Frimley Green FC
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Combined Counties League Premier Division South
Tuesday February 28, 2023, 7:45 pm
The Frimley Green Recreation Ground
Combined Counties League Premier Division South
Frimley Green are amongst a cluster of Combined Counties football clubs in the Farnborough and Aldershot area. Camberley Town is a couple of miles to the north whilst Cove is a similar distance to the west. They play on the local Recreation Ground which also incorporates tennis courts and a cricket pitch.
They have had a somewhat “yo-yo” existence in the Combined Counties’ League. Initially entering in 1981 they played in it for thirteen seasons, never finishing higher than eighth, before dropping out after finishing bottom in 1994.
After nearly a decade away they returned in 2002 but after escaping relegation in 2006, having finished eighteenth of twenty-one teams, they were demoted anyway as their ground failed to reach the required standard.
Frimley Green won the Division 1 title in 2013 and returned to the Premier Division for two seasons before finishing bottom again. A runners-up spot in 2019 saw them return to the Premier Division where the first abandoned season was more successful than the second, in which they had only three wins and two draws in the thirteen league matches that they completed.
Last season they went out in their first match of the F.A. Cup, but won through four rounds of the F.A. Vase before going out in the last sixty-four, which gave them exemption to the First Round this season. In the league they finished seventeenth with a 11-5-22 47-86 record, but never looked as though they might be relegated.
This season is a different matter and they have been in the relegation zone all season. They are now adrift at the bottom, 13 points from safety, and have seemingly accepted their fate. Frimley Green have now put their faith in a young side and are in the process of rebuilding for next season.
No player who started at Springfield four months ago was still in the squad and none of their players had made more than 17 appearances this season. One of those was goalkeeper, Chris Harris, who captained the side.
They had picked up their first win in sixteen matches on Saturday at Farnham Town when they had snatched a goal and defended it grimly. Their league record is now 3-3-20 27-75 and they lost heavily in their first match in both the F.A. Cup and the F.A. Vase.
James Queree and Luke Campbell were both on holiday so Jay Giles had the armband. Kamen Nafkha was unavailable as was Francis Lekimamati, injured at Badshot Lea. In to midfield came substitutes at Badshot, Joe Kilshaw and Jonny Le Quesne. Also starting were Sammy Sutcliffe and Miguel Carvalho who both stayed on the bench throughout Saturday’s match.
Carvalho had scored a full debut hat-trick in the reverse fixture four months ago when Jersey won 6-2. On the bench were Adam Trotter, Sammy Henia-Kamau and John Lloyd.
On another chilly (6C) evening Jersey chose to play with the cold northerly wind behind them. Therefore, the hosts kicked-off attacking the Worsley Road end on a very dry and bumpy pitch for this final February fixture.
Jersey dominated the match, scoring twice in the first half, with five more after the interval. It could easily have been double figures.
Miguel Carvalho obviously has a liking for the opposition and he spent the early part of the match tormenting them down the left channel. However, nothing clear cut emerged until midway through the first half. Carvalho then put Giles in on the left byline. Giles put the ball across the face of the goal where Fraser Barlow, in his last game before his three-match suspension after being sent off on Saturday, fluffed his lines. Fortunately, top scorer Lorne Bickley at the back post was present to stab home from a couple of yards and give Jersey the lead.
Carvalho looked intent on scoring himself three minutes later as he jinked through the centre of the Frimley defence only to be hauled down a couple of yards outside the box by Hudson Friday. It should have been the Long Good(bye) Friday but referee Joe Wright was lenient and Friday escaped with just a caution.
On the half hour Bickley struck again. Put away by Le Quesne down the right channel he coolly put away the opportunity past the advancing Harris and still had an hour to look for a hat-trick.
At the interval Carvalho was replaced by Henia-Kamau in order to keep them both fresh for Sunday’s Junior Muratti in Guernsey.
Early in second half Watson lobbed a free kick high into the box. Bickley approached and Harris took his eye off the ball punched the striker instead of the ball. Barlow was the quickest to react and pounced to give the Bulls a three-goal cushion.
Frank Tobin, who spent the second half checking how his beloved Bristol City were getting on in their F.A. Cup tie with Manchester City, had a chance to break his Jersey goalscoring duck but rushed it and was left to smile ruefully.
Nevertheless a more difficult chance arrived for him just after the hour and he took it with aplomb. Giles hit a long ball in from the left which he chested down at the far post and finished emphatically. It had taken 38 games and 2,729 minutes but was worth waiting for.
It was now a question of how many Jersey might score. The fifth goal arrived five minutes later. In the same move Barlow, and then Henia-Kamau, were brought down in the box and whilst the former was waved away by referee Wright he could not ignore the latter. In the absence of Luke Campbell, Giles stepped up and gave Harris little chance even though the home ‘keeper went the right way, diving to his right.
Within a minute Le Quesne had added another. Giles pumped a long ball forward which looked overhit and Harris came out of his box to clear rather than let it run on to him. He only succeeded it mishitting it to Le Quesne who lobbed it back into untenanted net.
Giles was rested for the last twenty minutes with John Lloyd taking over and making his first appearance in almost three months. Van der Vliet took over the armband which was as much action as he had had for most of the night.
Man of the match, Tobin, ran on to a Sammy Sutcliffe pass down the right, reached the byline and centred towards Barlow at the near post. Barlow was closely marked but managed to flick the ball on for substitute Trotter to side foot home from near the penalty spot.
There was still time for Barlow to hit a post with a free-kick with ten minutes remaining and for Trotter to volley spectacularly over in the last minute. The match was good for the goal difference but there will probably not be such a one sided game all season.
Frimley Green 0
Jersey Bulls 7 (Lorne Bickley 21 & 30, Fraser Barlow 49, Frank Tobin 62, Jay Giles pen 67, Jonny Le Quesne 68, Adam Trotter 77)
Attendance – 88
Programme – T.B.A.
Frimley Green – Chris Harris (c), Oscar Donaldson, Ashley Noble, Liridon Daka, Hudson Friday, Tommy Loveridge, Layton Avenell, Finn Scott, Pemi Yakubu, Alex Afful, Matt Cooper
Substitutes – 12. Finn Aherne (for Avenell 56), 14. Alex Santos (for Yakubu 63), 15. Max Cunningham (for Daka 73), 16. Oliver Joint (for Cooper 63), 17. Abdul Samad (for Friday 73)
All Royal Blue (White trim to shorts): GK Pink/Black/Black
James Marshall (Interim Joint Manager), Gerald Donaldson (Interim Joint Manager), Roland Baker (Coach), Steve Lynch (Physio), James Reeves (Squad Member)
Jersey Bulls – Euan Van der Vliet (vc), Frank Tobin (wore 12), Jay Giles (c), Sammy Sutcliffe, Ben Le Rougetel, Joe Kilshaw, Fraser Barlow, Jonny Le Quesne, Lorne Bickley (wore 16), Luke Watson, Miguel Carvalho
Substitutes – 14 John Lloyd (for Giles 70). 17. Sammy Henia-Kamau (for Carvalho 46), 23. Adam Trotter (for Bickley 63), only three substitutes
Red/White/Red; GK All Yellow
Gary Freeman (Manager), Kevan Nelson (Assistant)
Frimley Green (4-4-2 R to L) 1; 2-5-6-3; 7-4-8-11; 10-9
Jersey Bulls (4-1-4-1 R to L) 1; 2-4-5-3; 6; 7-10-8-11; 16
Referee – Joe Wright (Ash). His 8th season officiating, the 5th with the Combined Counties League. Visited Springfield in March 2020 for the match against Bedfont and Feltham. Also in charge of our “home” match against Colliers World United last season when the fixture was played at Three Bridges.
Assistants – Sam Holland (Godalming) on the dug outs side and Ian Purvis (Windsor) on the park side, both on their first Jersey match.
Caution – Hudson Friday (FG) 24
Corners – Frimley Green (0) 0, Jersey Bulls (2) 3
Player of the Match Award – Frank Tobin
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