Date: Saturday 17th August 2019
Competition: BetVictor I Isthmian League South Central
Venue: Alfred Davis Memorial Ground
Starters: Montel Joseph,Ricky Tarbard, Callum Thompson, Ryan Mallett (C), Joe Bruce, Jack Hayes, Emmanuel Ighorae, Jed Chouman, Nana Boakye-Yiadom, Kojo Apenteng, Johnny Ashman
Substitutes: Donnell Anderson, Theo Fairweather-Johnson, Albert Akinremi, Jack Roult, Sam Owusu
69' Anderson Apenteng
71' Fairweather-Johnson Ighorae
83' Akinremi Bruce
Yellow cards: Thompson, Anderson, Boakye-Yiadom
Red cards: None
HARSH OPENING DAY LESSONS TO BE LEARNED
Let’s get the statistical information out of the way first: Since season 2000/01 Barking have failed to register an opening day Isthmian league win and that includes a defeat against today’s opponents in 2002.
Despite a good performance and maximum effort, the failure to take chances and manage the game were harsh lessons and there is no doubt we will play worse and win games this season.
In a new division Barking were much changed since the final league game of last season and from that starting eleven only two players started today as Justin Gardner has been actively recruiting over the summer and in total nine players made their debut in a yellow shirt.
Marlow finished last season in the playoff places and were no doubt looking forward to carrying on where left off and the visitors got off to the worst possible start when with just six minutes on the clock Ashleigh Artwell was free and clear to slot past Montel Joseph and put the home side a goal up. It got worse from a Barking perspective just six minutes later when a free kick wide right of the goal was superbly struck home by Junaid Bell to give Joseph no chance and suddenly it seemed like we had a mountain to climb and being two down so early brought back uncomfortable memories of those heavy away defeats at Bowers & Pitsea and Maldon & Tiptree last term. However, the visitors were in no mood to lie down and only a smart save by home keeper Simon Grant kept out Jed Chouman’s header for an immediate reply. On 16 after a spell of pressure Barking were back in it when a corner by Callum Thompson was headed on by Jack Hayes and Emmanuel Ighorae forced the ball home for his first Barking goal and halved the deficit.
Marlow pushed forward again and Joseph saved with his feet and a shot across the goal hit the post and bounced to safety. With the interval approaching a foul on Nana Boakye-Yiadom presented Johnny Ashman with a chance to do the same as Bell had done earlier for Marlow but his free kick smacked the woodwork and Mallett could not force home the rebound.
The second half was a different affair with Marlow sitting deeper inviting Barking to get beyond them and early on they nearly equalised when Thompson forced Grant into saving with his feet. Barking shuffled the pack and brought on Donnell Anderson and Theo Fairweather-Johnson for Kojo Apenteng and goal scorer Ighorae.. Justin Gardner brought on Albert Akinremi with seven minutes for defender Joe Bruce in one last effort to even the score and a golden chance for an equaliser fell to Jed Chouman when a Mallett throw fell nicely to him and from close range his shot cleared the bar. However, Marlow had the last word when deep into added time one of their subs Charlie Samuel was found on the edge of our areas and curled the ball into the net to seal the points.
Not an opening day to remember but we have an early opportunity to get our season started on Tuesday when we visit Wodson Park to take on Ware FC kick off 7:45pm.
Report source: Terry Gilbert/Barking FC
Please note that the opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, nor should be attributed to Barking Football Club.
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