Saturday, September 30, 2023

Football: Slow start to season for Thurrock

Bostik Premier

Needham Market 2 v 1 Thurrock

By Mike Tongue

A fairly even first half with chances for both sides and then two crisply taken chances gave Needham Market a two goal lead going into the break. A change of formation for the second half gives Thurrock more of the play and they pull one back but despite best efforts can’t find the equaliser.

A bright start as a sublime touch from Glenn Poole releases Remi Sutton to drive into the box only to see his low cross cut out and cleared. Just shy of quarter of an hour gone and Charlie Stimson receives a pass from the left wing some twenty yards out, he turns and shoots clipping the outside of the post . Sutton again is provider as he swings the ball in to Lewwis Spence who blasts the ball a couple of yards wide.
Dennis Oli, Spence and Stimson link up in the area looking for an opening before being crowded out. A throw in high up the pitch for Thurrock finds Stimson who tracks across the area before laying the ball out to Sutton who hits it first time a yard wide of the far post.

Needham mount a number of attacks and Bobby Mason needs to keep his wits about him to first get a good punch to clear a tricky cross under pressure and then get down swiftly to his right to push wide a twenty five yard effort from Luke Ingram. A neat passage of one-touch passes culminates in Callum Harrison swerving the ball wide of Mason and inside the far post to open the scoring. With a couple of minutes of the half left Needham extend their lead. Thurrock clear a free kick behind for a corner which is delivered long to the far post and cleared by Richard Halle, Needham pick up the ball in midfield and find Ryan Gibbs just outside the box to unleash a shot beyond Mason’s reach.

Half Time: Needham Market 2 Thurrock 0

Thurrock start the second half with Jordan Clark pushed further up the pitch and he is soon in the area and goes down under a challenge from the keeper. James Goode tests Danny Gay from twenty yards and finds Gay equal to the task as the ball is pushed round the post for a corner. Dennis Oli punches a low hard cross square across the penalty area and Gay has to be brave to snatch the ball amongst flying feet.

A counter-attack from the Marketmen down the left wing sees another sharp shot blocked by Mason’s legs and Thurrock respond with a defence splitting ball from Spence to Sutton who shoots across the keeper but wide of the far post. Needham break again on the left but this time Joe Bruce tidies up.

With seven minutes to go Thurrock get their reward for the constant pressure, Joe Christou’s corner is cleared out to Jordan Clark and as the defence rush to close him down he finds a narrow corridor to rifle home a shot from thirty odd yards inside the right hand post. Luke Ingram receives a second yellow card as the ninety minutes tick over and Thurrock swarm over Needham for the final few minutes of added time but can’t find the telling touch for an equaliser.

Team: Bobby Mason, James Goode (Joe Christou 58), Remi Sutton, Joe Bruce, George Winn, Richard Halle, Jordan Clark, Lewwis Spence (Leon Antoine 74), Charlie Stimson, Dennis Oli, Glenn Poole (Ronnie Winn 65)
Unused: Tim Brown, Craig Hall
Attendance: 263

Next Match: Sat 19th Aug. Thurrock vs Dorking Wanderers


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