Woods still searching for consistency
  Saturday 7th December 2019

Isthmian League
South Central








Alan Evans   
James Brown


Bedfont Sports 4
Northwood 1

1 Joe Ringer  
2 Gabriel Piorkowski  
3 Michael Oshin  
4 Charlie Malin  
5 Ethan Flanagan  
6 Patrick Campbell  
7 Luke Holness (64m)  
8 Charlie Hayford¬©(60m)  
9 Harry Lodovica  
10 Eric Lopes  
11 Tyrone Pink  
12 Azeez Alibi (60m)  
14 Max Holland (64m)  
15 Festus Lori  
16 Malcolm Podier  
17 Yashma Romeo  
BEDFONT: Dimitrios Kyriatzis, Imran Uche, Mekhail McLaughlin, Michael Kinsella , Ed Cook, Ezekiel Bademosi, Joe Jackson (Vincent Follea 83m), Maxwell Oldham (Brandon Kalu 72m), Darryl Sanders (Ryan Debattista 89m), Nathan Wood, Lucas Sinclair  

Once again, the Woods’ rebuilt side were unable to follow up on a good win by maintaining that consistency as they slipped to a poor defeat against a Bedfont Sports side who have begun to achieve that reliability themselves.

As Manager Jamie Leacock still searches for the vastly improved defensive standards that his side need to find, he surprisingly made two changes at the back following the 2-1 success at Harlow Town a week earlier. In came new signing Michael Oshin at left-back while Gabriel Piorkowski covered at right-back with Patrick Campbell preferred to Azeez Alabi alongside Ethan Flanagan in the centre. Max Holland had also returned to the Woods for a third spell and took his place on the bench.

There was a slow start to the game and not until the ninth minute was there any sort of effort on goal, with the home side skipper Joe Jackson shooting well wide from outside the box, but after 11 minutes Bedfont Sports were in front. And a fine move it was, breaking quickly and working the ball from left to right before a good cross from Nathan Wood saw Eze Bademosi score with a solid header.

The goal at least woke up the Woods who tried their luck from distance through Eric Lopes and then Luke Holness but both efforts missed the target by a considerable distance. Northwood continued to battle hard though and went close on 27 minutes as Harry Lodovica worked his way into the box having shrugged off a couple of foul challenges and then cut the ball back to Lopes. His shot was on target this time but home goalkeeper Dimi Kyriatzis was comfortably behind it to save.

Four minutes later Sports could have made it 2-0 though as another deep cross from the right dropped kindly for Lucas Sinclair but he volleyed over the bar.

The game swung further towards the home side on 35 minutes. Charlie Hayford played a delightful ball through to the overlapping Piorkowski and his great ball across goal was met by Tyrone Pink at the far post and it looked a certain goal before Kyriatzis saved at point blank range. Bedfont countered quickly and repeated their opening goal, getting the ball out to the right, Jackson this time with the cross and Bademosi stole in between defenders and goalkeeper to force it home from close-range.

It was a poor goal to concede and the home side still led 2-0 at the break. Their goalkeeper was looking very solid between the sticks as he made another stop to deny Lopes on 49 minutes and two minutes later it was pretty much game over as the Woods defence stood ball-watching at a corner and Mekhail McLaughlin scored from a free header.

History repeated itself again when Kyriatzis got down well to keep out a Holness strike after he was presented the ball from a misplaced pass and another quick break saw Sinclair streak away down the left to fire under Joe Ringer for a fourth goal.

This time the Woods did pull a goal back almost immediately as Lopes fed Lodovica on the right and his cross dropped kindly for Pink to force home his first goal for the club from close range.

Unfortunately midfield general Hayford was then forced off with injury with Alabi coming on to bolster the central defence, Campbell moving to right-back and Piorkowski taking up his more familiar central midfield role. Holland then entered the fray in place of an out-of-sorts Holness and just a few minutes later he cut in from the right and sent a shot that curled just wide of the far post.

The changes from both sides plus a few hefty challenges when the Woods tried to build attacks meant there was little goalmouth action in the final twenty minutes. On 80 minutes Lopes helped on a flat ball from Piorkowski and Lodovica tried his luck with an overhead-kick attempt which was on target but without the power to beat the in-form ‘keeper who dived to his right to keep it out.

Just before the end, Lopes fired over after a neat run and cross from Holland and then a free-kick just outside the box saw Lodovica arrow his strike towards the bottom corner but again Kyriatzis was alert to it and he got across to make the save.

That’s 54 goals conceded now for the Woods in just sixteen league matches, the most in the division and the third worst record at Steps one to four in the Country. There is little doubt where the improvement still needs to come.