Town finished off by clinical Borough
By Ken Brazier
Haringey Borough 3 Enfield Town 1
A game which had started promisingly, and had included some fluent Town moves and a good deal of possession, ended in bitter disappointment at Coles Park on Saturday writes Ram Ismail.
Five points adrift of fifth place with half a dozen matches left to play is now a tall, albeit not impossible, order for a coveted play-off spot to be achieved.
Town were on the offensive from the start, and home keeper Valery Pajetet kept out an early Mickey Parcell effort. There followed a succession of corners at both ends and, from one of these, the hosts only half cleared the ball, which Matt Johnson retrieved and played goalwards, and Marc Weatherstone got a touch from close range to open the scoring.
After Sam Hatton had cleared a dangerous cross played in from the Haringey right, Ryan Blackman and Kezie Ibe combined to play in Billy Bricknell, but his shot lack sufficient power to beat Pajetet. A good run down the left by Boro’s Kudus Oyenuga ended with an important clearance from Dan Rumens while, at the opposite end, Joe Payne charged forward but his shot flew way over the top.
After Town had been caught in possession in the 23rd minute the impressive Oyenuga curled a superb effort towards the top corner, which Matt Nolan did well to fingertip over. Approaching the half hour mark, Matt Johnson was yellow carded after he had brought down Dimitrius Froxylias in full flight. Fortunately for Town the consequent free kick from Coby Rowe was hit straight at the defensive wall.
After Blackman had forced Pajetet into a low save via the woodwork after 33 minutes, Bricknell shot straight at the busy Boro keeper. In contrast to Town’s measured approach, Boro were regularly breaking with pace and looking exceptionally dangerous as a consequence.
A pivotal moment came and went when, on the stroke of half time, a long throw was handled by a home defender in the box. Up stepped Bricknell, in search of his 20th league goal of the season, but his side-footed effort was saved by Pajetet to his left. Nolan kept out another Oyenuga effort just before the half-time whistle sounded.
Half-time: Haringey Borough 1 Enfield Town 1
Froxylas shot wide for the hosts from 8 yards out as the second half opened, and the same player then went close with a curling shot which hit the woodwork with Nolan beaten. Johnson beat Georgios Aresti to the ball and the subsequent move involving Lewis Taaffe and Ibe ended with Bricknell, who had an off day by his standards, shooting over. Rumens and Blackman were similarly off target, but Town had a let off when Froxylas put the ball wide after Nolan had spilled the ball.
A free header from a corner was wasted by Jorge Djossi-Sambu as Boro came back into it. After Nolan had rushed off his line to successfully clear a dangerous one-on-one situation, Taaffe hit a low fizzing effort which flew inches wide, just before he made way for Sam Chaney.
Pajetet saved an effort from Aaron Greene from a tight angle following some good build up play from Chaney and Parcell, while Boro were thwarted when Weatherstone brought down Karl Akinwande in a dangerous position. Then, with 8 minutes left, Akinwande was tripped by Parcell after some confusion between him and Blackman inside the visitors’ box, and the tale of two penalties ended when Nolan’s firm hand low to his left failed to keep out Joel Nouble’s spot kick.
And it was game set and match when, a few minutes later, Akinwande ignored the appeals for offside by a stretched, retreating back line and slotted the ball confidently past Nolan to his left.
Haringey Borough: Valery Pajetet, Rakim Richards, David Olufemi, Scott Mitchell, Mark Kirby, Coby Rowe (Joseph Staunton 80), Lyle Della Verde, Georgios Aresti (Jorge Djassi-Sambu (68), Kudus Oyenuga (Karl Akinwande 73), Dimitrius Froxylas, Joel Nouble. Unused subs: Curtis Jackson, Charley Barker.
Enfield Town: Matt Nolan, Sam Hatton, Dan Rumens, Matt Johnson, Marc Weatherstone, Joe Payne (Aaron Greene 59), Mickey Parcell, Ryan Blackman, Billy Bricknell, Kezie Ibe (Josh Davison 78), Lewis Taaffe (Sam Chaney 72). Unused subs: Jay Porter, James Mulley. Booked: Johnson, Weatherstone.