Bishops Stortford 0 Enfield Town 2
Town go top!
Town topped the table for the first time this season with another away win, but made hard work of beating a young, lively Bishops Stortford side who never gave up. In a game delayed until 8.15pm because of horrendous traffic issues on the M11, Town fielded a strong side which included the returning Junior Mubiayi, plus Sam Chaney who has missed the last few weeks. Despite stop start preparation as the game was twice delayed, Town started confidently, moving the ball round well on a good surface, but kept giving the ball away or losing it in good positions. It was no real surprise that they took the lead on 13 minutes when Chaney confidently side footed the ball home and whilst the home side were competing well, there seemed an opportunity for another big win.
Instead, a combination of inspired goalkeeping and woeful finishing saw the half surprisingly finish with the same score line. Liam Hope, Brandon Adams and Bilal Sayoud all missed presentable chances, but the goalkeeper also made a series of fine saves and twice defenders blocked shots on or near the goal with the keeper beaten. Stortford started the second half more positively and dominated the opening exchanges. Having started the game with just 11 players, they made three early substitutions bringing on players who would normally have started and started to look a better side. Mubiayi who was unwell was replaced by Jamie Doyle and Town slowly started to get their share of the ball again. Gallagher and Chaney were having fine games in midfield and Doyle presented a new threat down the left with his powerful presence.
More chances came and went in a repetition of the first half, with the keeper making more good saves, though more careful shot placement by Town would have resulted in more goals. Stortford were not out of the game and young keeper Teddy Reynolds was at full stretch on several occasions to keep the home side out as the game swung from end to end, but he was also well protected by the back four. Having missed so many chances, Towns’ second goal came in bizarre circumstances when Doyle did well down the left and crossed the ball to the far post where a defender stabbed it past his own keeper. There was still time for Stortford to hit a post and just avoid a nervy finish, when Town could and really should have perhaps been out of sight far earlier.
It was however another 3 points and a clean sheet, helping to reach the top of the table for the first time this season.
Teddy Reynolds, Micky Purcell, Ben Jones (capt), Dan Heald, Necati Gench, Bilal Sayoud (Louie Remi), Blue Gallagher, Sam Chaney, Junior Mubiayi (Jamie Doyle), Liam Hope (Dante Mc Intosh), Brandon Adams. Unused sub : Duewaan Mc Kennon