Stansfeld 2-1 Badshot Lea - It means the world to everyone to reach the FA Vase Third Round for the first time in the clubs history, says Stansfeld player-coach Joe Minter

Sunday 21st November 2021
Stansfeld 2 – 1 Badshot Lea
Location Foxbury Avenue, off Perry Street, Chislehurst, Kent BR7 6SD
Kickoff 21/11/2021 15:00

The Buildbase FA Vase Second Round
Sunday 21 November 2021
Stephen McCartney reports from Foxbury Avenue

STANSFELD player-coach Joe Minter says it means the world to everyone at the club to reach The FA Vase Third Round for the first time in the clubs history after causing a real upset by beating promotion chasing Badshot Lea.

Stansfeld are four points clear at the top of the Southern Counties East Football League First Division with 36 points on the board from their 15 league games.

Billy Hamlin and Jamie Phipps’ side have beaten Bagshot (3-1), Worthing United (5-1) and their league rivals Staplehurst Monarchs United (3-1) to reach the Second Round for the second successive season, having lost 3-0 at home to Flackwell Heath last December.

Badshot Lea are in second-place in the Cherry Red Records Combined Counties League Premier Division South table with 33 points from 14 games, two points behind leaders Walton & Hersham and a point clear of Beckenham Town, who have a game in hand on the top two sides.

Also jointly-managed, by Dave Ford and Gavin Smith, the Surrey side have beaten Devizes Town (10-0), Godalming Town (5-4 on penalties after a 2-2 draw) and Fisher (2-1) but they crashed out of the competition to lower league opposition at Foxbury Avenue.

All three goals were scored inside the opening 19 minutes.

Stansfeld got off to a dream start by taking the lead after only 39 seconds through Rob Hughes and they doubled their lead through Ollie Milton’s 11th goal of the campaign.

Badshot Lea pulled a goal back from centre-half Billy Upton at a set-piece but they found Stansfeld – a club that do not pay their players – in resilient mood and they join Beckenham Town, Glebe, Sheppey United and Tunbridge Wells in tomorrow’s draw with ties taking place on Saturday 11 December.

“I think it was brilliant, just the way we worked,” said Minter, who was sent out for the post-match interview by Phipp.

“Listen, all of the boys are best mates. Everyone worked for eachother and we’ve just got that knack of winning and we’re hard to break down.  On the whole everyman was superb today.”

Badshot Lea centre-half Rock Moses was caught out when he allowed Billy Parkinson’s long ball from his right-back position to play in Hughes, who smacked a right-footed half-volley screaming past Kallum Lunn from the edge of the box.

“It’s a terrific finish from him. He’s been a little bit in and out of the team but I think he’s scored in the last three games now so it’s a credit to him.  His attitude to the team is superb,” added Minter.

It should have been two, with only four minutes and 17 seconds on the clock when central midfielder Dan Parkinson played in Milton, who dinked the onrushing goalkeeper only for his shot clip the outside of the near post.

“He should’ve done better, he should’ve done better but you can’t fault the lad, he's been excellent so far but perhaps on another day that will go in but it wasn’t to be today, well it was eventually,” added Minter.

Stansfeld deservedly doubled their lead with only 11 minutes and 37 seconds on the clock, leaving Badshot Lea shell-shocked.

Central midfielder Minter kneeled down to tie up his boot lace before whipping a right-footed free-kick towards goal from 35-yards, the ball sailing across the diving keeper Lunn and clipping the underside of the crossbar and as the ball bounced down Milton was there to flick his header into the near corner from three yards out.

“He won’t get an easier one, he won’t score an easier goal this year, will he?” said Minter, who claims the assist and is one of the best free-kick takers in the division.

“I always fancy myself around a free-kick. I think it was probably one of the first time I actually touched the ball to be honest with you.  I hit it well and I thought it was in. It’s come off the underside of the bar and Ollie’s got a little tap in so I’m pleased for him.”

Badshot Lea pulled a goal back with 18 minutes and 41 seconds on the clock, however.

Striker Tane Caubo was fouled right on the very edge of the Stansfeld penalty area by centre-half Sam Jeal and referee Joseph Turnpenny allowed Badshot Lea to take the resulting free-kick on the line of the penalty area.

However, if the foul was actually committed on the line then the Laws of the game state it should have been a penalty for the away side.

Midfielder Macauley Ford swept in the free-kick from the right, which was flicked on by Caubo at the near post and Upton ghosted in at the back post to steer his header in from close range.

“I thought they were a really good side, probably one of the better teams, if not the best team that we’ve played this year,” said Minter.

“We knew it was going to be tough. We knew they’re (in second place) in their league and a step higher but it was difficult during the first 25-30 minutes, even though we were 2-1 up.  They kept the ball well, their midfield rotated really well and it was hard to get a gauge in it but we just kept our shape and we’re so hard to break down.”

Upton dictated play from the back as Badshot Lea played out from the back but Stansfeld were a resolute outfit for the rest of the game.

Ford slipped the ball into Dean Rule, who plays wide on the left and his right-footed angled drive from 30-yards  bounced once and comfortably into the midriff of Stansfeld keeper Charlie Cottrell, who dropped to his knees at the halfway point.

Badshot Lea should have grabbed an equaliser on the half-hour mark when Upton shrugged off his man inside his own half and fed the ball into a deep Caubo before Kane Fitzgerald played in Rule, who beat the offside trap and as Cottrell rushed off his line his dink bounced just past the foot of the near post from eight-yards.

“He was a good player their eight (Fitzgerald), he was very fit but they didn’t really have too many clear-cut chances,” said Minter.

“They looked pretty and they passed the ball well and they rotated the midfield and they got crosses in without really threatening us too much.”

Ford floated a right-wing corner into the Stansfeld box where Upton rose to glance his header wide, while Stansfeld goalkeeper Cottrell’s handling was exemplary throughout.

Minter explained why he lasted only four minutes of the second half.

“I picked up a little bit of a strain in my right knee, so it was more of a precaution really but I knew about it at the start of the game and I knew it would be difficult to play 90 but I didn’t want to let Jamie (Phipps) know that but the best thing for the team was to come off and let someone else come on,” revealed Minter, 32.

“I’m a little bit more involved this year, helping the management side out. I don’t mind it as much (watching the game from the dug-out). I get to see the game from the management side, rather than the players side.”

Stansfeld wasted a decent chance to kill the game off inside the opening eight minutes, following their third corner of the game.

Dan Parkinson whipped in a quality delivery with his right-boot from the left, which was flicked on at the near post by his brother Billy but Jeal couldn’t force the ball into the bottom right-hand corner from close range, the ball going the wrong side of the post.

Minter said: “I don’t really know what happened there, I thought it was in! It literally just went past the post.  Jeal was unlucky. I don’t really know what he was doing up there. I think that was our only real chance in the second half but that shows what we’re about – the grit and determination that we have.”

Stansfeld started the second half as the more dominant force and a slick move involving Billy Parkinson and Milton resulted in Dan Parkinson drilling a right-footed first-time drive from 30-yards, which was hit straight at visiting goalkeeper Lunn, who made a comfortable catch.

Despite enjoying most of the possession, Badshot Lea didn’t create many clear-cut chances but they were unlucky in the 63rd minute.

Ford stroked his right-footed free-kick which clipped the top of the near post from 25-yards, leaving Cottrell rooted to the spot and looking to his left and thanking his lucky stars for a big slice of fortune.

“A great strike from the lad, Charlie’s sort of just watched it and thankfully it hit the post,” said Minter, who was full of praise for Cottrell’s contribution to the cause.

“Best goalkeeper in the league, Charlie.  Everyone’s been unbelievable and superb but week-in-week-out he is unbelievable. He is the best keeper in the league!”

Badshot Lea made a double change on the hour mark and changed their formation to three at the back and substitute Aaron Redford was left in space for the midfielder to crack a right-footed drive from 30-yards, which flashed across the keeper and past the far post.

Badshot Lea could get in trouble with The Football Association after one of their fans lit a flare (which is a criminal offence inside a football ground) behind Cottrell’s goal and the referee stopped play to allow the pink smoke to clear.

Stansfeld centre-half Casey Killilea produced a match-saving block in the penalty area to prevent Rule smashing the ball past Cottrell inside the final seven minutes, summing up the commitment from the Stansfeld players.

“Casey does that all the time. Casey’s an unbelievable player, literally week-in-week-out. He’s superb for us. As well as the whole of the back five, who just collectively as a group, it’s just been unbelievable this year,” added Minter.

Referee Turnpenny played eight minutes and 14 seconds of injury time and both sides had a chance each during this period.

James Smith – who came off the bench to play on the right-hand side of their back three – whipped in a cross towards substitute Aaron Redford, whose header was comfortably gathered by Cottrell.

A long ball released Jack Carthy who smacked a left-footed drive towards the Badshot Lea goal from 30-yards, which was expertly pushed over the bar by Lunn, stretching high to his left.

Minter revealed Glebe’s bar takings will be lucrative tonight.

“All of the boys are best mates, we’ll be in Glebe now until 11 or 12 o’clock most probably, we’ll wake up with sore heads tomorrow but it’s all worth it!

“It just means the world to everyone, not just to the boys but to the management and the boys behind the scenes.

“What it does for the club, it’s terrific because the club is really, really well run and I don’t think a lot of people understand how well run the club is.

“We’re looking forward to going again in the third round, which is a round we’ve never been in before, so it’s the furthest the club’s ever been in its history and we’re absolutely buzzing!

“No one would ever expect us (to get this far) and everyone probably thinks how are they doing so well? I’ll tell you why we’re doing so well because we all believe in one another and we just fight every minute for each other and it makes such a difference.”

Minter wants a coach trip next time, adding: “Home tie is good but we do like our away days us boys so anything north of Watford will be great for us.”

Stansfeld are without a game until Croydon visit Foxbury Avenue on Saturday 4 December, a week before their next FA Vase outing.

Minter said: “It will be a tough game. We always have a lively game against Croydon. They’ve got a good side, they’re very well organised and always hard to beat. They won’t want to be playing us, they won’t be up for playing us. “

Stansfeld are four points clear of Bridon Ropes and Tooting Bec, six points clear of fourth-placed Croydon and seven points clear of fifth-placed side Larkfield & New Hythe in the league table.

“We’ll just take every game as it comes week-by-week and we’ll just keep turning them off one by one,” added Minter.

Stansfeld: Charlie Cottrell, Billy Parkinson, Joe Borland, Joe Minter (Jack Carthy 49), Sam Jeal, Casey Killilea, Macey Malyon, Dan Parkinson, Rob Hughes (Red Jenkins 76), Ollie Milton (Alex Foord 82, Sam Smith.
Subs: Greg Summersby, Liam Rankin

Goals: Rob Hughes 1, Ollie Milton 12

Booked: Dan Parkinson 9, Casey Killilea 45

Badshot Lea: Kallum Lunn, Max Drake (James Smith 60), Josh Pound (Aaron Redford 72), James Whiting, Billy Upton, Rock Moses, Dean Rule, Macauley Ford, Tane Caubo, Danilo Cadete (Owen Dean 60).
Subs: George Hedley, Louis Lindsay, Raphael Aklobessi, Jack Selby

Goal: Billy Upton 19

Booked: Rock Moses 45

Attendance: 177
Referee: Mr Joseph Turnpenny
Assistants: Mr James Beadle & Mr Marian Stoichitoiu