Tons of joy for boss Wilfred

Clapton 1 Barking 0

A FIRST-HALF strike from Godfrey Unkuro-Ero was enough to condemn Barking to a surprise defeat at the hands of Essex Senior League strugglers Clapton on Saturday.

With regular goalkeeper Chris Clarke sidelined through illness, Steve Munday handed a league debut to Danny Fowler, who proved to be the shining light on an otherwise grim day with a string of fine saves.

However, the stand-in stopper was powerless to prevent Clapton’s winner, as Unkuro-Ero was left unmarked by the Barking defence and powered home on 17 minutes.

At the other end, Clapton custodian Allan Karago was in fine form as The Blues launched an assault on the home side’s goal in a bid to find the equaliser.

Karago was on hand to save efforts from Lee Pyne and Jason Kane, before twice denying Chas Liddiard a dream goalscoring return after three months out with an ankle ligament injury.

The Blues came closest to levelling in the dying minutes, but Craig Greenwood (pictured above) saw his shot come back off the post, as Barking suffered their eighth league defeat of the season.

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Munday felt his side were unlucky not to find a late equaliser, but will not be dwelling on the result as he prepares his side for a gruelling month, which sees eight scheduled games including a trip to high-flying Bethnal Green United on Saturday.

“Our keeper made three saves in the game. In the last 20 minutes we were camped inside their half, but it didn’t fall for us, it just wasn’t going to be our day,” said Munday.

“The boys know our performance wasn’t good enough, we were looking for three points to try and get on a little roll, but we can’t dwell on it too much because the games are coming thick and fast now. We’ve got lots of games coming up, so I will be rotating the team.

“Neil Day’s over at Bethnal Green now and it will be nice to see him again. It will be another tough game for us, but the games between the two sides always tend to be close ones.”