The final of the Middlesex Senior Challenge Cup, our oldest and most prestigious competition, was played last Tuesday evening, 12th April at the Cleo Saul Beveree Stadium, the picturesque home of Hampton & Richmond Borough FC. The teams involved were Barnet and Brentford B.
Our Senior Challenge Cup has been running since 1888. 24 teams entered this season’s competition.
Barnet drew a bye in round 1 and subsequently beat Hayes & Yeading United 2-1 (away) in Round 2, Ashford Town (Middlesex) 2-1 (away) in the Quarter-final and Northwood 2-0 (away) in the Semi-final.
Brentford B progressed to the final by beating St Panteleimon 4-2 (away) in Round 1, Broadfields United 11-0 (home) in Round 2, Hanwell Town 4-1 (away) in the Quarter-Final and Hampton & Richmond Borough 1-0 (home) in the Semi-final.
This game was played at a furious (sometimes frenetic) pace and moved rapidly up and down the field. Brentford went ahead midway through the first half. Barnet equalised 6 minutes after the interval and it remained 1-1 thereafter. The destination of the trophy was eventually settled in Barnet’s favour by a penalty shoot-out.
The first attempt on goal came from Barnet in the 4th minute, when Ross Marshall headed Rob Hall’s long free kick over the crossbar.
At the other end, a glancing header by Nathan Young-Coombes, from Valentino Adedokun’s cross, was just wide.
Brentford took the lead in the 22nd minute, when Nathan finished a well worked move with a rocket shot into the top corner of the net.
A good Barnet move put Adam Marriott through on goal but his shot was blocked by Ben Hockenhull. Then a long free kick, into the Brentford box, found Ross Marshall, who flicked the ball onto the crossbar.
Nathan Young-Coombes broke out of his half and sped towards the Barnet goal. However, Barnet’s Wesley Fonguck matched him for pace and managed to prevent him delivering a shot on goal. Nathan broke through the middle again but was brought down by Reiss Greenidge, who received a booking. The resultant free kick, taken by Jaako Oksanen, was charged down.
Brentford keeper, Matthew Cox punched an in-swinging Ryan De Havilland corner out from under his crossbar. Then another corner from Ryan bounced on top of the Brentford crossbar.
Half time score: Barnet 0 Brentford B 1
Ryan De Havilland equalised for Barnet in the 51st minute, following a goalmouth melee. Nico Jones stopped Rob Hall’s shot on the goal-line but the ball ran to Ryan who blasted it home from close range.
Brentford’s Nathan Young-Coombs was set up by Alex Gilbert but he shot straight at Jake Askew. Then Brentford custodian, Matthew Cox comfortably saved a long-range effort from Reece Grego-Cox.
Barnet keeper, Jake Askew came out to the half-way line and was dispossessed. He was rescued by an interception by Lewis Gordon.
Barnet’s Ephron Mason-Clarke shot on the turn, from an Adam Marriott pass but cleared the bar.
The ever-busy Lewis Gordon delivered an inviting cross from the left but neither of his Brentford team-mates, Nathan Young-Coombes nor Alex Gilbert, stationed in the box, was able to connect with it.
In the 87th minute, Nathan Young-Coombes was tripped by Ross Marshall, just inside the Barnet penalty box. The referee cautioned Marshall for the foul and then keeper Jake Askew, for scuffing the penalty spot. Young-Coombes took the kick but Askew, diving to his left, saved it.
Substitute Daniel Powell had a good chance to win the game for Barnet in the 90th minute. He was set up by Ephron Mason-Clarke but with just the keeper to beat, he fired wide from 6 yards out.
Score after 90 minutes: Barnet 1 Brentford B 1
Barnet went first in the penalty shoot-out. Daniel Powell and Brentford’ Ryan Trevitt both scored. Adam Marriott was successful with Barnet’s second penalty but Brentford’s Roy Syla hit his kick over the bar.
The respective goalkeepers saved from both of the takers of the third set of penalties, Reece Greco-Cox and Alex Gilbert. So, the score after 3 penalties by each side was 2-1 to Barnet.
Ben Richards-Everton scored for Barnet, with the help of the goalpost and Brentford’s Myles Peart-Harris netted his kick to make the score 3-2.
Ryan De Havilland then converted his kick to take the Middlesex Senior Cup to the Hive.
Result of Penalty Shoot-out: Barnet 4 Brentford B 2
Referee Conor Griffin controlled the match impeccably. His 3 colleagues also played their part in a very good team effort.
Middlesex FA President, John Davies, who was the Guest of Honour chose Brentford B’s Lewis Gordon as Player of the Match.
Our thanks are given to the Hampton & Richmond Borough FC management for allowing us to use their splendid facilities and for the assistance, which they provided on the night.
The attendance was 751.
Barnet: Jake Askew, Jordan Thomas, Ben Richards-Everton, Rob Hall (Daniel Powell 75 mins), Ross Marshall, Ephron Mason-Clarke (Louis Walsh 90+4), Adam Marriott, Reiss Greenidge, Wesley Fonguck, Ryan De Havilland and Reece Grego-Cox.
Unused substitutes: Teddy Howe, Sam Granville and Ayman Azaze.
Head Coach: Dean Brennan Coaches: John Dreyer, Dave Anderson and Kirk Rayment. Physio: Daniel Cluett.
Brentford B: Matthew Cox, Lewis Gordon, Valentino Adedokun (Myles Peart-Harris 70), Ben Hockenhull, Nico Jones, Dom Jefferies (Roy Syla 88), Nathan
Young-Coombes, Alex Gilbert, Ryan Trevitt, Jaako Oksanen (Paris Maghoma 77) and Tristan Crama.
Unused substitutes: Rocco Rees and Hans Mpongo.
Manager: Neil MacFarlane Coaches: Sam Saunders, Jani Viander and James Purdue Physios: Stella Zhang and Paolo Perna.
Referee: Conor Griffin Assistant Referees: Nathan Briggs and Dani Mansour 4th Official: Sobastian Frazer.
We thank Brentford's Official Photographer, Mark D Fuller for providing us with a couple of shots from the match. His full album can be found online where you can view and purchase his shots.
Official Brentford FC Pictures