Ryman Div One North
Romford 1 v 0 Aveley
By Scott Lanza
ROMFORD picked up their first win of the season after a battling display against a Tilbury side that also had their moments during this pulsating Ryman North encounter. Boro were able to name an unchanged side that had held high fliers Phoenix Sports to a 1-1 draw in midweek. The Dockers turned up at Ship Lane with only one change to the line-up that had crossed the Thames in midweek and returned from their sortie at Thamesmead Town with a 1-0 win.
The hosts started the game with some intent winning an early corner after some passing play between Chris Barry and Paul Preston resulted in the latter swinging over a cross that floated dangerously towards the six-yard box. Daniel Smith demonstrated some fine defensive prowess to knock the ball away. Preston soon sent over another cross from the left which Lee Butcher, a keeper with Football League experience with Leyton Orient, did well to claim as he was under pressure from the Romford forwards. Romford had certainly gone about their business quickly and had the first serious chance after ten minutes when Jonathan Adebayo fired a shot from outside the box which sailed over the head of Butcher but the post came to Tilbury’s aid and the rebound was dragged wide by Barry.
Tilbury slowly started to stem the Romford attacking flow and were now starting to supply some balls for their forwards to feed on. Anthony Martin was played in with a decent pass from the left flank, controlled it but was then dispossessed by a last-ditch tackle from Danny Cossington before he could unload. Ayokunle Odedoyi was also starting to come into the game, using his speed to get past the Romford defence. He went close on two occasions after his pace got him into dangerous areas but only solid defending preventing him causing any further damage. Odedoyi’s quick heels were a constant worry for the Romford backline and Tilbury looked to try and get balls to him as often as they could. Midway through the first half some slack passing by Romford resulted in Danny Norton intercepting the loose ball and chipping the ball over the defence into the path of Odedoyi but Callum Chafer tipped the ball away.
Adebayo had dropped back to help the Romford defence but he was a dangerman when able to move into a more attacking role. He was instrumental in Boro’s next real chance at the 25 minute mark; taking the ball from his own half, going on a surging run and then dinking the ball over the Dockers’ defence. Preston got the ball under his control before turning and firing; Butcher however parried the ball away. The attack wasn’t yet over however because Preston ran swiftly to the left touchline and sent over a cross which was back heeled only inches wide by Cossington. It was a deft bit of skill which wrong footed Butcher and would have made for an audacious goal had it not been only a mere inch the other side of the upright.
Emile Aiken carved out the next Tilbury assault on the half hour when he charged through the Romford midfield before supplying Terlochan Singh with a quality through ball however the shot Singh fired off was blocked and then the chance faltered as Odedoyi’s speed got him to the loose ball but the resulting shot flew wide off the mark. The ascendency now went Tilbury’s way and moments later they were threatening the Romford goal again. Singh was again involved, meeting an Odedoyi cross with his head which beat the dive of Chafer but darted past the far post. His counterpart in the Tilbury goal also was called upon in the closing moments of the half as Ryan Mallett was able to carve a chance out of nothing when he turned his marker and stroked a right footed shot towards the bottom left hand corner which Butcher superbly tipped away.
Boro certainly didn’t look like a side residing in the relegation zone at the start of play and immediately started the second half on the attack and within sixty seconds of the re-start Mallet again found space to fire off a shot however the effort sailed past the post. Romford were even closer with their next effort after Reynolds played in Adebayo. He had to use his strength to hold up the ball before laying off to Preston whose shot from an acute angle ended up hitting the side netting.
Aiken went on another searching in the 55th minute that won Tilbury a corner but apart from balls over the top which Aiken and Odedoyi tried to run onto, the rest of the attacks came from Romford with Charlie Portway twice testing Butcher in the Tilbury goal. The deadlock was finaly broken on 63 minutes when a ball down the left wing was picked up by Ryan Boswell who knocked the ball past the Tilbury keeper and then from an acute angle steered the ball into the net. It was a goal that Romford deserved and they then shut up shop and stifled any Tilbury foray into their half of the field by standing firm in the challenge and holding on to record their first win of the season.
Callum Chafer, Ryan Boswell, Paul Preston (James Ishmail), Danny Cossington, Tom Potter, Jonathan Adebayo, Ryan Mallett, Hayes Thomas, Nick Reynolds (Jamie Dicks), Charlie Portway, Chris Barry (Will Green)
Scorer – Ryan Boswell – 63 Minutes
Lee Butcher, Danny Norton, Conor Mead (Kurt Smith), Daniel Smith, Eli Benoath, Tom Anderson, Toch Singh (Tobis Aromolaran) , Jack Carlile, Ayokunle Odedoyi, Anthony Martin, Emile Aiken