Northwood Res. 3  Uxbridge Res. 2

Thursday 25th April 2013


Premier B Division
Northwood Park
Team line-up


1 Garry Malone
2 Alex Ishola
3 Adam Zaberosa
4 Eric Nyarko
5 Corey Ellis
6 Theo Hunte
7 Dennis Nortey (65m)
8 Lewis Davis
9 Hisham El Haddad
10 Adam El Haddad  
11 Fraser Robbins (79m)  
12 Matt Cooper (79m)  
14 Rocky Baptiste (65m)  
15 Ahmed Mahfouz  
16 -  
17 -  

Northwood Reserves were forced to make a number of changes for this game, which saw them line up against a physically bigger Uxbridge side that had a height advantage in almost every position on the pitch. However, unlike previous outings, Northwood started the game well and had their first chance to open the scoring within two minutes of the kick off when good work from Lewis Davis found Hisham El Haddad in space just outside the box. However, his snap shot from the edge of the area was saved comfortably by the Uxbridge keeper.

Eight minutes later more good work by Davies opened up an opportunity for himself twenty yards out, but the ball sailed just over the bar and behind for a goal kick. Northwood were playing really good football on the ground to negate Uxbridge's height advantage and were dominating the game with slick passing in the opening quarter that led to two more good chances in the 15th and 20th minutes for Theo Hunte and Davis, who were unlucky not to score with fine efforts that were blocked and deflected wide for corners.

The early pressure paid off in the 28th minute when a corner dropped to H El Haddad, who was perched on the left hand edge of the six yard box; his composed guided shot into the right hand corner of the goal opened the scoring. Davis almost made it two in the 36th minute when he picked up the ball on the halfway line before driving forward past three Uxbridge defenders and shooting from thirty yards out, just inches past the upright.

Uxbridge had their first real effort thwarted on 38 minutes when a dangerous in swinging corner was punched clear of the box by Garry Malone to set up a quick counter attack that ended with what looked like a stonewall penalty; unfortunately for Northwood the referee waved play on and Uxbridge were able to recover and clear the danger. Six minutes later a fantastic free kick from Adam Zaberosa found the head of Corey Ellis unmarked in the penalty area, and his powerful effort finished only inches over the bar.

With half time approaching Uxbridge had a great chance to level the scores when their striker found himself in space with only Malone to beat. Malone spread himself forcing the striker to cut the ball back; and gave Alex Ishola the opportunity to recover and clear the danger and feed the ball to Adam El Haddad; he carried the ball into the opposition box, beating two defenders before squaring his pass to Ellis, who slotted home from two yards out to send the Woods in at half time two goals up.

Northwood’s first chance of the second period came on 55 minutes when Malone’s free kick from just inside the Woods’ half found Hunte at the back post; he headed back across the Uxbridge goal to Ishola, who thundered his headed effort just over the bar from six yards out. Denis Nortey came close to getting on the score sheet with two good efforts in the 56th and 60th minutes with long-range strikes that ended up just over the bar and wide of the upright. Northwood, who had dominated most of the play, became a bit too complacent in the 65th minute and sloppy play in midfield let Uxbridge back into the game when they latched on to a poor cross field ball and broke quickly to score their first goal of the game.

Errol Dyer and Roger Linton responded to the setback by sending on Rocky Baptiste to replace Nortey in the 65th minute. Uxbridge were now pressing for an equaliser and came close with four efforts in quick succession in the 67th, 70th, 72nd and 74th minutes that were well saved on three occasions by Malone and then headed clear by Baptiste on the fourth occasion from a dangerous free-kick to maintain Woods’ slender advantage. 

Matt Cooper came on with eleven minutes to go to replace Fraser Robbins, who had enjoyed a good game. Northwood were now back on the front foot, and when Malone’s goal kick found Baptiste on the edge of the box his quick thinking opened up an opportunity for H El Haddad that resulted in a Woods flag-kick. The subsequent quick short corner was whipped into the Uxbridge six yard box and Ellis got there first to guide the ball in at the near post for Northwood’s third goal of the night in the 81st minute.

Three minutes later more sloppy defending by Northwood allowed Uxbridge’s Mitchell Wiseman to sneak in at the back post from a corner to guide the ball into the net and bring the score back to 3-2. Malone was called into action with just under four minutes to go, dealing with an awkward free-kick; the Woods’ keeper’s punch cleared the penalty area and led to a quick counter-attack that saw a fine effort from Zaberosa almost sneak in the top right hand corner of the goal. Northwood saw out the final minutes of the game to earn all three points and run out deserved winners.

This was another excellent TEAM performance, with a stand-out man of the match performance from Captain Corey Ellis.