Essex Senior League: Clapton give fans early Christmas present with win at FC Romania
PUBLISHED: 09:30 22 December 2016
Jay Knight’s double earns Tons a seventh consecutive away win in the division in their final match of 2016
A brace from new signing Jay Knight gave Clapton and their supporters some early Christmas cheer at FC Romania in the Essex Senior League last night.
Jon Fowell’s team had gone three games without a win at the Old Spotted Dog with the Ultras boycotting home matches due to an increase in ticket prices without warning and the introduction of invasive security checks prior to entry into the stadium.
But their form on the road in the division had been remarkable and that continued at Theobalds Lane.
The Tons were forced to put outfield player and captain Jerry Jairette in goal with Richie Robins departing the club two days earlier.
And therefore an extremely tough evening was anticipated up against a team that hadn’t lost since October 8.
But with the Ultras present due to the fixture being away, Clapton made a bright start and went ahead two minutes before half time.
Knight, who had impressed for Redbridge earlier in the campaign, bundled the ball over the line following a corner.
The Tons headed into half-time with the lead, yet knew they’d come under pressure after the break.
It proved to be the case and FC Romania equalised from the spot after a foul inside the penalty area.
But Clapton responded and went close to retaking the lead when Knight fired just past the post.
Then 10 minutes from time they did go ahead when Knight smashed in after Nathan Cook’s effort was saved.
FC Romania, who were unbeaten in 14 matches before the game, struggled to find a response with Tons nearly adding to their advantage before full time.
Despite a lengthy stoppage after an injury to Clapton’s Dylan Ebengo, the full time whistle did finally occur in Cheshunt.
Fowell’s team had ended FC Romania’s undefeated run and in the process earned a seventh consecutive away league win all with an outfield player in goal.
Clapton move up to third following the victory and play next on January 3 when Basildon United visit the Old Spotted Dog.
“What a fantastic performance. No goalkeeper, right-back or left-back and still we should have won by at least four. Top performance from all the boys,” said Fowell.
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