Date: Tuesday 10th October 2023
Competition: Essex Senior League
Venue: Lawtech Stadium
Starters: Arshak Sargsyan, Kenedi Dariri, Ehizojie Onoabhagbe, Joe Clark, Aundre Spencer, Brad Rowland, Harvey Brown (C), Jack Dickinson, Fahad Nyanja, Martin Tuohy, Luke Hirst
Substitutes: Gael Kileba, Kai Haysman, Tom Troubridge, Yassier Nazor, Addae Paponette
63′ Nazor for Brown
77′ Troubridge for Dickinson
86′ Paponette for Nyanja
86′ Kileba for Spencer
Tuohy 13′ 1-0
Jon Evans (Hullbridge) 70′ 1-1
Bobby Badham (Hullbridge) 78′ 1-2
Solomon Ofori (Hullbridge) 90′ 1-3
Yellow cards: Clark, Dariri
Red cards: Sargsyan, Tuohy
Against a Hullbridge team featuring a number of ex Blues, Barking started brightly and took an early lead but were unable to hold on and slipped to a disappointing defeat. On six minutes a well delivered cross from Aundre Spencer found Fahad Nyanja in the penalty area but he couldn’t direct the chance on target. However, another Spencer cross on thirteen minutes enabled Luke Hirst to chest the ball down and despite Hullbridge keeper Rob Budd getting his fingertips to the shot, Martin Tuohy fired the ball into the corner to give Barking the lead. They nearly conceded the equaliser almost immediately, conceding another needless free kick in a dangerous position, but the chance was wasted before home keeper Arshak Sargsyan made a good catch under pressure from another free kick. However, with half an hour gone both teams were reduced to ten men following a goalmouth melee in the Barking penalty area as Hullbridge were waiting to take a corner. Emmanuel Okunja saw red for Hullbridge but crucially Sargsyan was also dismissed, leading to Luke Hirst taking over in goal and leaving Tuohy to be the main attacking threat. The Barking defence managed to protect Hirst with a couple of well-timed blocks, and even managed to produce another chance just before half time, with another well delivered Spencer cross finding Nyanja again but his header went wide.
The second half started with Hullbridge’s Jonathan Evans firing narrowly over, but Barking almost increased their lead on fifty four minutes, Tuohy’s speculative lob going just over the bar with Budd frantically back pedalling. Two minutes later Spencer fired a free kick over the bar from just outside the penalty area, with Barking continuing to press for a second goal, a marauding run from Jack Dickinson on sixty-seven minutes saw the Hullbridge defence concede another free kick about twenty-five yards out. Sadly, Yas Nazor’s free kick rebounded from the bar with Budd well beaten. This proved to be a crucial chance, with Hullbridge equalising on seventy minutes, Evans firing home after the home defence were unable to clear the ball. The Blues then suffered another setback, with Tuohy’s continuing response to a bad foul on him initially meriting a ten-minute spell in the sin bin, but this was then upgraded to a straight red as the reaction continued. Five minutes later, Hullbridge took the lead as Jay Leader’s header was turned in by Bobby Badham, and with Barking desperately trying to snatch an equaliser by making a couple of changes, their fortunes took another downward turn as centre back Martin Onoabhagbe was forced off with injury, leaving only seven outfield players. With the game in injury time, Hullbridge piled on the misery for the home supporters by scoring again, Barking’s over stretched defence unable to cope with Solomon Ofori’s breakaway. Video evidence later suggested that Hirst had made a great save and prevented the ball from crossing the line, but the goal was awarded and Hullbridge duly celebrated with their supporters as the game ended.
Report source: Keith Whittington/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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