Seasiders 4 Haverhill Boro' 0

Thurlow Nunn League

Premier Division

Saturday 24th March 2018

Pictures Courtesy Stan Baston

Three successive home defeats have seen our substantial lead at the top of the Premier Division whittled away and a fourth would have seen it reduced to just two points, with Coggeshall in hot form right on our tails with three games in hand, so this win brought a huge sigh of relief to the faithful supporters who again turned out in numbers to support the side, and got a response from the players on the pitch. I thought 200+ braving the conditions last week was a brilliant turn-out, and Saturday’s 360 crowd outnumbered all the Bostik North attendances, all the Bostik South, bar one, and six of the thirteen Bostik Premier division games played. Thanks Everyone!






  The pitch again looked in good nick, thanks to some hard work from Richard, our groundsman, and his son, and conditions were good considering all the poor weather he had suffered over the past few weeks.

It was great to see the junior mascots from the clubs under 10’s accompanying the side as they shook hands with the opposition, and looking at their faces, the youngsters thoroughly enjoyed the occasion, although I think the pre-match chips may have helped!

There were three changes to the side that lost against Newmarket, with club captain Rhys Barber returning at the heart of the defence, Stuart Boardley coming into midfield and Ethan Clarke replacing Stuart Ainsley at left back.

The Seasiders started the game on the front foot, forcing a couple of early corners, one of which caught Joe Francis in a delicate place to take the wind out of sails for a couple of minutes but he got up to get very involved in the game’s third corner after just six minutes. Taking the flag kick, but playing it short to Taylor Hastings who played a neat one-two with Francis before collecting the ball on the dead ball line and delivering a low hard cross into the heart of the six yard box, where Miles Powell stooped low at the far post to get a firm header on target and open the scoring with just six minutes on the clock, giving the side an early grip on the game that they never relinquished, despite the visitors looking a much improved side in the second half, but chasing a three goal half time deficit, another home shock never looked likely to happen.

It was Powell’s 28th goal of the season, and one wonders what might have been had he not missed so many games through injury - it was also the Seasiders 100th in the league this season to keep them right up there, firmly in the top ten step 5 sides in the country on the goals for chart.

The lead was doubled in the 13th minute, when Joe Francis fired home from the penalty spot after Borough’s Rory Bone was penalised for a trip on Callum Bennett when the danger looked to have passed as the Seasiders worked a sweeping move that looked to be running out of legs, and it was 3-0, again from the penalty spot and Francis, just before the half hour when the visitors’ captain, Jarid Robson, upended Miles Powell in the area.

Staines should have pulled a goal back for the visitors before the break, but saw his effort across Crump as he cut in from the left, crash against the inside of the far post and bounce kindly back into the Seasiders’ custodian’s arms.

It was almost four in the 35th minute when Bennett was halted on the edge of the area in a central position and Francis bent the ball around the wall but just wide of Conroy’s right hand post.

Borough thought they had got a penalty of their own in the 39th minute when referee Callum Walchester blew up for what everyone thought was a foul inside the area, but he awarded the visitors an indirect free-kick a yard inside the area for a high foot, while also raising a yellow card for both Felixstowe’s Hastings and Borough’s Rory Bone, both for verbals! Nothing came of the kick, and the half ended with the Seasiders comfortably in charge.

The visitors came out for the second period looking a different side, full of energy and effort, seemingly deciding the best form of defence was attack, and Crump had to be at his best to deny Bone, who had been the visitors best player in the first half as he broke clear and got a shot on target.

Matt Staines put his close range effort wide off the target when he looked an odds on bet to score, and with Ally Conway looking lively down the Haverhill left flank, the home side had to work hard to deny their visitors an opening.

Having rode out the pressure in the opening 15 minutes of the second period, the Seasiders were back on the attack as the hour mark approached. Kye Ruel replaced Boardley and his first involvement found him clear of the Haverhill defence and one on one with Conroy. Ruel will be disappointed not to have finished the move with a goal, but Conroy did well to spread himself and block the Seasiders sub’s shot, turning it away, and Scott Chaplin following up saw his attempt rattle the cross bar and go over for a goal-kick.

Cameron Watson placed his header wide of the target at the other end from a Borough corner and Jarid Robson drilled an effort wide of the target, but Conroy was the busier of the two keepers in the closing stages but could do little in the 90th minute to deny Sam Ford, who had replaced Powell in the 75th minute as he made space on the left and curled a great effort across and round Conroy to add the fourth goal.

It’s the long road to Clipbush Park, home of Fakenham Town on Tuesday evening, where another win could be crucial as Coggeshall travel the much shorter distance to FC Clacton on the same evening. Anyone able to get there, your support would be greatly appreciated!!