Saturday 1st October 2016
Essex Senior League
Kick off: 3pm
Venue: Station Road
Current Form: W D W W W W
James Peagram 33'
Ben O'Brien (C)
Paul Oshin 85'
Petrit Elbi 38'
John Bricknell 38'
A solitary first half goal by James Peagram was enough for Barking to go to the top of the table as they travelled to Takeley and came away with a 1-0 win. It was a hard fought game but the Blues were resolute at the back thanks to a defensive masterclass from Ricky Tarbard, Brad Ling, Jay Taylor and Timi Abiola. Barking will be hoping to keep their success going on Tuesday as they look to get revenge against Barkingside at Mayesbrook Park.
The first 15 minutes passed without much of note as both sides comfortable in possession but lacking a cutting edge as Barking failed to get Peagram and Elbi in behind the defenders and Takeley could only see a tame shot clear the bar. A few minutes later and Takeley went close as a dangerous cross flashed across goal but no one was able to make any contact. Barking cranked up the pressure and the quality and managed to get the ball down on the floor with success after 33 minutes – Barking played the ball out from the back and pushed forward into Takeley territory – the ball found Joe Staunton on the edge of the box who played it wide to Petrit Elbi on the left wing – he cut back in on his right foot and crossed the ball towards tantalisingly goal where it was met by James Peagram who nodded the ball low into the net past Takeley ‘keeper Josh Knight. As half time approached Peagram had a chance to double the lead as his turn and volley was deflected but he was denied by an instinctive save by Knight with his feet. Ben O’Brien also headed wide from a corner but the last chance fell to Timi Abiola who launched into a mazy run from the left back position that he has done well to make his own and after beating four opposition players he sidefooted the ball towards goal but unfortunately it bounced past the post.
The second half started even slower than the first, with Takeley in control of the ball but unable to getting anywhere close to breaking the Yellows defence. It took until the 63rd minute for any sort of chance for either side but Takeley failed to get close during a goal mouth scramble. It took another ten minutes for Barking’s first chance of any note in the second half as good work from Abiola and O’Brien gave Pearman space to cross to the far post but it was slightly too high for Peagram to make good contact with it as he was unable to cushion the ball into the net with his head – instead it went just over the bar. Takeley, determined to not give up their top spot without a fight, cranked up the pressure – with a good chance coming with ten minutes remaining. A free kick from the right corner of the box was swung high to the far post where it was met with a towering header from close range but the header went across goal and away from danger when it should have really been at least on target. Takeley continued to be dangerous from crossing positions and spurned another good chance with less than five minutes on the clock as the ball came across goal from the right wing and it was met by the head of an unmarked striker. Fortunately for Barking the attacker did not make good contact with the ball and it bobbled wide of the goal.
Jason Willis collected a late curling effort comfortably and afterwards the referee blew this whistle on a game in which Barking did not dominate but did enough to get the goal they needed and then hold onto the lead by defending well and prevent Takeley from creating opportunities as much as possible.
Report source: Trevor Gilbert/Barking FC
Any opinions expressed in this report are those of the writer and not necessarily those of Barking Football Club.