Match Report: Basingstoke Town 2 – 1 Enfield Town FA Trophy Sat 10th November 2018

FA Trophy 2nd Round Qualifier – Saturday 10th November 2018

Basingstoke Town 2 – 1 Wimborne Town (The Towners) Attendance

With the rain pouring down, the Camrose stood silent to observe the two minute silence prior to the start of this intriguing FA Trophy game.

For any scouts who came looking to view Sam Smart today, they will realise they will need to add a few thousand pounds onto any offer they make the club after this performance.

With Mitchell Parker unavailable with him playing for the England C team out in the Falkland Islands this weekend, the returning Terry Brown went with the following starting line-up today;

In goal: Colm McAdden, the back four Dean Stow, Shane Hollamby, Dan Bayliss & Robert Gerrard. The midfield contained Charlie Kennedy (Capt), Jack McKnight, Sam Deadfield & Sam Smart, with Sam Argent & Ben Wright again leading the attack today.

On the bench; Akers, Philby, Collier, Bennett & C Kennedy.

Basingstoke playing towards the Clubhouse End in the first half were the first on the attack and in the 1st minute, Sam Smart shows he is up for the game today, as he beat two defenders and sends in a low cross, which is put out for Stoke’s first corner of the game. The corner was easily cleared by the defence.

A minute later and following a quick Enfield attack, we win the ball in front of the main stand and feed Smart again, and he’s drives deep into the opposition’s half and cuts in towards the middle of the pitch and from 28yds unleashes a low hard shot, that brings out a full-length save by the Enfield keeper who palms it away, but then has the time to recover the ball.

On 6 mins Enfield have their first real attack following a free-kick from 40yds out, but the cross which is swung into the box beats everybody and McAdden is able to comfortably save the ball at the far post.

On 9 mins Stoke nearly go ahead, following more good work down the left from Smart and Deadfield, it is Smart who sends in a low cross that bounces off the wet surface and hits the defender at the far post and looks to be going in until the keeper is able to push it away.

Enfield win another free-kick on 12 mins following a heavy tackle from Kennedy who I think is booked?) but the kick is headed clear by Dan Bayliss.

On 14 mins we are back on the attack, but a McKnight shot flies 5yds wide.

However, it is Enfield who take the lead on 16 mins, as they break down our left and send in a cross, that is met by an Enfield head and it finds the far corner of the net. Basingstoke Town 0 – 1 Enfield Town.

Stoke create the next chance on 22 mins with a neat move by Deadfield & Wright who feeds Argent who races onto the ball, but his shot from 10yds is deflected by the tall left back out for a corner. The corner is pushed away by the keeper to Gerrard, who hooks it to the goal, but an Enfield defender hooks it away off the line.

The next few minutes Stoke are still on the front foot, but we can only produce another McKnight shot that again fails to trouble the keeper.

On the half-hour Enfield have their next real attack but the shot from the edge of the penalty box down the left, is put 2yds wide.

Then on 32 mins Smart is now exclusively working down the left wing is sent through deep into the Enfield half and as he enters the box, smashes a shot with his left foot, that the keeper makes a superb one handed save and he pushes it over the bar. Again, nothing comes from the corner.

Then on 38 mins Colm McAdden makes a critical save, as he makes a full length dive and pushes a well-hit shot over the crossbar. Bayliss again clears the ball from the corner.

On 42 mins Deadfield is unable to get onto the through ball as the keeper comes out and hacks it clear.

There is very little more action in the half and the referee blows the half-time whistle as the rain continues to fall on the already wet pitch.

Half-time; Basingstoke Town 0 – 1 Enfield Town

We are back underway with Stoke now attacking the Town End and are the first to create an attack on 49 mins as Smart now working down the right, initially is stopped by the left back, but his clearance is retrieved by Kennedy who feeds Sam again, whose cross is this time cleared to McKnight whose shot is well blocked and cleared.

Then Enfield fluff another chance to go two ahead as Big Billy Brickell fails to make a proper connection from across and Stoke are able to clear.

Stoke continue to have more of the ball and another half-chance is created on 59 mins as Argent is fed the ball down the left just inside the box, his low cross beats the first defender, and is clipped away just before Wright can get to the ball.

On 62 mins Smart is back on it again, following a neat pass from Stow, clips a shot come cross on the outside of his foot. All it needs is a touch as it flies past the beaten keeper, but it is a foot wide of the post.

We are still the team on the attack and we finally get back into the game, as an innocuous low cross goes straight to the keeper, the match reporter looks down at his phone for a split-second and then a shout from the Btg averts my eyes back to the game and I see the keeper dive back to the goal-line as the ball has rolled though his hands and rolls over the line. GOAL Basingstoke Town 1 – 1 Enfield Town.

Basingstoke are straight back on it again with a good move by Gerard down the left, who then feeds Deadfield, whose first pass is blocked, he retrieves the ball and slips Stow in, but Dean’s cross is poor and is easily cleared.

Enfield are from out of this game, as they create to good chances. The first on 74 mins as a deep cross from the right, finds a wide-open forward who heads the ball back across the goal, and we are able to hoof it away. Then two minutes later the Towners have a succession of crosses, which the Stoke defence can only half clearly each time.

We make our first substitution on 81 mins, as George Bennett replaces a tired looking Ben Wright, who has put in a good shift today.

Neither team seems able to find a winner, as we reach 90 minutes, but then up pops Super Sammie Smart as he picks up the ball just past the halfway-line, he then goes on one of his dazzling runs as he slips past two defenders down the left, cuts into the penalty box and plants the ball into the far corner of the goal. YES, GET IN THERE!!!! GOAL Basingstoke Town 2 – 1 Enfield Town.

There is still time for Enfield to have another attack, but the ball is again cleared to Smart who chases down the ball, he again cuts inside, but this time his shot is well saved by the oncoming keeper.

The time is up and so are Enfield’s chances, as the referee blows the final whistle. And sends the Basingstoke fans home happy.

Final Score: Basingstoke Town 2 – 1 Enfield Town

Final Thought’s: Sam Smart was clearly the Man-of-the-Match today and looked full of running and passion and could have had a hat-trick today.

Colm McAdden made a vital save when we were down 1 – 0. and possibly kept us in the game, as we may not have come back from two goals down.

Both Ben Wright and Sam Deadfield put in good shifts today on a heavy surface today and again Gerrard looks solid at the back.

Although we let in a wide open header for the Enfield goal, the defence did well to keep this high-scoring Enfield team quiet for most of the game.

With £4,000 in the bank we enter Monday’s 3rd qualifying round, with hopes of another home-tie.

Match Report by Martin French..