Clapton 0 Newbury Forest 2
Buildbase FA Vase 2nd Qualifying Round
Saturday 15th September
Newbury Forest pulled off a shock result on Saturday as the Eastern Senior League outfit booked their first ever appearance in the 1st Round of the FA Vase by putting in a battling performance that saw them soak up a lot of second half pressure, while at the other end taking their chances when they presented themselves.
The Tons got off to a frantic start, holding most of the possession and went mightily close in the 4th minute when Warren Isoka had a shot that was only inches away from the target. But despite buzzing around the Newbury box they were not able to test Olle Bessex and his defence, with a Ryan Reed effort that was drilled into the side-netting just before the quarter hour mark being the only effort of note that the Tons could conjure up.
Newbury Forest looked threatening on the break, with Andy Adomakoh looking particularly dangerous as he looked to use his speed to get beyond the Clapton backline. He was able to do this on a number of occasions, but the Assistant Referee on the far side thwarted him by raising his flag, bringing some cries of despair from the Newbury dug-out as at least two of the decisions against Adomakoh looked to have halted a perfectly legitimate forward move.
But those signs showed that the visitors carried a threat and a decent cross from Kingdom Dawson almost bore fruit as Jack Francis spilled the ball, but luckily for the Tons their keeper was quickly able to rectify his error before Jason Reynolds-Blanche could capitalise. At the other end Bessex was no more than a spectator as Jason Kromann fired a shot wildly the post and then Ryan Reed drilled a shot that was way too high – neither shot requiring the Newbury keeper to do any work.
Adomakoh then delivered a peach of a cross in the 24th minute that was met by a powerful Reynolds-Blanche header that eluded Francis and handed Newbury Forest a 1-0 lead.
And having taken the lead the visitors then rallied again with Nick Loblack putting in a great challenge to clear away a Reynolds-Blanche shot, with the resulting corner being cleared, or so it seemed, as Freddie Anderson then unleashed a powerful shot from 30 yards that thumped against Clapton’s crossbar. And in the 41st minute Newbury went close again when a Reynolds-Blanche shot swerved past Francis and almost made its way into the top right hand corner. A long range freekick from Anderson was also well saved by Francis.
Bessex was finally called upon in the final moments of the half, pulling off a great save to keep the Tons out just before the break, as a well worked move ended in Kromann hitting a low shot that the Newbury stopper parried. There was just enough time for Kromann to have two further efforts; first a shot that he fired narrowly wide, then a header which he put over the bar. The half time whistle came when Clapton were having their best spell of goalmouth action.
Clapton needed to get back into the game and went at their opponents right from the re-start, with Dylan Gordon-Broadley coming on at half-time and immediately making himself a nuisance to the Newbury defence. It was he that set up Kromann early in the half, with the resulting shot being tipped around the post by Bessex.
But having done a good deed, Gordon-Broadley then delivered a wayward pass that was picked up by Tyrone Baker and a Newbury counter-attack was launched, with Baker’s cross seeing Reynolds-Blanche play a dummy that wrong-footed the Clapton defence, allowing the ball to come to Adomakoh whose effort from outside the box was blocked by the Clapton keeper.
However Bessex was certainly a lot busier in the second period, as he tipped away a Kromann shot and then pulled off a superb diving save to palm away a Reed volley. With an hour now played it looked to be only a matter of time before Clapton equalised but Newbury’s defence dug in and in the 65th minute a Reed free kick was parried by Bessex and then hooked clear by Sean Crossley. Clapton continued to press but Newbury’s defence soaked it up.
Gordon-Broadley was able to pace his way into Newbury’s box in the 75th minute but then lost his footing and the opportunity went begging. Clapton went even closer when Andrei Toader hit the post; Steve Sardinia had a shot blocked and then Bessex tipped a Jason Ajoodha header over the bar.
Football matches are not won on chances created, but on chances converted and Newbury Forest were awarded a golden opportunity to put the game to bed in the 84th minute after a sweeping move ended up with Alex Nicoll being felled in the box. Reynolds-Blanche stepped up and smashed the penalty into the back of the net.
Clapton now had a real mountain to climb, and needed to get a goal back quickly if they then wanted to get themselves a reprieve. They were not able to do this and will be probably ruing at the fact that they were not able to turn their second half dominance into goals. Newbury however put in a good solid team performance and now look forward to Monday’s 1st Round draw.
Clapton: Jack Francis, Lanre Vigo, Giovanni Palmer, Dominic Shepherd, Nick Loblack, Steven Sardinia, Andrei Toader (Valentine Iheanyiogu 70’), Jason Ajoodha, Jacob Kromann, Warren Isoka (Dylan Gordon-Broadley 46’), Ryan Reed.
Newbury Forest: Ollie Bessex, Kingdom Dawson, Enoch Freeman(Ansa-Effioum Edem 77’), Joseph Adewunwi, Sean Crossley (Capt), Freddie Anderson, Andy Adomakoh (Alex Nicoll 82’), Jamal Khan, Jason Reynolds-Blanche, Kieran Huddart, Tyrone Baker.
Scorer – Jason Reynolds-Blanche (24’, 84’p).