After last weeks win over Basildon United, manager Graeme Smith made several changes to his starting eleven as he looked to cement his sides place in the 2019 Bostik North Play-Off Semi-Finals, one of the changes was a welcome return for central defender, George Allen who made his first appearance for the SeedGrowers since breaking his toe away at Felixstowe & Walton. The home side have recently undergone major chances, which has a number of new signings arrive including Marcus Milner, Martin Tuohy and Firmin Ngandu, as Steve Butterworth has taken over the managerial reigns.
In truth, it was the hosts who started the brighter of the two sides but it was in fact the Town who had the first shot of the afternoon after fifteen minutes. As the SeedGrowers took a quick throw, Nnamdi Nwachuku flicked the ball in direction of midfielder, George Cocklin who unleashed a vicious volley which looked destined but the top corner but Rovers keeper, Bobby Mason was on hand to made an acrobatic save. That passage of play appeared to springboard Coggeshall in to action with Ross Wall and Cocklin again, both having chances to open their sides account for the afternoon. New signing, Mekhi McLeod grew in to the game as it went on and his trickery and skills were causing an issue for the home defence, as he skipped past three players before asking questions of Mason in goal, who again was equal to the shot to keep his clean sheet in tact.
As the game began to flow from one end to the other, both sides seemed intent on playing attractive, attacking football. This time, it was Danny Sambridge pulling off brilliant saves as he made two in quick succession to deny Shomari Barnwell who was almost celebrating as he hit his effort and the pacey, Ngandu. Wakering then had what was possibly the best chance of the afternoon, as the ball fell kindly for Martin Tuohy in the Coggeshall penalty area, however he lacked the require composure as he stroked his shot straight in to the arms of a grateful, Sambridge.
Minutes after, the game was flipped on it’s head by the Referee. George Cocklin was awarded a yellow card, despite George Cox causing an obstruction by laying on the ball, the Referee awarded Rovers the free kick and Cocklin was handed a yellow card for his protests. Within sixty seconds and Cocklin was shown another yellow card and a red card followed immediately after. As Nnamdi Nwachuku was ‘wiped out’ from behind, Coggeshall’s appeals for a free kick were led by George Allen as he protested towards the Referee, however the Referee was of the opinion that it was Cocklin leading the protests, as he was given his marching orders. With a man deficit, things went from bad to worse for Coggeshall on the stroke of half time, as Ngandu exchanged passes with Barnwell, he breached the defensive line and was all alone as he bent a curling effort in to the bottom of the net, beyond a helpless Sambridge.
HALF TIME: Great Wakering Rovers 1-0 Coggeshall Town
After a terribly end to the first half, the SeedGrowers made a change in personal with Artyon Coley being introduced in place of striker, Ross Wall which resulted in a change of formation and within minutes, the visitors were back level. As McLeod lost the ball in a wide position, it fell kindly to midfield maestro, Conor Hubble who only had one idea in mind. Twenty five yards away from goal, in a wide position, Hubble unleashed a spectacular effort, which was simply unstoppable. It curled over the head of Mason, who could only stand and watch as it nestled in the top corner of his goal. Not satisfied with his first goal, Hubble tried his luck again just moments later, this time with a free kick. The midfielder’s free kick had beaten Mason, however not the frame of the goal as it rebounded off the post and a Rovers defender was on hand to clear the danger.
The end-to-end fashion continued, as a revitalised Coggeshall were dealt with another sucker punch of a counter attack. Barnwell, turned George Allen in a wide position, dribbled towards the box before letting fly a left footed effort which appeared to be heading wide, however Josh Pollard was unable to get out of the way of the ball or sort his feet out in time, as it ricocheted off Pollard and landed in the back of the Coggeshall net. The SeedGrowers were behind again and had it all to do, as George Allen’s return to the first team was cut short as he was replaced by Michael Gyasi. With fifteen minutes remaining on the Referee’s watch, the ten-men of Coggeshall received a real life line from Rovers defender, Marc Gorbell. A corner from the right hand side, looked to be drifting away from goal before Gorbell foolishly hand-balled the ball inside his six yard box and the Referee has no choice but to award the Town with a penalty. Up stepped the in-form, Nwachuku who calmly dispatched the penalty to extend his goal scoring run – that goal meant Nwachuku has now scored in the last eight league games in a row, with a total of eleven goals in those eight games.
As both sides attempted to find a winner, neither were successful in the end, the SeedGrowers could be happy with a share of the points having gone behind twice in the game after George Cocklin dismissed in the first half.
FULL TIME: Great Wakering Rovers 2-2 Coggeshall Town
Great Wakering Rovers:
Bobby Mason, Jason Ring, Ollie Woodhouse, Simon Glover, Hussain Jaffa, Marc Gorbell, Marcus Milner, George Cox, Shomari Barnwell, Martin Tuohy, Firmin Ngandu.
Stephen Butterworth, Jacob Wiggings, Joshua Wiggins, Brandy Makhendi, William Harris.
Danny Sambridge, Joshua Pollard, Dexter Peter, Conor Hubble, George Allen, Tyler Corlett, Mekhi McLeod, Tevan Allen, Nnamdi Nwachuku, Ross Wall, George Cocklin.
Ace Howell, Aryton Coley, Tyler Brampton, Curtis Haynes-Brown, Michael Gyasi.