A single goal from James Singh was enough to put Shortwood into the 5th round of the FA Vase when they beat Enfield 1893 in a tense affair at Meadowbank on Saturday. As John Evans said: “This was a great battling performance against a very good side. I thought we deserved it for our second half performance”
Man of the match sponsor David Hand nominated goalscorer James Singh to receive a bottle of bubbly!
Evans was right that Shortwood deserved the win for their second half showing as they had the greater possession and created several chances, but Enfield made them fight to the very end and showed, especially in the first half, that there was going to be no comfortable ride. The game was influenced by two major second half decisions that both sparked controversy.
A strong wind made play difficult for both sides and the E’s kicked into it in the first half, but it was they who made the brighter start. As early as the second minute a poorly directed header found Bricknell on the edge of the area and he rattled Tom King’s crossbar. As Shortwood started to play Enfield conceded a lot of free kicks and after 11 minutes Singh headed wide from Parrott’s dead ball. Wood started to put pressure on the E’s defence and Bennett faded a shot wide before Shortwood scored after 17 minutes. Parrott fed Singh up the right flank and he found himself clear. Visiting keeper Beaupierre rushed from his goal but it was a rash decision as Singh neatly slotted the ball past him and into the far corner. Enfield pressed for an equaliser and King made a great point blank save from Dawkins at the foot of the post. Both sides then fashioned half chances but neither keeper was tested before the break. In the one real chance, right on half time, Tustain fired wide after the best Wood move of the half.
Shortwood were quicker out of the blocks in the second period and Slack fired over from a good position. After 54 minutes Singh raced through and Beaupierre raced from his area and brought the front man down as he went past him. It seemed a certain red card but the referee ruled that the keeper had played the ball and awarded a corner. From the corner Axton flicked his header just wide. Shortwood were on top now and Slack had a header scrambled off the line and Dawkins did superbly to deny Slack again as he ran through. Then Haddock just failed to get on the end of a Parrott corner. Having weathered the storm Enfield started to apply pressure of their own and after 78 minutes a free kick into the Wood box caused all sorts of problems before King tipped one effort onto the bar. Crosbie headed the ball home but the visitor’s joy was cut short as the Assistant immediately raised his flag for offside.
With 5 minutes to go Shortwood had a real chance to seal the win as Slack cut in from the right. Unfortunately he shot into the side netting when a ball into Tustain or Mortlock might have been a better option. In added time Taylor – Forbes headed a corner wide for the E’s but Shortwood were through!
Shortwood United would like to thank Sponsors Peter Webb and Rex Porter (Match Sponsor), Jim Cunneen (Match Ball Sponsor) and Dave Hand of Rover European Coaches (Man of the match sponsor) for their support!
Team: King, Coates (Benneyworth 71), Bennett, Axton, Thomas, Parrott, Tustain, Baldwin, Slack, Singh (Mortlock 84), Haddock.
Shortwood return to league action this week as they travel to Reading Town on Saturday.