Thamesmead Town 4-2 Hanwell Town - I'm more pleased for the chairman because he's got some money and he needs all the help he can get down here, says Tommy Warrilow

Tuesday 20th September 2016
Thamesmead Town 4 – 2 Hanwell Town
Location Bayliss Avenue, Thamesmead, London SE28 8NJ
Kickoff 20/09/2016 19:45

(after extra time)
The Emirates FA Cup Second Qualifying Round Replay
Tuesday 20th September 2016
Stephen McCartney reports from Bayliss Avenue

THAMESMEAD TOWN boss Tommy Warrilow says he is pleased the club have banked more prize money to help his chairman after knocking Hanwell Town out of The FA Cup at the second attempt.

The Ryman League Division One North club have taken their prize money to £9,425 after ending Guernsey’s, Chertsey Town and now 12th-placed Evo-Stik Southern League Division One Central outfit Hanwell Town interest in the competition, in front of a crowd of 84 at Bayliss Avenue.

Thamesmead Town missed a number of chances at Reynolds Lane but came away with a 1-1 draw on Saturday, but they did the business, in the end, tonight.

Ray Duffy’s side were bidding to reach The FA Cup Third Qualifying Round for only the second time and they were 2-0 up inside 39 minutes through lone striker Courtney Austin’s first two goals of the season.

Warrilow had a face like thunder as he went down the tunnel for half-time and earnt his corn during the half-time interval.  He made a couple of changes and his side responded and dominated for the entire second half.

Powerfully built striker Ike Feehi got the ball rolling with an early goal, but they had to wait until two minutes from the end of normal time when substitute Ellis Green’s cross curled into the bottom far corner.

Thamesmead Town booked their place in the Third Qualifying Round for the first time in their history through extra-time goals from man-of-the-match Thomas O’Connor and Feehi.

Warrilow said he will attend Wednesday night’s replay between Colliers Wood United and Merstham (Ryman Premier) to do his homework ahead of their trip to either club on 1 October with Thamesmead Town now only two wins away from making it to the First Round.

“We started well first 15-20 minutes and then we just stepped off the gas, started doing our own thing, not pressing, not defending route-one balls and both goals were poor from our point of view,” admitted Warrilow.

“We’ve not picked up the first one, the second ball we’ve not attacked either, they got through with pace and the second goal my goalie’s just dallied on the ball too much but that’s what they’re all about, they were out of the blocks.

“Once we pressed and once we stopped doing that, they seemed to come into the game a lot more so at half-time a few things were said and I dragged a few off, we changed the system and we got more responsibility on rather than go the other way.

“We put it on them even more and to be fair to the lads they responded brilliantly.”

Thamesmead Town chairman and managing director Paul Bowden-Brown wrote in his programme notes that he’s got an interesting week ahead.

“For me personally as the owner and chairman of this fine club, this coming week is going to be a  very interesting week, because after burning many months and weeks of midnight oil, I am awaiting on receiving important news that hopefully will change the future path that want this club to take to ensure it remains financially viable, and not just relying on my finances to ensure viability.

“Here I am with in my opinion, with one of the best management teams within non-league football at our level. Ian Docker as director of football and Academy manager, Tommy Warrilow, first team manager, Alex O’Brien (number two) and so I have to ensure that off the field the club mirrors the expertise and support that these guys are giving me week after week without hesitation and that’s my job! So, hopefully in due course I will be able to make the news public.”

Thamesmead Town created the first opening of the game after 260 seconds, central defender Joe Vines hooking his shot past the left-hand post after the ball came out to him after Richard Butler put in a free-kick from the half-way line.

Hanwell Town’s first chance arrived inside six minutes when Austin threaded a ball into Tyler Christian-Law, whose right-footed drive sailed past the far post from 22-yards.

O’Connor intercepted a pass from visiting keeper Melvin Minter which was intended for Mark Jamison and the former Bromley midfielder drove forward before flashing his 25-yard drive just past the left-hand post.

Hanwell Town took the lead with nine minutes and 29 seconds on the clock and Warrilow pointed the finger of blame at central defender Steve Springett, who he hauled off at half-time with Butler.

Springett failed to cut out a ball from Anton Robinson and Christian-Law played in Austin along the deck and the striker placed his shot into the bottom right-hand corner when he only had the keeper to beat.

“It’s the first header really, we’ve not defended the ball out to the winger.  The seven (Robinson) has won a lot of aerial balls and he’s headed it inside and Steve’s got to come and meet that ball whereas the nine (Austin) lively. Steve’s got caught on his toes, he’s got a little touch in and got given a little bit of a give and go but a clumsy one and he’s finished it well so I wasn’t happy with that!”

Winger Cristian Nanetti cut back a corner from the right, Joe Vines let the ball roll through his legs on the edge of the box and O’Connor’s first time drive ballooned over the crossbar.

They got closer in the 20th minute when Paul Vines played the ball out wide to Jay Porter, who took a touch before whipping in a cross and Paul Vines’ left-footed shot on the turn was tipped around the post by Minter, diving to his right.

Feehi held the ball up for Paul Vines to stroke his weak shot past the post from 20-yards.

Warrilow was concerned that all his side’s good play during the opening 20 minutes disintegrated after that.

“The problem was the last 20-25 minutes of the first half, we were poor,” he admitted.

“For the first 15-20 minutes we pressed the ball, we won the ball but when we won the ball back we never did anything with it – and yet again we’ve been punished.”

Hanwell Town linked up well down the right and Jamison’s powerfully struck angled drive deflected past the far post from 30-yards.

Hanwell Town were gifted a second goal, timed at 38:33 and Mead’s 18-year-old goalkeeper Tyler McCarthy was at fault for an embarrassing goal.

His clearance went straight to Austin, who had closed him down inside the box, and the striker cut in towards the far post and once the ball was inches from the goal-line he smashed the ball into the back of the net.

Warrilow said: “I was even more unhappy with the second one!”

“He’s an 18-year-old and he’s come in and he’s done well for us. It’s nice for Walks (Andy Walker) to look round, Walks has made some mistakes as well so I’ve signed him.  Tyler’s going to make mistakes, he’s a young boy and he’s got to learn from it.”

That goal knocked the stuffing out of Thamesmead Town, but Paul Vines’ looping header dropped over after he met Nathan Simpson’s cross from the right.

“To be fair, we shouldn’t have been here tonight in my point of view because we should’ve won the game on Saturday with the chances we missed,” said Warrilow.

“Once they got their goal they got a spring in their step and we didn’t, so we wanted half-time to come.”

Warrilow rallied his troops during the half-time interval, brought on left-winger Ellis Green and midfielder Bode Anidugbe and changed his formation to three at the back (Jay Porter, Joe Vines and Simpson), five across the midfield and two up front.

When asked if words were said at half-time, Warrilow hinted in his response that he threatened his players with getting rid of them if they didn’t improve and showed more desire in the second half.

Warrilow replied: “Understatement, yes, we’ve been alright. We’ve been really impressing as you’ve seen in the second half of extra-time but we’ve got to get that over 90 minutes. We can’t do our own thing. We’ve worked on things and if you don’t do that there’s no point.  Players will come, players will go but the nice thing from my point of view players are beginning to appear and if they’re better than what we’ve got then we’ll strengthen but if the boys do what they did second half, it doesn’t cause me many problems.”

Thamesmead Town hit a high tempo for the first 15 minutes of the second half as they went in search of a lifeline.

Green played the ball into Nanetti, who cut inside and drilled his left-footed drive over the crossbar from the left hand side of the penalty area.

But they pulled a goal back, 108 seconds into the second half.

O’Connor threaded the ball into Feehi’s path, who cut inside and his shot trickled across Minter and nestled into the bottom far corner of the goal, only just though such was the weak effort on goal.

Warrilow said: “He was in and he tucked it away well. Reaction. Bang and we’re on the front foot! At 2-0 everyone will tell you the next goal’s important and we got it but the important thing was not to settle until we got to two-all, not to sit back, we’re on the front foot and we’re on the momentum, be positive and we’ve got our just rewards.”

Warrilow praised Anidugbe, despite playing with a hamstring injury.

“I’ve got a lot of time for Bode, another one I’m looking forward to working with,  He’s got a little niggle so hoping having Thursday off will make him (fitter).  We’ve got to have him at 100% because you can’t keep playing him as soon as he stops it sorts of seizes up so we’ve limited him, given him two weeks off so hopefully we can eradicate that and I’ve got two lads in there that have got a great partnership.”

Anidugbe’s desire and energy got his team-mates out of the traps and he played the ball inside to Whiteley, whose low right-footed drive from 25-yards was comfortably saved by Minter.

Paul Vines then played the ball to O’Connor, who swept his drive towards the bottom far corner, which called Minter into making another comfortable save.

But to their credit, Hanwell Town rode the 15 minute storm and Paul Vines was agonisingly close to turning in an excellent low cross from the right from Whiteley, the striker sliding in at the far post as the ball flashed across the face of goal.

“We had a few balls put in across the box, it was a lot better, but the clock was running out,” added Warrilow.

“We put a few balls in the box second half, we were getting out wide especially on the right-hand side.”

Hanwell Town’s number 10, Christian-Law was not a threat during the second half. His free-kick from the left was punched away by McCarthy and Joe Vines hit a long ball forward to Nanetti, who saw the Hanwell keeper had advanced out of his penalty area and hooked the ball past him, the ball rolling wide.

Nanetti was playing his last game for Thamesmead Town tonight, having accepted an offer to play Vanarama National League South football for Concord Rangers.

Warrilow is sorry to see him leave Bayliss Avenue after making 11 appearances and scoring two goals for the club.

“It’s his last game tonight. For me, I think it’s too early, I’m disappointed, but it’s two levels up and yet again it sort of shows the sort of calibre of the player and how we’ve helped Cristian out as well.  I’ve known him from the Havant days, he’s given his all tonight for us as well and I just hope he does well at Concord and he uses that to push on.”

Time was ticking away for Thamesmead and Hanwell should have wrapped the victory up in the last 10 minutes.

Winger Kyle Watson raced down the left and floated in a deep cross to substitute Sam Hurrell, but he lacked composure once he cut into the penalty area and his shot was mis-hit and rolled behind for a goal-kick.

Hanwell substitute Jordan Keeley swung in their fifth (of six) corner from the left and right-back Calum Duffy steered his free-header across goal and harmlessly wide.

Green got on his bike to speed down the left channel and whipped in a low cross and Joe Vines slid his shot past the far post from 12-yards as he found himself unmarked in a good position.

Thamesmead Town’s equaliser was lucky but well-deserved and it finally arrived with 42 minutes and 55 seconds on the clock.

Jay Porter collided with team-mate O’Connor in Hanwell’s half but still managed to sweep the ball out to Green on the left.  He cut inside and curled a cross into the penalty area, the keeper was unsighted by Feehi’s clever run across him and the ball crept in, nestling into the bottom far corner.

“The clock was ticking and we was running out of time so thankfully we’ve got Ellis.  Ellis likes to cut in and he’s done what you should do there, aim for the far post and we got good runs across the ball and it’s gone straight in.

“Relieved. It wasn’t lucky or whatever, we deserved that and I wanted to try to win it before full-time.

“At the same time when you’ve got a team like that with pace we didn’t change. We didn’t go back to a back four, we stayed positive. We got our just rewards.”

Hanwell Town missed a glorious chance to snatch victory inside injury time when Watson delivered another deep cross from the left but Austin’s poor first touch while left unmarked inside the box was a big let-off for the Mead.

“That’s what can happen, they done it on Saturday, but they put balls across and not got on the end of them, and there’s always the danger but what do you do? Do you go negative and sit back or do you (attack them)? We’re playing a lot better so I wasn’t going to change it, so I was more confident of us getting a win.”

And there was still time for Thamesmead to go close, Nanetti cutting the ball onto his left foot before steering his low drive agonisingly past the foot of the right-hand post.

When asked his thoughts on 90 minutes, Warrilow replied: “Just keep it going. We looked fit, we looked strong. The boys have had a really hard start to the season so I actually gave them Thursday off because we haven’t had a break yet and we’ve had a lot of travelling to do.

“We’ve earnt our FA Cup run this year, playing Guernsey twice, a difficult game with Chertsey and Hanwell twice and we’ve got a difficult tie in the next round but I’m more pleased for the chairman because he’s got some money. He needs all the help he can get down here.”

Hanwell Town created the first chance in extra-time after eight minutes when Oliver Duffy’s free-kick from the half-way line found Watson on the edge of the box and he threaded the ball through an eye of a needle but McCarthy read the pass to smother at the feet of substitute Tavis Royer.

Hurrell then unleashed a left-footed drive from 35-yards that flashed past the post, before O’Connor’s fine strike gave Thamesmead Town the lead, the goal timed at 10:45 into extra-time.

He picked the ball up in the final third, drove forward, looked up and bent a sublime shot into the bottom far corner.

“Tom’s a young lad whose come in. I like him a lot. I’m just trying to get him to play in the right areas, just try to get him centrally so he can do that driving and get shots off but he’s a very composed boy and I’m looking forward to working with him,” said Warrilow.

More poor control inside Mead’s penalty area cost Hanwell a goal on the stroke of half-time.

Another long ball from Watson found Tom Duffy inside the box and another poor touch and the chance went begging.

Thamesmead Town finished the game strong and on the front foot, while Hanwell Town ran out of steam and ideas.

Nanetti sprinted down the left and whipped in a cross but substitute Adrian Stone steered his free header wide.

But Stone played a part in Thamesmead’s fourth goal that arrived in the 110th minute.

He slipped the ball through in the centre circle and Feehi looked across the line to ensure he kept onside, collected the ball at his feet and sprinted through the heart of the pitch and drilled his right-footed shot past Minter.

“I’m glad for Ike because he gives us a little bit different up there,” said Warrilow.

“I know he could’ve had a couple more tonight, he could’ve had four on Saturday but I’d rather him get into positions. He gives us that little bit of pace over the top. He’s a big lad but he’s quick as well and he gives us a different dimension, which I’ve said to Adrian Stone and Paul Vines they’ve sort of shared the load a little bit but I’m glad he’s got a couple because it will do his confidence a world of good.”

Hanwell’s right-back Calum Duffy was pushed up front and had a couple of headers late in the game but one went wide and the other was comfortably gathered by McCarthy, who was relieved that his team-mates got the job done in front of him.

“The last five minutes we just went to a four (at the back) because a few of the lads were struggling. Bode’s had a hamstring injury, that’s why he didn’t start today. Tom’s hamstring was playing up. We had Nathan (Simpson) struggling a little bit. We just locked it up to a 4-1-4-1 and thankfully seal it out.”

Next up, fourteenth-placed Thamesmead Town travel to seventeenth-placed Great Wakering Rovers on Saturday; ninth-placed AFC Hornchurch next Tuesday, before their trip to Merstham or Colliers Wood United in The FA Cup Third Qualifying Round on 1 October.

“We’ve got an important game Saturday now, so we’ll concentrate on that,” said Warrilow.

“It’s been a good start, we’ve been gradually improving. 

“I know the Merstham boys, Hayden Bird and I’ll go to the replay tomorrow night and pick the bones out of that but the main focus now is on the next two league games.”

When asked about making history for the club tonight, Warrilow added: “I didn’t know about that! Hopefully it doesn’t finish there so we’ll see.”

Thamesmead Town: Tyler McCarthy, Nathan Simpson, Jay Porter, Richard Butler (Ellis Green 46), Joe Vines, Steve Springett (Bode Anidugbe 46), Cristian Nanetti, Thomas O’Connor, Ike Feehi, Paul Vines (Adrian Stone 81), Warren Whiteley.
Subs: Fraser Walker, Andy Walker

Goals: Ike Feehi 47, 110, Ellis Green 88, Thomas O’Connor 101

Booked: Nathan Simpson 74, Ike Feehi 87, Thomas O’Connor 90

Hanwell Town: Melvin Minter, Calum Duffy, Joe Chandiram, Tom Duffy, Oliver Duffy, Jessie Kewley-Graham, Anton Robinson (Sam Hurrell 65), Mark Jamison, Courtney Austin (Tavis Royer 97), Tyler Christian-Law (Jordan Keeley 76), Kyle Watson.
Sub: Michael Buckley

Goals: Courtney Austin 10, 39

Booked: Tyler Christian-Law 74, Oliver Duffy 112

Attendance: 84
Referee: Mr Andrew Loe (St Albans, Hertfordshire)
Assistants: Mr Kennedy Kikulwe (East Ham, London E6) & Mr David Moreno-Rojas (East Ham, London E6)

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