Today Town had their first F.A. Trophy match of the season with the away game at Bedfont Sports; their ground sits close to Heathrow Airport. It was a comfortable trip to the ground round the M25 with hardly any hold ups.
Manager Graeme Smith made three changes to the side with Frankie Hession-Harris coming in for his first start of the season and both Captain Tevan Allen and Joe Claridge making a welcome return to the side after a lay-off through injury. The players were buzzing as they warmed up in front of the Town supporters, there was plenty of banter and they looked like they were feeling confident. The Supporters had plenty of flags on show as they waited with anticipation for the start of the game.
As the game got going, there was nothing to choose between the two sides in the early exchanges. The Town back four of Tyler Corlett, Jayden Gipson, Joe Claridge and Harry Critchley coped well with the pace the Bedfont forwards. On thirteen minutes Bedfont created their first chance with a cross shot from their number 10 Jordan Esprit clipping the outside of the far post. A minute later, after some great work on the Town’s right by Ross Wall, his cross into the box found Ethan Kessel unmarked on the edge of the six-yard box at the far post, unfortunately Ethan fired his shot just past the post. I was a great opportunity to take the lead. Town were now pushing forward and were beginning to control the mid-field, on fifteen minutes Capt Tevan Allen fired over the bar from 25 yards out. Tevan was covering the ground well and seeing lots of the ball. He was being well supported by the rest of the mid-field. Jack Baker was winning numerous tackles, Ethan Kessel once again was showing great vision with his passing and Frankie Hession-Harris was tidying up behind them. He was passing the ball very well keeping Town in possession.
As the half progressed Town were pushing forward at every opportunity, Joe and Harry down the flanks and Jayden and Tyler were joining in down the center of the pitch. Town were passing the ball well and looking the better side. It was a good game to watch as Bedfont were playing their part trying to work the ball to their pacey front players. On 35 minutes, Bedfonts number 7 Ricardo Andre was very lucky not to receive a straight red card as he caught Joe with a dangerous looking studs up tackle. Ross Wall and Matt Price were working hard up front but the ball never fell right for them in the box. With 5 minutes until half time Harry Critchley went close with a great shot as he cut in from the left.
HALF TIME: Bedfont Sports 0 – 0 Coggeshall Town.
Town started the second half as the finished the first, the mid field were combining well with Jack Baker continuing to win the ball consistently Ethan and Tevan Allen covering every inch of the pitch and Frankie playing his best game for the Town tidying up behind them. Town’s first chance of the half came on 55 minutes when Matt Price turned his marker on the edge of the box to fire a shot just wide of the post. The next chance followed 7 minutes later with Matt involved again, this time setting up Ross who fired straight at the keeper. Town were playing well now and Matt and Ross were seeing more of the ball. Bedfont as in the first half were feeding there pacey front men down the wings but on the occasions that got past the Towns Full backs Tyler Corlett was always on hand to intercept them and clear the ball. Tyler was having a great game.
On 68 minutes, Nnamdi Nawachuku was introduced for Matt Price. Nnamdi went on the attack immediately. Max Booth was brought on for Jack on 78minutes. Jack had a great influence on the game considering it was only his second game since a lengthy lay off through injury. Although the Town never looked like conceding, Bedfont could have scored the winner on 85 minutes but fortunately, the shot went wide and then four minutes later Nnamdi managed to fire in a shot between two defenders that the Bedfont keeper saved at the foot of the post. Nnamdi had one more effort as he fired over bar just before the final whistle blew. On reflection a goalless draw was probably a fair result although the Town supports felt that they had the edge overall.
Time for the Penalty shoot-out. After a chat between the players and the management, the penalty takers and the order was decided. Town took the first Penalty and Joe Claridge fired home giving the keeper no chance. Bedfont scored theirs 1 – 1. Ethan stepped up for the second, he struck it well but the keeper guessed right and made a good save. Bedfont sent theirs over bar still 1 – 1. Max Booth was next another great Penalty 2 -1. Bedfont scored making it 2 – 2. Then Namdi, Tevan and Ayrton all followed with well-taken Penalties giving the Bedfont keeper no chance. Bedfont matched the Town making the score 5 – 5. The Town players standing in the centre circle had linked arms to show their solidarity and support for the penalty takers. Jayden Gipson was next to step up and took another great penalty sending the keeper the wrong way, Town now lead 6 – 5. Jake Jessup took his place on the line to face Bedfonts next penalty taker who fired his shot to Jakes right. Jake dived the right way but it needed every inch of his frame to punch the ball out and put Town into the Draw for the next round. The players ran to celebrate with Jake. It was a job well done with all the players making a great contribution to the game and the result. The Town supporters left the ground smiling and thinking who they would draw in the next round.
FULL TIME: Bedfont Sports 0 – 0 Coggeshall Town.
Penalty shoot-out. Bedfont Sports 5 – 6 Coggeshall Town.
NO.7 20/21 Bedfont Sports