Buckhurst Hill            3 Broxbourne               1

Starting formation 4-4-2

Firstly, I’m sure you will all agree that we should all spare a thought for the families of the 3 West Ham fans, who lost their lives traveling to West Bromwich Albion yesterday. This tragic event, for me, puts every type of sport and their loyal supporters into humbling perspective.

Before the match the manager took me to one side and said to me that he thought that the boys ‘didn’t seem up for it today and it would take a wake up-call to spur them into action’. Unfortunately, this proved to be the case.

On a mild but somewhat grey day Buckhurst Hill Football club was a very vibrant place with several important matches being played by before and after our encounter with Broxbourne FC. The first hint of an eventful match came when we noticed the referee walking towards our allotted pitch. He had assured several back room staff and coaches that he was indeed an ex-Essex league referee, in which era he failed to say!!

First Half

The game started with Broxbourne pressuring the midfield. Redhead won a quick free kick, which was easily dealt with by the keeper. Broxbourne play the ball out of defence and quickly play some neat passes down their right hand side and angle a swift ball into our 6-yard box, which is coolly met by their striker and neatly put into the net for a goal after only 3mins of play. 1-0

From the re-start Jessop intercepts a Broxbourne midfield player and neatly passes it to Redhead who glides past 3 players only to see his powerful low shot to the keepers left pushed past the post; a good save by their keeper. Which did his mum loudly praise.... :)

Broxbourne continue to dominate the midfield and this causes some panic within the Hill team resulting in some bad decision making, which the opposition seize on to take control of the game.

In a slightly bizarre run of play BH give away a throw. The Broxbourne player makes a foul throw, only for our own player who retakes the throw in to make another foul throw. Which sums up the game so far. With BH chasing the game in midfield we are committing, (in the refs eyes), far too many needless free-kicks which thankfully are not capitalised on by the opposition.

On 18mins the manger decides to change the line up of the BH team and in positive move brings two players off (Emerson and Bolton) replaces them with Swan and Brookes. This proves to be an inspired move as within 1min BH win a corner and Brookes delightful corner goes straight in without a single touch or deflection. 1-1

Straight from the resumption of play BH seem to have more pace and strength in their game especially from Swan. What a difference a goal makes to the overall confidence of the boys.

On 24mins Broxbourne give away a cheap free-kick on the half way line and Harris receives the ball and passes it to Swan who neatly controls it a and spins around to crack a half volley into the bottom left of the opposition goal. 2-1

The next 5mins see some great interplay with all the BH team playing out of their own half with great one touch football to feet creating space and opportunity and press Broxbourne back into their half. This pressure results in several corners being awarded to BH. The referee feels it necessary to talk to several players about the jostling and pushing in the goal area, but to me, this proves that BH have woken up to the fact that they are in a football match.

Broxbourne try to a succession of attacks into the BH half. But these were confidently handled in defence by Harrison (who had a great game today), Jessop (who was playing with an injury), Barrett H (solid) and King (who got better and better as the game progressed), together with the midfield of Johnson (who was increasingly making his presence felt) with Redhead and Harris making decisive forays into the oppositions half.

Second Half

The second half saw BH come out quick, fast and determined, I’m sure the manager had a good team talk on the pitch with the boys. However the at times rather inconsistent referee was stopping the free flowing game our boys were trying to play.

On 50mins of play, a delightful passage saw a well taken goal kick from Barrett S reach Barrett B who made a run down the right hand side and passed it to Swan, he skipped passed a defender and laid it back to Barrett H who  had carried on his run and passed into the box towards their keeper, who uncharacteristically fumbled it. Swan managed to get the ball and again passed it to Barrett H who passed it to Harris miss-kicked his first shot, but regained composure to blast it past the goalkeeper. 3-1

This brought some daylight between the two teams. However BH could not become complacent, as Broxbourne did not let this considerable change in their fortune dampen their attitude and continued to press forward at every opportunity. The tempo of the game dropped, but the tenacity of the defence and the continued interplay in the middle of the park and attack kept the supporters well entertained.

On 68mins the manager decided on a further change of personnel in the team and bought Bolton and Emerson back on for Harris and Ewing. At the same time the sun came out but the temperature fell as well.

Broxbourne continue to press but BH are in control of the situation. With some good defence there is only one more shot on goal from Broxbourne. At the other end encouraging signs of good interplay between Midfield and Forwards retain the ball in the opposite end. On 72mins Harris replaces The impressive Harrison.

One scuffed shot from Swan and shots from Redhead and Brookes which both go wide see out the game with the final result of 3-1