Cockfosters 6  Northwood 2

Saturday 28th July 2018


1 Luke Sheldrick    
2 Karl Stevenson    
3 Miguel Matos    
4 Wilson Chingoka    
5 Tom Massey    
6 Charlie Morgan    
7 Kweku Conrad-Lucan    
8 Cameron Ferguson    
9 James Ewington    
10 Ben Pattie    
11 Emmanuel Melford-Rowe    
12 Ben Andreos    
14 Matt Cooper    
15 Rhys Shirley-Clarke    
16 Antoine Akinola    
17 Sam Jenkins    
18 Bradley Marriott    
19 Chris Gosling    
20 Hakeem Nyariki    

Northwood suffered their first defeat of the 2018 pre-season programme, and remarkably their first loss in 20 pre-season games since 2015. Played in windy conditions on a difficult surface, Woods were never really at the races against their Spartan South Midlands opponents to give manager Dean Barker plenty to ponder with a couple of weeks to go until the real action begins.

Charlie Morgan was given a first start alongside Tom Massey in central defence with Kweku Conrad-Lucan and Emmanuel Melford-Rowe returning to the starting line-up to occupy the wide attacking berths.

Northwood made the worst possible start as Courtney Clay gave Cockfosters the lead with  two minutes on the clock. Woods went close to posting an immediate response as Cameron Ferguson’s shot was parried onto the crossbar before Conrad-Lucan saw deflected for a corner. But it was the hosts who extended their lead on 10 minutes as poor defending allowed Clay to grab his second of the afternoon.

Northwood briefly threatened through Ben Pattie and Conrad-Lucan but to no avail. And it was that man Clay once again who capitalised on indecision from goalkeeper Luke Sheldrick as he chased down a long punt which held up in the wind, to roll the ball into an unguarded net to seal his hat-trick in the 18th minute. Sheldrick’s afternoon was made worse three minutes later as Clay’s speculative shot slipped through the keeper’s hands before agonisingly rolling over the line to make it 4-0 on a rapidly deteriorating afternoon for Barker’s men.

Northwood proceeded to create a couple of chances as Pattie had a shot turned round the upright by the home ‘keeper before former sent in a deep cross which was headed wide by Wilson Chingoka. And Northwood’s  miserable afternoon continued on 31 minutes as the defence was deceived once again by a long ball from the back allowing Clay to score with ease and register his fifth of the afternoon.

Woods continued to create chances of their own, James  Ewington having a shot cleared off the line, Conrad-Lucan seeing his shot rebound off the post after good work from Ferguson while the Cockfoster’s keeper juggled a Pattie shot at the second attempt with Ewington hovering.

Woods finally managed a score of their own six minutes into the second period, Pattie firing home after Chingoka helped on Ewington’s pullback following good work from Emmanuel-Rowe.

Woods utilised all their substitutes but normal business was resumed as Cockfosters added a sixth goal on with a penalty on 73 minutes after Sam Jenkins was penalised.

There was still time for Pattie to grab a second goal to complete the scoring with a fine strike from the edge of the box. But this was little consolation on a disappointing afternoon for Northwood with manager Barker keen to draw a line under the performance and look forward to welcoming back a couple of key absentees as they resume their pre-season programme against AFC Hayes on Tuesday.

REPORT by Robin Piper
PHOTOS by Alan Evans