Football: Romford go out of cup on penalties

Romford 1 v 1 Billericay Town

Billericay Town won 3-1 penalties

Essex Senior Cup 3rd Round

Report by Scott Lanza

ROMFORD were knocked out the Essex Senior Cup last night having matched their Ryman Premier rivals in an entertaining game that required penalties to determine the winner.

The opening ten minutes pretty much saw both teams set out their stall as both teams attempted to dominate the midfield area and then try and bring their frontline into play. Neither keeper had much to deal with until the twelfth minute when Callum Chafer had to dive to his right to turn away a Goldy Capela shot. Chafer was called upon two minutes later when a corner was played short to Gabby Adeliowo who then knocked the ball to Kreshnic Krasniqi who whipped in a shot towards the far corner that Chafer parried.

Boro were also playing some nice passing football with Ayodeji Olukaga acting as the talisman, holding the ball up and then spraying passes around the Billericay box. Olukaga was the source for Romford’s first meaningful attack when he sent a ball from midfield to the right of the Billericay penalty box which Sam Coe picked up and played a lovely pass to Chris Taylor. For a moment it looked like Romford were about to carve up the Billericay defence but the attack came to an abrupt end when Taylor played the ball into the box but Jack Giddens reacted quickly to smoother the ball.

In the twenty-eighth minute a long ball down the left set up Asher Modeste whose run into the box resulted in him being fouled by the Billericay keeper and the referee had no hesitation in awarding a penalty. Jamie Dicks placed his shot towards the bottom right hand corner but Giddens dived the right way to tip the ball away. Another Romford attack saw Chris Taylor pass to Olukaga, who played in Sam Coe whose sublime cross picked out Jamie Age; his powerful shot however was blocked by the Billericay stopper.

Billericay were also demonstrating some quick pass and move football but found the Romford defence equal to anything that came into their penalty area. A superb cross by Krasniqi needed Nick Reynolds to knock away as it looked destined to reach Capela. Romford also found the Billericay defence equal to anything they could conjure up and on forty minutes a long pass from Ashley Bankole to Sam Coe resulted in Boro winning a corner which was easily dealt with by the Billericay defence. Capela went close in the closing stages of the first half when he volleyed over the bar and then a minute later Modeste did likewise for Romford. It was goalless at half-time as both teams cancelled each other out as both defences worked hard to keep clear cut chances to a premium.

Billericay made a positive start to the second period and perhaps should have taken the lead in the opening minute of the half when Quintin Monville connected with a cross but wasn’t able to fire his shot on target. Ernest Omo also wasted a great opportunity in the forty ninth minute after Monville had dribbled his way through the Boro defence before playing in Omo who rushed his shot and dragged the ball wide of the far post. The best chance of the game came in the fifty second minute when Olukaga let fly with a superb volley that required some outstanding keeping from Giddens, who leapt through the air to tip the ball over the crossbar.

The opening goal came in the fifty eight minute after Bankole had been able to block Joshua Oyuian’s shot but the rebound was headed past Chafer by Capela. After taking the lead the Blues then went at their hosts and they almost doubled their lead when Monville, who was starting to distribute the ball around the Boro box with panache and aplomb, chipped the ball into the area which Omo latched onto, requiring some frantic defending from Bankole to end the attack.

Billericay had kept a tight rearguard but could do nothing to prevent Romford equalising. The goal came from top scorer Chinedu McKenzie who was introduced into the game in seventy fifth minute and his goal in the eighty third minute was an absolute screamer. The ball had worked its way to the right of side of the Billericay penalty box where McKenzie unleashed a shot that whistled past Giddens.

Billericay’s bench called for a penalty in the closing stages of the game after they felt Nick Reynolds last ditch challenge on Oyuian was a bit too over-zealous, but the referee turned down the appeals and instead awarded them a corner. Then deep into injury time Chafer had to tip away an Edvardas Gaurilovas shot.

With normal time finishing all square at 1-1 it went straight to a penalty shoot-out. Jack Giddens, the Billericay keeper, took the first penalty but his rather tame effort was easily saved by Chafer. Giddens however made amends by saving the penalties taken by Nick Reynolds, Charlie Portway and Ayodeji Olukaga. Chafer was able to save Goldy Capela’s attempt but Sam Cross converted Billericay’s fourth penalty to give them a 2-1 lead before Luke Nilson stepped up to convert his penalty and thus win the game 3-1 for Billericay. It had been a good showing from the Ryman North strugglers and they travel to AFC Sudbury, another Ryman Premier outfit, on Saturday in the FA Trophy and if they play the way they did this evening then they could pull off a surprise result.

Romford: Callum Chafer, Ashley Bankole, Jamie Dicks, Ryan Boswell, Nick Reynolds (Charlie Portway 57), Danny Cossington (Will Green 67), Ayodeji Olukaga, Chris Taylor, Sam Coe, Jamie Age, Asher Modeste (Chinedu McKenzie 75)

Scorer – Chinedu McKenzie (83′)

Billericay Town: Jack Giddens, Ibrahim Diallo, Sam Cross, Pierre Hazet (Edvardas Gaurilovas 86), Luke Nilson, Alex Stephenson, Quinton Monville, Gabby Adeliowo, Goldy Capela, Kreshnic Krasniqi ,(Joshua Oyuian 45), Ernest Omo (Lloyd Russ 71)

Scorer – Goldy Capela (58′)

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