Youthful Abbott's Progress In Essex Senior Cup
By Ryan Handley
Round 4 Beckons!
A youthful Abbey side took on Basildon Utd FC in the 3rd round of the Essex Senior Cup which was billed as "The Battle of the Table Toppers" and came out as 4-2 winners. A number of changes was made to the side after last Saturdays league game including Daniel Aristidou returning to the squad and a number of players from the reserves given the chance to shine including David Asante Boatang who made his debut leading the forward line. Basildon Utd FC who were unbeaten and sitting at the top of the Bostik North Division, went virtually full strength.
The game didn't start of the best for The Abbott's as we were 1-0 down within 3 minutes and David Tarawali sustained an injury in the build up to the Basildon goal. So best laid plans went out of the window and young Charlie Thomas went into the back line to partner Ricky Brennan. This early set back didn't seem to faze The Abbotts as we drew level with a cracking effort from Timothy Ogunrinde. Billy Holland picked up the ball in midfield and sent a lovely through ball for Tim to chase down the right. After getting the ball under control, he cut inside and unleashed a left foot curler that soared into the top corner. The game was very even with a chances coming from each side until the second goal for The Abbott's come through some lovely football through the middle. This resulted in Ibrahim Kehinde finding Daniel Aristidou on the left hand side of the penalty area who gleefully made it 3 goals in 3 apperances! A reoccurence of Reece Morgan's thigh injury meant that another young reserve team player Joseph Lane was introduced into the team on the 33rd minute.
Basildon pushed hard at us at the beginning of the second half and we did well to stand up to the pressure once again. Ricky Brennan and Charlie Thomas were being tested by the Basildon number 9 and the one time he got away from them, he made it 2-2. In the 65th minute, The Abbott's had a corner on the left hand side and Robert Clark produced a precise ball into David Asante Boatang to head home on his first team debut and make it 3-2 to The Abbotts. Basildon came at us again and threw everything but the kitchen sink! They were thwarted a number of times by brilliant defending by all and also the crossbar when they got through on one occasion. Basildon were not able to make this pressure count and The Abbott's were able to increase the lead when Robert Clark lobbed the Basildon keeper from 35 yards after great pressure from the front men. Jeff Okirie replaced David Asante Boatang and The Abbott's went through to the 4th round of the Essex Senior Cup.
Manager Mark Stimson said "I was extremely delighted to go through against a full strength Basildon side that are flying at the moment. We decided to give a number of reserve team players their debuts today and they all did well. It's pleasing to go through to the next round of this cup as you never know who we will face. We have a couple of weeks to rest and hopefully get our injured players back for when we go to Chipstead in the league."