Sunday, 17 November 2019

Tonbridge Angels 2 St Albans City 1

Match 46/19/1768 - Saturday, 16th November 2019 - National South

Tonbridge Angels (1) 2 Greenhalgh 29 Da Costa 77
St Albans City (0) 1 Banton 90
Attendance: 592

Admission: Pass
Programme: £2.50
Mileage: 38/3,541

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Folkestone Academy 2 Hugh Christie 12

Match 45/19/1767 - Wednesday, 13th November 2019 - Kent Academies Cup

Folkestone Academy (1) 2
Hugh Christie (4) 12 Hutson 20 Fife 25 Ruck 44 Reed 45+2,70,83,87 Barden 56,72,81 Kempton 85 Knight 90+3
Headcount: 8

Admission: Free
Programme: None
Mileage: 100/3,503

Tonbridge Angels Academy Development side, Hugh Christie, cruised into the Quarter Finals of the League Cup in a one-sided match at Folkestone Academy.

The home side compete at a lower level than the Angels and despite being given a goal start when awarded a penalty after two minutes, the gap between the sides became more cavernous as the game progressed.

Folkestone fielded a young lady as their main striker and a tap on her ankle led to the early penalty that was duly despatched.

On a sodden pitch it took the Tonbridge side a while to recover their composure and assert their obvious superiority on the home side. A Josh Reed header from a corner brought a good save from the corner and from an Angus Fife free kick, Max Webb headed over before, after 20 minutes, Luke Hutson converted with a header from a free kick.

The feeling that the floodgates were about to open grew when Fife curled a free kick into the top corner from 20 yards after 25 minutes.

But, despite many a close thing, that did not happen until the final couple of minutes of the half as Folkestone defended valiantly with the aid of the woodwork. But after 44 minutes Reed set up Brynley Ruck with time to turn and shoot. A couple of minute into added time a fourth was added when Webb’s effort came back from the bar for Reed to fire into the top corner.

With the tie virtually safe, manager Dominic Welsh shuffled his pack throwing full back Adam Barden into attack and the defender was able to tap in a rebound after the goalkeeper fumbled a Fife free kick.

The game was now almost embarrassingly one-way traffic but it was Fife, who had shown the most quality from midfield, that was left a little red-faced as he fired wide a 66th minute penalty.

A lapse in concentration saw a throw-in find its way to allow the hosts to score from close range but within four minutes, the sixth through Reed and the seventh through Barden re-established order.

It was a case of how many the visitors would score and as the Folkestone side tired and became even more ragged defensively, five goals in the last 10 minutes rounded up a dozen. Barden collected an unlikely hat-trick from his starting position at the back; Reed (who is normally a centre back) had a tap in for his hat trick; Harry Kempton brought up double figures and a Reed header for his fourth made it 11.

Arguably, the best goal of the game was the final one when Jacob Knight hooked in a volley at the near post from a Kempton cross.

Hugh Christie now go on to meet what can only be expected to be sterner opposition in Dover Christ Church Academy in the next round.

Bearsted 0 Chatham Town 1

Match 44/19/1766 - Tuesday, 12th November 2019 - FA Vase 2R

Bearsted (0) 0
Chatham Town (0) 1 Vines 82
Attendance: 141

Admission: £4
Programme: Free
Mileage: 15/3,403

Saturday, 9 November 2019

Hungerford Town P Tonbridge Angels P

Saturday, 9th November 2019 - National South

Hungerford Town P
Tonbridge Angels P
Wasted Mileage: 240/3,388

Luton Town Cedars 3 Tonbridge Angels 2

Match 43/19/1765 - Wednesday, 6th November 2019 - National Academies League Cup

Luton Town Cedars (2) 3 Summers 2,72 Ball 33
Tonbridge Angels (0) 2 Lewis 44 (pen) Mayhew 55
Headcount: 6

Admission: Free
Programme: None
Mileage: 200/3,148

The width of a crossbar denied the Angels’ Academy at least the opportunity of League Cup progression via penalties as Harrison Mayhew’s spectacular volley crashed back from the woodwork in the final minutes of the game against Luton Town Cedars.

The Angels had recovered well from a poor start, conceding after just two minutes when several chances to clear a cross from the right were passed up before the ball eventually fell to Luton’s Ben Summers who made no mistake from six yards.

Once they settled into their game, the Angels showed they would be a stern test for their Football League opponents and a slick move after 11 minutes between Ned Lewis and Jacob Lambert ended with Leo Deere shooting into the side netting.

Summers was proving a handful, as was winger Jack Percy, and when a cross from the latter was poorly dealt with in a manner similar to the opening goal, full back Daniel Ball was on hand to score from close range and double the home side's advantage.

The game entered a phase following the second goal when the home side enjoyed a period of dominance with the Angels’ goalkeeper, Charlie Martin making regulation saves from Sam Scott and Joseph Sellers-West.

But the visitors were handed a foothold in the game in the final minute of the half when a cross from Sam Babayale found Lewis, who was clumsily brought down. The striker dusted himself down to score from the spot.

The second half began with Tonbridge showing a renewed sense of determination and after Lambert had a shot blocked and Gabriel Ogunseri had fired over, they found a leveller after 55 minutes when a free kick into the box from Babayale was headed home by Mayhew.

The game which had been a good contest for an hour became a thriller as both sides strived to earn their place in the next round draw.

Percy’s cross across the face of goal begged a touch for the home side whilst free kicks from Regan Bowden and Ben Twist brought efforts from Lewis and substitute Louis Copeland that tested the home goalkeeper whose was small in stature in comparison to the physicality of the rest of his team, certainly the biggest that the Academy have met this season.

After 72 minutes, a wonderful through ball sent Summers clear to finish in the bottom corner to restore the Hatters’ advantage.

It was a long way to travel to go down without a fight and the Angels were not about to do that.

There were four minutes remaining when a free kick into the box was only half-cleared to the edge of the box from where Mayhew’s stunning volley deserved so much better than the hitting of the woodwork.

Babayale’s header only found the side netting and a final free kick from the full back drifted harmlessly over as time ran out for the Angels, who can nevertheless be proud of their performance against a Football League team with an unbeaten record this season.

Sunday, 3 November 2019

Tonbridge Angels 4 Oxford City 4

Match 42/19/1764 - Saturday, 2nd November 2019 - National South

Tonbridge Angels (0) 4 Derry 48 Theobalds 55 (pen) Turner 85,90+2
Oxford City (2) 4 Benyon 31 Fleet 39 Brown 87,90
Attendance: 473

Admission: Pass
Programme: £2.50
Mileage: 38/2,948

Another Saturday when football has to share centre stage with the Rugby World Cup and even if Liverpool and Manchester City were in opposition, it would have played second fiddle to a World Cup Final involving England.

So the household chores of a Saturday morning were scheduled around a kick-off time in Yokohama of 09:00 as we settled down to watch England crowned Champions of the World, or so we had been led to believe by the media. Turn up and it’s ours.

Of course, nothing is as predictable as that and South Africa were not ready to roll over and have their tummies tickled. Even to my less than knowledgeable eye it was soon apparent that the Springboks were more powerful in the apparently vital area of the scrum and as they wheeled the English around into offside positions, penalties built up an unassailable lead. When the second try went over with five or so minutes over, it was time to upsticks for Morrisons and the start of the footballing day chores.

Just as with the rugby, Tonbridge Angel’s game against similarly relegation threatened Oxford City was far from predictable and had a climax that would have had both sets of management watching from behind the sofa, if there had been a couple.

Torrential downpours during the morning had left the ground staff with an awful lot of mopping up to make sure that referee Daniel Lamport gave it the go-ahead.

Tonbridge started the game well and went on to dominate the first half, but somehow, went into the break 2-0 down.

In the first quarter-hour, with Jared Small’s pace causing the visitors concern, Tom Derry had a header deflected wide for a corner; Rhian Bray headed wide whilst the rejuvenated Joe Turner shot narrowly over and had another shot deflected wide.

It took Oxford City 20-odd minutes to mount a serious attack that came to nothing.

But, almost true to form one would say, it was indeed the visitors that took the lead on 31 minutes when a ball lost on the right of midfield was instantly pumped forward into the path of Elliot Benyon who drove a fierce shot between Jonny Henly and his near post.

Eight minutes later, the early dominance of the home side was well and truly put into the past as an Oxford corner from the left was met at the near post with a header from Reece Fleet to put City two goals to the good.

With Christ Tiehi having made way for Khale Da Costa after 35 minutes, Steve McKimm made a second change during the break with new signing Jason Williams replacing Small.

The changes had the desired effect with Derry converting a Da Costa corner three minutes in the half.

After 55 minutes the Angels were level when Da Costa was tripped in the box for D’Sean Theobalds to make no mistake with the spot kick.

The game had a good ebb and flow from that point with both sides having half-chances unconverted. But with five minutes remaining, Chinedu McKenzie linked with Turner before the winger cut in from the left to fire a pinpoint shot into the far corner. As the Tonbridge support celebrated what appeared to be the winning goal, no one was envisaging quite how the game was about to unfold.

Within two minutes, Oxford were level once more as a cross from the left from Nana Owusu found substitute Stefan Brown on the edge of the box with time and space to pick his spot into the bottom corner past Henly.

Joy of Turner’s goal turned into utter despair on 90 minutes when a three man move opened up the Tonbridge defence for Brown to finish.

But those that had braved the weather were rewarded two minutes into time added when a Da Costa corner from the left was met by the head of Turner at the near post and a point, albeit wholly deserved, had been salvaged.

No more sharing of Saturday’s which is a good thing because the heart and brain cannot continue to take the heady mixture of disappointment and celebration in equal measure.

Wednesday, 30 October 2019

Crystal Palace Community 3 Tonbridge Angels 5

Match 41/19/1763 - Wednesday, 30th October 2019 - National Academies' Alliance

Crystal Palace Community (1) 3 Medley 35,76,90
Tonbridge Angels (2) 5 Lewis 8,23 Copeland 48 Hudson 56 Musengeyi 83
Headcount: 13
Played at Catford Wanderers
New Ground: 338

Admission: Free
Programme: None
Mileage: 84/2,910

Tonbridge Angels Academy maintained their 100% record with a 5-3 victory against Crystal Palace Community but manager Tommy Parkinson was less than impressed with his side’s last 15 minutes when the foot came off the pedal whilst 4-1 up.

Parkinson explained after the game that his side had, too often this season, played in patches and they need to learn to be consistent both as a team and individually over the full 90 minutes.

Despite this, for 75 minutes, the Angels’ youngsters dominated the game and were, ultimately, well deserving of their fourth straight win in the National Academies’ Alliance.

Tonbridge went in front after eight minutes when a ball pumped into the box brought a misjudgment from the Palace goalkeeper who called for a ball that he had no chance of collecting. Ned Lewis was first to the ball and his header was looped over the advancing Mason Whitnall and into the unguarded net.

On a narrow pitch at Catford Wanderers, Sam Babayale’s long throws into the box were causing chaos in the Palace defence with one throw managing to find its way through to striking the far post.

Harry Hudson headed wide from a Babayale throw before, after 23 minutes, an exquisitely curled shot into the top corner from Lewis doubled the Angels advantage.

With Crystal Palace barely threatening, Tonbridge had further opportunities to extend their lead. Lewis headed over from the umpteenth Babayale throw and Louis Copeland shot into the side netting before the home side surprisingly pulled a goal back after 35 minutes when their burly striker, Nathan Medley, scored with a shot into the top corner from 20 yards.

Tonbridge’s dominance was restored at the start of the second half when Saul Musengeyi’s shot-cum-pass found Copeland at the far post to net from a tight angle.

The Angels put the game virtually out of reach of their hosts after 56 minutes when a free kick lofted into the box by the excellent Ben Twist was met with a header from Hudson to make it 4-1.

Lewis narrowly shot wide and Hudson headed a Babayale free kick wide before, after 76 minutes, Medley once more showed the quality of his left foot with a shot from which Angels’ goalkeeper, Charlie Martin, might well have done better.

Any real concerns were dispelled with seven minutes remaining when Musengeyi was sent clear to finish into the bottom corner but it was the Palace striker Medley who had the last say when he completed his hat-trick with a free kick into the bottom corner from the edge of the box.

Whilst he bemoaned his side’s final quarter-hour, Parkinson praised his side’s earlier performance when they “had some spells with good quality, scoring some nice goals”. The Angels maintain their position at the head of the table alongside Welling United who also have four wins out of four.