The heavy rain adversely affected the plans of your roving team last weekend. Their intention of reporting on the progress of one of our member clubs engaged in the FA competitions on Saturday was thwarted by early adverse ground inspections and then their chosen quarter final match in the Middlesex Sunday Cup met the same fate. Saturday’s postponements did, however, provide the opportunity to watch two of our clubs in league action, in what promised to be an interesting match.
Uxbridge hosted local rivals Southall, at the Honeycroft, in an Isthmian League Division 1 South Central match. Uxbridge and Southall are two of the oldest clubs in Middlesex, both being founded in 1871 and have played each other more than 120 times. However, this is their first league encounter for many years.
Uxbridge, winners of the Middlesex Charity Cup, enjoyed a successful league campaign last season. They finished in 6th place and only missed out on the promotion play-offs by one place.
Southall’s proud history includes winning the Middlesex Senior Cup 12 times (the last time in 1955) and the Middlesex Charity Cup 10 times (the last time in 1984). They are now on the rise again, having suffered a chequered existence since losing their splendid Western Road ground in 1992. They won promotion to level 4 last season, by finishing as runners-up in the Combined Counties League North and have comfortably held their own at that level.
After 19 games, Southall were currently in 8th place in the league table, with 31 points. Uxbridge were in 12th place on 23 points.
The quality of the Honeycroft playing surface was a testament to its excellent draining qualities and a credit to the ground-staff, considering the number of games which were postponed on Saturday. For example, only 12 of the 16 scheduled FA Vase games went ahead.
The audience of 151 were treated to a lively and entertaining match. Both teams played attractive, attacking football and either could have won. Eventually, it was the home side who came from behind to claim the three points. Southall had marginally the better of the play in first half and went ahead after half an hour’s play. However, Uxbridge equalised before the interval and took advantage of a defensive mistake to claim what proved to be the winning goal in the 52nd minute. Southall fought back but couldn’t quite regain their first half form. They were not helped by an injury to striker, Lewis Putman in the 69th minute.
The match got off to a brisk start and Tyler Tobin, in the home goal, was in action in the first minute, taking a cross from Anthony O’Connor, who had been released by Kevin Diomande.
Then Anthony Mendy netted for Uxbridge but the assistant referee’s flag had already been raised for offside.
Uxbridge continued to press. Eitel Goueth won possession and fed Mark Bitmead but Southall keeper, Carey Bloedorn saved comfortably. Carey then saved an angled cross/shot from Alan Hedley and a deflected shot from Mark Bitmead high up.
Southall came into the game. Anthony O’Connor set up Jaden Thompson-Brissett but Tyler saved his subsequent cross shot. Then Lewis Putman’s drive from 25 yards was deflected for a corner.
Uxbridge had an anxious moment, when a defender jumped and handled the ball in his penalty area. The referee, after apparently giving the penalty, was persuaded to consult his assistant referee and subsequently awarded the defence a free kick for a push.
Lewis Putman bursts through...
In the 17th minute, Southall had the best scoring chance so far. Lewis Putman burst through the middle but was thwarted by the advancing Tyler Tobin.
...but is foiled by Tyler Tobin
Jaden Thompson-Brissett embarked on an incisive dribble, which took him into the Uxbridge box, before he was halted by a timely interception.
At the other end, Anthony Mendy volleyed over the bar, after a corner was headed on to him.
Jack Roper's (6) header from a corner...
Southall took the lead in the 31st minute. Louis Stead went on a run and forced a corner. The corner kick was taken by Louis and found Jack Roper, whose header produced another corner. Jack again got his head to the ball and glanced it into the far side of the goal.
...gives Southall the lead
Jaden Thompson-Brissett's free kick...
A well struck free kick from around 30 yards, by Jaden Thompson-Brissett, was turned over the cross-bar by Tyler Tobin.
...is turned over the bar by Tyler Tobin
The visitors appeared to be taking a grip on the game but in the 41st minute Mark Bitmead hit the ball into the far corner of the net to equalise for Uxbridge.
Half time score: Uxbridge 1 Southall 1
Southall custodian, Carey Bloedorn, was soon in action, saving low down from Alan Hedley. Then a long-range effort from Uxbridge’s energetic midfielder, Joe Jackson was just wide.
Kensley Maloney puts Uxbridge ahead
Uxbridge went ahead after 52 minutes, through Kensley Maloney, who netted after intercepting a poor back pass.
A long free kick by Uxbridge’s Callum Woodcock was headed behind by a defender, at the expense of a corner. Then Callum’s low cross was hit on the turn by Mark Bitmead but Carl Pearce blocked Mark’s effort.
Southall striker, Lewis Putman sustained a serious injury to his knee ligaments in the 69th minute. Unfortunately, he will be out of action for the remainder of this season. After a lengthy stoppage to allow Lewis to receive attention, he was replaced by Emmanuel Williams.
Jaden Thompson-Brissett set up Anthony O’Connor, who shot narrowly wide, under pressure from the challenge of Uxbridge skipper, Andy O’Brien.
Uxbridge’s Eitel Goueth’s activities, wide on the left, were proving a danger to Southall. His crosses provided openings for Anthony Mendy, whose shot was saved and Mark Bitmead, who hit an upright.
Carey Bloeden struggled to keep Callum Woodcock’s high acute angled effort out.
Dan Williams (15) breaks through the middle...
Uxbridge substitute, Dan Williams broke through the middle but the keeper saved his shot.
Kensley Maloney took advantage of the fact that Southall were pushing up for an equaliser and broke from his half. The keeper deflected Kensley’s shot onto a post and Dan Williams hit the rebound across the goal.
The keeper pushes Kensley Maloney's shot onto the post
In the closing minutes, Southall sent their goalkeeper, Carey Bloedorn forward for a corner kick, in a desperate but unsuccessful attempt to grab a goal.
The Southall keeper goes up for a corner
Final Score: Uxbridge 2 Southall 1
Uxbridge: Tyler Tobin, Callum Woodcock, David Sota. Luke Paris (Baboucarr Jarra 84 mins), Andy O’Brien (capt), Joe Jackson, Kensley Maloney, Alan Hedley (Jordan Ireland 77), Mark Bitmead, Anthony Mendy (Dan Williams 90) and Eitel Goueth.
Unused substitutes: Khalid Simmo and Harry Seabrook.
Manager: Danny Edwards Assistant Manager: Fred Cummings Coaches: Luke Brooks-Smith, John Carroll and Shaka Mughai Physio: Joseph Peacock.
Southall: Carey Bloedorn, Kevin Diomande, Azeez Alabi, Louis Stead (Jake Frailing 66), Carl Pearce (Michael Bryan 66), Jack Roper, Ryan Hope (capt). Jaden Thompson-Brissett, Anthony O’Connor, Lewis Putman (Emmanuel Williams 76) and Darreon Mark.
Unused substitutes: Frankie Taylor and Luke Henneghan.
Manager: Max Howell Coaches: Dan Bennett and Jesse Smith Physio: Bren Briggs.
Referee: Stephen Hawkes Assistant Referees: Simon Weston and Tolga Inanc
We thanks Chris and Jim for braving the poor weather to cover the game, as ever they have selected their favourite shots from the game which can be foiund throughout the report. Chris has also very kindly provided a full album of imagery from the game.
Chris & Jim's Picks
Full Album Courtesy of Chris Benn