WEEK 1 REVIEW: Round-up of all the opening EAL football action

WEEK 1 REVIEW: Round-up of all the opening EAL football action

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A new season in the Essex Alliance League got underway this weekend, beginning on Friday night where a new look Sporting Hackney side made a great start to their season, visiting last season’s fellow promotion rivals, Woodford East, coming away 2-0 victors from Mayesbrook Park with a goal apiece from Chibuike Okoli and Jerrel Watkins.

It was also a first outing at step seven for promoted Aveley Under 23s at Parkside where they were pitched against fellow promotees, CSM London, on the opening evening of the season in front of a good crowd. Euguene Sagoe gave the young Millers a lead but Luke McElroy’s strike for CSM from distance wasn’t cleanly held and found the back of the net to share the spoils in a 1-1 draw.

There were two statement results on the opening day, beginning up at Coles Park where last season’s Isthmian Development League side, Haringey Borough Under 23s, made a successful start at step seven with a thumping 8-1 home win against Kit Out London to put the hosts top of the pile after the first round of games.

Just below on alphabetical order, Lymore Gardens will be equally pleased with their first outing in the league this season as they were up against promoted Priory Park Rangers in Leyton. Lymore were able to put eight goals past the visitors in an 8-1 success as Malik Donaldson scored the first hat-trick of the season, Paul Benfield adding two, with Dylan Roberts, Jordan Young and Gaston Mendy rounding it off.

A local derby game saw Rapid Chingford make the short trip to Wadham Lodge on Saturday where they faced a Walthamstow Reserves side, both sides having survived late on last season. Rapid will be pleased with their efforts as they ran out 3-0 winners on the road with Andrei Boga scoring twice and George Hliban once to net all three points.

Down at Lakeside, Chingford Athletic’s first foray at this level saw them make the journey to Chafford Hundred to face Chadwell Heath Spartans on the opening weekend of the new season. Tyla Fenlon struck for Chingford but his goal proved not quite enough as Jason Thanni’s debut brace and Elie Fanga’s goal gave Spartans a 3-1 win.

Up at Wodson Park, last season’s runners-up, FC Baresi, were back into the swing of things though didn’t quite get everything all their own way, eventually taking all three points in a 3-2 win against rebranded Bakers693. Murat Karagul scored twice for the hosts and Ramond Poku struck with the other to ensure an opening win.

We end with action from Noak Hill where Frenford Reserves almost pulled off a big comeback as they slipped behind 4-1 at the hands of last season’s cup kings, FC Petrocub. But Frenford fought back to 4-3 by full-time, almost taking a point, as Petrocub started their league season with a win. Tyler Shillingford, Wisley Baltazar and Damilola Olaiya struck with the Frenford goals on the day.

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