Southall 2  Northwood 1

Monday 1st April 2024


1 Andrew McCorkell
2 Harry McKenna
3 Sam Jenkins (88m)
4 Carl Stewart
5 Luke Tingey ©
6 Stephan Langley
7 Kofi Anokye-Boadi
8 Teddy Stacey
9 Lucas Sinclair
10 Dan Williams (76m)
11 Harry McCorkell (93m)
12 Deago Dunbar-Bonnie
14 Denzel Effah (93m)
15 Harry Gallagher  (88m)
16 Godlove Oppong (76m)
17 Jeremy Stewart 

Kojusoluwa Abayomi, David Amate (Romey Eccles-Meodad 55m), Azeez Alabi, Ryan Hope , Carl Pearce (Anthony O’Connor 55m), Joshua Green , Jaden Thompson-Brissett , Darreon Mark, Lucias Vine (Brendan Matthew 55m ), William Montague, Adam Laaref

Southall notched three valuable points towards their push for the play-offs with two late goals to turn around this competitive contest played in weather conditions that alternated between wind, rain, hail and sunshine.

Having had their previous midweek game at Binfield postponed and being without a game on the Easter Saturday, manager Ben Bukowski was again able to name an unchanged starting line-up for this Bank Holiday Monday fixture as the Woods looked to make it three consecutive wins.

Southall had seen their play-off hopes slip in recent weeks but had bounced back to form on the Saturday with a 2-0 win at Badshot Lea so were looking to find some consistency.

There was another slow start to the game with a midfield battle developing that neither side managed to establish any real hold. The first couple of efforts on goal came from the home side though as Bill Montague saw a shot comfortably taken at his near-post by Andrew McCorkell while another strike from Joshua Green flashed across the face of goal.

Dan Williams tried his luck with a shot from distance but that flew well over while the ‘All’s attempts to attack were generally wasted by overhit final balls. 

And that didn’t really change until the 36th minute when Northwood suddenly found themselves in the lead as Harry McCorkell headed on an Andrew McCorkell kick and it found Williams bearing down on goal, already ahead of defender Carl Pearce. Spotting goalkeeper Koju Abayomi off his line, the Woods top scorer fired his shot early and firmly into the top corner for a spectacular goal.

PHOTOS by James Brown

Having taken the lead, the Woods should probably have made it 2-0 just two minutes later as Carl Stewart played a great ball through to Williams again. He cut in past his marker but his shot with his weaker right-foot wasn’t powerful enough to beat the keeper.

Chances were still few and far between at both ends and it wasn’t until four minutes into the second-half that the Woods almost had a second again. It was Williams again who played a ball forward that Abayomi should have cleared but he missed his kick and had to race back to reach it before it crossed the line. It still wasn’t the best of clearances with many observers thinking it had still gone over the line but he was given the benefit of the doubt.

After 52 minutes, Williams was the provider again with a cross to the far post where Kofi Anokye-Boadi rose highest but his header only found the side-netting.

Having not managed to turn the tide, Southall took the risky option of making a triple substitution just ten minutes after the restart but it didn’t appear to bring any immediate improvement and after 61 minutes, Williams broke well down the left and was about to square to Lucas Sinclair who had got ahead of his marker in the centre. He was unceremoniously pushed over by Southall skipper Azeez Alabi about two feet outside the box. It looked like a red card offence with a free-kick awarded but, after consultation with his assistant the Referee selected just a yellow. Sam Jenkins free-kick clipped the wall and went for a corner which came to nothing.

Three minutes later, a heavy hailstorm forced the Referee to call a halt to proceedings for a few minutes and Sinclair was given his first chance on goal after good approach work from Teddy Stacey but he flicked his shot wide under pressure.

Godlove Oppong was introduced as a substitute for Williams on 75 minutes but by now Southall were beginning to threaten as Jaden Thompson-Brissett’s cross from the left was almost met by Brendan Matthew.

The home side then found a much-needed equaliser two minutes later. Matthew overhit a cross from the left but it was rescued by some good footwork from Romey Eccles-Meodad who swung it back into the centre from the right and Thompson-Brissett ghosted in unmarked to head home.

With spirits raised, Southall almost led a minute later as Thompson-Brissett sent over a good cross from the left and Matthew managed to outjump Luke Tingey to head goalwards but it came back off the post.

Time was running out though when former Woods winger Adam Laaref found space for a shot from the edge of the box which flashed across the face of goal and wide.

Then, just a minute into stoppage-time and with a rainbow in the sky behind the goal, Matthew swung his right-foot at a cross from the right and it slipped just inside the post for an instinctive winner for the home side. It was the striker’s fourth goal against the Woods this season, earning his two different sides nine points and scoring the winner in all three one-goal margin victories.

It was Southall’s first home victory over Northwood since their first-ever meeting; a 2-1 FA Vase success at the old Western Road ground way back in 1983 but a very important one as they maintain their play-off push.

REPORT by Alan Evans