Round-up: Essex Senior League (Fri 16/Sat 17 Aug) [ESL 2019/20 18.8.19]

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

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

Friday 16th August

Woodford Town  1- 3  West Essex   | the Harlow Arena | Att: 58

West started the weekend’s action with a fine win at Woodford. Symeon Taylor opened the scoring for Kwame Kwateng’s side. Sharn Quinn levelled for Dee Safer’s Town side though it was the visitors who took the points as Hakim Medfai & Brad Russell both struck to make it a night to remember for the Stags.

 

Saturday 17th August 

Enfield   1 – 3   Cockfosters  | Woodside

Cockfosters came away from Woodside with a good three points. James Verney, on loan from Hitchin Town, got the first for Player-manager Ryan Wade’s side on 19 minutes. Wade then notched himself as the visitors had a 2 – 1 lead at the break. Verney then got his second with three minutes remaining to give the ‘Fosters their second win of the campaign. The E’s tricky start to the season continued here with their fourth loss in five matches in all competitions.

 

Hadley  2 – 0  Sporting Bengal Utd   | Brickfield Lane | Att: 52

The Bricks kept their home form going in all competitions with a hard-fought win over Bengal at Brickfield Lane. After an own goal had put the hoss ahead, substitute Peter Rosemin completed the scoring to give Anthony Clark’s team the win, their third in League and Cup.

 

Ilford  0 – 3   Hoddesdon Town  | Cricklefield

Hoddy overpowered the Foxes with a fine display at Cricklefield. All the goals came after the hour as Connor Scully’s double [62’ & 80’] more than set Simon Riddle’s side on their way to victory. Blue Gallagher added a late third as Ilf extended their wait for a first win this term.

 

Redbridge  0 – 2   Hashtag Utd  | Oakside

Hashtag held firm to record their second win of the season at Oakside. Substitute George Smith was the difference-maker as he got the opening goal on the hour, just six minutes after entering the fray. Smith then completed his brace five minutes later as Jay Devereux’s side showed they can get results wherever they play here. The Motormen were defeated at home for the second time this term, though remain in the top ten in this embryonic table.

 

Sawbridgeworth Town  1 – 4  Tower Hamlets  | Crofters

Hamlets produced a fine display to add to Sawbo’s early-season woes at Crofters. Ezra Ndukuba grabbed a hat-trick to make it a day worth savouring personally while Kahlil Kirwan-Meade got the other goal for Damien Briggs’ side, who racked up their first win of the season here.

 

Takeley  0 – 1  Saffron Walden Town  | Station Road

Walden got the result in this local derby, laying another foundation for a possible challenge on the top three here. Jack Leachman got the only goal of the game just shy of the hour mark as the Bloods got their second win of the season. Takeley’s 100% start to the campaign ended here though they remain top of the standings.

 

Walthamstow  1 – 0  Stansted       | Wadham Lodge Stadium | Att: 63

Finally, ‘Stow won a battle with rivals Stansted as Dwade James struck again on 56 minutes to edge a tight affair at Wadham Lodge.

I attend this match & my in-depth report is here: https://survivor16b.wordpress.com/2019/08/17/match-report-walthamstow-1-0-stansted-sat-17-aug-esl/

 

That’s all for this weekend’s Essex Senior League action. Thank you for reading. Check back regularly for more Essex Senior League round-up articles, Match Reports from the ESL & elsewhere, plus the regular Essex Olympian League round-up articles here on my blog. Finally, here are the results from this weekend’s Eastern Senior League South matches. Thanks for reading.

 

Eastern Senior League South Results

Friday 16th August

Barkingside 1 – 0 Hackney Wick

Frenford  2 – 2  Coggeshall Utd

May & Baker  3 – 0  Newbury Forest

Wivenhoe Town 3 – 0 Brightlingsea Regent Res

 

Saturday 17th August

Benfleet  5 – 1  Holland

Halstead Town  1 – 0  Burnham Ramblers

Little Oakley  2 – 0 Fire Utd

White Ensign  3 – 1  Harwich & Parkeston

 

 

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

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

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

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

 

Friday 9th August – 7.45pm KO

 

Woodford Town v West Essex   | the Harlow Arena

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

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

 

Saturday 10th August – 3pm KO

 

Enfield    v   Cockfosters  | Woodside

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

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2

 

Hadley  v  Sporting Bengal Utd   | Brickfield Lane

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

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

 

Ilford  v  Hoddesdon Town  | Cricklefield

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

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

 

Redbridge   v   Hashtag Utd  | Oakside

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

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 3

 

Sawbridgeworth Town  v  Tower Hamlets  | Crofters

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

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

 

Takeley  v  Saffron Walden Town  | Station Road

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

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 2

 

Walthamstow  v  Stansted       | Wadham Lodge Stadium

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

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

 

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

Match Report: West Essex 1 – 2 Whitton Utd (Sun 11th Aug) [FAC 19/20 EPR 12.8.19]

The FA Cup 2019 -20: Extra Preliminary Round

Venue: Oakside

Attendance: 109

2019 – 20 Season: Match 11

Sunday 11th August 2019 – 3pm KO

W Essex: Yellow & Black Striped Shirts, Black Shorts, Yellow Socks

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

 

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Players before KO at Oakside (Image: Scott W)

 

West bow out in the FA Cup to Whitton in frustrating display

West Essex 1 – 2 Whitton Utd

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

The second of my FA Cup weekend matches took me to Redbridge’s Oakside. Like the first match 24 hours earlier, this was also a battle between Essex Senior League and Thurlow Nunn Premier sides. ESL representatives West Essex welcomed Whitton Utd, who are based in Ipswich and have existed under their present guise since 1926. West of course are celebrating their 30th anniversary this year, having worked their way up the leagues since their inception in 1989.

As for the teams today, West fielded ever-present Jack Coker in goal, with a back four of Sanchez Hardy, Tom MacLeod, Nick Walk and Sam McNally. Cameron Gray pulled up with a knock in the warm-up so Joe Lefley replaced him in the starting eleven. Defender Josh French plus forwards Symeon Taylor & Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe were among the options on the bench. Whitton named Harry Wales and Josh Hubert in central defence with Lewis Higgins as their goalkeeper and three-pronged forward line in Jamie Cole, Liam Wales and Jacob Lay.

Both sides gradually made their way into the match, with Whitton defender Harry Wales heading well wide nine minutes in whilst in a promising position about eight yards out. Meanwhile at the other end, home midfielder Callum Bloss was attempting to find his radar sending through his telling through balls into forward Michael Mignot though visiting centre-back Josh Hubert was alert to the danger, showing good positioning. Whitton broke the deadlock after 17 minutes as a powerful drive from forward Liam Wales caught out Stags custodian Jack Coker and flew into the net from twenty yards. With Kwame Kwateng’s side on the back foot, they had a great chance to level just four minutes after the goal as creative midfielder Joe Lefley found himself one-on-one with ‘keeper Lewis Higgins though his shot couldn’t find the target, though Hubert did well to clear off the goal-line before Mignot blazed the follow-up over the bar.

The first ‘flash-point’ of the match struck with a jolt on the half-hour as Greens centre-back Harry Wales was given a straight red card for a challenge on Mignot just as the forward was approaching the penalty area, much to the chagrin of the visiting dugout. To be fair to Shane Caldron’s team, they were still posing a threat of their of their own as fleet-footed winger Jacob Lay was driving his way towards the 18-yard area before a good challenge by West right-back Sanchez Hardy stopped him. The Stags were losing their rhythm in the five minutes or so before half-time and just before the interval came the second ‘flash-point’. Mignot was fouled again on the edge of the penalty area though this time reacted rather vigorously as the defender ended up on the floor. You’ve seen dismissals happen for that type of thing before and the West forward was fortunate to not add to that statistic.

 

 

 

Half-Time: West Essex  0 – 1  Whitton Utd

After the interval, the hosts started building their good passing play as a move involving Bloss and forward Hakim Medfai showed before Higgins gathered the ball with Mignot lurking. At the other end, on 52 minutes a corner by Greens midfield anchor Kevin Inglis viciously curled in which needed the intervention of Coker to tip round the post. Moments later, Higgins denied Mignot again though the hosts did level nine minutes into the half as a sweet Joe Lefley corner found skipper Tom MacLeod who powered an unstoppable header right into the top left corner.

West had chances to take the advantage themselves trough Mignot and Medfai though Higgins and a well-regimented visiting backline was equal to it. As we entered the latter stages, the atmosphere only increased in tension as the Stags could not settle into their preferred ‘pass & move’ play, instead getting drawn into a physical battle. With 17 minutes left, Lay sent in a great ball from the left for fellow winger Zehnn Young though his stroke was blocked, with the rebound falling to Lay himself who drilled his low strike narrowly wide.

Soon after Higgins again denied MIgnot, the crucial goal came as West were piling numbers forward, Greens forward Jamie Cole challenged Coker on the edge of the area before lobbing home coolly the rebound. The fraid nerves were only going to go one way and despite the Stags piling on the pressure to the Whitton 18-yard area in added time which need two goal-line clearances from the gutsy visitors and Higgins being alert to deny late substitute Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe’s drive, it was not enough as the visitors held on for one heck of a hard-fought victory.

 

Full-Time: West Essex  1 – 2  Whitton Utd  

 

 

It has to be said that this is a darn hard game to sum up. To call it ‘feisty’ would be an understatement though the one thing we saw in abundance is passion and fortitude. This may not have been the best West performance I’ve seen, though one thing I will ‘stick my neck out’ to say is that they are driven to improve, irrespective of how long that journey takes. Skipper Tom MacLeod stood out for me, reverting to centre-back today and showed again his aerial threat and determined attitude. Fellow defender Sam McNally also had his moments with some good interceptions. Forward Michael Mignot again showed that despite it not being his day in front of goal, he is a difficult player to keep out of the game.

You had to respect Whitton for their guts in defending en-bloc, with centre-back Josh Hubert really shining out for his side with good tackles at times to prevent more chances going the way of the hosts. Also, to hold firm for over an hour with ten men takes some doing, fair play. The front three of Jamie Cole, Liam Wales and Jacob Lay all offered a differing threat too. Cole with his physicality, Wales with his running & finishing and Lay with his pace and trickery. It is arguable that they were trying to ‘take time out of the game’ as well at times and whilst it won’t win them many friends, it did the job for them.

Finally, I’d like to say thanks to West for their hospitality and that by Ricky Eaton and Redbridge FC. Thanks also to Dan Reading.

 

Teams

West Essex    | Manager: Kwame Kwateng

Jack Coker (GK), Sanchez Hardy, Sam McNally, Tom MacLeod (Capt), Nick Walk, Emanuel Wazola, Brad Russell, Callum Bloss (Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe 82’), Joe Lefley (Symeon Taylor 67’), Michael Mignot, Hakim Medfai

Goal-scorer: Tom MacLeod [54’]

Booked: Mignot | Sub Not Used: Russell (GK), French, Leo, Dodon, Gray

 

Whitton Utd   | Manager: Shane Caldron

Lewis Higgins (GK), Lloyd Clarke, Ethan Clarke (Capt), Kevin Inglis (Stef Mallardo 75’), Harry Wales, Josh Hubert, Zehnn Young, Jack Baker, Jamie Cole, Liam Wales, Jacob Lay (Jack Newman 82’)

Goal-scorers: Liam Wales [17’], Jamie Cole [78’]

 

Booked: L Clarke, Newman | Sent Off:  H Wales | Subs Not Used: Garrett, Gittens, Stevens

Referee: Sam Ingrey

Preview: Essex Senior League Matchday 1 (Sat 3rd Aug) (ESL 19/20 1.8.19)

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Hullbridge won the ESL last term, who will get their hands on the trophy in April? (Image: SW)

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

Hello all and welcome to the first of a new season of weekly Preview pieces for the 2019-20 Essex Senior League campaign. The opening day sees everyone except Hashtag Utd in action and two of the fancied sides at home. Two of the new clubs in Cockfosters and Hadley are also face their debut in the division with intriguing opposition.  Here are my thoughts on the nine matches this weekend.

Saturday 3rd August – 3pm KO

 

Clapton  v  Hoddesdon Town   | Old Spotted Dog

It’s the beginning of a new era for the management at Clapton as Glen Kendall takes charge for the first competitive match as the Tons welcome the Lilywhites to the Old Spotted Dog. Previous incumbent Jon Fowell did well in his near three-season reign in East London, though this is no easy initiation, given Hoddesdon’s very decent defensive record last term which was the joint fourth-best with Takeley.

Though as they say, the new season is a ‘new book’ to be written and I can see this one being a draw.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 1

 

Hadley  v  Enfield   |  Brickfield Lane

Hadley enter the ESL fray with a home encounter with Enfield, who finished last term in mid-table. The ‘Bricks’ as they are known, are managed by Anthony Clark and riding high after a 3rd-place finish in their last season in Spartan South Midlands league, prior to their transfer to the ESL. Included in their stats from last term is the small fact that they had the joint-best defence alongside champions Biggleswade.

The first question some may pose is how they will adapt to the rigours of the Essex Senior League and facing an E’s side who will know they have to improve defensively this season will be a good opener. Matt Hanning remains in charge of Enfield though they have moved ground to share at Bishop’s Stortford’s Woodside this season.

I’m hoping to attend this match and it could be a gooden. Have to go with a home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

 

Ilford  v  Stansted  | Cricklefield

The Foxes start another new campaign with a new management team, led by ex-Leyton Athletic boss Morgan LaForce. His brief you suspect is to match or better last season’s 10th place finish, which constituted a very respectable season on-the-pitch.

They entertain Stansted, a side who have also seen a change in the dugout. Last season’s co-boss Marc Benterman has headed off to Witham Town though that role has been filled pretty much by ex-Sawbridgeworth Town stalwart John Watters. The Airportmen lost out by five points to champions Hullbridge in the league but after being triumphant in both the Gordon Brasted Trophy and Errington Challenge Cup Finals, you trying telling them it wasn’t a really good season!!

Stand-out goalkeeper Charlie Turner may have moved on though most of the squad remains from last season, and they will be aiming for another strong campaign. Away win in my view.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 3

 

Redbridge   v   St Margaretsbury  | Oakside

Meanwhile, Redbridge welcome ‘Bury to Oakside on the opening day. Micky Wetherall’s team will be looking to harness the strong end to last season they had to get their 12th-place finish after their woes in the first half of the campaign. St Margs had their own tough spell last term, though under new boss Jon Fowell, they will hope for another decent campaign. My gut says there might be goals in this one and therefore I’m plumping for a narrow away win.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

 

Saffron Walden Town  v  West Essex  | Catons Lane

In their own opening match of the campaign, much-fancied Saffron Walden face the Stags at Catons Lane. Jason Maher’s side have recruited well over the summer and will want to ‘lay down a marker’ in the opening month of the season you feel.

That said, West won this exact fixture in February and they begin their season with a series of league away matches, due to the pitch issues at landlords Barking , where they play. This match on paper sounds a tough assignment for Kwame Kwateng’s side so early on so in that respect, will head for a home win here.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 1

 

Sawbridgeworth Town   v  Woodford Town   | Crofters

At Crofters, Sawbridgeworth begin their new era under former Reserve team boss Lee Mackman, with Woodford Town being the visitors. From what we hear on the grapevine, there have been squad changes at Sawbo and it’ll be interesting to see how quickly they find their rhythm.

Woodford may have lost skipper & centre-back Jack Grosvenor to Walthamstow though the bulk of their promising squad remain and on the back of an impressive 6th place last term, if Dee Safer’s team keep that ‘winning habit’ they could be in for another strong campaign. Away win here for me.

Scott’s Prediction: 1 – 2

 

Southend Manor  v  Sporting Bengal Utd     | Southchurch Park

Sporting Bengal begin their season with a trip to Southchurch Park to face Manor. Another ‘new dawn’ is starting at the Southend-based side though manager Adam Peek will have learned much from a tough campaign last term you suspect.

Imrul Gazi’s side is broadly the same as last season though influential skipper Freddy Tandon moved on during the close season, signing for Eastern Senior League South side Frenford. Their last two campaigns in the league have both broken club records in terms of points gained and this match could be a tough battle to start for both teams. Draw for me.

Scott’s Prediction:  1 – 1

 

Takeley  v  Cockfosters  | Station Road

Takeley entertain new ESL outfit Cockfosters at Station Road. Forward Reece Barrett has returned to the club, where he will be joined by stalwart goalkeeper Ronnie Yates and midfielder Mitchell Das once again. Cockfosters recruited former St Margaretsbury assistant Tony Faulkner in the summer alongside Ryan Wade and Nick Mountford. The North London side only just kept their Step 5 status in the Spartan South Midlands league last term and we’ll see how long it takes for them to adapt to the ESL.

Home win, in my view.

Scott’s Prediction: 2 – 1

 

Walthamstow  v  Tower Hamlets       | Wadham Lodge Stadium

Finally, one of the ESL ‘Title contenders’ in Walthamstow face Tower Hamlets at Wadham Lodge. ‘Stow have added the likes of Ryan Reed and Jamie Bennett to what was on paper at least a strong squad from April. Importantly, prolific forward Dwade James remains their focal point for goals.

By contrast, Tower Hamlets’ squad are in the middle of a rebuild after they saw boss AJ Ashinike depart to join former mentor Allan Fenn at Fisher FC. The Mile End side may take time to settle into the season though here they may well face a ‘Stow side hungry to get off to a strong start. Have to say home win.

Scott’s Prediction: 3 – 0

That’s all for the opening day’s preview. Check back on Sunday when I’ll have the round-up of what happened at the start of the 2019 – 20 Essex Senior League season. Thanks for reading.

Match Report: Stansted 1 – 0 West Essex (Mon 6 May) [ECC Final 6.5.19]

Errington Challenge Cup Final

Venue: Woodside (Bishop’s Stortford FC)

Attendance: 417

2018-19 Season – Match 78

Monday 6th May 2019  – 3pm KO

Stansted: Royal Blue Shirt, Royal Blue Shorts, Blue Socks

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

 

 

 

Stansted secure Errington Cup triumph with last-gasp winner at Woodside

 

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

On Bank Holiday Monday, another ESL-related season concluded with the Errington Challenge Cup Final at Woodside with League runners-up Stansted looking for a Cup double as they faced mid-table West Essex, who let’s not forget are only in their third season at this level. Stansted were heavily depleted, with both West brothers (Sam & Jack), defensive rock Paul Clayton, midfielder Charlie Barlow and goal-getter James Peagram all unavailable. Moses Carvalho was drafted in at centre-back, with James Briggs making a rare appearance from the start, alongside Rob Norris in midfield. Callum Ibe and Jordan Palmer led the attack with Carl Mullings among those on the bench.

West were fortunate enough to name a near full-strength team with glovesman Jack Coker between the posts, Emanuel Wazola and Sanchez Hardy the full-backs, Tom Macleod skippering the side and a strong front three of Michael Mignot, Symeon Taylor and Samraj Gill. Cameron Gray and Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe were among the substitutes.

The match didn’t take long to get going in fairness. In the first minute, full-back Jamie Bennett struck wide over the upright for the Airportmen though it was West who nearly took the lead five minutes in. Samraj Gill’s corner was powerfully met by midfielder Tom MacLeod though James Briggs did well to head clear on the goal-line. ‘Blue Brazil’ goalkeeper Charlie Turner was called into action soon afterward with the ESL ‘Golden Glove’ winner doing well to deny Joe Lefley’s low drive and Michael Mignot’s effort on goal. The Stags were having some joy going forward with Callum Bloss sending through more telling passes to the forward line as well as running down the channel.

Midway through the half, the Airportmen made sure Coker was alert as a sweet centre from the right by winger Jack Mitchell found forward Jordan Palmer, though he could only head straight at the Stags custodian who held well. Apart from two James Briggs efforts that went just over the woodwork, Paul Pittuck & Marc Benterman’s team had to rally to keep things level. In the last ten minutes or so of the half, West forward Symeon Taylor fizzed a strike wide while Bloss fed Mignot well though the latter could only dribble his effort wide. A telling moment came two minutes before the interval as Mignot did superbly to round Turner though he went for precision with the finish though the lack of power on it told as centre-back Joe Clark did well to clear off the line.

Half-Time: Stansted 0 – 0 West Essex

Goal-less it was at the break though no lack of entertainment or good attacking play. The Stags were guilty of missing chances and but for impressive defending by the Stansted back four, led by Moses Carvalho, they could have had even more. Ten minutes into the second half, lively forward Samraj Gill burst through the middle and curled a sweet strike which just escaped the attentions of the woodwork. Stansted ‘keeper Turner did well to deny Lefley’s drive at the second time of asking near the hour mark.

 

Stansted substitute Harvey Brown was well-found by a left-wing cross though he blazed wide as we entered the last twenty minutes of the contest. Carl Mullings came off the bench to add more physicality to their forward line as although Callum Ibe was causing some nervous moments for the Stags back-line, the ‘Blue Brazil’ top-scorer wasn’t having much joy when it came to chances. Into the latter stages now and West substitute Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe fired straight at Turner when handily-placed and you started to get an unerring sense that Kwame Kwateng’s side would pay a price for not being comfortably ahead as they could have been.

That feeling was only exacerbated when on the stroke of the ninety, a 40-yard surging run by Mignot ended with only Turner to beat though the Blues stopper showed his class again by gathering bravely at the forward’s feet when well-poised to strike.

And then, in added-time, the ‘clang’ well & truly struck. Brown’s angled free-kick was headed on to Ibe at the near post who headed in past Coker to ‘raise the roof’ among the Stansted contingent. Moments later, the full-time whistle struck and the celebrations began for the Airportmen whilst the desolation and disappointment among the West players was hard to deny.

 

Full-time: Stansted  1 – 0  West Essex

Firstly, how this match didn’t bring about five or six goals I don’t think we’ll ever know and that is a credit to both sides today – it added to what was a really good occasion.

 

All in all, the Airportmen got the result they wanted to complete the Cup ‘Double’  this term (the Gordon Brasted Trophy as well as this triumph) through defending in their characteristically strong manner, a bit of luck and having a forward who makes things happen in Callum Ibe. As far as stand-out performances go for the ‘Blue Brazil’, goalkeeper Charlie Turner arguably kept his side in the game to begin with, plus emergency centre-back Moses Carvalho shone alongside central defensive partner Joe Clark.  Ibe was a threat as per usual, as was winger Jack Mitchell and substitute Harvey Brown in his half-hour on-the-field.

West Essex will feel it was ‘so near, yet so far’ and it’s tough to disagree with that assertion. When the frustration has died down for them, they have quite a lot to be proud of. Their brand of attacking football was on-show in front of a big crowd – even if they did not put away the plethora of chances they had created. Midfielder Callum Bloss had another strong match, with tricky forward Samraj Gill, fellow midfielder Joe Lefley and the ever-dangerous Michael Mignot also impressing, being a thorn in the opposition’s side all match. Their recent improvement defensively was also their to see and centre-backs Nick Walk and Josh French played their part in that.

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Stansted recieve their medals

Finally, as this is my last report of the ESL 2018/19 campaign, I feel it would be remiss not to mention the following – it’s been a quite a season. Twists, turns, quality, grit and guts have all been part of it. Seeing players, managers & clubs write chapters in their history is gratifying to be a part of, as is being part of the Non-League ‘family’. Thank you to all the clubs, countless players, managers and club/league officials who have welcomed me this term – I do notice it and it helps keep me going during tough weeks/months. Thank you also to all that have read these reports this season… and enjoy your summer.

Teams

Stansted  | Co-Managers: Paul Pittuck & Marc Benterman

Charlie Turner (GK), Jamie Bennett, Billy Coyne (Capt), Joe Clark, Moses Carvalho, Jack Mitchell, James Briggs (Harvey Brown 61′), Rob Norris, Callum Ibe, Ollie Bell (Lewis Stantiall 83′), Jordan Palmer (Carl Mullings 71′)

Goal-scorer: Callum Ibe [90’+3]

Booked: Norris, Ibe  | Subs Not Used: Buffin, Tyrell

West Essex  |  Manager: Kwame Kwateng

Jack Coker (GK), Emanuel Wazola, Sanchez Hardy, Nick Walk, Josh French, Tom MacLeod (Capt), Callum Bloss (Cameron Gray 67′), Joe Lefley, Michael Mignot, Symeon Taylor (Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe 79′), Samraj Gill (James Jewers 83′)

Booked: MacLeod    | Subs Not Used: McNally, Woodbridge

 

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The Officials recieve their momentos 

Referee: Mark Pond
Assistant Referees: Eddie Andrews & Charlie Roberts
Fourth Official: Joseph Gray

ESL ‘Squads of the Season’ 2018-19 [ESL 4.5.19]

Written by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]

Hello and welcome a run-down of the Essex Senior League ‘Squads of the Season’ that Pete and myself chose during our stand-alone episode for GFS, released this weekend.

Listen to it here: http://www.mixcloud.com/EastLondonRadio/gfs-squads-of-the-season-podcast-2018-19

Ground Rules

18-man squad (Starting XI & 7 substitutes)

No more than two players from the same club can be chosen in the squad

 

Peter’s Squad  (below)

 

Position Player Club/s
GK James Bransgrove Walthamstow
RB Lanre Vigo Clapton
CB Jack Grosvenor Woodford Town
CB Kamarl Duncan Sporting Bengal Utd
LB Courtney Homans Hullbridge
CM Conor Okus Redbridge
CM Callum Ibe Stansted
CM Lewis Francis Saffron Walden Town
ST Charncey Dash St Margaretsbury
ST Jimmy Cox Enfield
ST Mohamed Kargbo Southend Manor
Bench
GK Charlie Turner Stansted
Jason Todd Takeley
Samrai Gebrai Walthamstow
Flavio Jumo Tower Hamlets
Matt Rose Hullbridge
Izzy Ogedi-Uzokwe West Essex
Callum Maltese Ilford

 

And Scott’s Squad (below)

Position Player Club/s
GK Jack Coker West Essex
RB Courtney Homans Hullbridge
CB Sam West Stansted
CB Jamal Allen Hullbridge
LB Aiden Critchley Hoddesdon Town
RW Samrai Gebrai Walthamstow
CM Steven Carvell Sporting Bengal Utd
CM Callum Bloss West Essex
LW Lewis Francis Saffron Walden Town
ST Dwade James Walthamstow / Leyton Athletic
ST Temi Babalola Woodford Town
Bench
GK Charlie Turner Stansted
Luke Casey Ilford
Ellis Routledge Woodford Town
Kamarl Duncan Sporting Bengal Utd
Tyler Kemp Stanway Rovers
Charlie Portway Saffron Walden Town
Charncey Dash St Margaretsbury

Match Report: Clapton 2 – 4 West Essex (Tues 2 Apr) [ECC SF 3.4.19]

Errington Challenge Cup: Semi-Final

2018-19 Season: Match 64

Tuesday 2nd April 2019 – 7.45pm KO

Venue: Old Spotted Dog

Attendance: TBC

Clapton Red & White Striped Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Shorts

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

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The Stags’ clinical finishing secures passage to the Errington Cup Final 

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

This Errington Challenge Cup Semi-Final tie between Clapton and West Essex was too big a draw to miss. Both sides have been notching the goals recently so many may well have thought this would be a fascinating encounter. The Tons fielded Emmanuel Olajide in goal, Lanre Vigo and Conor Duffy as their full-backs, and in-form Giovanni Palmer leading the line. Kirk MacPherson, Timi Abiola and Dan Martin were among the substitutes. For West, they named a strong side as well with Jack Coker in goal, skipper Tom MacLeod in midfield alongside Callum Bloss and Joe Lefley. James Jewers and Cameron Gray were among their substitutes.

The visitors had the better of the early running with forward Symeon Taylor stretching the hosts’ backline. Jon Fowell’s side had the first clear-cut chance though on seven minutes as a lung-busting run by forward Giovanni Palmer down the left saw him pass West full-back Emanuel Wazola before placing a good effort towards the far post, although visiting custodian Jack Coker did well to turn it round the post. The Stags responded by breaking the deadlock three minutes later as creative midfielder Callum Bloss played in forward Michael Mignot who kept his composure to lob Tons stopper Emmanuel Olajide and making the net bulge.

In a match which continued to be played at a frenetic pace, Palmer again surged forward, forcing Coker into another good save before Palmer blasted the rebound wide. Midway through the half, Wazola played in Mignot down the West right flank, before cutting inside into the penalty area and sending in a dangerous cross that managed to evade everyone before being hacked away. West doubled their lead just shy of the half-hour with Wazola in the action again, his teasing ball in from the right unfortunately finding opposing full-back Lanre Vigo at the back stick whose momentum forced the ball over the line.

Clapton got back into proceedings minutes later as a curling free-kick from Ali Al-Nashi thundered off the crossbar with Coker beaten, with the ball falling to midfielder Andy Greenslade who fired home well. West soon restored their two-ggoal cushion, on 38 minutes as skipper Tom MacLeod rose highest at the back post and his knock-down caused panic in the home defence while Mignot nipped in and got a rare tap-in.

Half-Time: Clapton 1 – 3 West Essex

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Clapton started the second-half strongly with the lively Giovanni Palmer continuing to be their best outlet, with Palmer in on goal, forcing Coker into another fine save. The Tons fized two more chances wide wirth Al-Nashi and Greenslade unable to find the target. On the hour mark, Mignot was played in again and cut through the home defence before rolling home to complete another hat-trick. Six minutes later, tricky forward Samraj Gill found himself testing Olajide whilst one-on-one.

To their credit, the hosts kept pouring forward and with West bringing on substitutes and adopting a slightly more defensive mindset, gifted winger Ryan Reed blasted home another stunner from 30-yards into the bottom corner to suddenly enhance the his side’s chances of getting back into the game. However, the hosts would have no further joy as West dug in to seal a memorable win.

Full-Time: Clapton  2 – 4  West Essex

Clapton undoubtedly played their part in what was a throughly entertaining match, with Giovanni Palmer unfortunate to add to his growing goal-tally this term here. Lanre Vigo, Ryan Reed and Ali Al-Nashi all had good games tonight too. For West, Michael MIgnot showed once again how important he is to the side, though ‘keeper Jack Coker also made a number of good saves. Symeon Taylor and Callum Bloss also had good games tonight as well.

It is West who progress to the final at Bishop’s Stortford to face Stansted on May 6th, it will be a proud day for their club.

Teams:

Clapton   |    Manager: Jon Fowell

Emmanuel Olajide (GK), Lanre Vigo, Conor Duffy (Timi Abiola 63′), Ebz Gyamerah, James Falaise (Capt) (Tayo Awoderu 63′), Ahmed Mohammed, Ryan Reed, Andy Greenslade, Jeffrey Cobblah, Ali Al-Nashi (Jaydon Charles 68′), Giovanni Palmer

Goal-scorers: Andy Greenslade [34′], Ryan Reed [80′]

Booked: Palmer, Charles       |   Subs Not Used: MacPherson, Martin

West Essex    |   Manager: Kwame Kwateng

Jack Coker (GK), Emanuel Wazola (Kofi Appiah 78′), Sanchez Hardy, NIck Walk, Josh French, Tom MacLeod (Capt), Callum Bloss, Joe Lefley, Syemeon Taylor (James Jewers 76′), Samraj Gill (Cameron Gray 68′), Michael Mignot

Goal-scorers: Michael Mignot [10′, 38′ & 59′], Lanre Vigo [OG 29′]

Booked: Gill, Jewers |  Sub Not Used: Woodbridge, Ogedi-Uzokwe

Ref: Robert Claussen