White Socks


A minute’s applause pre-match

West outplay Manor to grab a deserved win at Southchurch

Southend Manor  0 – 3 West Essex

Match Report & Photos by Scott W  [Twitter: @ScottMHC14] – Non-League Writer

This weekend’s match was a short trip to Southchurch Park to see West Essex visit Southend Manor in another Essex Senior League match. Craig Waters’ home team were missing several players including the influential Jordan Chambers, defender James Hegarty and forwards Luca Frankis and Ethan Evison. Josh Harrison was the choice in goal, with a defence of full-backs Ben Sargent and Kiah Froud with the central defence being led by skipper Joe Elliott with Alex Jenkins alongside him. Teddy Rumsby and Josh Devlin were the wingers in support of forwards Harry Rogers and Conor Cobb, with defender Jean Paul Moke, and young forwards Jordan Russell and Kia Cody all options from the bench.

The Stags were also missing several important players such as goalkeeper Jack Coker, captain Reece Clarke and forwards Callum Bloss and Demetris Frangeskides all unavailable for Kwame Kwateng’s team. Dan Russell deputised in goal, with club stalwart Sanchez Hardy skippering the side, alongside Emmanuel Oluwole in central defence. Michael Morris and Joel Lamb were wing-backs here, assisting the forward line of Moyo Ajibade and Jon Ogunsanya. Their depleted substitutes bench was comprised of forwards Symeon Taylor and Mohamud Kaudeer.

The visitors looked to get their rhythm going early in the match here, with wing-backs Michael Morris and Joel Lamb and winger Samraj Gill looking good in possession as they looked to assist their side ‘s forward moves. For the hosts, Teddy Rumsby had a half-chance blocked by the visiting defence. On the whole though, it was West who really had the impetus and nearly broke the deadlock on twelve minutes as a good move down the left side ended with Gill sending in a good cross from the left flank, which was just over the head of advancing forward Jon Ogunsanya at the back post. The Stags were finding their passing range on the quarter-hour with central midfielder Sam McNally starting a fine move involving Morris and Gill, only for full-back Kiah Froud to intervene and clear away for a corner.


On a decent counter-attack, Manor forward Conor Cobb got into the eighteen-yard box before being tackled well by centre-back Sanchez Hardy. From the corner that resulted, Manor defender Alex Jenkins had a decent header blocked as West strived to clear the ball away. Manor did have one or two more set-pieces which didn’t quite find their targets but West responded with another driving forward move at the other end, with pacey forward Moyo Ajibade sending in a good centre which support forward David Bell could only blaze over the goal frame. It was another warning though for the home defence but West Essex did not have to wait long for a goal. With 29 minutes played, a good long clearance by custodian Dan Russell down the right side started the move, with Ajibade and Ogunsanya both involved and found Bell one-on-one with Manor stopper Josh Harrison and this time Bell planted a good finish into the opposite corner to give the visitors the advantage.


West doubled their lead on the counter-attack only four minutes later as Morris was involved once again showing good passing and composure with the ball finding Ogunsanya who evaded his marker before firing a low strike from about eighteen yards into the left-sided corner, just evading the grasp of Harrison. Manor were just not able to retain possession for long periods to build their attacks and went into the break needing to step up their own tempo.

Half-Time: Southend Manor  0 – 2 West Essex



Soon after the break, Manor did have a free-kick which Jordan Faulkner sent a header off-target. Bell had another decent curling strike for West travel over the crossbar but in a match of few positives for Manor at this point, they did have more ball retention with the likes of Rumsby, central midfielder Jack Frost, winger Josh Devlin and Jordan Faulkner, who was pushed up to lead the forward line at half-time showing their intent to get their side back in the match. In fairness, West were having to defend a bit more but they were keen to show that they were more than up to the challenge, with Hardy, Morris and centre-back Emmanuel Oluwole doing well to intercept the hosts’ attacks, with custodian Dan Russell not having to make a significant save.

West were still showing their promise going forward as well as with 71 minutes on the watch, another fine pass by Gill found Ogunsanya although his well-struck strike was straight at Harrison. Substitute Jean Paul Moke also did well for the hosts at centre-back since the interval but a deeply regrettable moment transpired with five minutes of normal time remaining. The referee had heard brought play to a stop with West in position to launch another promising forward move, and very soon after that the red card was out for defender Kiah Froud for what ref Edwards described directly as foul & abusive language. The incident certainly caused the West players to understandably react strongly and the situation needed both management teams to intervene and after several minutes, play resumed.



West did get a third goal at the beginning of an extended added-time period as substitute Symeon Taylor powered a fine finish high into the net with only Harrison to bypass. However, the Manor goalkeeper responded well to deny strikes by Taylor and Ogunsanya as the visitors finished the match well and more than earned the win here.

West GK Russell (right) about to clear..

Full-Time: Southend Manor   0 – 3  West Essex

In summary, West were the better side, particularly in the first half and fully deserved the points that their fast, enterprising play had given them. The home side simply could not match the pace, incisive passing and finishing that Kwame Kwateng’s side showed here. The events late on did irrevocably alter the atmosphere and referee Kirk Edwards did not hesitate to deal with the situation. Fact is you cannot condone language like that either.

There were a number of good performances from both sides in this match. Firstly for West, I felt right wing-back Michael Morris had a terrific match, showing excellent pace, composure and work rate throughout in both defence and going forward. Forward Jon Ogunsanya was also constantly involved in his side’s forward moves and took his goal well. Tricky winger Samraj Gill had another influential match, giving the hosts a tough afternoon with his passing, pace and dribbling. Finally, a mention for club stalwart Sanchez Hardy who led his team well from central defence and made several important interceptions.

For Manor, central midfielder Jack Frost had a good game as the home side’s midfield struggled to stifle the pace of the Stags’ counter-attacks. Joe Elliott again led the team well and made a number of good interceptions from centre-back. Jordan Faulkner was utilised as a stand-in forward after the interval and did keep the visiting defence alert. Finally, winger Teddy Rumsby also had some good moments on the right flank showing pace and energy on what was a tough day for them.

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


Teams

Southend Manor   | Manager: Craig Waters  | Assistant: Garry Pond

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Josh Harrison (GK), 2 Ben Sargent, 3 Kiah Froud, 4 Alex Jenkins (13 Kia Cody 75’), 5 Joe Elliott (Capt), 6 Jordan Faulkner, 7 Teddy Rumsby, 8 Jack Frost, 9 Harry Rogers (12 Jean-Paul Moke 46’), 10 Conor Cobb (14 Jordan Russell 46’), 11 Josh Devlin

Booked: Devlin, Elliott  | Sent Off: Froud

Subs Not Used: Waters


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

1 Daniel Russell (GK), 15 Michael Morris, 2 Sanchez Hardy (Capt), 5 Emmanuel Oluwole, 3 Joel Lamb, 4 Sam McNally, 10 Emmanuel Wazola, 18 Moyo Ajibade (9 Symeon Taylor 77’), 20 David Bell (21 Mohamud Kaudeer 61’), 19 Jon Ogunsanya, 22 Samraj Gill

Goal-scorers: David Bell [29’], Jon Ogunsanya [33’], Symeon Taylor [90’+1]

Booked: None | Subs Not Used: None

S21-22 Match Report: Buckhurst Hill 3 – 0 Enfield (Sat 11 Sept) [FAV 1RQ 12.9.21]

FA Vase crest

The FA Vase – First Qualifying Round

Venue: Roding Lane

Attendance: TBC

2021-22 Season: Match 22

Saturday 11th September 2021 – 3pm KO

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

Enfield: Yellow Shirts, Yellow Shorts, Yellow Socks

Both teams just prior to kick-off (Image: Scott W)

The Stags’ Fairytale season goes on with big Vase win over Enfield

Buckhurst Hill  3 – 0  Enfield

The second match of two on this hectic FA Vase weekend saw a return visit to the upgraded Roding Lane as Eastern Senior League South high-fliers Buckhurst Hill welcomed Essex Senior side Enfield in their First Qualifying Round tie. Before we get to the on-pitch things, I have to add that it is great to see a seated stand, turnstiles and a little Food kiosk are now present at the ground. Alright, now onto the hosts’ line-up and boss Mark Williams named a strong squad with Daniel Blockley in goal, a defence comprised of full-backs Liam Foster and Keaton Moore and Henry Day and Alfie Harris in central defence. The forward line was again led by star forward Suleyman Zuhdu, supported by Sonny Shilling and Nathan Sollosi. Their substitutes’ bench included the likes of Buchanan, Rowland, Nicholson, Griggs and Sam Sollosi.

Enfield were looking to return from their FA Cup exit to Hadley after 120 minutes on Wednesday night and with regular custodian James Bransgrove unavailable due to a knock, Jack Willmott took the gloves, with a defence of centre-backs Jack Johnson and Vinny Murphy and Ryan Ramsay and Jack Folan as full-backs. Dwade James was again the focal point of the attack for Jamie Cureton’s team, with support forwards Callum Ibe and Olly Miles also looking to add to their goal-scoring tallies this term.

It was the hosts who started the match with the first sight of goal, with Hill understandably a little nervy given the scope of the tie and the occasion. Enfield centre-back Jack Johnson sent a decent header over the crossbar from a set-piece. The respective number nines then had glimpses of goal with Buckhurst forward Sonny Shilling striking wide and Enfield’s Olly Miles effort blocked by a home defence who were starting to find their rhythm, buoyed on by an exuberant home crowd.

The E’s were unable to find that telling final ball but had speculative chances as Miles sent in a delicate lob on the quarter-hour but Buckhurst custodian Daniel Blockley could easily gather. It was the E’s turn to have a let-off a moment later as a superb run by forward Suleyman Zuhdu did Johnson for pace down the left side of the eighteen yard area but Zuhdu was unable to get the power on his shot to bypass Willmott.

Zuhdu did make a telling contribution on 26 minutes though as Buckhurst took a surprise lead. The physical forward’s threaded pass found the run of Nathan Sollosi and Sollosi slotted home past Willmott with cool aplomb. The home defence was aware of the rapid counter-attack by the E’s and with 31 minutes on the watch, Blockley did well to claw over an in-swinging corner by Alex Warman. The visitors had a decent phase of the game and in a match where he was uncharacteristically quiet, forward Dwade James was well found by full-back Jack Folan’s pass but James’ strike wasn’t strong enough to trouble Blockley. Soon after, Hill countered and from a good pass by full-back Liam Foster, Shilling’s header was off-target.

Zuhdu was troubling the visiting backline with pace and movement, though at the other end, Buckhurst centre-back Alfie Harris was also doing well to stifle a strong Enfield forward line. It was a slender lead at the interval but the pressure was slowly going across to the visitors, with the hosts growing in confidence.


Half-Time:  Buckhurst Hill 1 – 0 Enfield

Enfield did begin the second period quite well with another searing run by Miles being well-tracked by Buckhurst centre-back Henry Day, while Zuhdu again got in the action, only to see his effort on goal deflected wide for a set-piece by the E’s defence. Enfield so nearly made it a totally different match as first on fifty-four minutes, Dwade James was one-on-one with Blockley but the ‘keeper did well to claw away the effort. Moments later, a superb strike, I think by Miles fizzed off the crossbar, with Blockley doing superbly to deny follow-up strikes by James and Miles. The E’s were still well in the tie with twenty minutes remaining as Miles narrowly headed over the goal-frame and substitute Benji Crilley also had an effort cleared off the goal-line as the visitors cursed their lack of fortune.

Buckhurst also had a Shilling goal chalked off but they would not be denied overall as the crucial second goal for them came on 75 minutes. Zuhdu was involved again as another fine pass found Tyler Dolan who evaded the off-side trap and finished calmly past Willmott to really put themselves in a great position. The E’s did keep going but as the minutes ticked by, the feeling grew that it wasn’t going to be their day and they conceded a third goal in added time as Dolan turned provider, tracking the run of midfielder Josh Banfield, who advanced on Wilmott’s goal and again finished well low into the right corner.

When the final whistle went, the contrasting reactions of the two sides was clear. Absolute unfiltered joy for Buckhurst, whilst the E’s had to reflect on what has been a bad week for them.

Full-Time: Buckhurst Hill 3 – 0 Enfield

In summary, the hosts showed pretty much what they are about – good, quick passing Football and defensively they dealt admirably with the threat posed by a good forward line of Enfield, even if the latter were perhaps not at their best. The E’s will be disappointed they didn’t quite create enough chances to really get back in the match but as so often us scribes say, if one of their chances did go in it really would’ve been a different match entirely. Hill do deserve credit though for not allowing the occasion to overwhelm them though, and it was a superb turnout – no doubting that.

For this match’s ‘stand-outs’ I’ll start with the victors. I have to credit Nathan Sollosi who really made the most of the space he managed to create and also took his goal well. Centre-back Henry Day again led the defensive line suoerbly, making a number of important interceptions himself during the match. Goalkeeper Dan Blockley had another good natch, pulling off two superb saves to deny James and Miles when his side were only one goal up. Also, talisman Suleyman Zuhdu again led the forward line with pace and power and he showed he can be a telling assist-maker as well as a fine goalscorer. For Enfield, I felt forward Olly Miles was their chief threat and was unlucky not to score. Miles was quick, direct and as we know, has a good strike on him. Callum Ibe and Jack Johnson also had good games, Ibe being tricky and pacy while Johnson had to really do well to stifle promising Buckhurst attacks. Midfielder David Cowley rounds off the mentions as his set-pieces had to be dealt with too.

Buckhurst progress into the Second Quali Round where they face a trip to local rivals Newbury Forest, who have also been scoring a lot of goals already this term. I’d like to wish both teams a good rest of the season.


Teams

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

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Daniel Blockley (GK), 2 Liam Foster (18 Jonah Gregory 79′), 3 Keaton Moore, 4 Alfie Harris, 5 Henry Day, 6 Louis Wynter (16 Jack Griggs 59′), 7 Tyler Dolan, 8 Josh Banfield, 9 Sonny Shilling (15 Max Nicholson 79′), 10 Suleyman Zuhdu (Capt), 11 Nathan Sollosi

Goal-scorers: Nathan Sollosi [26′], Tyler Dolan [75′], Josh Banfield [90’+3]

Booked: None | Subs Not Used: Buchanan, Rowland, Moss, S Sollosi


Enfield | Manager: Jamie Cureton   | Assistant: Jim Duggan

Starting XI (Subs): 1 Jack Willmott (GK), 2 Jack Folan (6 Luke Wilson 55′), 13 Vinny Murphy, 5 Jack Johnson, 7 Ryan Ramsay, 4 Alex Warman (14 Isaac Stevens 84′), 8 Reece Conway (Capt), 19 David Cowley, 10 Callum Ibe, 27 Dwade James (17 Benji Crilley 71′), 9 Olly Miles

Booked: Conway | Subs Not Used: Vasconcelos


Referee: Fabio Roque

S21-22 Match Report: Ilford 2 – 3 Athletic Newham (Wed 1 Sept) [ESL 21/22 2.9.21]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Cricklefield

Attendance: TBC

2021-22 Season: Match 18

Wednesday 1st September 2021 – 7.45pm KO

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

Ath Newham: Red & White Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks


Late goal gives Newham another away-day win

Ilford  2 – 3 Athletic Newham

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

The midweek match this week was a trip to Cricklefield to see Ilford take on Athletic Newham. The hosts have a big FA Cup match with Aveley on the horizon, while Newham were looking for their third straight league win. The Foxes fielded Josh Blackburn in goal, with a back four of full-backs Dion Lewis-Kirwan and Josh Taylor, with centre-backs Anthony Kelsey and former Sporting Bengal player Lee Sharpe. Adam Peek’s side did have a few changes to it, as recent signing Michael Ogboin and Jerold Cobblah led the forward line. Options from the sidelines included forwards Tigana Quebe, Kieran Southgate and Ellis Leveridge. Athletic Newham had regular stopper Wilkinson Boateng between the posts, with Louis Hiobi, Christopher Nguidjol and Jeff Idemudia in defence and brought a foward line of Richard Kone, skipper Joel Appiah and experienced forward Simon Bamidele. Their substitutes’ bench included forward Tony Cookey, midfielders Emmanuel Odunaike and Best Toke.

This game didn’t take long to get going in earnest as Newham took the lead after just two minutes. A defensive error by the Foxes allowed in-form forward Richard Kone to steal in and slot home into the left-side corner from close range, past Foxes custodian Josh Blackburn. The hosts had to be alert moments later as a teasing cross from the left channel from Simon Bamidele evaded everyone. Ilford had their first big chance on ten minutes, as Reece Sayers’ free-kick from the right found centre-back Anthony Kelsey who sent a good header goalward which was tipped onto the crossbar well by Newham stopper Wilkinson Boateng.



Adam Peek’ team had a decent phase of the match at this point as advancing full-back Dion Lewis-Kirwan’s strike fizzed of Boateng’s far post. Newham responded midway through the half by doubling their advantage with a great solo run by Kone initially intercepted well by a covering defender, but Kone managed to get to the ball first and fired home past Blackburn. Ilford couldn’t create too much on the counter despite the pressure mounting on the visitors. With about ten minutes to the interval, a good header from a corner by Sharpe had to be tipped wide by the alert Boateng.

Soon after that chance, Ilford did pull a goal back. From another set-piece by Sayers, referee Tom Wyatt detected a hand-ball in the area and blew up for a spot-kick. Michael Ogboin stepped up and duly converted, low into the net past Boateng on 34 minutes.


Half-Time:  Ilford  1 – 2  Athletic Newham


At the break, I had a strong feeling the open nature of the match would lead to more goals & that end-to-end composition of the game continued after the break. Sharpe and Ogboin both had chances with only Boateng to beat, but their respective strikes lacked the power to defeat the Newham goalkeepeer. As it happened, that was a warning as Ilford levelled on 52 minutes. A superb 20-yard thunderbolt from substutute Ellis Leveridge sailed into the top corner to really give the hosts a good chance od taking something from the match.

Just before the hour mark, fellow Ilford replacement Tigana Quebe was well found by Dimi Christou but when Quebe was poised, he was well-intercepted by Newham defender Louis Hiobi. The scoring ended on 79 minutes as Newham got the decisive goal, as Hiobi sent in a terrific cross deep from the left side, which Kone chested down well and allowed skipper Joel Appiah to steal in first ahead of the home defence and stroke home.


Newham would again feel unfortunate as substitute Tony Cookey had a good header chalked off for a off-side four minutes from time. It was fitting that the match ended with two good chances. First, Newham replacement Emmanuel Odunaike powered a fine strike just off-target and then in added-time, Quebe was unfortunate to see a lofted effort go over the advancing Boateng but the ball went agonizingly over the cross-bar.


Full-Time:  Ilford  2 – 3 Athletic Newham

To briefly summarise, Ilford couldn’t get enough ball retention in the final third at times or finish the chances they had although they did give the Newham backline some nervy moments. Newham showed again the pace of their forward line, were more clinical in their finishing and they made the most of a poor start by their opponents and just about deserved the win, thanks to determined defending. For the visitors, Richard Kone had another strong match, showing rapid pace and good finishing to make it eight goals in the last three matches alone. Anderson Baro also had a good match, building attacking moves well. Defender Louis Hiobi was very good in the Newham defence & put in a great cross for their third goal, while Joel Appiah also contributed well to his team’s attacks.

For Ilford, forward Michael Ogboin led the line well and gave Newham a tricky evening and couldn’t had a brace here. Centre-back Lee Sharpe really showed his worth with a committed display to lead the hosts’ backline. Substitute Ellis Leveridge made a difference on second half and his superbly well-taken strike gave his team a chance of a point and fellow replacement Tigana Quebe did well down the flanks and his late lob was inches away from claiming a draw for Ilford.

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



Teams

Ilford |  Manager: Adam Peek  | Assistant: Charlie Barlow

Starting XI: 1 Josh Blackburn (GK), 2 Dion Lewis-Kirwan, 3 Josh Taylor, 4 Ope Mosuro (Capt) (17 Ellis Leveridge 46′), 5 Anthony Kelsey, 6 Lee Sharpe, 7 Mo Kargbo (16 Tigana Quebe 36′), 8 Reece Sayers, 9 Michael Ogboin, 10 Jerold Cobblah, 11 Dimitrou Christou (15 Kieran Southgate 69′)

Goal-scorers: Michael Ogboin [pen 34′), Ellis Leveridge (52′)

Booked: Cobblah | Subs Not Used: Fisher, Olukolu


Athletic Newham  | Manager: Chris Davis   | Assistant: Timothy Tejuoso

Starting XI: 1 Wilkinson Boateng (GK), 3 Louis Hiobi, 4 Christopher Nguidjol, 7 Jeff Idemudia, 6 Yousupha Gaye (9 Tony Cookey 73′) , 14 Akin Akinola, 8 Eusfrause Cabulo (19 Emmanuel Odunaike 84′), 18 Simon Bamidele, 15 Anderson Baro, 10 Joel Appiah (Capt), 17 Richard Kone

Goal-scorers: Richard Kone [2′, 23′], Joel Appiah [79′]

Booked: Akinola, Kone, Appiah  | Subs Not Used: Toke, Dame, Leurs


Referee: Tom Wyatt

Assistants: Craig Wood & Mackenzie Klessa-Smith

S21-22 Match Report: Southend Manor 3 – 4 Athletic Newham (Tues 24 Aug) [ESL 21/22 25.8.21]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Southchurch Park

Attendance: 36

2021-22 Season: Match 14

Tuesday 24th August 2021 – 7.45pm KO

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

Ath Newham: Blue & White Shirts, White Shorts, Blue Socks



Pre-match image as both teams prepare to get the match underway

Superb comeback from Newham claims the points at Manor

Southend Manor  3 – 4 Athletic Newham

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

The midweek main match was another visit to Southchrch Park to see Southend Manor face Essex Senior League newcomers Athletic Newham. Both sides exited the FA Cup three days previously and have been scoring goals – but also conceding them so was we in for more of the same here? Was we ever!  Manor’s squad was again affected by injuries but could still field regular stopper Jack Allen in goal with a back four of Ben Sargent, Billy Harrison with James Hegarty and Alex Jenkins as centre-backs. Luca Frankis once again led the forward line alongside Josh Devlin, with Isaac Acquah and Jordan Chambers on the flanks in support. Options from the sidelines included forwards Conor Cobb and Harry Rogers and midfielder Jordan Russell for Craig Waters’ team. Athletic Newham brought a strong attack-minded team with Richard Kone, skipper Joel Appiah and experienced forward Tony Cookey making up their forward line. Alvaro Guerrero and Anderson Baro were part of a creative midfield and Wilkinson Boateng was once again selected as goalkeeper for Chris Davis’ side.

The match started well for Southend Manor who had an early sight of goal four minutes in as a free-kick from Alex Jenkins found Isaac Acquah in space at the far post but the latter was unable to turn his strike into the net. The hosts were keen to fizz crosses into the six-yard area with visiting goalkeeper Wilkinson Boateng electing to parry the ball away from danger in the early part of the match. Newham were swift on the counter-attack as ever though and ten minutes in, a great pass by playmaker Anderson Baro found the run of rapid forward Richard Kone who hammered a good strike which came back off the left-side goalpost with some pace. That was a warning for Manor which ultimately they didn’t heed but they could count themselves a little unfortunate in how they fell behind here. On fourteen minutes, a clearance from a home defender cannoned off full-back Ben Sargent and into the path of Kone who cut inside and struck home into the net past home custodian Jack Allen.


The home side were causing some nervy moments for Newham from set-pieces and six minutes after they went behind, Manor levelled from one said set-piece. Boateng clawed a cross away but didn’t get enough on it which allowed Manor forward Luca Frankis to pounce and head into the net from close range in a congested penalty area. With the half-hour mark approaching, forward Joel Appiah’s strike was well-saved by Allen, though the assistant’s flag would have denied him anyway. By this point, Newham were really in the match though in another twist, Manor took the advantage for the first time on 32 minutes. Another Jenkins free-kick managed to catch Boateng off his goal-line and the ball was lofted over him and into the net.

However, there was another swift change of fortune barely a minute afterwards as Newham showed all of their quality & skill to level the match again. Richard Kone powered home a fine strike which flew past Allen, low into the net on the left-side. Minutes after that, the tempo was building further as Jenkins had a half-chance gathered by Boateng and visiting forward Tony Cookey also had a decent chance saved by Allen following another good move.


Half-Time:  Southend Manor 2 – 2 Athletic Newham 


After the interval, it was the hosts who edged the opening moments of the second half as Acquah played in winger Jordan Chambers but the Newham defence denied him a clear chance at Boateng’s goal. Frankis also had another effort sail wide but three minutes later, it was Newham’s turn to feel frustrated. Another really good long pass by Anderson Baro found Kone again and after another good run, Kone blazed his effort wide of Allen’s goal. On the hour, Manor responded with a well-taken goal to give them the lead again, as good hold-up play by Chambers occupied the Newham defence, allowing right-back Ben Sargent to advance and Chambers managed to get a pass in, which Sargent fired home a good effort into the corner again. Newham defender Perez Goumou made a number of good interceptions for his side, which would prove important in the latter stages.

Both sides traded chances as we entered the last twenty minutes of the match, with midfielder Jordan Faulkner firing wide for Manor and Cookey also off-target for the visitors. However, the game turned late on as with nine minutes remaining, another terrific run down the left channel by Kone ended up finding Baro who struck his effort wide when in a really good position to score. At this point, Newham skipper Joel Appiah had been sent into the sin-bin by referee Leigh Ballinger. Frankis had to be substituted as well at this point, with Conor Cobb replacing him. Newham went into another gear to try and grab a point with Manor defending deep and Newham got a dramatic leveller on 89 minutes with Kone again involved in the build-up but it was defender Louis Hiobi who fired a good strike past Allen, much to the delight of the visitors.

Newham sensed that the comeback was on right there and barely a minute after replacing Cookey, substitute Reon Reid was well found again by Baro and Reid made no mistake with a good finish to break the hosts’ resolve and ultimately claim all three points in what was a brilliant match for the neutral.



Full-Time:  Southend Manor  3 – 4 Athletic Newham

In summary, this was a really open, entertaining match and Chris Davis’ Newham side really showed they are a strong-willed team, as well as showing the quality they have, particularly in attack. Manor put so much into the match but their decision to defend deep in the latter stages ultimately didn’t go well for them in a match that had pretty much everything – great finishing, great chances created and an enthralling high tempo for most of the match. You have to give both teams a lot of credit for the type of match we saw here.

There were a number of good performances in this encounter. For victors Newham, forward Richard Kone was again the driving force for his team, scoring two goals and creating a lot of problems down the flanks with his movement and rapid pace. Playmaker Anderson Baro also had a good game, making some astute passes and looked to build quick attacking moves, with skipper Joel Appiah playing his part in the forward line and defender Louis Hiobi also made a number of good interceptions during the game, as well as the well-taken late goal. Manor’s stand-out players were led by forward Luca Frankis who took his goal well and generally gave the visiting defence a tricky evening with his physicality and movement. Winger Jordan Chambers had another fine match too, showing a big work rate down the flanks and played his part in his side’ third goal by occupying defenders. Defenders Alex Jenkins and James Hegarty also did well to clear their lines as often as they did but ultimately the pace and creativity of Newham’s counter-attacks did prove telling.

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


Teams

Southend Manor |  Manager: Craig Waters  | Assistant: Garry Pond

Starting XI: 1 Jack Allen (GK), 2 Ben Sargent, 3 Billy Harrison, 4 Kiah Froud, 5 James Hegarty, 6 Alex Jenkins, 7 Jordan Chambers, 8 Jordan Faulkner, 9 Luca Frankis (Capt) (15 Conor Cobb 82′), 10 Josh Devlin, 11 Isaac Acquah (14 Jordan Russell 66′)

Goal-scorers: Luca Frankis [20′], Alex Jenkins [32′], Ben Sargent [60′]

Booked: Sargent, Chambers, Harrison | Subs Not Used: Brocklebank, Frost, Rogers


Athletic Newham  | Manager: Chris Davis   | Assistant: Timothy Tejuoso

Starting XI: 1 Wilkinson Boateng (GK), 3 Louis Hiobi, 2 Perez Goumou, 7 Jeff Idemudia, 8 Alvaro Guerrero, 14 Akin Akinola, 19 Emmanuel Odunaike (6 Yousupha Gaye 68′), 15 Anderson Baro, 10 Joel Appiah (Capt), 17 Richard Kone, 9 Tony Cookey (11 Reon Reid 90′)

Goal-scorers: Richard Kone [14′ & 33′], Louis Hiobi [89′], Reon Reid [90′ +1]

Booked: Odunaike, Appiah (Sin-Bin)  | Subs Not Used: Toke, Gbade, Barrow


Referee: Leigh Ballinger

Assistants: Elliott Hardcastle & Joe Lennon

S21-22 Match Report: Redbridge 3 – 2 White Ensign (Tues 17 Aug) [ESL 21/22 18.8.21]

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Oakside

Attendance: 73

2021-22 Season: Match 12

Tuesday 17th August 2021 – 7.45pm KO

Redbridge: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

White Ensign: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

Redbridge withstand late comeback from Ensign to claim win

Redbridge  3 – 2 White Ensign

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

The midweek match this week saw me travel to Oakside for the first time this term to see Redbridge face Step 5 newcomers White Ensign in another Essex Senior encounter. George Christou’s Motormen were led in attack by a front three of skipper James Barlow, Abdishakur Farah and Tim Ogunrinde. Their defence was comprised of full-backs Brad Bennett and Jack Roult with Dean Hall and Craig Hall their centre-backs. Options on their bench included forward Ibrahim Kehinde, midfielder Jack Chawner, Jack Blackledge and Herman Mwanza. Ensign were looking to get their rhythm back and also a league result ahead of their FA Cup tie this coming weekend at Basildon Utd. They welcomed new recruit Frankie Worboyes in goal, with a backline of Charlie Buffin, captain Andrew George, Carl Conway and Courtney Justin. Both Skinners (Harry & Luke) were in the visitors’ midfield, with a forward line of Ayo Odukoya, Connor Barnby and Dominic Locke. Included on their substitute’s bench were midfielders Ollie Bell and Dylan Jones plus forward Zack Littlejohn.

As we got underway, there was little doubting the home side’s intent. Full-back Jack Roult was supporting his team’s forwards down the left flank and the visitors had a let-off after only three minutes as visiting goalkeeper Frankie Worboyes was caught off his line, but forunately for the visitors, Robbie Norris’ strike was blocked by a well-placed covering defender on the goal-line. Worboyes was in action again moments later, denying a good effort by Redbridge forward Abdishakur Farah. The home forward line was finding space in & around the Ensign 18-yard line by this point and the visitors also found it hard to clear their lines. Sure enough, the host did break the deadlock on eighteen minutes as a good run by forward Tim Ogunrinde weaved past his marker before firing home a good strike low into the right-sided corner, giving Worboyes little chance.

Ensign had to recover quickly and have a period of ball rentention but it was the Motormen who pushed forward again and doubled their advantage only five minutes later. Another enterprising run by jack Roult down the left channel ended with a fine centre which forward James Barlow rose well to and powered a header high into the net. It could’ve been worse for the uncharacteristically nervy Ensign defence as Norris blazed a spot-kick over the woodwork soon after for Redbridge. The first chance of note really for Brett Munyard’s side came just after the half-hour as a good set-piece by Dominic Locke found forward Ayo Odukoya who sent a good header narrowly wide of home custodian Joe Palmer’s goal. Odukoya to his credit was starting to test the home backline, as another darting run from the left flank on thirty-five minutes looked to be promising before a good interception by Redbridge midfielder Jake Brocklebank ended the potential oppurtunity.

Redbridge crucially got a third goal in added-time though another good cross into the box caused chaos in the visiting defence with Ogunrinde credited with the final touch from close-range. All in all, the visitors could have little complaints and they really needed to step it up after the break to prevent a bad loss here.

Half-Time:  Redbridge 3 – 0 White Ensign


After the interval, the hosts had a decent start with Barlow forcing another save out of Worboyes early on, then minutes later h the Ensign stopper in action again, having to rush out to deny Farah low down by the forward’s feet. The visitors gradually found their rhythm though as their half progressed, led by the fired-up Odukoya. the physical forward let fly with a speculative strike from 30 yards from the left channel just before the hour which sent Palmer back to check his angles before narrowly fizzing wide. Ensign did reduce their arrears just after the hour as a fine pass by substitute Dylan Jones found Odukoya in space, before a fine run beat his marker for pace and finished low past Palmer.

Ensign were lifted by that breakthrough, and Odukoya sent in another good header from a good cross three minutes later, unfortunately for his team it was straight at Palmer. At this point, the tension of the home side were starting to build and that only got worse for the hosts on 70 minutes as Ensign scored again. It the visitors’ turn to make it difficult in the home penalty area before Luke Woodward got half a yard of space to slot home from close range.

Ensign had a setback with ten minutes left as replacement Dylan Jones had to be assisted off the pitch with what looked a serious leg injury, we wish him well in his recovery. Redbridge had a rare foray forward in the half with eight minutes to play, which ended up with substitute Jack Chawner’s low free-kick going just wide of Worboyes’ right-side post. It was Ensign’s turn to rue their luck with moments left as a fine header from just inside the 18-yard box by replacement Zack Littlejohn was ruled out by the assistant referee’s flag.


Full-Time:  Redbridge 3 – 2 White Ensign

In summary, this was a entertaining match that could have ended up with the spoils shared. However, the hosts just about prevailed because of their grit and the manner of their performance in the first half. What will concern Ensign is their first-half showing here which was uncharacteristic for them in both attack & defence. After the break was much better from them and their journey to adjusting to this division will mean they have to improve defensively as a unit.

There were a number of good performances in this match. For Redbridge, the front three was led superbly by the rapid, quick-thinking forward Tim Ogunrinde who deserved his goals and caused no lack of problems down the left side for the visitors. Fellow forward Abdishakur Farah again had a good game too, linking up well and stretching the Ensign backline with pace and movement. Also, Shaun Harris had a good match in midfield, as did Jake Brocklebank, playing in an anchor midfield role here and he did well to break up opposition attacking moves well.

For Ensign, the stand-out performer was Ayo Odukoya in my view. The physical forward was impressive in holding off his markers, playing in team-mates and showing his own rapid pace down the channels plus he deserved his goal. Connor Barnby also was a good outlet running from deep for Munyard’s side. Centre-back Carl Conway was the pick of their defensively unit and Luke Skinner also kept battling in midfield despite being over-run at times by the pace of the hosts’ attacks.

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


Teams

Redbridge   |  Manager: George Christou  | Assistant: Jack Toghli

Starting XI: 1 Joe Palmer (GK), 2 Brad Bennett, 3 Jack Roult (9 Ibrahim Kehinde 68′), 4 Jake Brocklebank, 5 Dean Hall, 6 Craig Hall, 7 Shaun Harris, 8 Robbie Norris (18 Jack Chawner 73′), 15 James Barlow (Capt), 10 Abdishakur Farah (12 Herman Mwanza 79′), 11 Tim Ogunrinde

Goal-scorers: Tim Ogunrinde [18, 45+1], James Barlow [23′]

Booked: Roult | Subs Not Used: Blackledge, Tullet


White Ensign  | Manager: Brett Munyard   | Assistant: Mark Healy

Starting XI: 1 Frankie Worboyes (GK), 2 Charlie Buffin, 5 Andrew George (Capt), 14 Carl Conway, 6 Courtney Justin, 4 Harry Skinner, (16 Zack Littlejohn 58′) 10 Luke Skinner, 19 Luke Woodward, 7 Dominic Locke (15 Dylan Jones 58′ who was replaced by 11 Ollie Bell 78′ because of injury), 9 Connor Barnby, 18 Ayo Odukoya

Goal-scorers: Ayo Odukoya [61′], Luke Woodward [70′]

Booked: Justin, Barnby, L Skinner, Bell (Sin-Bin)  | Sub Not Used: Adams, Moyo


Referee: Tom Wyatt
Assistants: Martin Quinn & Albert Forbes

S21-22 Match Report: West Essex 8 – 1 Sporting Bengal Utd (Sat 14 Aug) [ESL 21/22 14.8.21]

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Wadham Lodge Stadium

Attendance: 61

2021-22 Season: Match 10

Saturday 14th August 2021 – 3pm KO

West Essex: White Shirts, White Shorts, White Socks

Sporting Bengal: Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

Awesome West hit eight in dominant win over Sporting

West Essex 8 – 1 Sporting Bengal Utd

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

This weekend’s match saw me return to Wadham Lodge to see new tenants West Essex face Sporting Bengal. I had a feeling that we would have goals in this match but the match itself was played at a very high tempo. Onto the line-ups then and West named Dan Russell in goal with regular stopper Jack Coker still suspended. The back four was comprised of full-backs Michael Morris and Joel Lamb alongside centre-backs Emmanuel Oluwole and skipper Reece Clarke. The presence going forward has altered in the close season but Symeon Taylor, Cameron Gray and Samraj Gill were the forward three here, supported by the classy Callum Bloss. On the bench were club stalwart Sanchez Hardy alongside recent recruits in Frangeskides, Bell and Ogunsanya. Bengal were also missing several of their key players, with George Parkin between the goalposts, a defence of Lennox Forster, Raul Gazi & centre-backs Jerry Sheehan and Salam Amoako. Skipper Tanvir Ahmed faced his old club in a driving central midfield role, with Samir Ali, Bradley McDonald and Terry Amoafo leading the line. From the sidelines, nanager Imrul Gazi’s options included Abu Bakar, Isaiah Anjorin, Abid Haque & Ousman Ndure.

The hosts started the match in a lively way, with both Callum Bloss and full-back Joel Lamb looking to make telling runs to get in good positions to strike and cross the ball respectively. Bengal had an early warning four minutes in as a good ball in found forward Cameron Gray, but his header lacked the power to bypass visiting custodian George Parkin, who gathered. Kwame Kwateng’s re-modelled side did not have to wait long though to break the deadlock. On 13 minutes, a neat passing move involving Bloss and Gray ended up with the centre finding fellow forward Samraj Gill who struck home with a smart, composed finish past Parkin. From that point on, the Stags sensed that they could get themselves into a commanding position. Only four minutes later, it was a two-goal lead for the hosts as a fine low finish by Callum Bloss into the left-side corner. Before Bengal could really recover, it was a three-goal deficit they had to face as Bloss again found enough space to fire accurately into the net on nineteen minutes.

The visitors needed a spell of ball retention themselves to build attacks and a rare foray forward saw a good cross from the right by winger Munir Hadi find forward Samir Ali but good positioning by right-back Michael Morris saw him block the attempted chance well at the near post. Before the half-hour, West stormed forward again with purpose though a fierce strike by left-back Joel Lamb was well parried away by Parkin. And wiith half-time approaching, West spurned a chance to be further ahead again with midfielder Oliseh Okuganu starting a move, finding Lamb before the latter crossed in to Bloss who could only fire over the goal-frame.


It really wasnt going Bengal’s way at all on this day as they had to bring on two substitutes before the break with Abu Bakar replacing winger Munir Hadi before the half-hour and Abid Haque coming on for Bradley McDonald before the break. Add to that the half-time change of forward Samir Ali having to go off, replaced by Isaiah Anjorin and you could understand boss Imrul Gazi’s frustration.


Half-Time:  West Essex 3 – 0 Sporting Bengal Utd

After the break, you could’ve understood if the hosts wanted to protect their lead. As it happened, that particular instruction was not amongst Kwateng’s half-time team talk. Any doubt over the hosts’ intent was answered barely a minute into the second period as a well-directed free-kick by centre-back Reece Clarke found Bloss who was able to shrug off his marker and fire home to complete his treble and surely put the result beyond doubt. Bengal showed willingness to run and battle for each other but they were made to look very ordinary by free-flowing, rapid West forward breaks. Just short of the hour, West got their fifth goal as a fine ball in by Morris found forward Symeon Taylor who struck a fine low finish past the helpless Parkin. It was at this point that you were concerned for the visitors as to how many they would concede.

Parkin in the Bengal goal was called into action again on the hour to deny a decent strike by Samraj Gill but the visiting backline had further pain to endure yet. Moments later, it was six for the home side as substitute Demetris Frangeskides (who had just come on for Jewers) started yet another quick forward move, with the ball falling to Gill who powred another strike past Parkin, to grab his second of the match.

By this stage, West Essex were absolutely in their rhythm and made it seven on sixty-eight minutes as another fizzing goal-bound strike by Lamb was spilled by the unfortunate Parkin, which allowed Gray to finally get on the score-sheet having missed a good chance or two earlier. To their credit though, Bengal did start to have more possession in the latter fifteen minutes, with another driving run by skipper Tanvir Ahmed finding forward Terry Amoafo but his strike lacked the power required to defeat West custodian Dan Russell, who calmly took hold of the ball.

West were still not done with their goal-scoring exploits though as they nabbed an eighth goal with twelve minutes left. Substitute David Bell did well to nick the ball off a Bengal defender before finding Gray who finished very well to grab his second goal on what was a memorable afternoon for his side.



Moments after Parkin did well to deny substitute Jon Ogunsanya’s effort on goal, Bengal did get on the score-sheet. The ball was played in to the advancing Terry Amoafo and his superb 20-yard power strike beat Russell’s desparing dive and went high into the net off the woodwork.

All in all, this was a really strong match of attacking football. You do have to wonder what the ability level is of this developing West side and if they can keep this form up, they may well again surprise a few in the top-half of the Essex Senior this season. My thanks to both teams & to the hosts for their kind hospitality.

Full-Time:  West Essex 8 – 1 Sporting Bengal Utd

In summary, this was one of the best performances West have put on for some time and not many teams in the Essex Senior League would’ve been able to cope with it. Sometimes you see teams with a hefty advantage drop a couple of gears in the latter stages but Kwame Kwateng’s side were relentless until perhaps the last ten minutes. Bengal were simply unable to match the energy levels, passing ability and finishing and they did deserve something for keeping on going in the latter stages and Amoafo’s goal late on was high-quality.

In a performance of such sustained quality, it’s hard to pick out players but support forward Callum Bloss had a terrific match for the hosts, grabbing a treble and assisting his side’s many attacking moves here. Full-back Michael Morris also had a good game, making the most of the chance to get forward to support his team’s attacks, as did forward Samraj Gill who scored two goals and was a pivotal figure in his team’s forward line. Fellow forward Symeon Taylor also made a number of good runs down the left channel and deserved his well-taken goal.

Bengal had goalkeeper George Parkin to thank for four good saves today and understandably was frustrated with his defenders. Skipper Tanvir Ahmed made a number of surging runs through the middle from midfield to raise his side, while full-back Lennox Forster made  number of good interceptions.

Finally, I’d like to wish both teams a good campaign. I doubt there will be many better matches than this one for rest of the season across the Leagues I see.

Teams:

West Essex     |  Manager: Kwame Kwateng  | Assistant: Josh Rogers

Starting XI: 13 Dan Russell (GK), 15 Michael Morris, 3 Joel Lamb, 12 Reece Clarke (Capt), 5 Emmanuel Oluwole, 6 Oliseh Okuganu, 8 James Jewers (7 Demetris Frangeskides 63′), 9 Symeon Taylor (20 David Bell 70′), 10 Callum Bloss (19 Jon Ogunsanya 72′), 11 Cameron Gray, 22 Samraj Gill

Goal-scorers: Samraj Gill [13′, & 63′], Callum Bloss [17′, 19′ & 46′], Symeon Taylor [58′], Cameron Gray [68′ & 78′]

Booked: Jewers, Morris | Sub Not Used: Hardy


Sporting Bengal  | Manager: Imrul Gazi  | Assistant: Sarosh Ali

Starting XI: 1 George Parkin (GK), 2 Lennox Forster, 3 Raul Gazi, 4 Jerry Sheehan, 5 Salam Amoako, 6 Aaron Lesta, 7 Munir Hadi (12 Abu Bakar 28′), 8 Tanvir Ahmed (Capt), 9 Samir Ali (14 Isaiah Anjorin 46′), 10 Bradley McDonald (16 Abid Haque 38′), 11 Terry Amoafo

Goal-scorers: Terry Amoafo [82′]

Booked: Amoako  | Sub Not Used: Ndure


Referee: Dwayne Uylett
Assistants: Simeon Joseph & Matthew Flowers

S21-22 Match Report: Southend Manor 1 – 1 St Margaretsbury (Tues 10 Aug) [ESL 21/22 11.8.21]

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Southchurch Park

Attendance: 52

2021-22 Season: Match 9

Tuesday 10 August 2021 – 7.45pm KO

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

St Margs: Red Shirts, Black Shorts, Red Shorts

Southchurch Park pitch pre-match

Manor share the points in hard-fought encounter

Southend Manor  1 – 1  St Margaretsbury

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

This week’s midweek match saw a trip to Southend to see Manor welcome St Margaretsbury in the Essex Senior. Manor were again in action three days after their FA Cup progression at the weekend and were missing several players. They fielded a defensive four of Josh Brocklebank, Aaron Marshall, James Hegarty and captain Kiah Froud. They also started with the same front three as last time out with Josh Devlin and Jordan Chambers supporting focal point Luca Frankis. Among the options on the bench were forwards Harry Rogers and Luke Jackson plus midfielder Connor Cobb. Ray Bartlett’s St Margs side had on-loan Hullbridge stopper Christian North in goal, with a back four of skipper Andrew Greenslade, Joe Parmley and centre-backs Tom Hayden and Aiden Read. Ricardo Adewuyi and Sam Rogers were on the flanks, supporting front two Roddy Lemba and Kyle Roberts. The visitors’ options from the sidelines included Napier Brown and Marvin Wray.

Both sides were gradually working their way into the contest early on, as St Margaretsbury central midfielder Dan Palmer fired a strike over the crossbar a few minutes in. Manor had an early setback as forward Luca Frankis had to be withdrawn after just ten minutes, with Harry Rogers replacing him. The hosts couldn’t quite find their final pass in the opposition area, but forward Jordan Chambers was again posing a threat with his pace and movement. On eleven minutes, St Margs forward Roddy Lemba had a glimpse of Jack Allen’s goal but a good interception by home defender James Hegarty denied that potential chance.

It was a warning though for Manor, and they fell behind on eighteen minutes. A fine run down the right flank by teenage winger Sam Rogers ended with a great cross which found Ricardo Adewuyi at the back post who sent in a good header from close range. As it turned out, that lead only stood for five minutes as Manor levelled. A set-piece delivered in made its way in a congested penalty box to substitute Harry Rogers who prodded the ball home from close range after evading the visiting defence.

The match was getting increasingly open at this point as chances built up for both sides. On the stroke of the half-hour, a surging run by St Margs full-back Andrew Greenslade found Lemba who narrowly sent a powerful header over the woodwork. Again, the hosts responded with Aaron Marshall making good runs from left-back. Half-time was quickly approaching as the chances continued. Five minutes before the break, another good centre from Sam Rogers found Adewuyi whse effort was denied by Allen whilst at the other end, Harry Rogers couldn’t get enough power on his strike which allowed visiting goalkeeper Christian North to gather. Rogers had another chance for the hosts just before the interval after being found by a deep cross from Manor midfielder Jordan Faulkner but Rogers couldn’t direct his effort on goal.

Half-Time:  Southend Manor 1 – 1  St Margaretsbury

The second half was set-up nicely but the chances weren’t quite as frequent. Two minutes after the restart, Manor’s Josh Devlin powered a twenty-yard strike at North’s goal but the ‘keeper was alert and gathered. Adewuyi was involved in another decent St Margs move as the hour mark was in sight, as Palmer again fired narrowly wide. The hosts did build up pressure on the visiting defence as the match entered its final twenty minutes. Manor substitute Luke Jackson did well to get a fierce strike in but North was equal to it. Manor centre-back Hegarty had a header wide of goal as well. St Margs also had a header from defender Aiden Read who went just over and a fizzing effort from forward Kyle Roberts which sailed wide too.

Unfortunately, for the visitors the match ended on a less positive note as full-back Joe Parmley was given a straight red card by referee Adam Miller for a hard tackle on Manor midfielder Ethan Evison, which left him needing treatment for several minutes. The challenge also brought about an ensuing melee for a couple of minutes after. After that had settled down, Manor had one chance in added-time as a good ball by Shawn Coe found substitute Connor Cobb who somehow skewed his strike wide.

Full-Time: Southend Manor  1 – 1 St Margaretsbury

St Margs probably will be pleased with a point although both sides had chances to put the match beyond their opponents. That being said, Manor are also harder to beat at present and will hope that continues. In my view, Manor midfielders Ethan Evison and Jordan Faulkner had good games here, showing good passing and movement. Kiah Froud led the home defence well again with a typically hard-working display, and forward Jordan Chambers also did well to stretch the opposition backline here. For St Margaretsbury, Tom Hayden had a really good game at the heart of their defence, while winger Sam Rogers showed a lot of energy and good passing for most of the game. Dan Palmer also did well in centre midfield plus forward Roddy Lemba was a good physical presence in attack and was unfortunate to not get on the score-sheet.

Thanks to both clubs for their assistance with this report & best wishes to them both for the season ahead.

Teams

Southend Manor    |  Manager: Craig Waters  | Assistant: Garry Pond

Starting XI: 1 Jack Allen (GK), 2 Josh Brocklebank, 3 Aaron Marshall (15 Luke Jackson 65′), 4 Jordan Faulkner, 5 James Hegarty, 6 Kiah Froud (Capt), 7 Shawn Coe, 8  Ethan Evison, 9 Luca Frankis (11 Harry Rogers 10′), 10 Josh Devlin, 14 Jordan Chambers (16 Connor Cobb 76′)

Goal-scorer: Harry Rogers [23′]

Booked: Evison, Brocklebank   | Subs Not Used: Frost, Acquah

St Margaretsbury  | Manager: Ray Bartlett | Assistant: James Falaise 

Starting XI: 1 Christian North (GK), 2 Andrew Greenslade (Capt) (17 Marvin Wray 76′), 3 Joe Parmley, 4 Dominic Wynter-Stephens, 5 Tom Hayden (16 Jake Hayden-Eley 66′), 6 Aiden Read, 7 Sam Rogers, 8 Dan Palmer, 18 Roddy Lemba, 10 Kyle Roberts, 11 Ricardo Adewuyi (14 Napier Brown 66′)

Goal-scorer: Ricardo Adewuyi [18′]

Booked: Lemba  | Sent Off: Parmley

Subs Not Used: McPherson, Ali

Referee: Adam Miller
Assistants: Glenn Michaels & Robert Collins

S2021-22 Match Report: Cockfosters 6 – 1 Woodford Town (Sat 31 July) [ESL 21/22 1.8.21]

ESL crest

Essex Senior League – Premier Division

Venue: Chalk Lane

Attendance: 205

2021-22 Season: Match 7

Saturday 31st July 2021 – 3pm KO

Cockfosters: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks

Woodford: Yellow Shirts, Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

Both sides’ observing a minute’s pre-match applause for the NHS

Dominant performance sees ‘Fosters off to a super start at Chalk Lane

Cockfosters  6 – 1  Woodford Town

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

Additional Photo by Peter D [@Twitter: @ped1980]

The second match of the opening weekend saw me return to the characterful Chalk Lane to see a side in Cockfosters that I felt may surprise a few in the top part of the Essex Senior table. Player-Manager Ryan Wade’s side faced Woodford Town, who are still managed by joint-managers Dee Safer & Julian Charles and will shortly move into their much-talked about new ground at Ashton’s. The incessant rain we’ve had in the South East of England this week continued before kick-off but it didn’t affect the quality of the game.

The hosts line-up included a number of players who impressed last season. New goalkeeper, former Enfield Town stopper Matt Nolan started behind a defence of skipper Luke Marshall at right-back, with Danny Haigh and Michael Okafor at centre-back with Prince Madu at left-back. The forward line was led by Billy Healey and new signing Charncey Dash, with chief support coming from the flanks from Reece Mosanya and George Beattie. A youthful bench included the likes of Taylor Wild, Billy Blackwell and forward Jack Hockney. Woodford also named a new stopper in Lee Haylock, with Abdus Salami and Bailey Brown as centre-backs. Skipper Jaydon Charles looked to build attacks from midfield, with Ramiah Mills and Luke May May-Parrott supporting forwards Rasheed Salau and George Thompson, Their bench included rapid forward Richard Asamoah and midfielder Tyriq Alexander.

Right from the opening minutes, Cockfosters started with clear desire to gain the adavantage. The first of several fine passing moves involved winger Reece Mosanya, midfielder Kaidyn Michael and left-back Prince Madu led to a decent strike by forward Billy Healey which visiting custodian Lee Haylock did well to deny. With eight minutes on the watch, a good threaded pass by Madu down the left to winger George Beattie who then found Mosanya well before the latter’s fierce strike which powered off the crossbar. Nervy moment for the Town defence averted. Unfortunately for Woodford, they would concede just after the quarter-hour. Moments after Haylock pulled off another good save from Kaidyn Michael’s initial effort, the hosts kept possession and Healey’s looping centre found strike partner Charncey Dash who easily headed the ball in from mere yards out. Haylock was in action again a couple of minutes later as Mosanya broke past the Woodford defence again though the Town stopper again denied Mosanya’s decent strike.

Mosanya continued his fine performance as midway through the half, another surging run down the right side ended with a well-placed centre, to which Beattie latched on to at the far post and stroked home past the unfortunate Haylock to double the hosts’ advantage. Woodford had a decent five-minute spell with the half-hour approaching, as forward George Thompson’s effort was well-blocked by ‘Fosters centre-back Michael Okafor and then, a good mazy run by winger Luke May-Parrott on the edge of the penalty area ended with his strike tipped wide by home goalkeeper Matt Nolan.

Unsurprisingly, this stirred the hosts into a reaction and they extend their lead on the half-hour. Another fine long pass by Michael found advancing right-back Luke Marshall who in turn found Beattie who sent home another good low finish to give his side a three-goal lead. Four minutes afterward, tall forward Dash evaded his marker in Town defender Bailey Brown before bringing another good save out of Town stopper Haylock, who simply kept his side in the match in the first half with a number of good saves. Cockfosters did notch a fourth goal though on 37 minutes as Mosanya finally got a deserved goal with a fine finish into the left-sided corner.

Half-Time:  Cockfosters  4 – 1  Woodford Town

After an impressive first-half, you may have thought the hosts would move into a slightly more defensive mode after the interval. This wasn’t the case although Woodford did have more of the ball in the early stages as winger Ramiah Mills nearly forced an error by Nolan. The hosts responded and after a good move involving Mosanya and Dash led to another strike on goal by Healey but it fizzed over the goal frame. Ryan Wade & Tony Faulkner’s side did add to their goal tally on fifty-eight minutes as George Beattie was well played in again and again, fired home a crisp strike into the left corner to complete a super treble, much to the delight of his team-mates (pictured) & fans.

Cockfosters players celebrate Beattie’s treble [Image by Peter D]

Only a minute later, it was six for the home side as a fine finish from Billy Healey found the net. The tiring Woodford defence were unable to stop the rapid wave of Cockfosters forward attacks, and on 71 minutes two substitutes combined as as forward Jack Hockney found Billy Blackwell but the over-worked Haylock did well to deny another well-hit strike. The hosts would’ve been a little frustrated as Town did get on the score-sheet three minutes later through a well-taken finish by Rasheed Salau into the right corner of the net.

The hosts were still keen to add to their goal-scoring haul though Hockney was unable to beat Haylock on two occasions, the second occasion Hockney was well found by Michael who had beaten two defenders for pace. All in all though, the hosts will be very happy with the result & performance and it was really good to see it first-hand. Woodford will need to be stronger defensively and start matches better but you had to feel for the players and the management team on what was a tough afternoon for them.

Full-Time: Cockfosters  6 – 1  Woodford Town

To summarise the match, the hosts really did make a statement of intent from early on in this match. They were very impressive and although one-sided matches aren’t always great to see, the ‘Fosters could have scored ten here. Woodford were simply unable to stem the flow of attacks the hosts mustered in the first half, though they did have more joy after the break. For Cockfosters, George Beattie had an excent match and was hungry for goals and it showed with three good goals, as well as his movement and pace. Winger Reece Mosanya was hugely influential as well and was too strong for the opposite with his passing, energy and speed. Billy Healey led the line well alongside new recruit Charncey Dash, they both deserved to get on the score-sheet as they did. Dynamic midfielder Kaidyn Michael’s passing, speed and energy also made a telling contribution to a day they won’t soon forget.

Woodford were very grateful to goalkeeper Lee Haylock who made no less than six good saves and he can be very pleased with his performance today. Winger Luke May-Parrott was also a good outlet down the flank showing good dribbling and movement to ensure the home defence kept their focus. Right-back Jack Murray-Sharpe showed decent composure as well in looking to build attacks and substitute Richard Asamoah also did well to stretch the tiring defence late on in the match. Finally, I’d like to say thanks to the hosts for their assistance and best wishes to both teams for the rest of the campaign.

Line-ups:

Cockfosters    | Player-Manager: Ryan Wade  | Assistant: Tony Faulkner

Starting XI: 1 Matt Nolan (GK), 2 Luke Marshall (Capt) (15 Matt Thomson 79′), 3 Prince Madu, 4 Zivonimir Lopes, 5 Danny Haigh, 6 Michael Okafor, 7 Reece Mosanya, 8 Kaidyn Michael, 9 Billy Healey (16 Jack Hockney 61′), 10 Charncey Dash (14 Billy Blackwell 71′), 11 George Beattie 

Goal-scorers: Charncey Dash [16′], George Beattie [21′, 30′ & 58′], Billy Healey [59′]

Booked: None   | Subs Not Used: Wild, Wade

Woodford Town  | Joint-Managers: Dee Safer & Julian Charles 

Starting XI: 1 Lee Haylock (GK), 2 Jack Murray-Sharpe, 3 Jonathan Makaku, 4  Jaydon Charles (Capt), 5 Abdus Salami, 6 Bailey Brown, 7 Ramiah Mills (15 Luke McElroy 69′), 8 Joshua Gravesande, 9 George Thompson (12 Tyriq Alexander 50′), 10 Rasheed Salau, 11 Luke May-Parrott (14 Richard Asamoah 56′)

Goal-scorers: Rasheed Salau [74′]

Booked: Salau & 1 more (unknown) | Subs Not Used: Lewis, Bayo

Referee: James Keane
Assistants: Daniel Smith & Joshua Evans

S 20-21 Match Report: Redbridge 2 – 1 Holland (AET) (Sat 29 May) [LCC Finals Day 2021 30.5.21]

Len Cordell Cup – Final

Venue: Oakside

Attendance: 162

2020 -21 Season – Match 39

Saturday 29th May 2021 – 4pm KO

Redbridge: Royal Blue Shirts, Blue Shorts & Blue Socks

 Holland: Orange Shirts, Orange Shorts, Orange Socks

Both sides observing a minute’s applause pre-match [Image: Scott W]

Redbridge edge hugely determined Holland to win the Len Cordell Cup!!

Redbridge  2 – 1  Holland

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

The second match of Day One of the Cordell Finals weekend saw this hugely anticipated match between Redbridge, looking to claim the Cup in memory & honour of their former Secretary Len Cordell and Eastern Senior League South side Holland who have been impressive in this competition in their run to the Final. If you’d like to read more about this competition from the Writer’s View, head here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2021/05/29/2021-in-focus-cordell-cups-the-writers-view/

Before we begin with the match specifics, I feel compelled to note that Holland brought two minibuses full of fans to this match which is some effort so they deserve respect for that and it added to the atmosphere of the match.

Onto the teams then and Redbridge named a strong starting XI, with George Martin between the sticks, Harry Gibbs and Olamji Ayoola at centre-back and the forward line of Abdishakur Farah, Ayub Kairi and Tony Martin. Their bench included midfielders Jack Roult and Sonny Fish. Holland fielded Luke Avenell in goal, with skipper Harvey Cowler and Steven Downes as their centre-back pairing. Their forward line was led by Louis Olymbios, Harry Willoughby and Rueben Cowler, whose free-kick in the Semi-Final got them here. On the bench for Paul Phelan’s side were Thomas Ayton, Adrian Cant and Matthew Williams.  

As with the proceeding Plate Final, before we began we had a minute’s applause to remember all those lost  & long-term affected in the last fifteen months because of Covid-19. Redbridge started the match with the impetus as in the first minute, a header on Luke Avenell’s goal by centre-back Harry Gibbs needed the custodian to gather. Five minutes later, a free-kick from midfielder Jack Chawner cannoned off the left-side post and trickled across the goal-line, somehow evading the touch it needed to open the scoring. Redbridge were having the lion’s share of the ball in these early stages, though Holland set their stall out to be resolute in defence, with centre-back Steven Downes setting the tone for Paul Phelan’s side by making good interceptions in the first half-hour.

For all the possession they had in said first half-hour, George Christou’s side were unable to make the most of it as their final ball eluded them to a point and also that impacted the amount of clear-cut chances they created. Central midfielder Shaun Harris fired wide for the Motormen with the half-hour mark approaching and you were getting a sense of trepidation for the Essex Senior side that they were going to regret not going in front when they were having the majority of the match. In fairness to Holland, they had to deal with the early loss of full-back Mason Lumley-Ridgway due to injury (second picture above) but as the half went on, they started to keep possession and venture forward and they sent a warning to the ‘hosts’ eleven minutes before the break, with substitute Thomas Ayton getting in on goal, with Redbridge defender Olamji Ayoola doing well to shoulder him off the ball allowing custodian George Martin to sweep in and gather.

Holland made the most of soaking up all the early pressure and broke the deadlock, somewhat against the run of play on thirty-five minutes as a good pass in found forward Harry Willoughby and he struck home well from close range to send the travelling contingent jubilant. The increasing drama of the contest didn’t end there though. Impressive winger Ayub Kadiri curled past two Tangerines defenders and fired at goal though Luke Avenell blocked his first shot well before Kadiri sent the rebound wide. Redbridge were behind then at the interval, though the line of Farah, Martin and Kadiri really kept the Tangerines alert and you have to say the defence was beyond rigid, much to their credit.  

Half-Time:  Redbridge  0 – 1  Holland

Holland had a more than capable forward line themselves, with star forward Olymbios who already has a hat-trick to his name in this competition working well in tandem with tireless forward Harry Willoughby and Rueben Cowler whose passes were causing problems. On fifty-two minutes, Ayton made another good rapid run down the right flank which preceded another good chance for Phelan’s side. Another excellent mazy run by Reuben Cowler ended with Redbridge custodian George Martin denying Olymbios. The end-to-end nature of the match at this stage was further exemplified by a superb fifty-yard run by Motormen winger Kadiri, beating two defenders before his strike was well-parried by Avenell. The atmosphere was getting tetchy as both sides had vocal support from the terraces. Holland saw a chance fade as quickly as it appeared with fifteen minutes remaining as Willoughby ghosted past his marker before skewing his strike wide.

The nerves among the Redbridge management and supporters were getting more frayed as another counter-attack saw replacement Sonny Fish perhaps choosing the wrong option and fired into the side-netting. Target-man Josh Sykes entered the fray with thirteen minutes to play and his good hold-up play fed Tony Martin whose clever pass found full-back Brad Bennett but his couldn’t find the power in his finish to bypass the approaching Avenell, who was happy to gather.

Just when you thought Redbridge had ‘run out of gas’ and Holland were going to complete the job, the Motormen were awarded a penalty on 89 minutes, to which Jake Brocklebank’s spot-kick was converted low into the left corner to send the Motormen fans delirious with delight. Holland were having to hold on as we seeped into added-time and Sykes had a good strike denied by another good save by Avenell. On balance, the Tangerines deserved to take it to extra time at least for the energy and desire they had put into the contest. And with the final whistle blown by referee Alex Kyriacou, it was exactly what was coming – thirty minutes of extra time to determine the winner of the Cordell Cup.  

Full-Time (after 90 minutes): Redbridge  1 – 1  Holland

In the Extra-time that ensued, the tension was getting unbearable, even for the neutral. Holland had a goal chalked off for off-side nine minutes in but earlier in the match, you did wonder if the Tangerines having five players on a yellow card at this stage would hinder them. Eleven minutes into the added 30, a searing run by skipper James Barlow down the left channel ended with his cross being cleared by the ever-dependable Downes. Moments into the second-period of extra-time, Olymbios picked up a second booking to leave Holland down to ten men, but you still wondered whether the Motormen had enough in the tank to make the most of that with twelve minutes to pounce. The tetchy nature on-pitch increased with Sykes getting dismissed as well moments after being substituted for unsportsmanlike behaviour.

On-pitch though, the telling moment came with 109 minutes played in the titan of a match as substitute Jack Roult manoeuvred himself into a bit of space before sending a fizzing low drive from the edge of the eighteen-yard box which was too strong for Avenell to get down and block and found the net, much to the delight of all the Motormen contingent. Holland were unable to level the match and had to settle for the runners-up prizes in a match where genuinely neither side really deserved to lose and you have to add that Holland being a Step 6 side as well, they more than showed their talents as a unit here and who knows, they may be joining recently-promoted White Ensign and Athletic Newham in the not-too-distant future.  

Result:  Redbridge  2 – 1 Holland  (After Extra Time)

How do you summarise this one? Heck knows, but I will add it was an utterly enthralling contest which more than justified the occasion it was and Redbridge have had tough times in recent years, and this apparently in their first Trophy since 2004 so you wouldn’t begrudge them a ‘day in the sun’ here. But at the same time, Holland also justified not only their place in the Final but also crowned off a fabulous competition for them with their performance here, showing the difference between Step 5 and Step 6 in this region isn’t that big at all. Every credit to Paul Phelan’s side and I wish them well for next season, they can be very proud.

Stand-outs wise, Redbridge were led well going forward by tricky, pacey forward Ayub Kadiri who showed a lot of persistence to go with his technical ability. Centre-forward Tony Martin again showed why he is an important player for Christou’s team as well with Abdi Farah also contributing heavily before being substituted. Finally, a shout-out to skipper James Barlow as he also left everything out there energy-wise and centre-half Olamji Ayoola who did well in intercepting the impressive Holland forwards. For the Tangerines, forwards Harry Willoughby and Rueben Cowler deserve a big mention as they are big players for their side. Defender Steven Downes was also superb, with midfielder Keelan Sorrell and custodian Luke Avenell worthy of honourable mentions as well as their side came so close to a big win.

But it was to be Redbridge’s day and they honoured the departed Len Cordell with success here and Len would’ve loved the atmosphere with a good crowd at both matches and for me it was a good way to end the disrupted 2020-21 season, so thank you for reading all these reports during the season. Best wishes, Scott

Teams

Redbridge    |  Manager: George Christou   | Assistant: Jack Toghli

13 George Martin (GK), 2 Brad Bennett (18 Chikosi Basden 85’), 15 James Barlow (Capt), 4 Jack Chawner, 5 Harry Gibbs, 6 Olamji Ayoola, 7 Shaun Harris (12 Jack Roult 77’), 8 Jake Brocklebank, 9 Tony Martin, 10 Abdishakur Farah (16 Sonny Fish 63’), 11 Ayub Kadiri (19 Josh Sykes 77’, who was replaced by 14 Dean Hall 107’)

Goal-scorers: Jake Brocklebank [pen 89’], Jack Roult [109’]

Booked: Chawner, Ayoola, Fish | Sent Off: Sykes (after being substituted)

| Subs Not Used: Blackledge, Dickens

Holland    | Manager: Paul Phelan   | Assistant: Luke Watts

1 Luke Avenell (GK), 2 Mason Lumley-Ridgway (12 Thomas Ayton 13’), 3 Jamey Williams, 4 Toby Harms, 5 Harvey Cowler (Capt), 6 Steven Downes, 7 Kieran Michaels, 8 Keelan Sorrell (16 Matthew Williams 114’), 9 Louis Olymbios, 10 Harry Willoughby, 11 Reuben Cowler (15 Adrian Cant 78’)

Goal-scorers: Harry Willoughby [35’]

Booked: Sorrell, Michaels, Avenell, Cant  | Sent Off: Olymbios (106’, Two bookings)

 | Subs Not Used: Cook (GK)

Referee: Alex Kyriacou

Assistant Referees: James Latham & Katie Dorling

Fourth Official: Callum Dorling