Ryman Div One North
Brentwood Town 2 v 1 Thurrock
Report by Scott Lanza
Thurrock arrived at the Brentwood Arena looking for points to maintain their Title push but found their hosts in no mood to roll over as they too were in need of points to starve off relegation woes.
It was Brentwood Town who got down to business straight away and Bobby Mason had to parry away an Andy Greenslade shot in the opening minute. Jordan Clark also had to knock away a Leon Gordon cross in the opening stages. It was an uncharacteristic slow start from the Fleet and it took them a while to get going. Apart from a nice passing move involving David Cowley and Charlie Simpson, which played in Mark Onyemah they had little to show until the 13th minute when a Reece Morgan drive thumped against the post.
Two minutes later Brentwood took the lead. A ball across the Fleet box was struck by Harrison Georgiou and it somehow squirmed its way past Mason and into the net. The hosts, battling against relegation, almost doubled their lead in the 19th minute when a deep cross from Brendan Cavalier was met by Leon Gordon whose header was only narrowly wide.
Onyemah won a corner for Thurrock in the 20th minute after he surged into the Brentwood box and forced Matt Hall to knock the ball behind. Richard Halle was able to rifle off a header which was cut out by Brentwood keeper Anthony Page. However it was soon Brentwood back on the attack and Lamar Reynolds was able to work his way into a dangerous position and fire off a shot that sailed over the bar. The same player also picked up a ball from Gordon who capitalised on a Glenn Poole slip to play in his team mate. Mason was able to use his legs to knock the ball away.
Cowley and Onyemah carved out the first real Thurrock chance soon after. Their fast passing move appeared to split the Brentwood defence and Remi Sutton’s shot flashed across the Brentwood goal. It showed that Thurrock were dangerous on the break but it had taken them half an hour to finally get going and they soon had another chance when another one-touch passing move ended with Cowley unleashing a shot that was only inches too high. As the half came to an end Fleet were very much in the ascendency and they almost equalised in the 42nd minute when a free kick worked its way to Jordan Clark who let fly with a fierce shot that crashed against the post.
It took only five second half minutes for Thurrock to find an equaliser. A free kick was awarded just outside the penalty box and Cowley curled his shot over the wall and past Page to put Thurrock back on equal terms. However the goal didn’t ignite Thurrock and Mason was soon called upon to tip away a Reynolds shot. A wild ricochet almost dipped into the Fleet net and Reynolds also had a couple of shots whistle over the bar. Fleet were looking flat but then came to life just after the hour mark when a Poole dink over the Brentwood defence fell to Morgan who hit a shot towards the back post that almost crept into the net.
An in-swinging corner from Cowley eluded Page but Connor Martin was on hand to hook the ball out of the danger zone. Cowley also went close with a free kick and also had a shot blocked by Martin in the 77th minute. The Fleet were now starting to click into gear and Page suddenly came under some sustained pressure and he had to dive high to his right to get his hands on a Cook shot in the 81st minute. A series of corners also tested the Brentwood defence as Thurrock went out to pick up the three points. With the game coming to a close Ronnie Winn was able to reach Sutton with a pinpoint pass but the resulting shot was miscued and sailed harmlessly away from the Brentwood goal.
However with a share of the points looking likely Brentwood then snatched all three deep in injury time. A Georgiou cross from the right found Reynolds who was able to rifle in from close range sending the home fans delirious. To make matters worse for the Fleet news soon filtered across the Arena that Maldon & Tiptree had also been beaten. It means the opportunity to close the nine point gap had passed and Thurrock have now dropped down to third due to Brightlingsea Regent picking up a win.
Thurrock return to action on Saturday when they host local rivals Tilbury at Ship Lane.
Brentwood Town: Anthony Page, Brendan Cavalier, Ben Sampayo, Matt Hall, Connor Martin, Ryan O’Rawe, Andy Freeman, Andy Greenslade, Leon Gordon (Ife Ogunbayo 54), Harrison Georgiou, Lamar Reynolds
Scorers – Harrison Georgiou (15′), Lamar Reynolds (90′)
Thurrock: Bobby Mason, Reece Morgan (Harry Cook 76), Remi Sutton, Richard Halle, Mark Onyemah (Ronnie Winn 68), Perry Dunn, Jordan Clark, Glenn Poole, Charlie Stimson, George Winn, David Cowley
Scorer – David Cowley (50′)