Fixtures

Jersey Bulls

4 - 0

Combined Counties League Premier Division South

Frimley Green FC

Tuesday April 12, 2022, 8:00 pm

Springfield Stadium

Combined Counties League Premier Division South

Match Report

This match had originally been due for mid-September but had to be re-arranged when the scheduled date clashed with the Bulls’ F.A. Cup fixture at Sutton Common Rovers. It was then fixed for 3rd January but had to be re-arranged again due to a pandemic problem within the Frimley Green squad.

Frimley Green are amongst a cluster of Combined Counties football clubs in the Farnborough and Aldershot area. Camberley Town is a couple of miles to the north whilst Cove is a similar distance to the west. They play on the local Recreation Ground which also incorporates tennis courts on your left as you drive in past the cricket pitch which is at the south end of the football ground.

They have had a somewhat “yo-yo” existence in the Combined Counties League. Initially entering in 1981 they played in it for thirteen seasons, never finishing higher than eighth, before dropping out after finishing bottom in 1994.

After nearly a decade away they returned in 2002 but after escaping relegation in 2006 having finished eighteenth of twenty-one teams they were demoted anyway as their ground failed to reach the required standard.

Frimley Green won the Division 1 title in 2013 and returned to the Premier Division for two seasons before finishing bottom again. A runners-up spot in 2019 saw them return to the Premier Division where the first abandoned season was more successful than the second when they had only three wins and two draws in the thirteen league matches that they completed.

This season they went out in their first match in the F.A. Cup but won through four rounds of the F.A. Vase before going out in the last sixty-four. In the league they are currently seventeenth with a 10-5-18 39-69 record but after their Vase exploits they have games in hand on the teams immediately above them.

The Bulls’ side was depleted by injuries and the calls of the U23s playing their Suburban Cup Semi-Final at Sheerwater the same evening. Frimley were themselves a club struggling to put out a team. Both their joint managers played and six under 18s were in their youthful squad of just a dozen.

Euan Van der Vliet, Jack Cannon and Sammy Sutcliffe, all missing on Saturday, were welcome additions to the home defence as they looked to take on the peppermint clad opposition.
Frimley Green, as near to the bottom of the league as Jersey are to the top, were soon under pressure, and Jake Prince put a speculative bicycle kick just wide of the right post after just four minutes.

They responded with what would be their best chance of the match. Finlay Aherne seized upon a weak back pass but as he hurdled the diving Van der Vliet he lost control of the ball. Credit to Aherne for not “simulating” a penalty claim as many of Bulls’ recent opponents might well have done.

Bulls’ supporters’ hearts were in their mouths again a minute later when Leo Anthony was set for a one on one with Van der Vliet but assistant Nigel Hickes flag was raised for what must have been a marginal decision.

The deadlock was broken midway through the half when the rejuvenated Lorne Bickley, who had limped off on Saturday, made a break down the left. Reaching the left corner he lofted the ball to the far post where Francis Lekimamati cleverly chested the ball down between two defenders to leave Jonny Le Quesne with a simple finish.

Lekimamati and Prince both had shots saved before the Bulls doubled their lead. Bickley was brought down on the edge of the box. Lekimamati and Cannon hovered over the free kick with the latter firing the ball through the elaborately constructed defensive wall and in to the bottom right corner.

Before half time a Cannon cross from the left was met by a Lekimamati header at the far post but the header rattled the bar rather than giving the Bulls a commanding interval lead.
After the break Kamen Nafka had a shot deflected over before he became the provider for two goals in five minutes as the Bulls put the match to bed.

Bickley rode a lunging tackle from Steven Brown to set up a break on the left for Nafkha. His cross was deflected in to the path of Le Quesne who rifled his shot from near the penalty spot into the top right corner. Referee Josh Osaba had not overlooked the Brown lunge in the build-up to the goal and cautioned him before the restart.

For the latter, just before the hour, Nafkha’s long high ball from the left eluded Bickley in the middle but was met at the far post six yards out by Prince. His powerful downward header gave the young James Ferguson in the Frimley goal no chance.

Joe Kilshaw and Kieran Lester came on for Adam Trotter and Bickley, before Queree, Le Quesne and Prince might all have added to the goal tally in the later stages. The last few minutes saw Sutcliffe cautioned for clattering Anthony and a home debut for Olly Rivers who had only previously appeared for the first team when the U23s represented them in the League Cup.

The eventual outcome was an identical result to when both sides were at full strength for their meeting in Hampshire at the end of January and so the Bulls regained fourth place from Badshot Lea by dint of a better goal difference. On the same night Badshot Lea defeated the unbeaten runaway leaders of the Northern Division, Hanworth Villa, in the League Cup. A result that possibly substantiates the theory that any of the top six teams in the Southern Division would have been promoted but for their geography.

Jersey Bulls 4 (Jonny Le Quesne 24 & 54, Jack Cannon 38, Jake Prince 59), Frimley Green 0

Attendance – 672

Programme – £2, 24pp (joint issue with Badshot Lea last Saturday)

Jersey Bulls – Euan Van der Vliet, James Queree (c), Jack Cannon, Ben Le Rougetel, Sammy Sutcliffe, Kamen Nafkha, Francis Lekimamati, Adam Trotter, Lorne Bickley, Jonny Le Quesne, Jake Prince
Substitutes – Joe Kilshaw (for Trotter 64), Kieran Lester (for Bickley 72), Olly Rivers (for Lekimamati 81), only three substitutes

Red/White/White; GK All Yellow.

Gary Freeman (Manager), Dan Seviour (Coach), Richard Hebert (GK Coach), Jim Robertson (Physio.)

Frimley Green – James Ferguson, Sam Hutchings, Freddie Loveridge, Steve Brown, Adam Sewell, Aaron Keenan, Finlay Aherne, Ben Hutchings (c), Leo Anthony, Nick Thumwood, Tommy Loveridge
Substitute – Harley Rogers (for Aherne 60), only one substitute

Peppermint Green (Black trim)/Peppermint Green/Black (White trim); GK Black front (Pink trim & Pink back)/Black (Pink trim)/Black

Nick Thurwood (Player/Manager), Kris Hatten (Coach), Rowland Baker (Coach), James Markham (Physio.)

Referee – Josh Osafa (Walton on Thames) Qualified in 2011 and officiated in the Wessex League whilst he was at Portsmouth University before joining the Combined Counties League

Assistants – Aiden Farrelly (Hanworth) on the dug-out side. In his 20th season, having served fifteen of them with the Spartan League. He was due at Springfield for the Guildford game in November before the officiating team were thwarted by the airport delays that day. He was also on the line for the cup game at London Samurai Rovers and the league game at Guildford. Nigel Hickes (Ruislip) on the grandstand side. Another whose appearance at Springfield was delayed by the airlines as he was due here for the postponed Balham game in late January. He qualified in 1991 and has been officiating in the Combined Counties League for 25 years

Cautions – Steven Brown (FG) 55, Sammy Sutcliffe (JB) 78

Corners – Jersey Bulls (3) 6, Frimley Green (1) 2
Player of the Match Award (commentator) – Jonny Le Quesne