WEEK 32 REVIEW: Round-up of all the EAL league and cup action from the weekend

WEEK 32 REVIEW: Round-up of all the EAL league and cup action from the weekend

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It was finally semi-final day for Fairlop Rovers in the their Essex Junior Cup quest on Saturday, travelling to north Essex to face a Cressing United side. Despite a strong start, a heavily wind affected contest and in-form keepers prevented either side scoring, ending 0-0 after extra-time. A shootout was therefore needed and Rovers held their nerve to win it 4-3 and take their place in the final against Thorpe Athletic on 10th April.


In the remaining third round Fenton Cup action at the weekend, London Cranes made the trip to take on fellow Premier Division West side, Philip United, with a quarter-final place on the line. With the sides unable to be separated after a 2-2 draw, Arafat Lubega scoring both Cranes’ goals, it was Cranes who held their nerve from the spot to win the shootout and progress through.

It was also quarter-final day for two of the clubs in the competition with Division One’s representatives, Woodford East Reserves, with a home clash against Premier’s Waltham Abbey A. In a goal-filled contest, it was the Abbotts who eventually prevailed, winning the tie 5-3 to move within ninety minutes of a cup final place.


On Friday evening, it was the first semi-final in the Senior Division Cup with Aveley Under 23s at home against Walthamstow Reserves side. Stow made a strong start and raced into a three-goal lead at the break through two Issa Sidibe goals and an Ezra Agyiri effort. The Millers were greatly improved in the second period, netting one in reply, but Walthamstow held on to win 3-1 and book their place in the final.


With the title decided, attention turns to matters at the bottom end of the table where Sporting Hackney picked up a hugely important three points at FC Petrocub on Saturday, coming away 3-2 winners from Noak Hill to record just a fifth win this term. That result sees them remain bottom but with the gap to safety reduced to six points, with three games in hand.

Another side to make up some ground on safety were Priory Park Rangers who earned an important point, coming from behind to Bogdan Toana’s goal to draw against Rapid Chingford in a 1-1 scoreline, Owen Coleman with the equaliser. That result leaves Rangers four points adrift of safety and requiring wins from both remaining games to keep hopes of survival alive.

The side sitting just above the relegation zone at present at Bakers693 and they moved a point closer to potential safety on Saturday with a strong point at home against Haringey Borough Under 23s, the sides finishing in a 2-2 at Parsloes Park. With two games remaining, Bakers now sit four points clear of the sides above, one more win likely to therefore be enough.

Over at Mayesbrook Park, Lymore Gardens remain fifth in the table following an excellent 3-1 win at the confirmed runners-up, Woodford East. Dylan Roberts’ hat-trick was the difference between the sides with Sam May-Parrott netting the Peacocks’ goal in reply, a result which maintains Lymore hopes of a top five finish.

That will very much depend on the remaining games for Frenford Development who sit a point behind Lymore but with two games in hand, picking up win number thirteen on Saturday with a 2-1 home success at The Drive against CSM London. Ramiz Mahmood scored for the visitors but two Frenford goals were enough to earn the win.


In the Premier Division Cup, there were two quarter-final ties completed as Newbury Athletic earned their place in the last four with a 2-0 home success against Snaresbrook at Parsloes Park as East over West, placing themselves just ninety minutes away from a potential cup final appearance for the club.

The other tie saw an all-East division contest as hosts Soul took on a Dagenham United side at Fairlop Oak to battle for a place in the last four of the competition. Shaquille Mathurin got on the scoresheet once again for Dagenham but Soul struck twice themselves to edge the tie 2-1 and head into the semi-finals against Newbury.


Over in the East division league action, there was just the one game as Something From Nothing were also in action at Fairlop Oak, taking on a Redbridge Community side in desperate need of some points in their battle to avoid the drop. It was a well matched contest however with the game ending level at 2-2, a result which leaves the visitors needing at least two wins.


The goals were flowing in the West where a thirteen-goal thriller at the Marshes saw Wanstead record a hugely important victory, taking all three points with a 7-6 win against Wapping to move off the bottom. Debutant George Russell scored a hat-trick, Ibrahim Cardona, Akram Mujuzi, Melvine Boni and Isiaih Farinto also netting for the Stags. Donald Adeosun, Abraham Jairette and Jordon Mills-Smith all struck braces in consolation for the hosts.

In another big game affecting things at the bottom, Athletic Newham A slipped back to the foot of the table after losing at home against fourth placed Renegade, the visitors running out 5-0 winners to take a tenth win of the season. Wellington Ismael scored two with Okwute Izuchukwu, Vincent Follea and Anthony Ralenekov also on the scoresheet.

Eighth placed FC Baresi Reserves have moved closer to survival in the division as they moved to a sixth win of the season on Saturday, beating North East Lions in a 3-0 result at Peter May. Noyan Tajbakhsh scored two with Ronnie Karayianni netting the other to earn their side a vital win in the race to beat the drop.

Over in Seven Kings, hosts London Park City were up against a fellow mid-table outfit as Barkingside Under 21s made the short trip to continue their quests for a higher placed finish. It was a close game, settled by the odd goal in three as City ran out 2-1 winners on the day to record their ninth win this term, moving five points clear of their opponents.


Saturday saw the group stage of the Division One Cup wrapped up with Royal Lions earning the win they needed away at Lymore Gardens Under 23s to move above their opponents to take top spot and a home semi-final. Lions were 5-2 winners, despite a couple of Johneli Lungikisia goals for the hosts who had already secured their place in the last four.

The other game saw Chingford Athletic Reserves complete their cup campaign with a trip to Dagenham, taking on Freetown for the third place position in the group. Cameron St Rose, Joshus Fisayo and Victor Nwagbara all struck for the hosts but those goals proved in vain as Chingford struck four of their own in a 4-3 win.


In the Division Two Cup, the sole group action of the day saw Collier Row Reserves and Dagenham United Reserves in action at Forest Row with the latter knowing they needed a win to ensure they remained in the knockout picture. But Row produced a 4-2 winning performance to end their hopes with Shane Redford scoring twice, Jordan Lee and Celso Da Silva netting too.


There was a huge game at the summit of Division Three at the weekend as Woodford Town Under 23s faced up to a Collier Row Wheels side, the only team with mathematical chances of catching them in the title race. With Town having won the first encounter, they made it a second here, scoring a winner late on to win 2-1. Kai Geere struck with the Wheels goal with Frankie Waker and Kamil Michalik also netting for Town to keep their grip on the race.

That result also enabled Old Parkonians to continue their promotion quest as they entertained cup semi-finalists, Beckton Sporting Club, in east London. Despite their recent improvements, it was Parks who took the win as Charlie Fiander struck four goals, Billy Mason scored two with Aaron Leggett and Burt Cardy.

Completing the league fixture list, Buckhurst Way’s remaining game of the season saw them with a home fixture against Changing Lives. With little to separate the sides on the day, the game ended in a 2-2 draw to share the spoils. Mohammed Dahub and Alan Valle were the scorers on the day for Lives to take a point.

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