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Westfield 1
Frith (22')
0 Beaconsfield Town
Westfield vs Beaconsfield 261019

Time runs out for Rams in FA Trophy

Courtesy and Copyright Beaconsfield Town FC website 

It was impossible to make the usual notes holding an umbrella and a camera in mostly torrential rain so this report is drawn from memory and looking at the pictures. I didn’t have a team sheet.

Before we start I’d like to share a thought with referees, not just Saturdays official but Referees in general.

Teams time waste because it is now an effective tactic. It will continue to work as long as officials let it. It is tedious. It ruins the spectacle and shortchanges the supporters.I don’t like it when Beaconsfield do it and trust me they have their moments but often the level of moaning about it outweighs the actual severity of the offence.

It’s really very easy to deal with. A couple of occasions where we play twelve minutes added on time would settle it pretty swiftly especially if the results were shaped in and by added time.

Either that or have the clock controlled by an official off the field who can stop it when appropriate as is the case in both codes of Rugby and all American sports. At present refs love to make a big Mike Deane ™ theatrical gesture to show the watch being stopped. Has anyone ever seen this before the 60th minute? There’s the rub.  

On Saturday afternoon the home side began time wasting after four minutes and reached laughable levels where a player was eventually yellow carded, which I’ve never seen at this level. So you get the picture.  

Yet added time was 5 minutes. If we allow that 30 seconds is allotted per substitution, goal etc., five minutes amounts to two extra minutes. Even if the fact that two subs were made at half-time takes a minute back, when one of the home substitutions takes over two minutes why wouldn’t you waste time?  It works. Unless and until the advantages are removed it will continue to fester.

It reached a point that on Saturday I came away with the view that Westfield are a team I would actively avoid watching again who play in a cross between an Eastern Bloc sports centre and a municipal recyling facility which I have no wish ever to visit again.

As someone once said, “If they were playing in my back garden I’d draw the curtains”. Which is a pity because on this evidence when they bothered to play they can be half decent in an attacking sense. Their off-side trap needs work though.

They have pace and enthusiasm and a central striking partnership capable of giving anyone a difficult afternoon. They could have been two nil up here before taking the lead in the 20th minute, but for Myles Bowman and despite Beaconsfield dominating possession and seemingly having the time and space to play some of the better approach football we’ve seen this season.  Ade Shokunbi and Jordan Ajanlekoko continued their partnership from Tuesday night and carved out chances for Tyrell Mitford and Reece Yorke both of whom were thwarted by Ross in the home goal.

In the 20th minute somewhat against the run of play, if not quality of chances, Blackmore’s cross shot was beaten out by Bowman. Frith reacted quickest and slammed in the rebound from 15 yards despite the combined efforts of Ryan Parsons and Mayo Balogun. 

Despite the score-line Beaconsfield remained on top and Ross was the busier goalkeeper as the visitors bypassed the home sides attempts at an offside trap at will. The Rams though were lacking a finish for their approach play no more so than when Brendan Matthew dithered over a one on one chance allowing Ross to dive at his feet and snatch the ball from his toe.

Half time 1-0

The second half opened with a bang. Shokunbi rode a horrendous high and late challenge from right back Dean who spent most of the second half diving into challenges, probably because the first effort went unpenalised. Being charitable you could give the official credit for playing the advantage. However, as he failed to come back to deal with the incident it’s difficult to support that line of argument. As play progressed, half time substitute, Kaine Kennedy-Sinclair was involved in a challenge with Carter. As the defender slid in to make his challenge Kennedy-Sinclair stepped over the ball and down onto the defender’s ankle. A foul? Yes probably. Malicious? No [you can look at the picture sequence] Kennedy-Sinclair never took his eyes off the ball. Certainly not a stamp as was claimed by the prostrate Carter and colleagues. One of those things, a coming together, certainly not deliberate but worthy of a yellow card in the view of the ref. Probably fair enough in the final analysis.

Beaconsfield continued to expose the frailty of the home offside trap and The Rams other half time substitute, Shawnikki Clement-Peter, twice broke clear to chase through balls which narrowly beat him to the waiting gloves of Ross at the edge of his area. 

Then Kennedy Sinclair broke through to be met by the keeper 40 yards from goal sliding in fractionally ahead of the youngster to clear.

In between the home team, still potent on the break, had efforts from Watson and Blackmore strike the outside of a post and clip the bar.

Beaconsfield continued to press and on 75 minutes Clement-Peter again sprung the offside trap, drew Ross from his line and laid the ball across goal for Matthew who could not make good contact and skewed the ball wide of the post from 8 yards.

Then Peters himself lunging in beyond the far post headed a skidding Louis Stead cross narrowly wide of the post.

Meanwhile Ujkaj, already booked for comedy time wasting, launched a tackle from behind on Matthew. He left his feet about five feet away and swept through the striker two footed, taking man and ball from behind. As sanction? He received a stiff talking too and no hint of the deserved second yellow.

Unsurprisingly in the pervading atmosphere of sportsmanship thus far created, the incident enraged the Beaconsfield bench and prompted the classy opposition bench to speculate loudly on the employment prospects of their “feeling the pressure?” opponents. 

Some times it isn’t your day. Beaconsfield are better than this and on any other day would have won handsomely.

Westfield are probably better than this too. To be honest they need to be.

Rams Man of the Match - Ade Shokunbi

Published Monday 28th October 2019