Thursday 01st September 2005
Pressure mounts on Saunders
Epsom & Ewell 1-1 Bromley
Saturday 6 December 2003
Ryman Football League Division One South
Stephen McCartney reports from Merland Rise
The future of Eddie Saunders as Bromley manager hangs in the balance today following their 1-1 draw at bottom of the table Epsom & Ewell.
Saunders took over the reigns at Hayes Lane on a caretaker basis on Thursday 23 October following the shock resignation of Stuart McIntyre.
After winning two league games as caretaker manager, Saunders has now gone five league games without a win since getting the manager's job on a permanent basis.
Bromley are sitting in twelfth place in the table collecting 28 points from 18 games. There is a four point gap between them and eleventh placed Leatherhead. The Ravens are five points behind Whyteleafe in that coveted and all important sixth place finish for a key to promotion into the Ryman Premier Division.
Without a home win all season, Epsom & Ewell prop up the Ryman League Division One South table and before this game collected only six points in nineteen games. They also leaked seventeen goals in their last three games without reply.
The home side's shoot from distance policy saw them go close in the opening five minutes with stocky Chris Fossey and Jamie Buckley going close with the latter testing Bromley goalkeeper Danny Harwood.
Bromley's first chance came after ten minutes through former Lewes striker Tony Reid, who made Epsom goalkeeper Matt Sergeant work, getting down low to his left to clutch the low shot from twenty yards.
After Fossey's forty yard effort bounced wide of Bromley's right upright, Bromley took a fourteenth minute lead.
Reid clipped the ball over the advancing goalkeeper finding the bottom far corner of the net to score his eighth goal of a disappointing campaign.
His strike partner, Adolph Amoako, however, almost doubled the visiting side's lead seven minutes later from eighteen yards as his shot narrowly missed Sergeant's flying dive and the right upright.
Harwood made a fine save just before the half an hour mark rushing off his line to thwart Noel Rogers shot after Fossey's threaded pass cut through the centre of Bromley's back four.
Epsom levelled proceeding's after 44 minutes. Nigel Bennett's free kick on the left was squared to midfielder Jamie Buckley in space in the middle. He had time and space to unleash a 35 yard drive that bounced past Harwood hitting the foot of the right stanchion to give the basement boys an equaliser.
Five minutes after the break, Bromley midfielder John Wilfort, back in the side after completing a three match suspension, volleyed narrowly wide of the right post from 40 yards before Sergeant saved Reid's header after Paul Kember headed Colin Luckett's flag kick across the penalty area.
As the home side were forced to defend for their lives and not troubling visiting goalkeeper Harwood, Bromley went close to scoring after 62 minutes.
Tim Smith rugby tackled Kember on the right hand side of the penalty area and Luckett delivered a free kick but Reid's powerful header clipped the right upright.
Kember's cross after 65 minutes found substitute Bobby George on the right hand side of the penalty area. The Bromley player had time to bring the ball under control, but went for goal himself, heading well off target of the right post just inside the penalty area.
Shortly afterwards, Reid's 25 yard snap shot flew wide before Sergeant, whose kicking had much to be desired throughout the game, had two attempts to collect Wilfort's header on goal following South African defender, Steve Potterill's dead ball kick.
The loyal Bromley faithful lost patience with their side late in the game and saw their goalkeeper, Harwood get his body fully behind Epsom substitute Adam Broomhead's powerful twenty yard drive after 77 minutes.
Bromley's day was summed up when substitute Paul Vines lashed high and wide of the target when well placed inside the penalty area, before the former Cray Wanderers second string player saw a shot inside injury time headed off the line by Matt Sinclair.
Epsom almost snatched a late winner but Craig Watkins shot into the side netting to the right of the penalty area after beating the defence.
These are now anxious and stressful times at Bromley, without a league win in five games, and one of the highest wage bills in the division, the question is how long will chairman Jerry Dolke give manager Eddie Saunders to turn things round at Hayes Lane?
Epsom & Ewell: Matt Sergeant, Tim Smith, Nigel Bennett, Matt Sinclair, Adam Stones, Ross Slidefield, Jamie Buckley, Chris Fossey (Adam Broomfield 54), Craig Watkins, Noel Rogers (Simon Hatton 70), Lee Purvis. Subs: Tim Livreen, Jeffeason Curtis
Bromley: Danny Harwood, Steve Potterill, Mark Willy, John Wilfort, Colin Luckett, Danny Smith (Capt), Paul Kember (John Myatt 90), Mark Hammond (Bobby George 64), Tony Reid, Adolph Amoako (Paul Vines 81), Michael Harney. Subs: John Butler, Andy Hunt (Gk)
Referee: Mr S D Cook
Assistants: Mr T Wood and Mr T Hatt