Tue 20
1st Team
O Akinsanya (22'), (63'), (66'), T Boxer (59')
T Boxer (16' OG), (52' OG)
Ware 4 Barking 2

Ware 4 Barking 2

By Stephen King
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Another six-goal thriller as Akinsanya scores a hat trick.

It's early days but there were definite signs of another successful season for Ware in this hard fought match. They looked very good going forward but there were still nervous moments whenever Barking broke quickly.

Paul Halsey was pleased to have Leigh Rose back in action to complete a strong midfield line up. Rose had a good game and now looks a long way from the slight young man who first played for Ware eight years ago. His strong tackling set up a number of good chances for the front runners but a second half injury ended his participation in the game.

And what about those front men? Liam Hope has arrived as a proven scorer over a number of seasons but has forgone the chance to adopt a position of superiority. Instead he has settled in as a team player alongside Olu Akinsanya with whom he feels there is a good understanding on the field.

They seem to be sharing the goals and if Hope was the main man on Saturday against Staines, Tuesday night belonged to Akinsanya with three goals. It's just as well that the tall number nine has struck form as Hope is unavailable for the next three fixtures.

Things are less sure at the back as Barking's opening goal on 16 minutes demonstrated. A long clearance down the middle after a Ware attack saw Tom Boxer trying to shield the ball from Nana Boakye-Yiadom whilst running towards his own goal as Charlie Crowley advanced from his line. Neither seemed sure who should take responsibility with the net result that Boxer nodded the ball past Crowley and into the net.

That lack of understanding is a problem that should be capable of ironing out but all through the first half and much of the second there was always a feeling that Barking were capable of opening up the home defence. They had already prised the door open before that goal and Boakye-Yiadom's shot from inside the six yard area was only denied by Louis Rose's last ditch block that brought loud claims for handball from the visitors.

But Ware were moving the ball around well at times and as early as the third minute Hope had a good chance that Montel Joseph could only push away. Five minutes later Hope's cross from the left found Akinsanya but the big man's volley went wide. Next up was some good interplay between Harry Norman, Leigh Rose and Hope which ended with Hope firing across the face of the Barking goal.

Going a goal behind didn't seem to impair Ware's play and they got their reward after 22 minutes. Leigh Rose was on the end of Tom Bruno's pass and played in Akinsanya whose shot from wide had the power to find the net despite Joseph getting a hand to it. Rose almost scored with a header close to half time after Gareth Madden's tackle robbed the ball from Barking but almost immediately Barking broke and Boakye-Yiadom fired high over the bar when well placed.

The opening period of the second half found Ware still in the changing rooms as Barking started to dominate play. They had the ball in the net only to be ruled offside but made sure after 52 minutes. A corner from Ware's right went to the far post and in the scramble that followed the ball went in off the unfortunate Tom Boxer.

Three minutes later and Bruno picked up a yellow card. He played the ball forward just before being hit by an onrushing Barking player. When all had settled down Ware were awarded a free kick and Bruno his card. It was not clear from my position what he had done.

His actions were much clearer on the hour when he put a cross into the Barking box and there was Boxer coming in to meet it with a first time shot past Joseph for Ware's equaliser. It was a hat trick of sorts and also the start of a seven minute spell that put the game in Ware's hands.

On 63 minutes it was Bruno again with a ball forward to Akinsanya who got the better of his defender to open up a clear shot. Supporters are learning that he doesn't miss these opportunities and Joseph was given no chance.

At this point the game had followed the same scoring order as Saturday's when Ware had dropped two points by conceding a later equaliser. Not this time however and on 66 minutes Ware put themselves two goals clear. Hope laid the ball into Patrick Adamson's path and his cross was met at the near post by Akinsanya, jumping to divert it home with the outside of his right foot. His hat trick is Ware's first since Brandon Adams' in the 7-2 defeat of Bracknell last December.

For a while there was still the sense that a Barking goal was still possible and would lead to a nervous finish but as both sides wheeled on their substitutes the belief seemed to seep slowly from the visitors. It was left to Ware to come closest to another goal first when Hope appeared to be tripped in the area but the referee turned down appeals for a penalty and then when Boxer headed against the Barking bar.

And so the final whistle came leaving Ware in seventh place in the fledgling table and joint highest scorers.

Ware: Charlie Crowley, Harry Norman, Patrick Adamson, Tom Boxer, Gareth Madden, Louis Rose, Jason Brown, Leigh Rose (Andrew Bennett 76mins), Olu Akinsanya, Liam Hope (Jordon Watson 88mins), Tom Bruno. Unused subs: Harry Watkins, Tobi Adekunle, Imani Matthews.

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Match details

Match date

Tue 20, Aug 2019






South Central Division

League position

Olu Akinsanya

Player of the match

Olu Akinsanya