Northwood 1  Basildon United 1
Northwood won 4-3 on penalties

Saturday 26th September 2020


1 Hafed Al-Droubi    
2 Baback Dehghani (56m)    
3 Jaden Sharman    
4 Ryan Phillips    
5 Dave Thomas (c)    
6 Charlie Kuehn    
7 Diogo Da Silva    
8 Marcelo Graca    
9 Devonte Totesaut    
10 Denerson Moreira (61m)    
11 George Isaac (68m)    
12 David Castanho    
14 Aaron Morgan (61m)    
15 Taufee Skandari    
16 Richard Ward (68m)    
17 Calvin Dickson (56m)    

Basildon United:
George Marsh, Nathan Putt, Eduino Vaz, Ben Brookes, Ben Steward , Jack Grosvenor, Tyrone Baker, Bradley Greene (Billy Purdy 64m), Samuel Jeremiah, Kamal De Bourg (Callum Boylan 74m), Ruben Martins Carvalho (57m)


Northwood came through the drama of a penalty shoot-out for the second time in two weeks as they overcame Isthmian League North Basildon United to progress to the next round of the F.A. Trophy.

In the first-ever meeting between the two clubs, both sides went into the contest following mixed starts to the season with Woods looking to bounce back from the disappointment of their midweek F.A. Cup exit, while the Bees had a new manager in place and lots of fresh faces in their line up following a busy week of recruitment.

Northwood manager Rob Ursell decided to switch to three at the back with Ryan Phillips and Charlie Kuehn playing either side of Dave Thomas, with Craig Carby unavailable.  Baback Dehghani was given his full debut in the right wing-back role with Jaden Sharman taking up his position on the opposite flank while Devonte Totesaut made his first start as the fulcrum of the attack with George Isaac in support.

Woods started brightly and they spurned the opportunity to take the lead from the penalty spot on 11 minutes as the overlapping Sharman latched onto a great ball from Phillips before being upended in the Basildon box, but Bees goalkeeper George Marsh was equal to Isaac’s firmly struck spot-kick.

Having escaped the penalty scare, Basildon threatened as Northwood conceded a free-kick in a dangerous position just outside the box but the hosts could breathe a sigh of relief as Rubens Martins Carvalho’s effort was deflected wide.

Woods were soon back on the front foot with a series of slick moves, Isaac finding himself in a great position after Diogo Da Silva created the opening but hesitation from the Northwood attacker saw him crowded out by the Bees defence. And another incisive move ended with Sharman trying his luck with a right foot shot which flew narrowly over following a neat lay-off from Totesaut.

But it was the visitors who opened the scoring on the 30 minute mark as the unfortunate Phillips attempted to shepherd a ball into the box back to Hafed Al-Droubi, Carvalho nipping in to slide the ball beyond the Woods goalkeeper.

Northwood responded well to the setback as they proceeded to hit the Basildon woodwork twice in quick succession. Firstly, Marcelo Gracas saw his long-range curling shot deflect off the upright before a sweeping move involving the same player and Denerson Moreira led to Totesaut firing in a rasping shot which crashed off the underside of the crossbar, with Sharman first to the rebound but unable to convert.

Woods continued to press with Da Silva the next to try his luck with a low shot which was deflected for a corner. But the hosts had some defending to do as Al-Droubi gathered efforts from Ben Brookes and Tyrone Baker. However, Northwood went close again as Isaac headed over from an enticing Phillips free-kick to close an entertaining opening period.

Northwood were quickly into their stride after the break with Dehghani’s cross finding Isaac whose shot was deflected behind before Thomas headed narrowly over as the Woods skipper latched onto a Phillips corner.

The home side made a change on the hour-mark when Calvin Dickson replaced Dehghani on the right flank and the substitute was quickly into the action as he got to the by-line, his pull-back finding Moreira, whose shot was charged down by the Basildon defence.

Woods utilised both their remaining substitutes, strikers Aaron Morgan and Richard Ward being introduced for Moreira and Isaac respectively, with the hosts still looking for the elusive equaliser. But Basildon could have put the tie beyond Northwood as Samuel Jeremiah found himself clear on goal but the Bees’ number nine dragged his shot wide.

Northwood looked to make the most of their reprieve and Da Silva almost got on the end of Morgan’s header to the far post following a Phillip’s corner. But Woods were not to be denied as Phillip’s floated cross found Ward whose low shot rebounded of the post into the path off Sharman, who lashed the ball home for the equaliser on 85 minutes.

With the threat of penalties looming, there were further chances for Woods in a rousing finish, Morgan and Totesaut having bites of the cherry in a goalmouth scramble, Dickson curling an effort narrowly wide before almost finding the stretching Ward with an enticing ball into the six yard box. But it was Basildon who had the last opportunity as Jeremiah was denied by Al-Droubi.

And the Northwood stopper took that form into the shoot-out, as he had done a couple of weeks earlier in the F.A. Cup, saving two penalties including the first and fifth Basildon efforts after Dickson, Kuehn, Totesaut and Thomas had converted, to win the tie for Woods.

REPORT by Robin Piper
PHOTOS by James Brown