Saturday 1st April 2017
Essex Senior League
Kick off: 3pm
Venue: Hargrave Park
Current Form: W W L W W D
Liam Burgess 64'
Joe Pearman 86'
Ben O'Brien (C)
Petrit Elbi 55'
Matheus Santos 86'
John Bricknell 55'
Max Watters 64'
Barking title hopes grounded at Stansted
Barking were left taxiing on the runway in their aim of lifting the title as Stansted restricted the Yellows to a 0-0 draw. The point does move Barking closer to winning the title – now only needing two points when they travel to Burnham Ramblers next Saturday.
The first 20 minutes saw only one chance as James Peagram saw his free kick in the 8th minute go over the bar. Stansted had their first chance to open the scoring after 24 minutes but a shot from near the right wing flashed wide. Stansted kept up the pressure but Barking went close from a counter-attack 3 minutes later as Ben O’Brien’s lifted through ball was met by Peagram but he could only hook the ball over the bar. Barking kept up their pressure and at the half hour mark Ricky Tarbard’s left wing cross was met by Joe Staunton at the far post but his powerful volley was wide of the mark. Barking were then caught on the break after 39 minutes – goalkeeper Rob Hatton easily saved a high header and launched the Yellows on a counter of the own – Tarbard saw his cross blocked but fall to James Peagram in the box – as Shergill in the Stansted goal attempt to make his way across the line Peagram shot back across him with Shergill managing to put a hand out and palm the ball away from giving the Yellows the lead. There was one late chance for Stansted as Billy Rix earned himself a caution for bundling over a striker near goal but Hatton was easily equal to the set piece to tip the ball over the bar.
The second half started with controversy as Stansted had a good-looking appeal for a penalty as Steve Willis was beaten in the box, as he attempted to recover he seemed to trip the Stansted striker but the referee was unmoved and the game carried on. Stansted continued to pressure but it took until the 62nd minute for another attempt as a turn and shot cleared the bar. As the game entered the final twenty minutes the away side fought back as they attempted to claim the title but in the 73rd minute Joe Pearman saw his attempt from a narrow angle saved by Shergill. Stansted still had chances to take the lead and found themselves with a free kick in a dangerous position after 83 minutes but it came to nothing.
In the end both sides stayed resilient defensively and Barking left Stansted with only a point – and only the fourth time this season they had to failed to score in a league team. Barking will go again to ensure they are crowned champions against Burnham Ramblers.
Report source: Trevor 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.