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  • Writer's pictureRobert Austin

Berks & Bucks FA Sunday Trophy Match Report (23/10/2022): Bracknell Saint-Germain vs. Hype Train FC

Hype Train FC will be playing across both Saturday and Sunday next season, with the team primarily competing in the Reading & District Sunday League. You can follow all of the team's season coverage right here as we provide match reports and photo galleries from our fourth season as a club! All aboard.

Match Report: Hype Train FC

Date: Sunday 23rd October 2022

Competition: Berks & Bucks FA Sunday Trophy (10:30am KO)

Opposition: Bracknell Saint-Germain

Location: St Crispin's School, London Road, Wokingham, RG40 1SS

Final Score: Bracknell Saint-Germain 1-8 Hype Train FC

Photographer: Paige Alexander

Match Report:

The train's encounter against Bracknell was the team's 6th competitive outing of the 2022/23 season, with the team on the road to St Crispin's School in Wokingham in the BBFA Sunday Trophy. This was the club's first Sunday League away encounter to the wider Reading area, and our first away outing in county cup competition on Sunday's.

Perhaps the biggest talking point was the anxious wait prior to the game starting if the game was going to be going ahead. Torrential rain the night before, and heavy rain until 10:30am, the referee showed up a few minutes before kick-off, leaving both teams stood in the rain for nearly an hour as we held our breath - fortunately, another game was called off on the ground and we were able to play on a pitch that was playable, and dried up quickly as the sun started shining and dried up the pitch well before half-time.

As for the game itself after a quick warm-up, the team took a decisive lead after 15 minutes on the clock. The opening goal only took 8 minutes to arrive and started when Owen Bowbrick played Leon Mannion down the right channel, cutting the ball back to a defender that set the ball for Brad Matthews to strike on goal - the rebound fell to Cosmin Huhulea, who turned a defender before smashing a rocket into the top-right corner to opening the scoring.

A second goal only took until the 12th minute after the team had won a series of corner kicks. Owen Bowbrick fired in a corner that flashed in front of the BSG goalkeeper, with their shot-stopper punching the ball into his own net to double our lead.

Our good start got even better during the 16th minute when the team worked a Tom Williams set-piece, that was only cleared to the edge of the box and picked up by Williams again - the midfielder cut in and fired a stinging shot that was only parried to the head of Brad Matthews to tuck in a header from close range, ensuring a first goal on Matthews's first start for the club!

The team were made to wait for our next goal, but it was worth the wait after some good work by Mannion and Alvin Mugabe on the left eventually drew a corner for the team. Huhulea's corner was cleared out to the edge of the box, which saw O. Bowbrick pick up the ball, cut in on his left, and deliver a calm finish to the top-right corner - a top finish on his weaker foot from the Number 10!

The team's scoring for the first-half was complete when Mannion, who changed his boots just minutes before the 5th, stayed out left as Huhulea picked out the attacker with a fine pass. Mannion beat several men with skill and pace, glided into the penalty area before shooting at the near-post from an acute angle to see the team out of sort on the stroke of the 36th minute.

The half wasn't without a fault though as the hosts were given a penalty kick after Joe Sawyer fouled the BSG left midfielder inside the penalty area after the attacker cut a ball across the box - with the eventual shot blocked by Eme Boateng - though the referee pointed to the spot as he didn't see enough of an advantage. The resulting penalty was tucked into the left of Jamie Halsall's goal as our hopes of a clean sheet evaporated.

The second-half saw less goals, but an improved from the team that saw us hold the ball better and create a host of opportunities, with a 6th goal arriving during the 55th minute. A good passing sequence led to Williams picking up the ball at the halfway line and providing an inch-perfect through ball with the outside of his right foot, setting Mannion through on goal, who beat the BSG keeper to net a second goal on the day.

The team's pressure paid off even more during the 63rd minute when Mannion and Mugabe linked down the left again, with Mannion finding Mugabe inside the penalty area, who then cut back to O. Bowbrick - the winger then beat several players with skill before finishing off the nice move with a composed and low finish past the goalkeeper.

The team's 8th and final goal on the day arrived in the 76th minute when another one-on-one for Mannion was converted again - Mannion's 66th competitive goal for the club - this time after Huhulea won the ball back after a loose pass, before freeing the Number 9 with a calm pass to claim his 7th assist of the season in 6 games.

The result means that we have started the season with 5 wins and 1 defeat, and have advanced through in both cup competitions on offer for the team in our Sunday League season. Next up for the train, we face Sanctuary Strikes at home in RDSL Division 3 on Sunday 30th October 2022.

Thoughts from Club Secretary, Robert Austin:

"This morning was a bit of a landmark match for the club, as we have never had to sweat over a game of football being so much in our 4 years as a club. No one on either team was at all ready, just waiting in suspended animation in the pouring rain until we finally got the go ahead to play.

With a quick turnover once the game was confirmed, we got in some goals early but never really settled our play down until the second-half, which is when we play our better football without debate. The quality of our goals was also top-class, our build-up play got better as the game went on, and we largely controlled the game. All we have to stamp out is some off moments inside the penalty area as we've now conceded a penalty every other game - if we tighten up slightly we would have left Jamie in goal without much to do, apart from one good save to his right late on in the game - but overall it was a game that we're happy to have gotten over the line as there's nothing worse than a backlog of county cup games!

Every day is a learning curve for the team, even when we win 8-1, and I believe we applied ourselves a lot better today than in previous games when winning by a margin. We're looking forward to some tough games later on in the cup as we want to challenge ourselves against the top teams in the county.

I'd like to pass my thanks onto Bracknell for hosting a game in tough conditions as it’s never easy, and not only that, going throughout most of the game with a bare bones squad. They never gave up, played an honest game until the end and before the game were a top bunch of lads to speak too as we collectively waited in the rain for the referee to arrive. Best of luck to them in the Bracknell league this season!"

Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad

Management Team: Robert Austin, Jon Watkins

Starting 11:

GK: Jamie Halsall

DEF: Joe Sawyer (Matthews 70')

DEF: Liam Bowbrick

DEF: Josh Watkins

DEF: Emmanuel Boateng (Austin 65')

MID: Owen Bowbrick

MID: Cosmin Huhulea (Bolwell 46')

MID: Tom Williams (Huhulea 70')

MID: Brad Matthews (Parr-Jones 46')

MID: Alvin Mugabe

FOR: Leon Mannion


SUB: Robert Austin

SUB: Callum Parr-Jones

SUB: Sam Bolwell

Goals & Assists:

Goal 1: Huhulea (goal), Matthews (assist)

Goal 2: Own Goal, O. Bowbrick (assist)

Goal 3: Matthews (goal), Williams (assist)

Goal 4: O. Bowbrick (goal), No assist

Goal 5: Mannion (goal), Huhulea (assist)

Goal 6: Mannion (goal), Williams (assist)

Goal 7: O. Bowbrick (goal), Mugabe (assist)

Goal 8: Mannion (goal), Huhulea (assist)

Want to know more about The Hype Train?

The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in general football and Fantasy sports reporting, starting with Fantasy Premier League (FPL), before expanding to MLS Fantasy coverage in 2018.

We pride ourselves in providing beautiful graphics, statistics, in-depth analytical reporting and free weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb rankings tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review games, live sport, and professional wrestling.

In 2019, Hype Train Football Club was formed, becoming the first Fantasy Football website to take to the field. HTFC is a socially active team across social and web channels, providing regular match highlights, match reports, comprehensive player statistics and unique player profiles. We won both Goal of the Season Awards in the Berkshire and County FA regions, with Callum Parr-Jones winning the Berks & Bucks FA award, whilst Martin King won the PlaySport UK award.

In 2021, we formed the Reading Sunday Social League (RSSL), a competitive Sunday League involving 8 teams in its debut season. During the 2021/22 season, we won our first-ever trophy, lifting the East Berkshire Football League's Presidents Cup!

The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog' in 2016 by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), and were again shortlisted as a finalist in 2019 in the 'Best Fantasy Football Blog' category.

You can follow us on Twitter, Like us on Facebook, follow Hype Train FC on Instagram, subscribe to our YouTube channel for exclusive content, visit our club's dedicate website, or visit our website here at

Believe The Hype!


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