After last weeks strong performance against Canvey Island, Graeme Smith was forced to make one change, with Tevan Allen missing. That did however, present an opportunity for Joshua Pollard to make his first start for several months having been missing through a fractured ankle – there was also a return to the starting eleven for Sam Bantick.
In truth, it was the visitors who started the game the better of the two sides as Coggeshall looked sluggish in the opening fifteen minutes. Without creating a real goal scoring opportunity, Mildenhall were looking to use their pacey attack at every opportunity. The tricky, Evans Kouassi had the first half chance of the affair, however rather than shooting tried a piece of trickery which went wrong and allowed Jamie Shaw to clear the danger. Striker, Stuart Zanone then had a headed chance to open the scoring, however he sent his effort over the bar when really he should have tested the hands of Danny Sambridge.
In the twenty first minute, the SeedGrowers punished Mildenhall for not making the most of their early dominance but it was a real goal out of nothing. As Mildenhall were attacking the ‘car park’ end, the Town dealt them a real sucker punch. A counter attack, led by Nnamdi Nwachuku resulted in Nwachuku a goal out of nothing. “Nnams” cut in from the right wing, beat two defenders, before unleashing a curling effort with his left foot – his strike bounced off the frame of the goal before landing in the back of the net, giving Hayhoe no chance in the Mildenhall goal.
Despite taking the lead, Smith’s side were still struggling to create clear cut goal scoring opportunities and in truth were lacking the fluidity they have shown throughout the season. However, as the SeedGrowers became more settled they were able to keep the visiting attackers under control to ensure they held their lead at the half time interval.
Half Time: Coggeshall Town 1-0 Mildenhall Town
After a few words from the management team, Coggeshall started the second half in different fashion compared to the first forty-five minutes. The SeedGrowers were starting to win the majority of their tackles, whilst looking more determined and dominating possession without testing Hayhoe. It was in fact the visitors who had the first chance, however a superb last ditch tackle from Curtis Haynes-Brown ensured the danger was dealt with and Sambridge was not called upon.
Midway in to the second half, the Suffolk outfit had calls for a penalty waved away by the match referee. As Sambridge charged off his goal line, Stuart Zanone threw himself to floor in an almost Tom Daley-esque dive. The man in the middle, awarded a goal kick for Coggeshall, however failed to caution Zanone for his theatrics. Coggeshall then had three chances in quick succession to extend their lead, the first of which was for Sam Bantick however ‘Banno’ was unable to make the most of his chance as the ball fell kindly for him inside the penalty area however he scuffed his shot wide of the goal. Goalscorer, Nwachuku then had two chances of his own however his first effort went high and wide before Hayhoe made a smart save to deny Nnamdi another superb goal which included a dribble from his own half.
As the game approached what could of been a nervous last few minutes, Nwachuku made sure of all three points. A passing move from Conor Hubble, George Cocklin and Ross Wall resulted in Hubble playing a through ball, behind the defence which allowed Nwachuku to beat the high defensive line. Just like his first goal, Nwachuku cut in from the right flank, dribbled past several defenders before bending an effort in to the corner of the net with his left foot.
With the points all but confirmed, the SeedGrowers put the icing on their cake with a delightful ‘team goal’, with their third and final goal of the afternoon. After Joshua Pollard won his header in the middle of the park, Hubble and Wall exchanged passes as they broke in to the Mildenhall penalty area. As Hubble looked for a team-mate, he was able to play a pass across the box and put it on a plate for midfield partner, George Cocklin who arrived in the right place, at the right time to calmly slot the ball in to the back of the net to secure all three points for the SeedGrowers.
Full Time: Coggeshall Town 3-0 Mildenhall Town
Danny Sambridge, Tyler Brampton, Curtis Haynes-Brown, Conor Hubble, Tyler Corlett, Jamie Shaw, Sam Bantick, Joshua Pollard, Nnamdi Nwachuku, Ross Wall, George Cocklin.
Ace Howell, Aryton Coley, Michael Gyasi, Deter Peter, Syrus Gordon.
Jake Hayhoe, Hugo Odogwu-Atkinson, Andrew Camilo-Tayaca, Luke Butcher, Joseph Asensi, Sando Costa Dias Fernandes, Lee Watkins, Stuart Zanone, Jarid Robson, Abouhadje Kouassi.
Tommy Robinson, Thomas Debenham, Thomas Boxer, Panayiotis Boxer.