Welling Town 4-2 Sporting Club Thamesmead Reserves - We need to hurry up and get these bad performances out of the way now, says unbeaten Welling Town boss Richard Dimmock

Friday 16th February 2018
Welling Town 4 – 2 Sporting Club Thamesmead
Location Bayliss Avenue, Thamesmead, London SE28 8NJ
Kickoff 16/02/2018 19:45

Barry Bundock West Kent Challenge Shield Quarter-Final
Friday 16 February 2018
Stephen McCartney reports from Bayliss Avenue

WELLING TOWN manager Richard Dimmock says his side must snap out of their bad performances despite extending their unbeaten run to all 19 games.

The Boots progressed through to the Semi-Finals of the Barry Bundock West Kent Challenge Shield after beating a robust Sporting Club Thamesmead Reserves side at Bayliss Avenue.

Welling Town, the current holders, are in second-place in the Andreas Carter Joma Kent County League Division Two West table with 31 points from 13 games, three points behind Sydenham Sports, while their opponents were in second-place in the Division Three West table with 38 points from their 15 outings.

An extremely poor first half saw both sides cancel each other out before two penalties were scored towards the end of the half.

Holding midfielder Ryan Leaver placed his penalty into the bottom corner to give Sporting Club Thamesmead Reserves the lead, before Lamarl Hubbard restored parity from the spot shortly afterwards.

Welling Town weren’t at their best but they were clinical in front of goal, while their goalkeeper Jack Moore pulled off a string of smart saves to frustrate the side that play next door on the artificial pitch.

Ryan Golding scored a brace to take his tally to 13 goals in nine games for the club before Dominic Elmes came off the bench to rifle in a fourth.

The Acre scored a second penalty at the death through winger Stephen Weatherly’s 35th goal of the season.

“First half was very poor, not at the races.  They just didn’t do what we said before the game so very, very disappointed,” said Dimmock, whose side would have lost this game had they played against players of their standard.

“We were lucky enough not to come in 2-1 down.

“Second half they had a bit more fight in them, still didn’t do what we said. It was very frustrating but I think the quality we had in the squad got us through the game tonight.

“We’re we at our best tonight? No, nowhere near it!  Not taking it away from Sporting Club Thamesmead Reserves but they came here tonight and got in our faces, gave us a right good game.  I think they’re too good for the division below, I think they should be in a division or two higher.  They played the long ball that we couldn’t cope with, it was very frustrating for me tonight.”

Sporting Club Thamesmead Reserves joint-manager Craig Penfold rued his side’s missed chances.

“It was just one of those nights, we had opportunities but we didn’t put the ball in the back of the net and they did.

“The game wasn’t the greatest of games to be honest with you but that’s football sometimes and you have to take your chances and I don’t think we did tonight.

“The first half wasn’t a great game of football.  Our team talk at the beginning of the game was to keep our shape because they are a decent side and they try to knock it about and we tried to catch them on the counter now and again.”

An uninspiring contest, Sporting Club Thamesmead Reserves committed 21 fouls to Welling Town’s 17.  This was not a game for the purist.

“I can’t stand here and criticise referee’s and linesmen,” said Dimmock.

“I wrote down in my notepad there were 26 challenges that they made tonight and only three of them have been booked and any other referee would’ve sent one or two off for two bookings but that’s not for me to criticise, I’m just saying what’s happened tonight.”

The Boots should have opened the scoring in the 14th minute when Moore’s big kick was cleared away by left-back Josh Weller and Golding’s pass played in Hubbard, who saw his angled drive flash past visiting keeper Ryan Osman and past the foot of the far post on the angle from 10-yards.

“It was against the run of play really. We had a counter-attack, good control from Golding, a little lay-off to Lamarl and he should’ve done better, he should’ve hit the target,” said Dimmock.

Penfold added: “That would’ve gone in, it would probably have been a different game but football sometimes doesn’t always go your own way.”

Sporting Club Thamesmead also created a glorious chance just 63 seconds later through former Glebe striker Aaron Jeffery, who is now plying his trade at the basement level of English non-league football.

Weatherly produced a sublime diagonal pass to pick-out Jeffery, who stroked his left-footed shot straight at Moore as he advanced off his line to smother the ball low to his right.

Now already sounding like a broken record, Penfold added: “I mean, I know I keep saying it, on another day that goes in, different game but it was a game of two halves tonight and they were the better side, I think, towards the end of it.”

Dimmock admitted: “I thought Jack Moore was our man-of-the-match tonight. He made several great saves tonight.   If it weren’t for Jack in goal tonight it could’ve been a different story. We’d have been out of the cup!”

The game then turned into an uninspiring battle before Welling Town created a half-chance in the 39th minute.

Winning the corner count by seven-to-four, Hubbard swung in a corner towards the near post and Golding peeled off his marker to steer his header harmlessly wide of the near post from 15-yards.

Referee Barry Jeal awarded his first penalty of the night when Welling Town captain Chris Ware slid in to bring down Ben Williams and Leaver placed his right-footed penalty nicely into the bottom left-hand corner, sending Moore the wrong way to give the Acre the lead with 40 minutes and 50 seconds on the clock.

Penfold said: “Well, that goes in and you think it gives the boys a bit of a buzz but I think the legs started to go towards the end and that was it.”

Dimmock added: “Well deserved! Bad tackle really, a tackle that doesn’t need to be made in that area, he’s just got to stand his man up. Instead, it’s a rash tackle and they got the penalty and to be honest they deserved the lead.

“I wasn’t thinking we was in trouble, we hadn’t turned up! It took us for them to score for us to liven up because as soon as they got that goal, all off a sudden we got that kick up the backside!”

However, Welling Town were swiftly back on level terms, scoring a penalty of their own with 43 minutes and 22 seconds on the clock.

Ware was taken out by shaven-headed central defensive captain Darren Penfold, senior assistant Tony Woods flagging before Jeal pointed to the spot.

Hubbard stepped up to lift his right-footed penalty over the diving keeper to find the left-hand side of the goal to score his eighth goal of the season.

Dimmock said: “Again, silly tackle.  You can’t moan with any of the tackles with the penalties, both penalties and he tucked it home and we got that against the run of play.”

Penfold added: “I didn’t actually see their actual pen but the fella was saying as he’s gone to kick it, the geezer’s head’s gone down. He’s caught the ball and then caught the fella so you can’t argue with the ref. If he’s given it, he’s given it, he’s not going to change his mind!”

The referee’s half-time whistle could not come soon enough as the large crowd hoped for better football after the interval.

“I could’ve come in and give them a right rollicking but I didn’t for once,” revealed Dimmock.

“I got them in and had a positive chat with them and told them what they were doing right and what they were doing wrong and told them they’ve got five or 10 minutes to put it right and if they didn’t I was making changes. 

“First five or 10 minutes of the second half we were still in the changing room so I made changes and every single change I made, made an impact.”

Penfold added: “We said ‘well done’ for keeping our shape and keeping in it. I think we defended well in the first half.  We said to them just up the tempo a bit, keep pressing them a bit more, get hold of the ball a bit more, start dictating the game really!”

Welling Town stepped up a few gears and took the lead with two minutes and 49 seconds into the second half.

Right wing-back Raheem Chentouf played a low pass into Golding, who knocked the ball on, outpaced his man to reach the penalty area and clinically slotted the ball past Osman into the corner.

“He went to play the ball through to Brima (Daramy), who was offside but he continued his run through one-on-one with the keeper and he slotted home nicely,” said Dimmock.

Penfold added: “Well he’s a good player. If you give him a chance, he’s going to score a goal but the boys switched off for a couple of minutes then.  I did say to them at half-time it’s one of those games where you can’t switch off. You’ve got to switch on for 90 minutes but it happens in football.”

A sliced clearance from Dan Wells gifted Sporting Club Thamesmead with a glorious chance to equalise but Weatherly brought the ball down and under control inside the box before blasting his left-footed shot straight at Moore from 10-yards.

Penfold said: “We had a fair amount of chances, if we put them in the back of the net, I’ll be standing here winning and the other fella would be standing here as a loser but it’s football, it doesn’t always go your way on the night.”

Jeffery was twice played in behind Welling’s three central defenders but on both occasions he was thwarted by the excellent Moore.

Dimmock added: “I can’t say anymore! It was the Jack Moore show tonight really.  They had a spell in the second half when they really put it on us and Jack just made three quality saves to keep us in it and from then onwards the subs that I made, made an impact and we got the third goal and I think from then onwards we controlled the game.”

Welling Town were gifted a third goal when it arrived with 26:55 on the clock, courtesy of some poor goalkeeping from Osman.

Substitute defender Chris Weber hit a long ball out of defence and Golding slipped in Mehmet Piro, who cut into the box and Osman’s clearance went straight to Golding, who swept his right-footed chip over the man on the line to find the bottom left-hand corner from 30-yards.

“A ball over the top, Mehmet hasn’t given up on the ball, he’s chased it down, the keeper’s made a mistake, he’s miss-kicked it, it’s fallen to Ryan’s feet and a great little lob over the defenders,” added Dimmock.

Penfold added: “I mean it comes down to switching off! Not switching on for the whole 90 minutes.  I mean you’re going to make mistakes in the game but Golding up front is a good player and if you give him a chance he’s going to put it in the back of the net.”

On Golding, Dimmock said: “Aaron Jeffery has proved he’s good enough in the league’s above and same as Ryan Golding. He wasn’t getting games at Erith Town.  I had a good chat with him and told him the ambitions of the club and he’s come on the board, liked the project that we want to do here. He’s come here, playing week-in-week-out and getting fitted and fitter and scoring goals.”

On Jeffery, Penfold said: “I think he just wants a game at the minute, I don’t think he’s fussed about who he plays for. He’s good mates with me and my mate Ben (Williams). He just fancies a game and he just wants to enjoy it really.”

Sporting Club Thamesmead were left frustrated again when Weller delivered a deep cross from the left towards the far post and Weatherly’s hooked shot from inside the six-yard box was blocked by Moore at his near post.

A frustrated Penfold said: “You keep saying it, at the keeper, so what can you say?”

“Another day it goes in, different story but superb (goalkeeping). I wouldn’t say he kept them in it but he made a lot of important saves.”

Williams then played the ball into Jeffery’s feet and his reverse pass teed up substitute Anthony Fenech, who powered his first time shot straight at Moore, who palmed the ball up before grabbing it as he fell.

Welling Town converted their fourth goal with 40:23 on the clock, courtesy of some good play from Hubbard.

The winger got the ball out from underneath his feet in and around the penalty area, kept composed to float over a cross towards the far post for Elmes to rifle his left-footed shot into the top left-hand corner from six-yards.

“Great finish from Dom! He’s been unlucky not to have started to be honest,” admitted Dimmock.

“Brima and Golding have been playing well together. He’s come on and scored his goal and stuck one finger up at me so it’s a tough decision for me next week.”

Penfold added: “We did say to the boys at half-time be aware of them getting it out wide and swing it in from the left or the right but like I say we weren’t tight enough, we weren’t switched on again marking in the 18-yard box and they punished us.”

Jeffery didn’t have his best night in front of goal and his last chance saw him glance a header wide from 12-yards after Williams whipped in a free-kick.

Star striker Jon Main made a 12 minute cameo appearance for Welling Town at the end and the 36-year-old missed a chance that in his prime he would have tucked away at the end of his fourth appearance of the campaign.

Peter Smith sent over a deep free-kick from the right which went all the way to Main unmarked at the far post but he drilled his shot past the foot of the near post from just inside the corner of the six-yard box.

“Mainy’s been injured plus he’s had work commitments so he hasn’t been out for the last month or so hopefully he’ll be back on board soon and get back in the squad,” added Dimmock.

Assistant referee Tony Woods flagged again to award the away side their second penalty of the night, although Jeffery ran into Wells inside the box before climbing over his back and hitting the deck.

Weatherly capped a decent game by finding the bottom left-hand corner from the resulting penalty, timed at 48:13, but it was too little too late to cause an upset.

 Dimmock added: “Let’s not talk about that decision because I thought it was totally outrageous! I do now know what the linesman’s seen but the game was dead and buried at that point, it was the last kick of the game literally. He’s taken a penalty and we’ve kicked off and he’s blown the whistle.”

Dimmock’s side host Johnson & Phillips – in eighth-place in the Division Two west table - in the Semi-Finals.

“That will be a tougher game than tonight.  We know how Johnson & Phillips play, they’re a very tough side and they will come here and it won’t be an easy game,” said Dimmock.

“I just think the last month, we’ve been lucky to keep that (19 match unbeaten) record.  We need to hurry up and get out of this little patch, bad patch. I’d say bad run, get these bad performances out of the way now and start kicking on!

“I’d love to win the cup double but I think cups are a bonus. The league is priority for me.  I want to win the league and if we win the two cups, if we could win the treble, it’s a great season.”

Penfold admitted his side ran out of steam.

“I said to my team after 90 minutes I thought it came down to three things, being clinical in front of goal, fitness and it’s football at the end of the day. 

“I mean they tried but we just weren’t good enough tonight. Fair play to Welling Town and good luck to them.

“I don’t think there was much of a standard issue. Welling Town are a good side, they knock it about well and it made us realise. We don’t train and things like that so maybe we need to put on a training session once a week so if we do move up to the next level, we do know what to expect.”

Welling Town: Jack Moore, Raheem Chentouf, Mehmet Piro (Damiola Oni 78), Dan Wells, Ricky Hepburn (Chris Weber 55), Ricky Hardie, Peter Smith, Chris Ware (Tom Fitzgerald 55), Ryan Golding (Jon Main 78), Brima Daramy (Dominic Elmes 63), Lamarl Hubbard.

Goals: Lamarl Hubbard 44 (penalty), Ryan Golding 49, 72, Dominic Elmes 86

Booked: Chris Ware 41

Sporting Club Thamesmead Reserves:  Ryan Osman, Harry Morgan, Josh Weller (Jack Shepherd 82), Ryan Leaver (Anthony Collins 63), Darren Penfold, Dan Walsh, Danny Stokley, Ben Williams, Aaron Jeffery, Tom Stokley (Anthony Fenech 75), Stephen Weatherly.
Subs: Harry Weaver, Toby Kelly

Goals: Ryan Leaver 41 (penalty), Stephen Weatherly 90 (penalty)

Booked: Ben Williams 35, Darren Penfold 43, Stephen Weatherly 75

Attendance: 225
Referee: Mr Barry Jeal (Gravesend)
Assistants: Mr Tony Woods (Bexleyheath) & Mr Douglas Osborne (Belvedere)

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