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2005-06 Results - February

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Saturday 25th February

Accies 1sts 1 (Patrick Green) Old Hamptonians 2.

Old Manorians 0 (Matt Ramsden) Accies 2nds 2 (Lloyd Vanson 2).

Old Woodhouseians 1 Accies 3rds 4 (Scott Atkinson, Chris Groves, Max Lovell, og).

Bealonians 1 Accies 5ths 0.

London Hospital Old Boys 1 Accies 6ths 3 (Mark Marshall, Adam Mammon, og).

Albanian 9 Accies 7ths 1 (Liam Styles).

1sts Match Report from Jon Houghton

The end of season report will be fairly straightforward. 2-1. That is the score that has beaten the Accies in exactly half of all their games this season. It was no different Saturday as Hamps won 2-1 (as they had against us several weeks earlier).

In a strong wind blowing directly down the pitch, Accies dominated possession in the first half, but had only Houghton's close drive to show for it. Too often the ball was overplayed in the last third and ideas to break down a solid defence were lacking. 0-0 at halftime with Hamps thwarted by an excellent save from Dawson in their only realistic attack.

The second half started with Hamps pumping a long free kick into the box only for Green to head into his own net. Accies responded positively showing much greater ability playing into the wind. several chances went begging before good interplay on the edge from Gillard enabled Green to make amends with an excellently taken goal.

With their tails up and playing the better football Accies did what they do best this season. Conceding a soft goal. A long throw in from near the halfway line managed to evade everybody leaving the Hamps striker a clear run on goal to score with a well taken finish. The injustice spurred Accies further but further chances were squandered leaving the all too familiar sour taste of a 2-1 defeat.

The result leaves the first team facing relegation as a probability now rather than a distant, unlikely possibility. Other teams with similar ability are fighting out the title while Accies are in big trouble with only 10 points. Only HAC have shown true quality this year and deserve to lift the trophy. Accies need 3 wins from 3 and will still need to rely on other results going their way.

7ths Match Report from Danny McConnell

Click here for Audio Report

Saturday 18th February

Albanian 2 Accies 1sts 1 (Neil Gillard).

Accies 2nds 1 (Gareth Jenkins) Old Minchendenians 1.

Accies 3rds 0 Old Camdenians 1.

Latymer Old Boys 1 Accies 4ths 4 (Max Lovell 2, Paul Bernard, Matt Wanford).

Old Parmiterians 2 Accies 5ths 0.

Accies 7ths 3 (Tseyi Hammond 2, Roy Okec) Latymer Old Boys 5.

4ths Match Report from Jon Logie

The Accies jumped back on the promotion-bound horse this week with a satisfying 4-1 away win over Latymer Old Boys.

Following two consecutive disappointing results, a positive performance was needed if the Accies were to make up ground on league leaders Old Edmontonians, and despite fielding another side with a makeshift defence and make-believe goalkeeper, they started strongly. After only 15 minutes of largely uneventful football, Max Lovell was released by a defence splitting pass from Steve McConnell (?) and finished coolly under the advancing keeper.

The fourths took heart from this early success, and some of the slick first time football that had been notable by its absence recently returned. Another passing move down the right involving McConnell and Mark Emmerson released Jon Logie, and his accurate cross was finished off by Barndoor.

Latymer, finding themselves consistently out-played, tried to respond physically, and a late two-footed challenge in midfield and deliberate barge on stand in keeper Dan Willoughby was the height of their efforts. However the wind was well and truly taken out of their sails with the move of the match, orchestrated by Matt Wanford on the left, and good interplay with Barndoor and Lovell left Max with a simple finish for 3-0, the scoreline at the break.

The second half saw another flowing goal involving the front two and McConnell before Wanford completed a lung-bursting run to get into the box to finish off from close range. By this time the game had slowed and the result was inevitable, but a mistake from substitute keeper Emmerson in coming for a corner gifted Latymer a consolation goal. 

At the end of the day Brian, a good team performance and a good result all round.

7ths Match Report from Tim Collins

Having gone through a fairly sticky patch recently (no win since December 3rd) the Sevenths yet again turned up at Shenley full of confidence and raring to go. Barry Fry had successfully brought in three new transfers to make their debuts and after our optimistic team talk they would have been expecting a comfortable victory over the Old Boys.

Hmmm, without wanting to use the usual clichés this was a game of two halves – almost. The Accies started well and looked the most likely team to score as Latymer struggled with the pace of Tseyi, the width of the pitch exploited by the Accies’ midfield and some commanding defending from Alex and JD. Tseyi put us ahead after good work throughout the team but although the Sevenths looked likely to take the game away from LOB the football became scrappier and few clear cut chances went to either team. The final killer ball was lacking and inevitably Latymer gained confidence, finally equalising after a couple of chances had gone begging. This galvanised the Accies into action and the Tseyi/Roy partnership started to cause the oppo’s defence a lot of problems, constantly beating them for pace onto “cultured” through balls. Roy scored Accies’ second and again the Accies looked set to increase the lead.

As turning points go the next portion of the match could be imagined as an articulated lorry doing a u-turn on a country lane. Against the run of play LOB broke free and left Danny Mac stranded as a curling shot headed for the top corner - Accies’ heads turned to the centre-spot and thoughts turned to getting back in the lead…All Accies’ except full-back Waz that is. Waseem “a couple of bottles of” Shiraz forgot that we weren’t playing fog/first man back and decided he wasn’t accepting the equalizer. Diving at full stretch he managed to palm the shot away and unwittingly put himself in contention for the Watford reserves Keeper’s Jersey. Unfortunately not everyone appreciated the Banks-esque save and Waz was red-carded for his troubles, LOB equalised with the penalty and at half-time the score was 2-2.

The second half was still there for the taking and with a couple of pairs of “fresh” legs on the pitch (the look on right back Antoine’s face when he saw the lithe frame of Tim ahead of him on the right wing was priceless) the Sevenths were confident that their supreme pace and fitness would see them home. Erm, it wasn’t to be. LOB still looked vulnerable to the pace of Tseyi but with Roy moved onto the wing the support wasn’t around him to make a difference. Ed and Andy pushed forward to help out and LOB were able to break onto the defence in numbers going two goals in front without being able to put sustained pressure on Danny’s goal. The Accies were still playing well but fitness was surprisingly lacking from most, the exception, Jonathan Day, sprinting around like the proverbial and earning plaudits from all.

The Sevenths kept at it and didn’t give up managing to pull a goal back from a corner – Tseyi bundling in after the ball bounced around in the six yard box – and actually looked more likely to score again before LOB finished the game off with their fifth with about 10 minutes to go.

In all honesty this was a game that the Sevenths should and could have won. Waz’s sending off changed the game and although the Accies kept going it was an uphill struggle from then on. If Will Hill would take it I would put some money on us getting a result this weekend though.

Saturday 11th February

Parkfield 0 (Mark Dawson) Accies 1sts 2 (Jon Houghton, Steve Hair).

Accies 2nds 0 Old Salvatorians 2.

Sinjuns Grammarians 1 Accies 3rds 3 (Steve Black, Stuart Bannister, Scott Atkinson).

William Fitt 3 Accies 4ths 1 (Mark Esiri).

Old Gladstoneians 7 Accies 6ths 3 (Phil Harden, Bob Woad, Andy Mackay).

Davenant Wanderers 3 Accies 7ths 1 (Tseyi Hammond).

2nds Match Report from Danny Fewkes

Accies indifferent recent form form continued with a cruel 2-0 reverse in a key league encounter at home to a combative Salvatorians outfit. We began well enough with the slight wind advantage and enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges, taking the game to the visitors without posing a significant threat from open play. Tim Vaughan was a little unlucky with some marginal offside decisions (one in particular when clean through) and we also failed to capitalise on opportunities from several good set piece deliveries, before Salvos began to edge back into the game and show they had some quality players to reinforce a resolute defence and superb work ethic. Accies spurned a great one on one chance soon after the half hour and we were certainly disappointed to turn around level knowing they’d have no reason to switch their game plan and would grow in confidence the longer the score-line remained level. 

As is often the case when a side fails to capitalise when on top, we were hit by a sucker punch and the oppo’s first genuine attempt on goal, and found ourselves behind on 65 mins, following a good free kick and firm downward header. Availability had again not given us the attacking options required to change the game and we began to huff and puff, creating a couple of half chances and anxious moments but in my opinion not showing enough quality, team spirit and fight when chasing a game of such importance. As time began to run out, Salvos looked more and more comfortable; debutant keeper Campbell was forced to make his first real save from a counter attack, and with moments to go a good old fashioned ‘cock up’ was punished by a clinical strike into the corner. The final whistle blew and we were left to reflect what might have been, it was certainly a game in which we had the opportunity to take control, but failed and were punished accordingly. All credit to the opposition who were as committed as any side we’ve played against this season and took their chances when presented.

It has been a difficult few weeks but we’re in the middle of a vital period and all players need to pull together, show confidence in the ability they have to play, certainly work that bit harder and offer as much as they can to the team. The pack chasing the significantly clear leaders Meads is now incredibly tight and we have now ceded any advantage (and some..) we had on several other rivals. Availability is starting to look a little better which will help, but it is time for individuals to stand up and show their quality, most importantly taking the right attitude into all our remaining games, starting home on Sat against the dangerous Old Minch’s. 

4ths Match Report from Steve Woodrow

The patched up 4th team limped their way to North East London on Saturday to face William Fitt first team. A team that had made it further in the AFA Senior Cup than our own illustrious leading team, only experiencing a 3-1 defeat at the hands of Old Owens (from the SAL Premier division) in the final 16, and that with 9 men. The task facing the 4’s was mountainous to say the least based on form, but at least this Saturday we had 3 recognised defenders out of the back 4.

The game was delayed due to the late arrival of three of the eleven, which didn’t aid the preparation. Right from the start it was clear that this was going to be a tricky encounter for the Accies as we struggled to gain any sort of momentum in the early exchanges. The opposition didn’t create any clear cut opportunities but the danger they posed was apparent as they wasted possession with over elaboration on occasions in the final third. With the early pressure weathered we started to gain some sort of foothold in the game and began to exert some pressure and began to string passes together and on occasion looked dangerous, this was a complete turnaround from the previous week's cup encounter, we were competing for balls and showing a desire to win. 

No clear-cut opportunities were being created though as the defences were on top, it was going to take something special or a mistake to break the deadlock. Unfortunately it was a combination of both, the lively, mobile forward managed to break free down our right and ran unhindered into the penalty box, from where he drilled, some would say lash, a shot past yours truly, something special but not uncommon for me in my Accies career. I turned to follow the path of the ball to see it cannon of the post and rebound beautifully onto my left boot where it flew into the back of the net. My first Accies goal for 4 seasons!!!

Our response was magnificent, it spurred us on and we more than held our own for all but 1 of the remaining minutes of the first half. In the final minute of the half the speedy forward broke free again, this time his run to the penalty box was not unhindered and Si Valentine, from right back, managed to make a challenge of sorts, unfortunately it was illegal in the referee’s eyes and he pointed to the spot. The referee’s eyes weren’t too good though as it was clearly made outside the box, but then perhaps the card would have been red rather than yellow. It didn’t matter anyway as your correspondent saved the resultant kick – I have to admit not the best penalty I’ve ever faced, but it still needed saving!!! Half time was reached with only the 1 goal deficit.

The early exchanges of the second half were similar to the final part of the first, a tight game with both defences on top, we were coming more into the game though and stared to exert a little control without really troubling their keeper. The game changed on 20 minutes, a corner from the right was met just inside the six yard box by an unmarked player giving him the simple task of making it 2-0 which he duly took. Again the response was admirable and we revealed our battling side putting their defence under more pressure, 10 minutes after making it 2-0 we got our reward when a well worked move resulted in Mark Esiri doing what he does best, scoring from six yards out with a perfectly executed flick past the stranded keeper.

The next 10 minutes were frantic as we threw everything at their defence, unfortunately it was to no avail as they stood firm. On 40 minutes the game was placed out of reach, a long throw was allowed to bounce twice in the area, due to tiredness more than anything else, and the loose ball was pounced on by a forward who made not mistake from 8 yards out to round off the scoring.

A disappointing result, but a much better performance against a very good opposition, the game was played in good spirit, hard but fair throughout by 2 good footballing sides, which we haven’t encountered every week this season. I must also add that the game was refereed very well (apart from one incident, which proved amusing to 21 of us but not all 22). 8 games to go and to gain something from the season we have to win them all, we are capable of it.

7ths Match Report from Danny McConnell

Good footballers can cope with difficult conditions, and a dry bobbly pitch at Fairlop Oak therefore left Accies 7ths and Davenant 2nds with no chance. Slick passing moves never looked a possibility, and within five minutes Tseyi Hammon had pounced on a mistake by the Davenant defence to give Accies a 1-0 lead. Almost as quickly as you can say "Daddy Whitmore", the Accies defence left the Turtle just as unprotected, and with the game hardly started the scoreline stood at 1-1.

For the remainder of the first half, the Accies continued to create chances, sadly at both ends. Over-elaboration at the back kept playing us into trouble, yet when we got to the right end we looked dangerous. Davenant meanwhile played the conditions rather better, using the well known "av' it" tactic and defence and looking to move the ball upfield as quickly as possible. Just before halftime another defensive lapse and Davenant led 2-1 at the half.

The half time talk was positive, and revolved around playing more sensibly, and surely our chances would come. Indeed they did, and for the first fifteen minutes the pressure was all Accies, though few clear cut chances were created and when they did, they were squandered. Then a sucker punch, again a defensive ball was allowed to bounce and Davenant put away the chance for a 3-1 lead.

That seemed to rather do for the Accies, who though continuing to try to press seemed to sense the chance had gone.

Another hard luck story, but again semi-self-inflicted. At Shenley the approach and style of play would've been perfect, but this wasn't Shenley, and something a little more direct was needed. By the time we'd twigged this we'd dug ourselves into a hole we never emerged from.

PS - on a positive note, this was a game played in perfect spirit, with no niggle between either side, competitive yet fair. Refereed by Andy MacRae, it was the sort of game his father, the late Percy, a past president of the SOL would've been proud of.

PPS - on a less positive note, the 7ths hygiene trail of shame continues. Pre-match Dan Oscroft emerged from the toilet and immediately darted into the shower, for reasons never satisfactorily explained (not that we investigated much). Not nice!

Saturday 4th February

Old Hamptonians 4 Accies 1sts 3 (Jamie Topping 2, Adam Parsons).

Accies 2nds 3 (Terry Foster, Gareth Jenkins, og) Mill Hill Village 3, Mill Hill Village won 5-4 on penalties.

Accies 3rds 1 (Phil Stewart) Bealonians 1.

Wood Green Old Boys 4 Accies 4ths 2 (Jon Logie, Paul Bernard).

Accies 5ths 2 (Andy Penfold, Graham Whitworth) Mill Hill County Old Boys 7.

Mill Hill County Old Boys 4 Accies 6ths 1 (Liam Styles).

1sts Match Report from Jon Houghton

Another game. Another 3 pts dropped. At least the attitude was right but the end result painfully familiar this season. The reluctant tinkerman was again forced to alter the line up and availability poor enough to name himself as the lone sub.

A bright start against an unbeaten Hamptonians was ruined as Hamps scored from a corner after poor communication . By this stage the gaffer was already on the park after Chantler aggravated an injury from last week on 10 minutes. 

However, the team rallied, refusing to make scapegoats and Carabine was unlucky to see his shot hit the outside of the post after good work from the right flank. Accies equalised when a long throw was flicked on by Lemon and Topping cooly finished at the far post. Hamps struck back almost immediately when Accies over committed and failed to track the right winger who scored with a simple drive.

Once again the spritely Topping, who looks to have had some passion blown in to him (or just some new found maturity), equalised. This time with an edge of the box rasper off the underside of the crossbar. Shortly after the ball was poorly cleared from the Accies box and the Hamps right back was the most surprised bloke on the pitch to see his first time shot arrow into the top corner.

The second half saw a determined and committed Accies who saw several good chances narrowly fail. Another mistake allowed Hamps to increase the advantage and a late charge was rewarded with a goal for Parsons. However hard they tried the Accies could not force the equaliser. 
The spirit however was 100% improved on previous weeks and once again Accies rued dropping points to top table sides who were no better. So far only HAC have shown champions quality and Accies will need to pick up points against some big reputation teams if they are to avoid the drop. MOM Topping celebrated by returning to the lair that has become an almost supernatural source of power over the last few weeks.

2nds Match Report from Danny Fewkes

Accies 2’s suffered a cruel blow as they conceded a late equaliser and crashed out of the AFA Intermediate Cup at the quarter final stage to a strong Mill Hill Village outfit in a tense penalty shoot out at Shenley.

With numbers again frustratingly tight, and Rabie unfortunately not able to arrive until deep into the second half, Accies were forced to reshuffle their back line, and started with a bare but still strong 11 (harshly excluding a wandering Turtle named in the squad). The game started evenly, but Accies edged ahead on 15 mins when a dangerous set piece delivery from Tel flicked the head of a defender in an aerial challenge to fly into the net. The visitors themselves also enjoyed the fine playing conditions to pass and move neatly, and equalised with a headed goal from a right wing cross on 25 mins. Accies responded themselves with a spell of pressure and were rewarded after a break on the left found Tim Vaughan in the box who skipped past a player but was slightly clipped and an admittedly harsh penalty awarded, which Jenks despatched with aplomb.

Turning around with a 2-1 advantage we knew we still faced much hard work to advance in the tie but disappointingly failed to come out firing. Mill Hill pressed for 10 minutes without creating any clear chances, yet against the run of play Accies got what should have been the crucial 3rd goal, when a long ball into the box caused hesitation from the keeper, allowing Tel to flick a header into the empty net. Almost immediately Vanson showed his pace to break clear but his shot rolled agonisingly wide of the post, and Mill Hill continued to play on the front foot, pushing men forward and working the ball quickly to their front two. Soon after the hour the deficit was halved as we were just muscled off the ball outside the box and a cross come shot was headed home from 12 yards. For a fleeting while we found some of the passing game with which we can hurt sides, but there was certainly an edge missing in the physical side of our game and we made things difficult for ourselves, sitting deep and failing to make the ball stick when advanced up the pitch.

Despite these failings it was an honest performance from all involved and just as it looked as we’d get a reward and a semi final place, conceded an 87th minute equaliser when a deep throw was twice flicked on and crept in the far post. So to extra time, a great team attitude and slight tactical switch enabled us to compete and show far more positively than the previous 20 minutes of normal time. Realistically, neither side seriously threatened and so to penalties, 10 taken with 1 unfortunate miss and a gutted Accies left to wonder what might have been.

All credit to Mill Hill and it was good to see them back as a resurgent club, (14 players, manager, support staff plus double figures of fans!) with a couple of old faces from the SOL days mixed with some strong new blood. I think they could well go all the way in a competition we ourselves thought with a bit of luck we had a real chance in. Having noted that, we need to bounce back and react strongly as we approach a vital period of the season. The 2’s still have a cup semi-final and even more important promotion battle to fight, but speaking generally about the top end of the club, we have to get all aspects of our preparation on track, from now until the season’s conclusion. Acknowledging I’ll bore readers with repetition from paragraph 2, only 33 regular players were about for the top 3 teams on Sat, forcing the 1st team manager to come on after 15 mins in their game, and making the 2s rely on a player racing back from the airport to provide cover late in our cup match. It’s difficult enough with full squads when competing in tight cup games, battling to avoid relegation or pushing for promotion. In 4 of 5 games since Christmas we’ve had a starting 11 pick itself, spot the best performance…. The ability to introduce fresh legs for those tiring or carrying knocks, and make tactical switches could (not would) have made a difference on Sat, but if not rectified certainly will over a period of 8 remaining league games for the 2s and 6 for the 1s. We can’t blame the opposition or referees if we suffer accordingly!!

4ths Match Report from Steve Woodrow

The 4th team turned up for this AFA Cup quarter final clash with Wood Green cruelly shorn of 3 of the usual back 4 that had served them so well this season in the league, but surely, given the attacking force that we could unleash on the opposition this wouldn’t be a problem, alas this wasn’t to be the case. It’s an all too familiar pattern to the 4’s cup runs over the past 3 seasons that we find ourselves unceremoniously dumped out by supposedly inferior opposition. It could well be the old Accies curse, an over inflated belief in our superiority, when will we learn?

We shouldn’t detract from the victors in this tie, they thoroughly deserved to win the game, they battled hard, chased every lost cause and didn’t give us any time to settle, right from the off they exposed our defensive frailty and good luck to them in the next round.

The game started slowly for the Accies, due to a late arrival we had to start with an even more makeshift defence than intended by playing a hamstrung right back prior to Mr Locke’s arrival. Unfortunately, good players though they are in their natural positions, they are not defenders and this showed against faster, younger forwards as Wood Green put us on the back foot right from the off. 

The first 20 minutes passed fairly uneventfully, but we were struggling to contain them at the back, against the run of play we scored, our superior height enabled us to cause confusion at the back form a set-piece and Jon Logie stabbed home a loose ball, perhaps this would kick start our game and we would start to play properly, unfortunately not, it only spurred on the opposition. After 25 minutes our defence was stretched again, a through ball allowed the speedy forward to outstrip the defence, only to be denied a goal scoring opportunity by a crude and clumsy challenge by your correspondent, who was spared the red card that the opposition demanded, but was shown the yellow. The resulting spot kick was dispatched with the minimum of fuss.

On 30 minutes a carbon copy move allowed the forward to outstrip the defence once again, this time he was not cruelly cut down by yours truly but finished clinically, surely this would kick start the Accies, and for a short period it did as we started to gain a foothold in the game, this resulted in an equaliser with Barndoor finishing well from a corner. Tony Locke then turned up which allowed us to replace the hamstrung Matt Wilson, all was looking good as we reached half time with no further scares.

The talk at half time was that we needed to compete more, to earn the right to play football and to start winning second balls, if we did this we should be able to go on and win; Wood Green weren’t going to comply with this and ruined the script. Right from the start of the second half they harried and chased even more than in the first, 10 minutes in they scored again. This was a sloppy goal with 3 or 4 chances to clear spurned by the defence the ball finally rebounded to a forward who made a good attempt to miss the opportunity from 8 yards out by blasting the ball instead of placing it, but it still found the net. After 60 minutes disaster struck the Accies defence when Chester, our only recognised defender playing, had a clash of heads with a forward, those readers knowing the origins of our strapping centre half would expect the opposition striker to come off worse, obviously the don’t make foreheads as hard in Edinburgh as they are in Glasgow and the burly centre half was carted off to hospital with a wee graze. (A wee graze to a Glaswegian).

This heralded the return to action after 18 months out with a knee injury for Pat and a move to 3 at the back, none of whom are defenders by trade – and this showed a little. With 25 minute remaining another failure to clear the ball when given the opportunity resulted in a simple chance for the forward to complete the scoring – trying to start a Maradonaesque run from your penalty area isn’t the ideal thing to do against this type of opposition.

There was nothing of note to report after this, none that I can remember anyway, job done by the opposition and well done, they took their opportunities well, if a little fortuitously coming up against a defence that only had 1 true defender, and that was only for 60 minutes of the game. We must now turn our attentions to the league, where there is still a chance, but we need to find a defence from somewhere, especially as we are now without Chester. 

7ths Match Report from Danny McConnell

Team of the Week award goes to the 7ths. The 7ths cancelled their game on Tuesday due to lack of players.

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