Town stay in touch
Enfield Town 2 Bognor Regis Town 0
Two crucial second half goals ensured Enfield Town took all three points and leapfrogged fellow play-off chasers Bognor Regis in the table after a much improved performance writes Charlie Baker. Looking to bounce back from the disastrous Hornchurch game the previous Saturday, it was Town who started on the front foot; Lyle Della-Verde having an early effort blocked following a promising build up.
On 16 minutes Doug Tuck was replaced by Ashton Leigh for the visitors after picking up a knock. A couple of minutes later, Shaun Okojie tested Rocks keeper Amadou Tangara, making space for himself in the box and forcing a low save upon his first home appearance for the Town. Bognor were causing themselves some problems on occasion with their tendency to play out from the back and lose possession. Billy Bricknell shot wide after picking up a stray throw-in by Ashton Leigh while, at the other end, Marc Weatherstone looked to have sold Nathan McDonald short with a header back towards him, but Bradley Lethbridge was unable to take advantage of the bouncing ball before McDonald gathered.
Bognor suffered a further personnel blow when Jake Flannigan appeared to tweak a hamstring and was replaced by Ben Mendoza on 37 minutes. For the remainder of the half, Town had a few more blocked efforts but couldn’t find the cutting edge to make a breakthrough. But the visitors had been impressively restricted to barely any chances of note; a couple of corners had been cleared, and a Tommy Leigh free-kick was seen out by Jon Muleba at the back post.
Half-time: Enfield Town 0 Bognor Regis Town 0
In a similar start to that of the opening 45 minutes, Town began to apply pressure straight away, only this time their efforts were rewarded. After just two second half minutes had elapsed, the deadlock was broken; Billy Bricknell’s cross from the right – after good set-up play from Okojie – found Lewis Taaffe at the back post. The Town midfielder, making his first start for some time following hamstring trouble, managed to control an awkward bounce and poke past Tangara to give the hosts the lead.
Town might have easily sat back and tried to defend their lead like many times before this season, but instead they continued to press and almost made it two in the 57th minute. This time roles were reversed to produce a more familiar sight for Town fans, with Taaffe setting up Bricknell in the box, but his deflected shot was superbly tipped over by Tangara.
On 65 minutes Bricknell was denied once again. Finding the ball at his feet straight from Nathan McDonald’s goal kick, his powerful shot was bravely blocked by the onrushing Tangara to keep the lead at just one.
In the 70th minute Junior Mubiayi made his first contribution after coming off the bench, testing the Rocks keeper with a fine low shot from the edge of the box which required a strong hand to keep out.
The Rocks had a few half-chances of their own, Lethbridge and sub Mason Walsh both blazing high and wide, but Town continued to defend resolutely, and as a result McDonald was rarely called into action. As the 90 minute mark approached Town were seeing the game out in relative comfort, but they made sure of the three points on 88 minutes. Substitute Ken Charles collected the ball on the edge the box, and just when it looked like the chance was gone, he beat two men brilliantly and finished low to Tangara’s right to secure the victory.
Enfield Town: Nathan McDonald, Sam Hatton, Josh Urquhart, Scott Thomas, Marc Weatherstone, Jonathan Muleba, Lewis Taaffe (Junior Mubiayi 67), Sam Youngs, Billy Bricknell (Ken Charles 80), Shaun Okojie, Lyle Della-Verde (Nathan Livings 86). Unused subs: Bobson Bawling, Joe Payne. Booked: Weatherstone.
Bognor Regis Town: Amadou Tangara, Harry Kavanagh (Mason Walsh 58), James Crane, Doug Tuck (Ashton Leigh 16), Matt Casey, Keaton Wood, Jake Flannigan (Ben Mendoza 37), Tommy Leigh, Dan Smith, Joshua Flint, Brad Lethbridge. Unused sub: Eddie Wakley. Booked: Casey, Crane.
|08/02/2020||3:00 pm||Pitching In Isthmian League Premier||2019-20|
|Bognor Regis Town||0|