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First Team - Match centre

Merstham
Kingstonian
F Saraiva (21'), T Henriques (89'), C Penny (93')
Full time
R Beckles (91')
Sat 23 Apr 15:00 - The Ryman Football League - Premier Division Attendance 266

That End of Season Feeling

A forgettable game at the Moatside sees home team Merstham take their chances to defeat Kingstonian 3-1.

Match report by Simon Grier.

Bright sunshine, a sparse crowd and little interest in the result. If it wasn’t so cold then it would have felt every inch like a pre-season friendly, as a Kingstonian side with nothing to play for closed their season off with another tame defeat, a fourth on the bounce.

Ks fans seemed to be paying as much attention to score updates on their phones as the action on the pitch. But tense battles for the league title and playoff berths at Hampton, Bognor and Needham Market seemed a world away from this low-key, laboured performance.

As it happened, Dulwich lost at Needham Market and just 82 points would have been enough to secure a playoff place. But Ks had long since fallen out of contention to capitalise.

Ks had a good chance in the very first minute when Andre McCollin slotted past the Merstham goalkeeper, only for a defender to rush back and clear off the line. But Ks created little more and then fell behind on 21 minutes, Fabio Saraiva capitalising when Rob Tolfrey was unable to claim a cross.

Merstham nearly doubled their advantage when Tommy Kavanagh, one of a number of ex-Ks in the home lineup, chipped Tolfrey from distance only to hit the post. Another ex-K, Arron Hopkinson, headed a McCollin effort off the line.

The half-time withdrawal of McCollin did little to inspire hope that Ks would make a comeback, although they had slightly the better of a generally lacklustre second half until a late flurry of action at the end. The goalkeeper did well to keep out a deflected Joe Turner shot and Dan Bennett headed home a Mitch Pinnock free kick but from an offside position.

Merstham got a penalty three minutes from time; we couldn’t really see why, and neither their goalkeeper who shrugged bemusedly when asked what it was given for. Charlie Penny stepped up, Tolfrey saved, but two minutes later it was 2-0 anyway when Tutu Henriques had a ridiculously free header from a corner.

Ks pulled one back somewhat shambolically when Turner broke free in the box, was dispossessed but it ran free and was then poked home with the goalkeeper stranded. Reece Beckles was contesting it but it actually looked like the last touch came from a defender.

At almost the precise moment that Twitter confirmed Alan Dowson’s Hampton had won the league, Ks conceded a third to Penny. It made little difference to Ks, although the win did secure Merstham a top half finish in the league. Ks are good at securing top half finishes, we’ve managed it seven times out of seven since promotion back to the Ryman Premier. But the magic formula to reach Conference South still seems no closer.

Merstham: Josh Smith, Simon Cooper, Isaac Nehemie, Antone Douglas, Tutu Henriques, Kershaney Samuels, Laure Azeez, Tommy Kavanagh, Callum Willock, Fabio Saraiva, Arron Hopkinson.

Subs: Charlie Penny (for Callum Willock, 63m), Michael Abnett, Tom Howard (for Lanre Azeez, 63m), Ellis Brown (for Fabio Saraiva, 76m), Rae Bailey-Allen.

Kingstonian: Rob Tolfrey, Aaron Goode, George Wells, Lee O'Leary, Sam Page, Bruce Hogg, Dan Bennett, Ryan Newman, Peter Dean, Andre McCollin, Joe Turner.

Subs: Harold Odametey, Mitch Pinnock (for Ryan Newman, 63m), Reece Beckles (for Peter Dean, HT), Sean Bonnett-Johnson (for Andre McCollin, HT).

Goalscorers: Fabio Saraiva (21m, 1-0), Tutu Henriques (89m, 2-0), Reece Beckles (90+1m, 2-1), Charlie Penny (90+3m, 3-1)

Attendance: 266

Key moments

21:00
Goal Fabio Saraiva scores for Merstham
89:00
Goal Tutu Henriques scores for Merstham
90:00 +1:00
Goal Reece Beckles scores for Kingstonian
90:00 +3:00
Goal Charlie Penny scores for Merstham

Highlights

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90:00 +3:00 Goal 3 - 1
Charlie Penny scores for Merstham
90:00 +1:00 Goal 2 - 1
Reece Beckles scores for Kingstonian
89:00 Goal 2 - 0
Tutu Henriques scores for Merstham
82:00 Saved Penalty
Rob Tolfrey saves a penalty for Kingstonian
76:00 Sub Off
Fabio Saraiva is substituted off for Merstham
76:00 Sub On
Ellis Brown is substituted on for Merstham
63:00 Sub Off
Ryan Newman is substituted off for Kingstonian
63:00 Sub On
Mitch Pinnock is substituted on for Kingstonian
63:00 Sub Off
Callum Willock is substituted off for Merstham
63:00 Sub On
Charlie Penny is substituted on for Merstham
63:00 Sub Off
Lanre Azeez is substituted off for Merstham
63:00 Sub On
Tom Howard is substituted on for Merstham
45:01 Sub On
Sean Bonnett-Johnson is substituted on for Kingstonian
45:01 Sub Off
Peter Dean is substituted off for Kingstonian
45:01 Sub On
Reece Beckles is substituted on for Kingstonian
45:01 Sub Off
Andre McCollin is substituted off for Kingstonian
End of period 1
21:00 Goal 1 - 0
Fabio Saraiva scores for Merstham
Start of the game
Replay game

As it happened

  • Merstham
  • Kingstonian
  • 0
  • Fabio Saraiva Goal 21:00'
  • Peter Dean Sub Off 45:01'
  • Sean Bonnett-Johnson Sub On 45:01'
  • Andre McCollin Sub Off 45:01'
  • Reece Beckles Sub On 45:01'
  • Ryan Newman Sub Off 63:00'
  • Mitch Pinnock Sub On 63:00'
  • Callum Willock Sub Off 63:00'
  • Charlie Penny Sub On 63:00'
  • Lanre Azeez Sub Off 63:00'
  • Tom Howard Sub On 63:00'
  • Fabio Saraiva Sub Off 76:00'
  • Ellis Brown Sub On 76:00'
  • Rob Tolfrey Saved Penalty 82:00'
  • Tutu Henriques Goal 89:00'
  • Reece Beckles Goal 90:00 +1:00'
  • Charlie Penny Goal 90:00 +3:00'

Team selection

Merstham
  • 1. Josh Smith
  • 2. Simon Cooper
  • 3. Isaac Nehemie
  • 4. Antone Douglas
  • 5. Tutu Henriques
  • 6. Kershaney Samuels
  • 7. Lanre Azeez
  • 8. Tommy Kavanagh
  • 9. Callum Willock
  • 10. Fabio Saraiva
  • 11. Arron Hopkinson
  • 12. Charlie Penny
  • 14. Michael Abnett
  • 15. Tom Howard
  • 16. Ellis Brown
  • 17. Rae Bailey-Allen

League round up

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