First Team - Match centre

Bognor Regis Town
Metropolitan Police
J Muitt (58')
Full time
Unknown (71')
Sat 22 Apr 15:00 - The Ryman Football League - Premier Division Attendance 794

Rocks Miss Out Ryman Premier Title.

Rocks play Wingate & Finchley in play-off semi this Thursday 7.45 pm .

The Rocks could barely have got any closer to winning the Ryman premier title without actually winning it.

For 13 minutes Bognor led 1-0 against Met Police, which with Havant drawing at Kingstonian was enough to take the crown.

But one slack moment at the back allowed the Coppers an equaliser - and try as they might the Rocks could not find a winner.

Rocks v Met Police 22nd April 2017
73 photos

Right up to stoppage time they knocked on the door - and when James Crane went down under a challenge in the box, it seemed it must be a penalty. The referee thought otherwise and waved play on - and that was that.

The title is Havant's and Bognor go into a home play-off semi-final - not the outcome they wanted on the day but still a hell of an achievement for a club who most tipped to struggle or finish in mid-table this season.

The scene was set for a nervy afternoon, and one ending in joy or anguish.

For Bognor or Havant, the Ryman premier title would be the afternoon's prize - for the team finishing second, the prospect of a home play-off semi-final on Thursday evening.

The sun was out on a cool spring afternoon and as expected a large crowd filed into the ground, with the supply of match programmes selling out by 2.30pm.

Sami El-Abd was the notable absentee from the Rocks starting line-up, ruled out in a fitness test, but defender Gary Charman had made a quick recovery from a foot injury to slot into his place in the centre of defence.

Met Police arrived on the coast still needing points to be sure of staying in the Ryman premier.

The Rocks were the ones putting on the early pressure, with Dan Beck unleashing a long-range shot with his left foot that drifted high and wide and then a couple of through-balls causing Met keeper Daly Brannon to come out and hoof clear.

Gary Charman rifled a shot goalwards from 25 yards but it was deflected up in the air by a defender.

Then a nice move involving Dylan Barnett, Doug Tuck and Dan Beck ended in Jamaes Fraser's cross from the right side of the box just eluding Ollie Pearce.

The Met's first threat came on 13 minutes when Dan Lincoln had to move quickly to deny Ollie Robinson as he met a cross to the near post after good work by Charlie Collins and Lloyd Macklin.

Bognor were close to the opener on 16 minutes when Pearce set up Jimmy Wild to cross to the far post, where Jimmy Muitt's volley was hacked away close to the goal-line.

Muitt was next to chance his arm but his half-volley from outside the box was well over.

Met Police were having the odd breakaway but it was Bognor doing most of the attacking and Tuck shot over from 15 yards when the Coppers failed to clear a cross.

The shots kept on coming - and kept on flying out the ground, with Beck the next to fire over from outside the area.

Bognor were on the back foot on 28 minutes as Met Police twice had shots blocked during a scramble in the area that ended with Robinson being booked for reasons not known.

The Rocks went straight to the end and Wild's point-blank header was kept out brilliantly by Brannon as Wild cut back a cross to him at the near post.

Macklin was causing Bognor all sorts of problems in the Met's forward play but the next chance fell to Wild, whose volley was diverted for a corner after good work by Fraser set up the young centre-forward.

A succession of corners as the first half entered its final ten minutes almost brought reward. First Chad Field was close to bundling in Barnett's right-sided corner - then when a Pearce corner was cleared to Barnett, his cross was met by Fraser, his header beat the keeper but came back off the bar and was cleared with Harvey Whyte lurking.

As well as some wayward shooting, the offside flag was the other factor denying Bognor as the first half drew to a rather pedestrian-paced close.

HT 0-0

Bognor began the second half as they had ended the first - on the attack. But too often the final ball was not up to standard.

A Coppers break almost ended in them taking the lead but when Macklin was played in with only Lincoln to beat, the Rocks stopper made a tremendous save to parry away his fierce shot.

Whyte weaved into the area in a Rocks foray down the right and drew a good low save from Brannon.

Fraser couldn't put away the loose ball but the flag was up anyway.

Then Pearce robbed his man and beat two players before releasing Tuck for a shot from an angle that Steve Sutherland headed off the line into the arms of Brannon.

Rocks hearts were in mouths when Barnett headed a Met cross back to Lincoln and almost headed it past him and in - happily the keeper plucked it out of the air.

Finally the breakthrough came on 59 minutes - the Rocks had three efforts at goal in one spell of pressure and after two were blocked, Tuck had the composure to square to Muitt who lashed a fine shot into the top corner.

It sparked great scenes around the ground - and with Havant still drawing at Kingstonian, that put Bognor top of the 'as it stands' table.

The Met immediately made a change, replacing Ahmed Abdulla with Ola Sdgbanmo.

Field picked up a knock while trying to halt a Met attack on 65 minutes and he hobbled off to be replaced by James Crane.

Pearce almost set up number two by jinking his way to the byline and sending a low cross right across the face of goal that no-one could get on the end of.

Met sub Sdgbanmo curled a shot just too high and wide after a Coppers free-kick was lofted into the box.

On71 minutes the Met Police stunned the crowd of 794 with an equaliser.

Bognor were slow to shut down a Met attack down the left and when the cross came in Will Salmon got up to head down and past a scrambling Lincoln.

Bognor responded with another change, with Alex Parsons coming on for Muitt as the crowd came to terms with the massive setback of the equalising goal.

Parsons was almost an instant hero, going close with a diving header.

Whyte and Macklin were booked for a bad-tempered entanglement on 77 minutes as tensions rose.

The Rocks were still seeing most of the play but were now desperate for a second goal and the ball was not falling for them.

Fraser headed over from a Barnett cross as the Rocks pushed.

Darren Budd replaced Beck in the Rocks' final change with ten minutes left.

Roman Michael-Percil was yellow-carded on 88 minutes for hauling down Whyte.

Parsons and Pearce created an opening that ended with Barnett shooting but it was a comfortable save for Brannon.

Then Parsons was sent clear but had too tight an angle to seriously test the keeper with his shot.

The Coppers made another change, Rylan Myers coming on for Robinson.

Macklin broke away in the first minute of injury time and looked he must score as he bore down on Lincoln, but Barnett denied him with a superbly-timed tackle - hurting himself in the process.

A final Met change had Macklin going off for Anthony Kozakis.

Rocks will play Wingate and Finchley in play-off semi on Thursday 27th April . 7.45 pm Kick Off.

Match Report courtesy of The Bognor Regis Observer

Key moments

Goal Jimmy Muitt scores for Bognor Regis Town
Goal Goal for Metropolitan Police

Videos and photos

Rocks v Met Police 22nd April 2017
73 photos


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90:00 Sub Off
Substitution off for Metropolitan Police
90:00 Sub On
Substitution on for Metropolitan Police
87:00 Yellow Card
Yellow card for Metropolitan Police
87:00 Sub On
Substitution on for Metropolitan Police
87:00 Sub Off
Substitution off for Metropolitan Police
80:00 Sub On
Darren Budd is substituted on for Bognor Regis Town
80:00 Sub Off
Dan Beck is substituted off for Bognor Regis Town
77:00 Yellow Card
Harvey Whyte is yellow carded for Bognor Regis Town
77:00 Yellow Card
Yellow card for Metropolitan Police
72:00 Sub On
Alex Parsons is substituted on for Bognor Regis Town
72:00 Sub Off
Jimmy Muitt is substituted off for Bognor Regis Town
71:00 Goal 1 - 1
Goal for Metropolitan Police
65:00 Sub Off
Chad Field is substituted off for Bognor Regis Town
65:00 Sub On
James Crane is substituted on for Bognor Regis Town
59:00 Sub On
Substitution on for Metropolitan Police
59:00 Sub Off
Substitution off for Metropolitan Police
58:00 Goal 1 - 0
Jimmy Muitt scores for Bognor Regis Town
End of period 1
28:00 Yellow Card
Yellow card for Metropolitan Police
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Bognor Regis Town
  • Metropolitan Police
  • 0
  • Yellow Card 28:00'
  • Jimmy Muitt Goal 58:00'
  • Sub Off 59:00'
  • Sub On 59:00'
  • Chad Field Sub Off 65:00'
  • James Crane Sub On 65:00'
  • Goal 71:00'
  • Alex Parsons Sub On 72:00'
  • Jimmy Muitt Sub Off 72:00'
  • Harvey Whyte Yellow Card 77:00'
  • Yellow Card 77:00'
  • Darren Budd Sub On 80:00'
  • Dan Beck Sub Off 80:00'
  • Sub On 87:00'
  • Sub Off 87:00'
  • Yellow Card 87:00'
  • Sub On 90:00'
  • Sub Off 90:00'

Team selection

League round up

League table

# Team Pl Pts
1. Havant & Waterlooville 46 94
2. Bognor Regis Town 46 92
3. Dulwich Hamlet 46 80
4. Enfield Town 46 76
5. Wingate & Finchley 46 75
6. Tonbridge Angels 46 74
7. Leiston 46 73


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