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EBFL MATCH REPORT – Away to Eldon Celtic FC

EBFL Match Report – Away to Eldon Celtic FC – 16/09/2018

Stags crash out of B&B Intermediate County Cup in first round

Report by Ross Clark
Wraysbury started the match in a 4 2 3 1 formation with the starting line up as follows;

Chris Randall, Jack Quelch, Colin White, Carl Williams, Ollie Pitt, Scott Hopkins (Captain), Alex Harvey, Max Woodley, Lewis Hewitt, Callum Hughes, Garret Pikulak.

The subs bench was Mack Bermingham, Joe Atherden, Owen Antalika.

Unlike our last outing, this match got off to worst possible start by going a goal down inside 2 minutes, following a strong run and cut back from the Eldon winger before a low finish put them 1 0 up. Wraysbury looked rattled after this and it took us a little while to settle into this one with not much doing in the final third despite, winger Lewis Hewitt looking likely every time he got the ball. Finally, after 20 minutes the stags got something going with Hewitt linking with Pikulak, who was also showing signs of a fine performance up front, who turned the defender before switching to Hughes on the right flank, who beat his man and delivered a high cross to the back post, where Pikulak had continued his run and powered in a towering header. This boosted the stags and another wave down the left hand side resulted in Hewitt drifting out and cutting back inside before bending a shot just wide of the far post. Wraysbury, however could not settle into controlling the game and Eldon retook the lead on the half hour mark with another pacey counter attack, with the forward finally beating Randall in the stags goal, who at this point had looked like a man on a mission making save after save to deny to the Eldon front line. After 40 minutes we had our first real controversial moment in the match with a deep Wraysbury free kick being whipped into the box and Colin White expertly steering home. Only to be denied by the Eldon club officials reffing the game to call the goal offside.

The 2nd half brought about a change in the match with both teams defending deep and trying to catch the other on the counter. Wraysburys first opportunity to get back into the game came from the penalty spot after Hughes had been brought down. Skipper Hopkins stepped up and was denied by the Eldon keeper saving to his left. The next real Wraysbury chance of note came around the 75 minute mark when a corner, floated into the box by Hughes was powered home, this time given, by a White header. This lead to a frantic final 15 minutes with both teams missing chances before in the final minute after a Wraysbury attack had broken down, Eldon countered again and finished the game with another strong, low finish.

Final Result: Eldon Celtic 3 – 2 Stags

After the match, Manager Scott Allaway said;

“The tie was cursed after 3 Referee amendments pre match for the Ref on the day to cancel before kick off and the 2 clubs left to sort out officials between themselves. Sadly, the home provided official had far too much influence in a finely balanced game and would have most likely produced a different result in neutral conditions.

Eldon are a big, strong who played good football at times and we were punished in less than a minute after over playing from the kick off and putting ourselves under tremendous pressure. We will need to use our football brains if we want to compete as that’s a 2nd goal in 2 matches that we have conceded from our own kick off. We change a couple of players for this match as we work to our best options and it was good to see Garrets hard work and excellent hold up play rewarded with his 1st goal.

It is a shame to go out early in the cup but, given the circumstances we showed great fight and have taken on more learning to transfer into the rest of the season”

Frost Partnership Man of the Match – Chris Randall.

Debuts – Jack Quelch, Owen Antalika