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First Team - Match centre

Romford
Maldon & Tiptree
C DJALO (17'), A OLUKOGA (19'), K NEWBY (49'), G AKPELE (89')
Full time
Sat 28 Apr 15:00 - The Bostik Football League - North Division Attendance 105

ROMFORD 4 (2) - (1) 2 Maldon and Tiptree Attendance 105 - Ship Lane

Romford pulled off the great escape after beating Maldon in their final game at Ship Lane, while Cheshunt thrashed Norwich.

Knowing only a win from the boys in blue and gold would do, Manager Paul Martin brought back Stephen REYNOLDS in goal to replace the injured Rob Budd and his brother Nick REYNOLDS returned upfront. Romford started brightly but it was the visitors who surprisingly took the lead with their first attack when vastly experienced Lee Barnard scored with a header in the eighth minute after a cross from the right. Heads did not drop as urged on by supporters Romford continued to push forward and Ayo OLUKOGA slipped in Ernest OKOH, but his shot went agonisingly wide of the far post then moments later a right wing cross was met by Reynolds but his point blank header was somehow saved by the Maldon keeper. In the seventeenth minute Romford finally got an equaliser their bright attacking play deserved when Jonathan NZENGO won possession and passed to Nick REYNOLDS who cut the ball back to Carlos DJALO and the powerful front striker happily rounded the keeper and smashed the ball home. Two minutes later and Romford were ahead when Olukoga and Djalo linked up leaving the former racing through and reaching the ball a fraction of a second before the keeper as they both collided. Luckily the ball bounced towards goal and Olukoga scrambled off the floor to slide the ball home before despairing defenders got back, and the home fans went wild. Even better news was coming in from Cheshunt as they were beating Norwich three goals to nil and Romford were playing well but keeper Reynolds had to be alert to save a free kick just before half time.

Almost immediately after the break a poor kick from the Maldon keeper fell to the senior Reynolds brother who passed to Djalo and his shot was well saved, but the ball fell to Kris NEWBY who took a touch and then fired low into the bottom corner with a quality finish to give Boro some breathing space with a two goal lead. Unfortunately there was bad news from Cheshunt as Norwich had amazingly come back to three all in their game, but suddenly another twist and the terraces erupted as supporters with one eye on their phones saw confirmation of a fourth and then fifth goal for Cheshunt. Romford being Romford though had to make things hard and Barnard grabbed his second goal for the visitors with seven minutes left and then Boro substitute Greg AKPELE was clipped from behind when through, but no penalty was given. A sixth goal for Cheshunt meant Romford just had to hang on to pull off the unthinkable and Akpele made it safe in the last minute, slotting home after a quick free kick found him unmarked in the box.

At the final whistle everyone involved at this wonderful club went what only can be described as a bit mental on and off the pitch and the partying continued until the early hours at the end of season presentation evening where skipper Danny COSSINGTON was awarded the supporters player of the year trophy for his part in the story, but all the management and staff deserve the highest of praise for keeping the faith when everything looked lost.

ROMFORD (2) 4 Carlos DJALO 17, Carlos DJALO 19, Kris NEWBY 49, Greg AKPELE 89
MALDON & TIPTREE (1) 2 BARNARD 8, 83

ROMFORD: Stephen REYNOLDS, Jonathan NZENGO, Sam MVEMBA, Danny COSSINGTON, Nathan OKOYE, Ayo OLUKOGA, Kris NEWBY, Chris TAYLOR, Carlos DJALO, Nick REYNOLDS (Greg AKPELE 79), Ernest OKOH (Akwasi MARFO 69) SUBS NOT USED BEN CLARKE, ANDREW TIRANHU AND PAUL MARTIN

Key moments

17:00
Goal Carlos DJALO scores for Romford
19:00
Goal Ayo OLUKOGA scores for Romford
49:00
Goal Kris NEWBY scores for Romford
89:00
Goal Greg AKPELE scores for Romford

Highlights

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89:00 Goal 4 - 0
Greg AKPELE scores for Romford
89:00 Assist
Kris NEWBY makes an assist for Romford
79:00 Sub Off
Nick REYNOLDS is substituted off for Romford
79:00 Sub On
Greg AKPELE is substituted on for Romford
69:00 Sub Off
Ernest OKOH is substituted off for Romford
69:00 Sub On
Akwasi MARFO is substituted on for Romford
65:00 Yellow Card
Kris NEWBY is yellow carded for Romford
49:00 Assist
Carlos DJALO makes an assist for Romford
49:00 Goal 3 - 0
Kris NEWBY scores for Romford
End of period 1
19:00 Goal 2 - 0
Ayo OLUKOGA scores for Romford
19:00 Assist
Carlos DJALO makes an assist for Romford
17:00 Goal 1 - 0
Carlos DJALO scores for Romford
17:00 Assist
Nick REYNOLDS makes an assist for Romford
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Romford
  • Maldon & Tiptree
  • 0
  • Carlos DJALO Goal 17:00'
  • Nick REYNOLDS Assist 17:00'
  • Ayo OLUKOGA Goal 19:00'
  • Carlos DJALO Assist 19:00'
  • Carlos DJALO Assist 49:00'
  • Kris NEWBY Goal 49:00'
  • Kris NEWBY Yellow Card 65:00'
  • Ernest OKOH Sub Off 69:00'
  • Akwasi MARFO Sub On 69:00'
  • Greg AKPELE Sub On 79:00'
  • Nick REYNOLDS Sub Off 79:00'
  • Kris NEWBY Assist 89:00'
  • Greg AKPELE Goal 89:00'

Team selection

REYNOLDS, Stephen REYNOLDS, Stephen
NZENGO, Jonathan NZENGO, Jonathan
MVEMBA, Sam MVEMBA, Sam
DJALO, Carlos DJALO, Carlos
OKOYE, Nathan OKOYE, Nathan
COSSINGTON, Danny COSSINGTON, Danny
OLUKOGA, Ayo OLUKOGA, Ayo
TAYLOR, Chris TAYLOR, Chris
REYNOLDS, Nick REYNOLDS, Nick
NEWBY, Kris NEWBY, Kris
OKOH, Ernest OKOH, Ernest

League round up

Other North Division results

Barking
0
3
Bowers & Pitsea
4
1
Brentwood Town
Bury Town
1
2
Haringey Borough
Cheshunt
6
3
Dereham Town
3
2
2
2
AFC Hornchurch

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League table

# Team Pl Pts
18. Waltham Abbey 46 49
19. Cheshunt 46 49
20. Ware 46 48
21. Brentwood Town 46 46
22. Mildenhall Town 46 46
23. Romford 46 41
24. Norwich United 46 40

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