In a huge week in the South Division title race, Rushall Olympic (Amber) have one hand on the trophy after completing all their division fixtures, and in the North Cup, Witton Albion continue their impressive run.
The South Division played host to the ‘Key Matchup’ this week that saw Rushall Olympic (Amber) close out their South Division season against Yate Town. The home side were sitting at the top of the division before the game with only Kidlington in second that could catch them. Yate Town on the other hand still had three games remaining before kick-off so were looking to climb the table and finish as high as possible.
Rushall Olympic (Amber) settled any nerves they had early doors after opening the scoring through Louis Godfray. Will Case clipped in a free kick from the left wing which Yate Town failed to clear and Godfray smashed the ball home at the back post.
The Home side soon doubled their lead through Kaylem Stacey after a powerful shot from Tyrese Hall was parried away by the Yate Town goalkeeper and Stacey was on hand to slot the ball home.
It was all one-way traffic in the first half with Rushall Olympic (Amber) having another chance to increase their lead. Some nice link up play down the right hand side resulted in Cobie Hodgekiss whipping in a pinpoint cross right on the head of Trafford Woolery who put it straight at the keeper.
Yate Town did have a chance to peg one back through Liam Jones thought. Some silky footwork freed him up outside the box, but his left footed effort was tipped round the post by Brandon Hillback in the Rushall Olympic sticks.
It was Rushall Olympic (Amber) who increased their lead before half-time with Cobie Hodgekiss providing a bullet header after Jamie Bryan played in a gorgeous ball with the outside of his right boot.
Yate Town did manage to get one back shortly after the break when a long ball from their keeper wasn’t dealt with by the Rushall Olympic (Amber) back line and Archie Williams supplied a brilliant finish by lifting the ball over the Rushall keeper.
Not long after, Yate Town managed to reduce the deficit once more through a tidy left footed finish from Ryan Filer. Another long ball out from the back caused the home team troubles and Filer was there to stroke the ball into the far corner.
With Rushall Olympic (Amber) still playing their fluent attacking football and Yate Town striving for an equaliser, the game became very stretch and both sides had their fair share of chances late on. Yate Town thought they had gone level right at the death following a brilliant header from Liam Jones but another fine save from Hillback ensured his side took all three points.
This was a huge victory for Rushall Olympic (Amber) in the South Division title race and means Kidlington would need to win their last two games by a 25-goal margin if they were to catch Rushall at the top of the table.
After the game, Louis Godfray who opened the scoring for Rushall Olympic (Amber) said he was proud of the way his team performed in the first half in such a big game but felt his side took their foot of the gas in the second half: “I think in the first half we were excellent, going 3-0 up at half-time in such a big game was good. Second half I think we made it hard work for ourselves, but we dug deep and we did well in the end.”
#ESPFASouthGloucestershire student and Yate Town academy player, Flyn Rawlings thought his side were poor in the first half, but their performance got better after the break. He said: “We had a sloppy first-half, but in the second half it got much better. We pressed the ball as a team, we fought until the very end and it was just unlucky that we didn’t get that third goal from the header from Liam Jones, the keeper made an unreal save and it was just unlucky really.”
Witton Albion continued their impressive run in the North Cup and moved to the top of the table after a 2-4 win over Skelmersdale United. A Dan Williams double helped them see out a third consecutive win in the North Cup.
Carlton Town picked up their first win of the cup competition with a hard fought 1-2 win against Belper Town. Sancho Ayodeji-Ansell and Thiago Mata were on the scoresheet for the visitors, With Ayodeji-Ansell also being named as the ‘Player of the Week’ for #MatchweekTwenty.
Brighouse Town and Mickleover shared the points once again after a tightly contested 1-1 draw. The two sides met back in #MatchweekNineteen and played out a hugely entertaining 2-2 draw. This week in the cup competition, Ethan Donkersley and Oli Cass scored to ensure their teams took home a point.
Kidlington kicked off their South Cup campaign with a 1-2 defeat to Rushall Olympic (Black). The Greens opened the scoring in the first half through Zak Rice but the away side came back in the second-half with goals from Enoch Danso and Kayden Lowbridge.
Team of the week
Well done to all the students who were nominated by their coaches for this week’s edition of #TeamOfTheWeek and also a special mention to #ESPFANottinghamshire student Sancho Ayodeji-Ansell who was chosen as the #PlayerOfTheWeek for #MatchweekTwenty after helping his side to victory in the North Cup.
The Highlights Show
You can catch all the action and goals from the huge game in the South Division between Rushall Olympic (Amber) and Yate Town in this week’s edition of The Highlights Show.