Deal Town 7-0 Tooting Bec - I thought we dealt with it incredibly professionally and it was pretty one-sided in the end, says Deal Town boss Steve King

Saturday 22nd October 2022
Deal Town 7 – 0 Tooting Bec
Location The Charles Sports Ground, St Leonards Road, Deal, Kent CT14 9AU
Kickoff 22/10/2022 15:00

The Isuzu FA Vase First Round
Saturday 22 October 2022
Stephen McCartney reports from The Charles Sports Ground

DEAL TOWN manager Steve King says his side dealt with their lower-league opponents in an incredibly professional manner after recording their record FA Vase victory with a seven-goal thrashing of Tooting Bec.

Deal Town went into this First Round tie sitting in fourth-place in the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division table with 20 points from 11 games, while Tooting Bec arrived on the Kent coast sitting in sixth-place in the Southern Counties East Football League First Division table with 18 points on the board from 12 games, four points adrift of leaders Lydd Town.

King’s men have beaten Alfold (3-1) and FC Elmstead (4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw), while Matt Hancock’s men defeated their league rivals Sporting Club Thamesmead (1-0) and Billingshurst (5-0) but suffered their record FA Vase defeat here today.

Tooting Bec goalkeeper Chris Gregory was handed his first start of the season as Zdnek Machacek was in his native Czech Republic to organise his wedding and with most of the squad turning up just 50 minutes before kick-off it was going to be a tall order for the Chipstead-based outfit to reach the Second Round for the first time.

Deal Town were in ruthless mood and impressive right-winger Tom Chapman notched a hat-trick inside the opening 37 minutes to take his goalscoring tally for the season up to five goals.

Aaron Millbank headed in a fourth before the break, before Deal Town continued the onslaught after the interval with central midfielder Ben Chapman scoring twice to take his tally to 12 for the season, before big target man Connor Coyne slotted in his fifth of the season.

There were no further goals after Tooting Bec’s holding midfielder Jack Martin was sent off for a late challenge on Ben Chapman with 14 minutes of the humiliation remaining.

“I thought it was an excellent performance.  We were good in front of goal and kept our good home form up and it was an enjoyable afternoon so I’m pleased to get through, pleased with the performance and pleased with the result,” said King.

“We’ve got the boys in the record books, the clean sheet was pleasing, another good crowd (466), considering they didn’t bring any fans with them, to have nearly 500 home fans, things are going well.  The club’s on the up and we’ve been on a journey over four, five, six years and we’ve still got lots to do but it’s all positive progress.

“I thought we started the game really well and our finishing was good.  We’re always going to play with spirit and are always going to work hard.  Our home form has been outstanding and we’ve got a real confidence at home at the moment that we’re going to win games of football.

“I just thought it was a good all-round performance.  I think those games are massive banana skins.  Tooting Bec got to the play-offs in SCEFL One last year and it’s not a bad league that league, you look at some of the sides that are in it and I know they’ve been on a good run recently, they haven’t lost many so it could’ve been a banana skin but I thought we dealt with it incredibly professionally and it was pretty one-sided in the end.”

Recalled Tooting Bec left-back Michael Thompsett had a nightmare and failed to cope with Tom Chapman’s skill wide on the right and Deal Town went close to opening the floodgates with five minutes and 25 seconds on the clock.

Right-back Sam Taylor released Tom Chapman down the right and his hanging cross sailed over Millbank’s head at the far post.  Billy Munday recycled the ball and cut the ball back to Jack Penny, who cut inside and curled his right-footed shot around the top of the far post from 25-yards.

“When Jack Penny starts games well, he seems to take that momentum, if he has a good first 10 minutes,” said King.

“I talk to him about it all of the time and he was really unlucky with that chance. It was a great strike on his weaker foot.”

Deal Town did open the floodgates, however, taking the lead with seven and a half minutes on the clock.

Penny had a great game at left-back and produced some great passing with his left-foot and he whipped in a cross from the left, which was brought down by Coyne on the edge of the box and he laid the ball off for Tom Chapman, whose deflected drive from 18-yards beat Gregory at his near post.

“Tom hasn’t scored for a while, a couple of weeks,” said King.

“He’s such a good player. We’ve linked it up well. We used that extra man overload out wide and it was a good strike. You always wanted that first goal. It got us off and running.” 

Munday and Penny linked up well down the left again and Penny’s cross was poorly punched by Gregory and the ball fell kindly for Munday, who drilled a low right-footed volley screaming past the foot of the right-hand post from 22-yards.

“A great strike from Bill, he was unlucky.  I thought he did that well. He backed our play well, got to the top of the box and he struck it cleanly and on another day that flies in but he did well there Bill,” added King.

A big kick from home goalkeeper Henry Newcombe was flicked on by Millbank and Coyne took a touch inside the box and prodded his shot towards goal only for Gregory to come out and narrow the angle and make a save at his near post.

Tooting Bec had very little quality all over the pitch but they did create a half-chance to score at the halfway mark.

Eoin Fraser played the ball in from the right and right-winger Alvin Turyatemba’s left-footed shot was comfortably gathered by Newcombe at his near post.

Penny’s left-footed free-kick wasn’t dealt with by an awful Tooting Bec defence and sailed a long way and was met by Millbank’s looping header at the back post, which was caught in Gregory’s midriff before the keeper fell to the deck.

Deal Town’s second goal arrived with 23 minutes and 48 seconds on the clock, following a well-worked move.

Penny switched the play from left to right by drilling a ball over to Taylor, who released Tom Chapman down the right and he easily cut inside Thompsett before producing a quality left-footed dinked finish into the bottom far corner from 18-yards.

King said: “A brilliant goal, a brilliant goal.  Jack Penny’s distribution is quality and his passing all afternoon was outstanding.  We knew we could get that two-on-one out on the right-hand side with Sam and Tom Chapman.  Sam got the perfect time of the pass and Tom’s cut inside and bent it in the top corner – it’s a great goal!”

Turyatemba picked up a loose ball close to the centre circle and drove past Penny and centre-half Alfie Foster and once inside the penalty area the Tooting Bec winger curled his shot around the top of the far post from 15-yards.

Martin then hooked a ball which split open centre-halves Lewis Stevens-Toomey and Foster to play in seven-goal striker Alex Keating, whose right-footed dink sailed across the goalkeeper and past the far post of an open goal before the home side regained dominance of this one-sided encounter.

“You have to show these teams respect, they’re going to have chances during the game and if one of them goes in, at 2-1 you never know but we limited them to one or two chances across the game.  They were a play-off side last year and teams are always going to have their opportunities. I thought we defended well across the game,” said King.

Deal Town raced into a three-goal lead in the 37th minute, finishing off a trademark set-piece routine.

Taylor launched a long throw in from the right, the ball was flicked on by Munday at the near post and Tom Chapman drilled a right-footed volley through a crowd of players and past the exposed goalkeeper from 10-yards.

King said: “Another good finish.  His brother has been in the goals this year so a first-half hat-trick from Tom.

“It’s nice for the goals to be shared around. I’m delighted for Tom, a quality player and a fantastic hat-trick from him.”

The game was dead and buried as soon as ruthless Deal Town scored their fourth goal with 38 minutes and 13 seconds on the clock, following another set-piece.

Deal Town won the corner count seven-by-two and notched their fourth goal following their second corner.

Macauley Murray floated the ball in from the left towards the back post for Millbank to bury his diving header into the bottom near corner.

“A brilliant header, a great cross, a great header, really pleased with that goal,” said King.

“I’m probably not giving any secrets away if I say we do a lot of work on our set-pieces and they’re important to us.  Most people will know that.

“It was a great cross. We work hard on our runs and we get Aaron free at the back post and it was a great diving header.

“When you go in at four-nil you feel really secure. There’s a lot of times in football where three-nil’s have been overturned after half-time but there’s not many where four’s have.

“That extra little bit of insurance meant that we could bring Millbank off at half-time, just to rest him, he’s been struggling with a couple of knocks and we’re playing Tuesday, Saturday, next Wednesday so that fourth goal just gave us that little bit of insurance to feel confident to make that substitution so it was an important goal for us.”

Penny’s left-footed free-kick some 35-yards from goal was met by Foster at the far post but his header was tipped around the post by Gregory as Deal Town held a four-goal advantage going into the interval.

“We actually talked about a few little things in our bigger plan, what we’re trying to do while moving forward and tactically what we want to do and we just focused on two or three things that we thought we could do a little bit better in the second half with possession of the ball,” revealed King.

“We weren’t getting carried away but we knew we were in a good position.  We were pleased with it.  Just a few bits, tactical information for us to take forward for future games.”

Gregory made a comfortable save as Deal Town created their first chance of the second half after 166 seconds.

Penny fed half-time substitute Riley Alford who cut inside down the left and put it on a plate for Ben Chapman, whose right-footed low drive from 25-yards was held by Gregory, low to his left.

“Ben was desperate to get in the goals second half but he did eventually.  He can be a bit frustrated that he hasn’t hit the target but I thought his all-round play was good,” said King.

“Riley’s come on and made a good impact in the game. He was unlucky not to start really. He started last week but we went with Connor Coyne today, who I thought did very well. Riley came on at half-time and I thought he done well.  He can be a bit frustrated that he hasn’t hit the target but I thou his all-round play was good.”

Tooting Bec created a glorious chance to pull a goal back when Eoin Bolger floated a left-footed free-kick into the box and Martin steered his free header past the left-hand post from six-yards out, punching the ground in despair after failing to score.

Deal Town raced into a five-goal lead with seven minutes and 49 seconds on the clock, following a set-piece and some poor defending from Tooting Bec’s centre-half Jude Soder.

Deal Town won a free-kick some 30-yards from goal and Murray’s free-kick was poorly headed away by Soder and the ball fell for Ben Chapman to smash a first-time right-footed drive through a crowd of players from 16-yards, the ball nestling into the bottom left-hand corner.

“A carbon copy of the one we had against K Sports (5-1 home win in the Kent Senior Trophy) last week. We work on those. We concentrate on second-phases of set-pieces and making sure we’ve got players where the ball is going to drop or where we think the ball is going to drop if we don’t win the first contact,” said King.

“It was a good strike. It went through a crowd and crept in the bottom corner.  You just want to get that first goal. We said at half-time we don’t want this one to be 4-1 or a 4-2 where you get sloppy in the second half.  We said let’s go and try to get the first goal of the second half and then we can kick on from there so it was nice for that one to go in.”

Penny put in another great cross from the left, the ball was poorly headed away by the woeful Thompsett and Ben Chapman’s drilled shot was parried away by Gregory, low to his left.

Hanock made a double change just before the hour but his team failed to stem the tide for the remainder of the game.

Deal Town’s sixth goal arrived with 18 minutes and 48 seconds on the clock.

Ben Chapman’s hook released Penny in acres of space down the left and he switched the play over to the outstanding Tom Chapman within the penalty area on the right and after a sublime first touch he drilled a low cross towards the back post where Ben Chapman flicked the ball into the bottom far corner.

“Chapman’s Chapman.  It was a good bit of football to isolate Tom out wide right,” said King.

“I don’t need to praise Ben Chapman, everyone knows what I think of him, he’s so, so good but he gets in those areas. People wonder how midfielders score so many goals. He scores so many goals because he gets in the box often. He works box-to-box but he scores a lot of goals in the six-yard box and you won’t find central midfielders who score a lot of goals in the six-yard box but he’s got such an engine and I’m delighted for him to get another couple of goals.”

Deal Town’s seventh goal arrived with 21 minutes and 26 seconds on the clock, with another well-worked move.

Ben Chapman and substitute Alex Smith linked up down the left, Penny put in a low cross into the D, Ben Chapman dummied the ball and Coyne’s clinical first-time left-footed drive nestled inside the bottom far corner from 18-yards.

King said: “I thought it was a great bit of play, a great step over by Ben Chapman and a great strike by Connor Coyne and I’m looking forward to watching that one back on the Veo. That was a real good goal and it shows when you’ve got quality players and you’re playing in tight games every week, sometimes that quality doesn’t always come out.

“We played some really good stuff and our interplay was really good.  We should’ve scored more but that was a real pleasing goal, I enjoyed that.”

The outstanding Penny delivered a deep cross towards the back post for Alford and the former Hythe Town striker drilled a low shot across the diving keeper and past the far post after being left in space.

Tooting Bec were reduced to 10 men when Martin was late on Ben Chapman and referee Nicholas Monkman consulted assistant referee Roger Beake and pulled out a red-card for violent conduct.

“I understand it in terms of being frustrated. I actually thought the boy did ok for them in holding midfield but it’s just a really poor challenge.  It was frustration, it was high and it was a deserved red card for me,” said King.

“At that point we want our players protected and we can only use three subs. We tried to get boys off to look after them and Ben Chapman has been outstanding for us. Obviously we don’t want to lose him to an injury at seven-nil from a bad tackle. I thought the ref got it right.”

Deal Town were hungry for more goals in the time remaining with Newcombe’s big kick releasing Penny down the left and his cross was flicked on by towering targetman Dean James and Ben Chapman’s rasping drive was beaten away by Gregory in the 89th minute.

Penny’s left-footed free-kick was hit deep and was knocked down by Foster at the back post and substitute James had his big moment but sliced his first-time shot past the far post at the death.

King added: “We probably should’ve scored another goal or two but we’ve scored seven, I’m not going to complain.  We were clinical. That’s 12 goals in two home games, so it was good.”

Tommy Sampson – who was Deal Town’s manager when they beat Chippenham Town 1-0 in the 2000 FA Vase Final underneath the iconic twin towers of the old Wembley Stadium, was in attendance.

“I’ve got to give Tommy a little mention because we invited him into the changing room before the game just to speak to the lads and he brought his winners’ medal with him and we spoke to him,” said King.

“It’s great to see Tommy here and he’s a big part of the club history and he’s still as enthusiastic as ever. It is nice for someone whose been there to speak to the players and it was good to put on a good show in front of him.”

Attention now turns to their league trip to Bearsted on Tuesday.  Kevin Stevens’ side were knocked out of The FA Vase today after losing 3-1 at Jersey Bulls.

King said: “I’ve got quite a lot of time for Kev Stevens. I like Bearsted as a side and I always think whenever we play them they should finish higher in the league than what they’ve done.  I think they save their best performances for us but we always have a really good game against them and that’s going to be tough.

“We’ve got a couple away. It’s half-term this week and we’ve got quite a lot of teachers in our side so I’m missing a couple but we’ll reshuffle the pack and we’ll be ready to go on Tuesday.  We haven’t won in three league games, we’ve had a couple of draws and lost to Phoenix so we need to get three points to try to get back on track after these two good cup wins.”

For Tooting Bec manager Hancock, he reflected on an poor afternoon on the Kent coast.

“We were very poor, they were very good. They all knew their jobs extremely well, very physical, very strong but not in a dirty way.  They won their headers, won their tackles and when they got the ball they knew exactly what they wanted to do, played to a system and ultimately we couldn’t handle that.  We’ve had a really bad day but we were beaten by the better team.”

When asked about his side’s late arrival, Hancock replied: “We’ve also turned up like that to other games and won so you’ve got to take that so you can’t control the traffic.  The lads should’ve had their heads on straight away, no excuses.”

“That (the first goal) was the pre-cursor to the game that we made a mistake and they punished it. Probably five of the seven goals, I think their moves started from us giving the ball away, or miscommunication or losing a header, take your pick!

“If you’ve got experienced players on the pitch, you’re hoping they take responsibility and know where the danger areas are.”

Hancock wanted left-winger Faiz Yuusuf to help out his struggling team-mate, as Tom Chapman put in an outstanding performance down that side of the pitch.

“I don’t think we ever got to grips with their winger (Tom Chapman) especially on the right. He was giving the left-back (Thompsett) a really tough time, then double up on him, give him a helping hand and I never thought as a team we took responsibility on the pitch.”

Hancock demanded more from his side, especially going into the interval with a mountain to climb.

He said: “When you go in at half-time at four-nil, the message was try to restore some pride. I don’t think we did that in the second half either.

“We had a chat about what it means to play for the club and for each other.  I literally don’t mind losing a game of football, I literally don’t mind if you get beaten by the better team but have some pride.  But not to play with that professional pride and responsibility for your position, that’s what really hurts me, it really upsets me and that was the message to them.

“If you don’t even win your one-v-one battles, it doesn’t mater about any tactics or formations, if you can’t win that fundamental battle against your opposing number than you’re going to lose a game of football.”

When asked about Gregory’s debut in goal, Hancock replied: “He actually did alright considering he conceded seven!  Our first team goalie is in the Czech Republic organising his wedding so he stepped up. I’ve not got a bad word to say about him, maybe a bit quiet coming for crosses.

“I don’t know how big the deflection was (for the first goal) but maybe he could’ve done a bit better on a few of the goals but he was very exposed.”

When asked about the red card, Hancock said: “It was late and an element of recklessness so no complaints.  It’s a big difference between going around and fouling people and actually that controlled physical aggression to put your body in the right position…”

It's seventh-versus-tenth when Staplehurst Monarchs visit Chipstead’s High Road next Saturday and Hancock demands a positive reaction for the First Division clash.

Lydd Town (22 points from 11 games) are early league leaders, with the play-off positions being held by Larkfield & New Hythe (20 points from 11), Bridon Ropes (20 points from nine), Rochester United (20 points from 11) and Snodland Town (19 points from 11).

“Myself and Gavin (Bolger) will have a chat, have a lot of whiskey and drink and the frustration thing is we’ll win two or three and then this happens and we’re trying to work out how to get consistency. If you get any consistency in the level that we’re at, in the league below and you shoot up the league table.  We just can’t get that consistency.

“We don’t pay players so we haven’t got a huge base of players so to a certain extent you’ve got what you’ve got so there’s no point whinging about it.”

When asked if he had a message for the travelling fans that witnessed today’s humiliation, Hancock replied: “I think it was the chairman (Stefan Wells), my mum and dad and I think there were five other parents as well so there you go, about eight of them. I hope they enjoyed the hospitality suite. Thanks for coming to watch an absolute shi* show.

“I’m someone who has another career who does it because I love football. I don’t get paid for it. I don’t have any real ambitions to make it my profession so by the time I get home to my family, I won’t forget about the loss but it is what it is.  Yes, it is a really poor day in my life as a manager but it’s not the be all and end all.”

Deal Town: Henry Newcombe, Sam Taylor, Jack Penny, Billy Munday, Lewis Stevens-Toomey, Alfie Forster, Connor Coyne, Macauley Murray (Alex Smith 63), Aaron Millbank (Riley Alford 46), Ben Chapman, Tom Chapman (Dean James 70).
Subs: Liam Hark, Joe Reeves, Kane Smith

Goals: Tom Chapman 8, 24, 37, Aaron Millbank 39, Ben Chapman 54, 64, Connor Coyne 67

Tooting Bec: Chris Gregory, Elijah Lewis, Michael Thompsett, Jack Martin, Matthew Stone, Jude Soder, Faiz Yuusuf (Steve Karkari 57), Eoin Bolger, Alex Keating (James Parsons 78), Eoin Fraser, Alvin Turyatemba (Conor Turner 58).
Subs: Nick Thompson, Matt Hancock

Booked: Alex Keating 42, James Parsons 90

Sent Off:  Jack Martin 76

Attendance: 466
Referee: Mr Nicholas Monkman
Assistants: Mr Roger Beake & Mr Derek McCamley