Clapton claim another late win
PUBLISHED: 08:34 27 November 2016
Redbridge 3 Clapton 4
Clapton came out on top in a seven-goal thriller at Essex Senior League rivals Redbridge thanks to another late winner.
Tons had come from behind to beat Enfield with an injury-time Fahad Nyanja goal a week earlier and took the points this time after Ryan Reed also struck in stoppage time.
In an extraordinary game which at times was as free flowing as a kickabout in the park, Clapton’s players stars shone at both ends of the pitch, with each of the four forwards scoring and goalkeeper Richie Robins producing a number of high-class saves.
Redbridge, who had been unbeaten in November before this game, were under pressure early as Dylan Ebengo’s first-minute header from a free-kick struck the post.
But it would be the home side who scored first on seven minutes, with the Tons conceding in unfortunate circumstances.
Redbridge’s Bryan Kyungu was played through into the box and pulled the ball back to Jacob Dingli, who looked certain to score from just five yards out only to be thwarted by a fantastic reflex save from Robins.
But the ball rebounded in off a Clapton defender to give Motormen the lead.
Undeterred, Clapton pressed and got their just rewards after two bits of individual brilliance for the equaliser.
The ball was cleared from a corner to Raphael Duyile, who ten looked up and fizzed a 20-yard pinpoint pass into the path of Stefan Nielsen for him to control it with a deft touch and fire home in the tenth minute.
Adulation quickly turned to frustration just two minutes later as Clapton were behind once again when sloppy defending, from a free-kick hoisted into the box, allowed Dingli space to lash home and restore the home side’s lead.
Clapton almost levelled straight from the restart, as Duyile’s header was saved well and the rebound bundled in, only for the linesman’s flag to be raised.
But Duyile was not to be denied on 18 minutes as he ghosted past the Redbridge left-back and struck home via a deflection to make the score 2-2 and top off a frantic first 20 minutes.
Clapton looked the better side before the break, but Redbridge came closest to taking the lead into the interval when a cross from the left found Lee Weemes a few yards out, but Robins was to the rescue once again, producing another splendid save.
Both teams had big chances to score early in the second half, but Nielsen was unable to convert a cross from just seven yards and Redbridge’s Weemes was denied by the heroic Robins after goinig through one-on-one.
Clapton took the lead for the first time on 69 minutes, though, when Ajani Domingo-Carrington profited from a defensive error and showed his finishing prowess.
But the lead would only last a minute as Redbridge replied instantly, with Weemes played in again and netting at the third time of asking after his first two attempts were blocked.
With the score deadlocked at 3-3, the game was set for an enthralling last 20 minutes as both teams pushed for the winner.
Tons went close late on when Reed made a surging run and hit a great cross to Carrington, whose shot was blocked, with the rebound falling to Bradley Joseph and his effort cleared behind.
A Clapton header was cleared off the line from the resulting corner and, after a goalmouth scramble, the ball fell to Reed to smash home and spark jubilant scenes.
Tons keeper Robins said: “It’s an incredible feeling to win late like that. We were a bit sloppy at times in defence, but i thought we attacked really well and never gave up, which is good.
“I picked up a knock before the game so to perform well feels extra special. I think we have the squad here to push for the league, if all the players stay.
“We are on a roll at the moment and I feel that Barking will slip up and drop some points along the way, so I think we can really challenge them.”
Clapton get a chance to test their credentials against the leaders as they visit Barking for a Brasted Memorial Trophy tie on Tuesday, in a repeat of the 2015 final which they lost.
Clapton: Robins, Vigo, Awoderu, Lyndon, Ebengo, Blackwood, Nielsen (Ashman), Jairette (Sardinha), Domingo-Carrington, Duyile (Joseph), Reed. Unused subs: Haighton, Rene.
London Bari 2 West Essex 2
Bari bagged another point at the Old Spotted Dog after recording their third successive 2-2 draw.
The visitors took the lead on 10 minutes when Josh Kane ran on to a through ball and slotted home and they saw Jack Coker save a Bari penalty after Kane was penalised for handball.
But the home side did get back on terms with a scrappy goal, before West Essex regained the lead five minutes into the second half when Ben Clarke fired home from fully 30 yards.
Bari battled back for a second time, though, and ensured honours would finish even when a free-kick from the edge of the box was fired under the defensive wall and into the bottom corner of the net 10 minutes from time.
The two sides are due to meet again on Tuesday in a Brasted Memorial Trophy match.
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