Enfield Town 1 Harrow Borough 2
Report by Andrew Warshaw
Enfield Town’s recent inconsistency cost us dearly on Tuesday night as we bowed of the Middlesex Senior Cup in the semi-finals with another indifferent performance.
Hopes were high that we could reach the final of the only cup competition left to us this season but despite taking a first-half lead, we allowed our visitors back into the game and never recovered.
To make matters worse, we suffered a number of injuries with no indication yet as to the extent of their seriousness.
On a cold, wet and windy night there was no indication in the first half that we would have any difficulty dispatching an under-strength Borough who are in the lower reaches of their division, also in Step 3.
Khale da Costa, signed a few hours earlier from Step 2 Chelmsford, showed what a strong asset he will be for us with several penetrating runs.
And it was Khale who gave us a 25th-minute lead on his debut, following up to score after a Joe Payne shot was parried but not held by Harrow’s 19-year-old keeper (goal pictured).
We had several other gilt-edged chances, notably two James Richmond headers and Marcus Wyllie thrashing the ball over from close range.
A limp Harrow team offered little apart from a dangerous Benjamin de Lacey Turner shot on the counter-attack, saved by Nathan McDonald.
With Payne taking a knock, he was replaced at halftime by Joshua Okotcha while Scott Thomas came on shortly afterwards for Chez Isaac, only for the luckless Scott to last only a matter a minutes before he, too, had to be substituted.
Harrow themselves had brought a couple of their big guns off the bench for the second half but there was still no reason for our sudden capitulation.
On 64 minutes, Lewis Knight was dispossessed as he waited for the ball to go out of play and from the resulting move, Anointed Chukwu laid on De Lacy-Turner to drive home the equaliser.
Goals change games – none more so than this as Harrow unexpectedly took control.
Chukwu’s turn and shot saw the ball come off the bar, De Lacy-Turner thankfully steering the rebound inches wide. McDonald’s hands were then stung by a 30-yard Moore piledriver, Richmond just managing to clear the rebound from under the nose of Kai Omoko Brosnan.
Two more decent Harrow efforts were blocked by a defence that was beginning to work overtime. And just as it looked like we might force penalties, we lost the game in the final minute of normal time.
A needless foul by Lyle Della-Verde just outside the box saw Moore dummy over the ball and Quaine Bartley smash home the freekick via a wicked deflection off the wall.
It may have been a cruel way to go out but we were the architects of our own downfall.
Win the next two games, however – both away at relegation-threatened sides – and we can look ahead with renewed confidence for the difficult league run-in.
Town: McDonald, Da Costa (Coker, 68), Payne (Okotcha, 45), Camara, Knight, Richmond, Taaffe, Isaac (Thomas, 48; sub Youngs, 52), Dayton (Cunnington, 70), Wyllie, Lyle Della-Verde