Date: Saturday 27th January 2024
Competition: Essex Senior League
Venue: Burroughs Park
Starters: Max Spence, Brad Rowland, Kenedi Dariri, Jack Folan, Joe Clark, Fahad Nyanja (C), Jack Dickinson, Karl Kayembe, Luke Hirst, Troy Osei-Bobie, Shaye La-Rose
Substitutes: Anthony Martin, Sam Dowridge, Bleron Ademi, Warren Kayembe, Larry Asare-Bediako
HT Asare-Bediako for Osei-Bobie
68′ Ademi for Rowland
90′ Martin for Hirst
Yellow cards: Clark, Rowland, Dickinson, Kayembe
Red cards: None
13 IS NOT UNLUCKY FOR THE BLUES
It was a classic tight game between two equal sides as Barking and Great Wakering Rovers played out a goalless draw. Wakering would have felt they deserved to win in terms of possession and pressure on goal but it was Barking who went closest to scoring the elusive goal.This latest result extends our unbeaten run to 13 games.
George Forrest was missing due to injury, so Joe Clark made a return to the team for his first game since the beginning of November at Saffron Walden. Troy Osei-Bobie made his first start, taking the place of Sam Dowridge who dropped to the bench.
The opening quarter of an hour saw no chances of note but the emerging trend was that of Wakering controlling possession and exerting pressure with Max Spence called into action as he came off his line to smother a shot with 16 gone. Barking had their first chance after 20 minutes as they countered a free kick from the home side and centurion appearance maker Kenedi Dariri drove forward before playing Brad Rowland down the right wing, he drove the length of the half before cutting the ball back to the onrushing Karl Kayembe but under pressure his effort just cleared the bar. Rowland himself went close with a snapshot after 25 minutes but it was too close to Daniel Blockley in the Wakering goal. It was the home side’s turn to go close at the half hour mark, a corner whipped into the far post evaded everyone including Spence before being nodded down towards goal and then being cleared off the line by a Barking defender.
That was it for the first half but there was no change in the second half as Wakering started strongest, there was a rare moment where they broke the Barking defensive line but the ball was blazed over the bar after 52 minutes. Larry Asare-Bediako hit a powerful effort after 60 minutes but it was comfortable enough for Blockley to save. Wakering pushed and pushed but Barking repeatedly cleared their lines from a succession of crosses, corners, free kicks and long throws and the visitors were nearly rewarded after 80 minutes as Luke Hirst poked Asare-Bediako’s cross towards goal but the ball agonisingly hit the post before bouncing away from danger. Wakering continued to look more dangerous but the only attempt of note was at the 90 minute mark as a long range free kick cleared the bar. It was Barking who should have won it with nearly the last kick of the game: Asare-Bediako continued his non-stop running and managed to win the ball from the last Rovers defender, he advanced on goal and attempted to round Blockley, but he was too close to the goalkeeper who managed get a hand to the ball and it fell back to Tony Martin. But his effort was just wide of the target.
The final whistle blew shortly after to ensure a share of the spoils but both sides would have left the game thinking they should have taken all three points.
We have our first midweek match of 2024 this coming Tuesday as we travel to West Street to take on Coggeshall Town in the second round of the Peter Butcher Memorial Trophy.
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.