Northwood 2 Chichester City 3

Saturday 4th September 2021


1 Montel Joseph ©    
2 Ryan Avery    
3 Aaron Petch (85m)    
4 Leo Decabo    
5 Arnold Linturn    
6 Gradi Milenge    
7 Shakeel Morris    
8 Declan Nche    
9 Ismael Ehui (69m)    
10 Matt Ayres    
11 Ezekiel Williams (80m)    
12 Olu Akinode    
14 Tristan Noel    
15 Matt Surmon (85m)    
16 Tom Unsworth    
17 Matteo Esposito    
18 Sam Coles (80m)    
19 Joakim Ehui (69m)    

Chichester: Ryan Young, Connor Cody, Rob Hutchings, Jamie Horncastle, Corey Heath (Lewis Hyde 81m), Ben Pashley, Tyrone Madhani (Callum Overton 57m), Emmett Dunn, Scott Jones, Gicu Iordache, Kaleem Haitham (Matt Axell 86m)


Northwood exited the FA Cup in disappointing fashion as Isthmian South East Chichester twice came from behind in a topsy-turvy encounter. Woods welcomed back midfielders Matt Ayres and Leo Decabo, who both missed the Bank Holiday defeat at Hanwell Town, with Matteo Esposito and Tristan Noel making way.

The home side began at a good tempo and Shakeel Morris created a chance for himself in the opening minute as he cut in from the left and sent in a low shot which was comfortably saved by goalkeeper Ryan Young. Woods were soon back on the offensive and they opened the scoring on five minutes as Ezekiel Willams released Declan Nche down the right flank with the latter centring for Ismael Ehui who took the ball on his chest before poking the ball beyond Young.

Having been stung by conceding the early goal, Chichester gradually worked their way into the game forcing a succession of corners. Scott Jones headed narrowly over at the far post after Kaleem Haitham had twice tried his luck from distance while a close-range attempt from the same player was deflected over by a red shirt.

The Lillywhites continued to press for an equaliser and Tyrone Madhani went close following a short corner but his shot was high of the target. At the other end, another strong run from Nche ended with his shot being saved by Young before the Chichester stopper was called upon again as he parried an effort from Morris.

However, it was the visitors who drew level on 33 minutes after Gicu Iordache was allowed to run across the edge of the Northwood box before firing in a low shot which evaded the reach of Montel Joseph and nestled in the far corner.

But Woods posted a swift response three minutes later after a well worked short corner routine saw Leo Decabo tee up Gradi Milenge, who converted from close range to restore Northwood’s lead. And Milenge almost grabbed his second of the afternoon in first half stoppage time with an instinctive backheel which landed in the grateful arms of Young.


After Nche had sent a long range shot wide early in the second period, the visitors began to dominate possession with Woods being pinned into their own half. Goalscorer Iordache twice went close to adding to his tally as Joseph saved well before a header rebounded off the Northwood crossbar.

The Lillywhites continued to threaten as Jones latched onto another far post corner sending a header narrowly over while a deflected shot from Madhani was gathered by Joseph. And the visitors were finally rewarded for their second half efforts as they restored parity on 62 minutes, somewhat aided by Woods inability to clear their lines, Haitham taking full advantage as he forced the ball home.

Having gone close to conceding again after a poor clearance fell to Iordache who squandered the opportunity with a wayward shot, Northwood threatened at the other end as Morris played in Ismael Ehui but he was denied by a well-timed tackle from Ben Pashley.

Ismael Ehui was replaced by his brother Joakim on 70 minutes, with the former failing to recover from what appeared to be a dead leg; Morris moved into the central striker’s role. And Northwood gathered themselves as they went in search of the winning strike and they weren’t far away as Joakim Ehui’s cross was pulled back by Williams to Ayres but his shot flew the wrong side of the crossbar.

Woods made another change on 83 minutes as Sam Coles was introduced for Williams but unfortunately for the hosts, the action was down the other end as poor marking at a corner allowed substitute Lewis Hyde to dive full length and head the ball home to put Chichester ahead with seven minutes left on the clock.

Woods threw Milenge forward in a desperate attempt to retrieve the situation with Matt Surmon replacing Aaron Petch in a three-man backline, but it wasn’t to be as Chichester comfortably saw out the remaining minutes to put themselves in the hat for the next round.