Wingate & Finchley travelled to Champion Hill to take on Southern Counties East Football League outfit, Fisher FC, in round one of the London Senior Cup, writes Khalid Karimullah.
Simon Lane’s side were coming into this game off the back of two consecutive wins and were eager to maintain their high scoring form.
After a tight opening, it was the Blues who started to display their attacking intent. Marc Weatherstone found the run of Lee Barney with a tremendous pass from the back, before the latter combined with Alfie Bartram and Dan Brown – but Brown’s powerful effort was blocked. At the other end, Taylor Thomas powered his way through the middle and attempted a speculative 25-yard effort, however Jack Metcalfe was on hand to deny the hosts.
Minutes later, Wingate almost found themselves in front when Reece Tison-Lascaris drew a foul out on the right channel from Martin Jack. Bartram’s deep free-kick found Weatherstone and as the loose ball fell to Barney, he could only place his shot over the woodwork. Metcalfe was on hand again to make a save from Thomas’ curling shot from inside left channel, prior to the visitors finding the back of the net. Leon Solomon found himself with space to drift forward, opened up his body 30 yards from goal leading up to his spectacular strike creeping into the bottom corner after 27 minutes.
Afterwards, Wingate began to express their ability on the ball. Joe Sharpe, Solomon, and Tison-Lascaris played free flowing football, preceding the latter finding Mark Goodman making a bombarding run down the right, though his pass into the box was cleared away from danger. From the resulting corner, the ball fell to Brown whose initial shot was blocked, before Tison-Lascaris’s volley from close-range had his side leading 2-0.
Similar to the first attacking move of the spectacle, Weatherstone found Laney this time making a diagonal run, before he cut the ball back inside finding Barney, but the striker’s effort went inches past the post. Lane’s side almost found a third just before half time, Laney drifting into space found his strike partner, though Adeniyi made an important save from Barney’s accurate effort. Subsequently, the resulting in swinging corner found the head of Laney, however his effort was cleared off the line by Jack.
Not long after the restart, Bartram, Brown, and Goodman exchanged passes before the right back found Barney just inside the box, but his powerful attempt flew over the bar. Fisher introduced Travis Gregory into the foray and he almost made an immediate impact from 18 yards, though Metcalfe was in the right place to watch as the ball hit the side netting. Laney then found himself away on the left flank, prior to finding Barney who intelligently drifted into the box, though despite finding the on rushing Goodman, the full-back’s effort was blocked. However, the fighting spirit displayed in recent games by Wingate was evident again, as Goodman didn’t give up the pressure cutting the ball back inside to Brown, yet the midfielder’s effort was also blocked.
Goodman, superb all game, had another attempt blocked after Barney held the ball well up front. A moment of controversy came moments later, after the home side won a corner the ball fell to the feet of Alfie Nunn whose effort was blocked, however despite calling for a penalty the referee waved away the calls. After circuitous passing in midfield, Tison-Lascaris picked out Laney making a run through the centre-halves, before the explosive forward finished superbly off the post for his fourth goal in three games.
Karl Oliyide drifted in behind the midfield before picking out Bartram, ahead of the young midfielder hitting his shot across the keeper forcing Adeniyi to make a full stretched finger tip save. The resulting set-piece found the Blues taking an even more commanding lead, with Ahmet Rifat showing great determination in the box prodding home from two yards after 76 minutes.
Just two minutes later, Solomon made a phenomenal run out on the left flank, delivered a sensational cross to the back post finding Barney, who clinically finished past Adeniyi for the Blues’ fifth goal of the night. As the game came to a close, Solomon went on a powering run again on the left flank, before his explosive shot hit the side netting, then not long after, Gregory for the home side hit his angled strike just past the post with Metcalfe closing him down.
It was a superb game of attacking football for the Blues, who now have accumulated an abundance of 12 goals in just under a week, and set up a second round tie against Cockfosters.
WingateTV interview with Leon Solomon and Rob Laney:
Ade Adeniyi, Robert Curtis, Besfort Sadiku, Jamie Taylor, Martin Jack, Daniel Flemming, Taylor Thomas (Tyrell Miledd-Bentley 67), Alfie Nunn (Max Rothwell 80), Alex Bolt (Travis Gregory 45), Emiliano Hysi, Frazer Bent
Subs not used: Travis Gregory, Max Rothwell, Reion McFarlane, Tyrell Miledd-Bentley, Denzil Kobia
Wingate & Finchley:
Jack Metcalfe, Mark Goodman (Karl Stevenson 79), Alfie Bartram, Marc Weatherstone, Marcus Rose, Leon Solomon, Joe Sharpe (Ahmet Rifat 71), Daniel Brown, Lee Barney, Reece Tison-Lascaris (Karl Oliyide 64), Rob Laney
Subs not used: Ahmet Rifat, Brad Marriott, Karl Stevenson, Karl Oliyide