Following Tuesday nights impressive FA Cup replay win over Berkhamsted, boss Graeme Smith made a couple of changes, one enforced, and two tactical changes. Nnamdi Nwachuku was absent due to injury and was replaced by Darren Mills, beginning his second spell at the club. Whilst Kevin Coyle and Connor Hubble were reintroduced to the starting line-up.
Tilbury came to West Street looking for their first win of the season, and the visitors started the game on the front foot, dominating the opening stages whilst the SeedGrowers looked to find their feet and shake off any fatigue from Tuesday’s testing match. It was however the home side who had the first chance of the afternoon, Aaron Condon released Hubble down the right hand side and forced Tilbury goalkeeper, Rhys Madden in to a smart save.
The first half was a real tight, high pressuring affair with neither side able to get their rhythm and control the game, with Tilbury looking to use their physical presence to gain whatever advantage they could. After 20 minutes, debutant Mills had a shot from the edge of the box which was deflected for a corner, Tilbury were yet to test James Bransgrove in the home goal.
As half time approached, Mills had the best chance of the half. He found himself through on goal, one-on-one with Madden and it looked a certain goalscoring opportunity. However, unselfishly, Mills attempted to pass the ball across the box to his team mate Ross Wall, which allowed a Tilbury defender to intercept. The SeedGrowers were then forced in to a change as Condon departed due to injury, replaced by debutant Michael Gyasi.
HALF TIME: Coggeshall Town 0 – 0 Tilbury
Just like the first, Tilbury started the second half on the front foot and had a couple of chances to take the lead. Abdul Salami had a glorious chance first of all, however he diverted his free header in to the hands of Bransgrove. Siju Odelusi then rattled the cross bar, as his looping header drifted towards the far post, with only the frame of the goal saving Coggeshall.
As the home side looked to utilise their counter attack, Gyasi twice went close to opening the scoring, with a smart save from Madden and late last ditch tackle from Hussain Jaffa denying the Town. The Dockers then went close again, as the ball bounced around in the Coggeshall box and somehow Odelusi sent his effort just wide. Lewis Smith then tried his luck with a bending effort from the edge of the box, however a superb diving save from Bransgrove kept his clean sheet intact.
After 65 minutes, the home side finally opened the scoring. A free kick from Bransgrove, from just inside his own half was delivered in to the box. Striker, Wall flicked the ball onto Hubble who saw his fierce effort initially saved by Madden, who was only able to direct the ball back to Hubble who smashed the ball in to the back of net with his left foot.
As Smith’s side attempted to manage the game towards three points, Darren Mills was replaced by the electric Kieran Bishop. It did not take long for Bishop to have an impact as he latched on to another flick-on from Wall, however his effort went narrowly wide of the post. With less than ten minutes to go, both sides had chances for more goals. Tilbury had a goal disallowed for offside, while Coyle saw his effort cleared off the line by a Tilbury defender.
As Tilbury pressed for an equaliser, Hubble had to clear a header from a corner off the line, whilst Coggeshall hung on for the final whistle. The visitors were then awarded a penalty and Coggeshall were reduced to ten men for the second time in as many matches with just minutes left on the Referee’s clock. George Cocklin was adjudged to have handled the ball on his own goal line and was giving his marching orders for denying a goalscoring opportunity. Lewis Smith stepped up for the away side and dispatched his penalty in to the bottom corner beyond Bransgrove.
The home side had a couple of chances to win the match before the final whistle, however Gyasi was unable to keep his header on target and Wall’s effort from the edge of the box went just side.
FULL TIME: Coggeshall Town 1 – 1 Tilbury
James Bransgrove, Tyler Brampton, Kevin Coyle, Tevan Allen, Dexter Peter, Josh Pollard, Aaron Condon, Connor Hubble, Darren Mills, Ross Wall & George Cocklin.
Curtis Haynes-Brown, Daniel Cunningham, Tom Monk, Michael Gyasi, Kieran Bishop.
Rhys Madden, Abdus Salami, Lewis Jags, Simon Peddie, Hussain Jaffa, Harry Norman, Ryan Boswell, Jack Carlisle, Siju Odelusi, Lewis Smith, Joe Paxman.
Charlie Buffon, Will Putt, Tom Anderson, Albert Keith, Reuben Mudd.