FISHER 3 WHITSTABLE TOWN 4
SCEFL Premier Division
Saturday November 18 2023 15.00
There was plenty to enjoy for the large crowd that attended the community day at Fisher as a competitive football match produced seven goals and was a great advertisement for SCEFL football. Whitstable started well and took the lead when Josh Williams tucked away the rebound after his penalty kick had initially hit the post, but a towering header by Eniye Amgbaduba soon drew the Fish level. The start of the second half brought three well-taken goals as Harvey Smith and Emmanuel Oloyede both scored for Whitstable, either side of a Callum Flynn volley for the home team. Whitstable extended their lead to 4-2 in added time through an expertly executed Josh Oliver free kick, but there were still a few minutes remaining and Andres Tobon took advantage of a defensive mix up to set up a dramatic finish, but Whitstable withstood the late pressure to claim a valuable away win.
This was designated the Annual Community Day at the St Paul’s Sports Ground in Rotherhithe, celebrating the area and supporting local charities, with the attendance of 386 being Fisher’s highest for a league match since Boxing Day 2008. Last season, the teams met on the opening day when Whitstable returned from London with a 1-0 win thanks to a Ryan Flack penalty, although Fisher recorded a 2-1 win at the Belmont later in that campaign. Both teams have started reasonably well this time around and Fisher began the day just three points below Whitstable, but with two games in hand. There was one change to the Whitstable starting eleven with Tyler Anderson replacing Josh Oliver. Jahmal Howlett-Mundle continued in defence with Tom Mills not yet ready to return from illness.
Whitstable began the game confidently, but had an early warning of things to come when the impressive Inesh Sumithran delivered the first of many dangerous crosses from the right, but this one was headed well wide by the tall Eniye Amgbaduba. Whitstable enjoyed a promising spell during which they had four of their seven first half corner kicks, but were unable to find an end product. They did open the scoring though in the 19th minute after being awarded a penalty when Mark Chidi tangled with Emmanuel Oloyede in the box following a throw in. Josh Williams took the spot kick, but the ball struck the right post then the back of goalkeeper Arthur Leblond before rebounding kindly for Williams to roll into the net. There were a few half chances created by both teams before Fisher equalised in the 29th minute. A quick break led to a free kick from which Flavio Jumo hit the wall, then the ball was recycled to Sumithran on the right and his cross was headed emphatically past Dan Eason by Amgbaduba.
For the remainder of the half, it was the home team asking most of the questions and Eason did well to turn away Manny Shoderu’s shot at the near post after he had been played through by a Callum Flynn header. Shoderu tried another shot a few minutes later, although this was an easier save for Eason. Whitstable went close when Oloyede held the ball up well before finding Anderson who curled his shot wide. In the 40th minute, a clever chip into the box by Charles Yiadom-Konadu gave Flynn a chance to shoot, but he put the ball just past the far post. Fisher managed to negotiate two late Whitstable corners and the teams went into the break level at 1-1.
There was plenty of action soon after the restart with three goals in the first eight minutes. Whitstable struck first, in the 47th minute, when a free kick was cleared as far as Mikey Dalton who passed to Anderson and he found George Sheminant on the left. He made room before crossing to Harvey Smith who turned smartly and shot past a wrong footed Leblond at the near post. The lead didn’t last long and it was 2-2 in the 49th minute when another Sumithran cross was headed away by Howlett-Mundle, but only as far as Flynn on the left of the box and he volleyed the ball straight back into the far corner. Amgbaduba then headed another Sumithran cross over the top before Whitstable scored their third with a route one effort in the 53rd minute. Eason rolled the ball out to Will Thomas who sent a long pass forward and it bounced past the last defender to Oloyede who calmly lobbed it over Leblond into the far corner of the net.
The game settled down a little, but still the chances came. Sumithran shot wide after a high ball eluded Eason, then Dalton won the ball and played a one-two with Oloyede before his shot was well blocked by a defender. Both managers started to make changes with two-thirds of the game gone. Williams cut in from the right, past a couple of challenges, but shot wide, then Yiadom-Konadu twisted and turned before missing the target at the other end. Eason saved a low shot from substitute Jojo Kinzonzi and Whitstable substitute Oliver almost scored when he raced onto a Williams pass down the right, but shot just wide from a narrow angle. Kinzonzi had another effort blocked in the box before Oliver tried his luck, unsuccessfully, from 60 yards when he spotted Leblond out of his goal.
Most felt that the game was over when Whitstable increased their lead in the first of the announced six added minutes. Oliver won the ball and passed to Reece Gillies who was fouled 25 yards from goal and Oliver curled the free kick over the wall and a stationary Leblond into the right corner of the net. Fisher weren’t about to give up though and when a long ball was sent into the box, the Whitstable defence failed to clear and with Eason stranded the ball was played back for Andres Tobon to fire in and it was 4-3 in the fourth added minute. Fisher went looking for an unlikely point and almost managed it when the ball dropped to Tobon again in the area, but Eason managed to get down to block at his near post and when he punched away the resulting corner, the referee blew the final whistle and Whitstable had collected a very hard-earned three points on the road.
Whitstable return to the Belmont on Tuesday evening when Scott Porter’s Hollands and Blair team visit for another SCEFL Premier Division fixture.
|8||Shots on target||6|
|6||Shots off target||4|
Arthur Leblond, Inesh Sumithran, Callum Flynn, Nathan Tshola, Mark Chidi, Prince Imoru (Joseph Adewunmi 69), Billy Brown (Jojo Kinzonzi 64), Charles Yiadom-Konadu (c) (Andres Tobon 82), Eniye Amgbaduba (Fred Obasa 78), Flavio Jumo, Manny Shoderu (Thomas Ngegba 72).
Subs (unused): none
Goals: Eniye Amgbaduba 29, Callum Flynn 49, Andres Tobon 90+4.
Dan Eason, Jake Mackenzie (c), George Sheminant, Mikey Dalton, Will Thomas, Jahmal Howlett-Mundle, Tyler Anderson (Steadman Callender 85), Reece Gillies, Emmanuel Oloyede, Harvey Smith (Josh Oliver 69), Josh Williams (Liam Gillies 85).
Subs (unused): Josh Robson, Eri Akintimehin.
Goals: Josh Williams 19, Harvey Smith 47, Emmanuel Oloyede 53, Josh Oliver 90+1.
Yellow card: Josh Oliver 90+3
Referee: Stephen Gorman
Assistants: Ben Wright & Martin Belsom